Posted: February 5, 2007 By Chuck Wagner
Thanks to a long line of family members who appreciated the beauty of this area, had a knack for farming, and loved wine both as a hobby and a business, the Napa Valley has always been my home. Thousands of tourists come to this region now to get a taste of a world-famous wine industry, but to me, it’s always been a farming community.
Posted: February 5, 2007 By Steven Page
After we docked in Fort Lauderdale, I flew to Cannes, France, for the annual Midem conference, the world’s largest music-industry gathering, where I’d been invited to speak. I’d boarded the cruise with a cold that no amount of vitamin popping, sinus irrigation, oil of oregano or echinacea could prevent.
Posted: February 5, 2007 By Bruce Sanderson
Two stops on this trip, one at a domaine, the other at a négociant, illustrated the purity, complexity and balance of Burgundy's 2005 vintage particularly well. Although all the domaines and houses I visited last week have made excellent and, in some cases potentially magnificent, wines, I was particularly impressed with the clarity and sheer beauty of the wines I tasted at Domaine G.
Posted: February 2, 2007 By Harvey Steiman
Australian vintner Michael Twelftree got into a taxi cab in Philadelphia last week. Hearing his Aussie accent, the driver turned to him and asked, "You Australian?" Then, without missing a beat, he added, "I love that Yellow Tail wine.
Posted: February 2, 2007 By James Molesworth
I sat down with François Lurton in my office yesterday to get caught up on his latest work in Argentina and Chile. Lurton is a member of a well-known Bordeaux family: His cousin, Pierre, currently manages Châteaus Cheval-Blanc and d’Yquem, while his father, André, still owns a few Bordeaux properties, including Château La Louvière.
Posted: February 2, 2007 By James Suckling
I drink a lot of Chilean wine while I am in Latin America. It always seems to be available. It’s well-priced, and the quality is very good. It also seems pretty indestructible, even in the face of the heat and humidity that characterize the places I travel to, like Cuba or Nicaragua, for Wine Spectator ’s sister publication, Cigar Aficionado.
Posted: February 2, 2007 By David Myers
I first started cooking at home, making small meals here and there as a college student. Some things have changed since then—namely, that I have my own restaurant. Work and travel can make home seem like a distant memory sometimes, but I do continue to cook at home as often as possible.
Posted: February 2, 2007 By Bruce Sanderson
I just visited Domaine Leroy in Burgundy, one of the highlights of my trip so far. Naturally, I had high expectations of the 2005s there—and I wasn't disappointed. “C’est magnifique,” said Lalou Bize-Leroy of the vintage.
Posted: February 1, 2007 By James Suckling
I was drinking a 2005 Concha y Toro Syrah Rapel Valley Casillero del Diablo a few nights ago in Havana in a small family-run restaurant called La Casa in Vedado, a nice and clean neighborhood in the city.
Posted: February 1, 2007 By Steven Page
The last few weeks have been a whirlwind of travel, at the height of cold and flu season. We spent four days at sea aboard the Carnival Legend, where we hosted the first annual Barenaked Ladies’ Ships and Dip cruise.
Posted: February 1, 2007 By Bruce Sanderson
I visited Domaine Jacques Prieur for the first time. There, I tasted a number of very pure, fruit-driven reds and whites. I sometimes found the wines a little oaky when tasted from bottle as new releases in New York, but the 2005s are very well-balanced.
Posted: January 31, 2007 By James Laube
I’ve been reading Johnny U: The Life and Times of John Unitas the past few days as a sort of mental preparation for Sunday’s Super Bowl. It’s a great read about one of the game’s all-time greats—and a must for any football fan.
Posted: January 31, 2007 By Harvey Steiman
Does the announcement that Riedel has come out with a new glass specifically designed for Oregon Pinot Noir strike you as funny as it does me? What's next? A special glass for Santa Ynez Valley Pinot Gris? Look, I admire what Riedel has done for wine glasses as much as anyone.
Posted: January 31, 2007 By Maynard James Keenan
Over the holidays I had a chance to get cozy with my 2006 juice. Touring has kept me at a distance from it all this year. For 2004 and 2005, I was around enough to know the stuff inside and out. So on this last break, rather than turning my brain off to the sounds of 24 on a DVD box set while recovering from the road, I crawled around my barrels for a few days.
Posted: January 30, 2007 By Larry Stone
I am frequently asked how someone interested in wine can become a sommelier. Let’s assume you already have a job in a restaurant, and want to take more responsibility when it comes to wine. When I am asked what is the most important organ needed in becoming a wine expert, it is usually implied that it is either the sense of smell or the palate.
Posted: January 30, 2007 By James Suckling
I read David Myers’ blog on his wonderful experience at Pierre Gagnaire’s restaurant in Paris, and how the French chef is genius. And I agree with him wholeheartedly. The guy is genius. The problem is that his brilliance isn't always manifested on the plates that arrive at your table, especially in his other restaurants around the world.
Posted: January 30, 2007 By James Laube
Today I’m the guest speaker at the Napa Valley Vintners annual meeting in St Helena. This is an association of 280 vintners bound by a mission to make Napa the best winegrowing region it can be, and it's one of the most powerful and successful organizations of its kind.
Posted: January 30, 2007 By Bruce Sanderson
I arrived in Beaune in time for lunch at the excellent bistro Le Gourmandin. I barely had time to drop my bags at my hotel in Nuits-St.-George before heading to my first appointment. I have already tasted nearly 100 wines from the 2005 vintage, so I will give you some of the highlights.
Posted: January 29, 2007 By James Laube
On Saturday, I met one of my wine-collector friends for lunch. Lately, we've been focusing on Pinot Noir when we get together, and despite our fascination with Pinot from anywhere, he delights in tasting older wines.
Posted: January 29, 2007 By James Molesworth
Over the weekend, I opened a bottle of Achával-Ferrer 's 2002 Finca Altamira Malbec (among other things), and it gave me a chance to reflect a little bit. When the wine was first released, I rated it 94 points (Nov.
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