Posted: August 24, 2006 By James Laube
I’ve never wanted to be a restaurant critic. Having to eat, think, take notes and dine out night after night, or lunch after lunch, has never had any appeal. Too many rich, buttery, artery-clogging, pound-inducing, uber calories and late nights for me.
Posted: August 24, 2006 By Harvey Steiman
While Joël Robuchon is shaking up New York with his new Atelier there, my wife and I stopped by his Las Vegas version earlier this week. We were driving back to California from Colorado. Las Vegas, with so many dining options, makes a welcome stopover midway through the two-day drive.
Posted: August 24, 2006 By James Molesworth
On Monday night, I was at a Rhône tasting at New York’s Tribeca Grill. It started at 5:30. I got there at 5:35, and I was not the first person in the room. Not by a long shot. By 6:00, the place was packed.
Posted: August 23, 2006 By James Suckling
I had dinner the other night at Au Caprice des Deux in St.-Tropez with some friends before going clubbing. The food was fancy bistro fare, good and hearty, with lots of flavor. Most people had oven-roasted lamb crusted with parsley.
Posted: August 22, 2006 By James Laube
I still visit dozens of wineries each year, but usually only for work-related reasons. Come weekends or holidays, or even when guests arrive in town, I try to keep my distance from the cellars and tasting rooms.
Posted: August 21, 2006 By James Laube
George Taber stopped by my office in Napa on Friday. The Block Island, R.I., author is researching a new book, Battle For The Bottle , which is about wine closures. Specifically it’s about cork--its past, present and future (?)--and its challengers: synthetics, twist offs, glass tops, crown caps and whatever alternatives might emerge in coming years.
Posted: August 21, 2006 By James Suckling
You have to wonder how much prestige cuvée Champagne is consumed in dark, loud and smoky clubs around the world. I was in Les Cave du Roi last weekend in St. Tropez, and I saw buckets full of 1999 Roederer Cristal being consumed like bottles of Evian at a beach clubs during the day.
Posted: August 21, 2006 By James Molesworth
Every six months, I do an inventory on my cellar, if for nothing else than to catch all those bottles that I forgot I actually drank, ahem. It’s been eye-opening for me to see how my cellar has changed over the last two years.
Posted: August 18, 2006 By James Suckling
Something a little lighter than contemplating prices for 2005 Bordeaux futures: I just had dinner with the fox, and we were drinking a bottle of 2002 Petrolo Galatrona , the pure Merlot bombshell from Tuscany.
Posted: August 18, 2006 By Harvey Steiman
Len Evans died on Aug. 17 at the age of 75. The Australian commentator, winemaker, wine judge, raconteur and consummate host left a big footprint in the wine world. Read my obituary of him here. When I first met Len Evans, he was spitting.
Posted: August 17, 2006 By James Suckling
I received e-mails from a few close friends who are Bordeaux wine traders, and they were very skeptical of my blog about Blackberry messages full of offers of top-class 2005 Bordeaux, such as Pétrus and Le Pin.
Posted: August 17, 2006 By James Laube
When good friends come to town, there’s usually lots of wine and, as goes wine, always surprises. Earlier this week, on a school night, I hooked up with two old friends -- Andy Katz and Greg Gorman -- both of whom are extraordinary photographers and wine lovers.
Posted: August 15, 2006 By Harvey Steiman
We were dining at Montagna at the Little Nell, the A-list restaurant in the A-list hotel in Aspen, Colo. If you want to see celebrities and rich people, this is the place. It has a Wine Spectator Grand Award for its cellar and a new chef, Ryan Hardy, who came to the Nell from another enclave of the rich, Martha's Vineyard in Massachusetts.
Posted: August 15, 2006 By James Laube
I need help. I’m working on a story about California Pinot Noir, and I’m looking for a few wines that are no longer for sale to fill in a few gaps in my research. The wineries are Kistler, Littorai and Rochioli, for the Reserve Pinots, and the vintages are 2001 to 2003 or 2004.
Posted: August 15, 2006 By James Molesworth
I was in Massachusetts celebrating my sister’s wedding this past weekend. After the ceremony in the Harvard Memorial Church, we all headed up to Gloucester for the reception. During the party, I was (inevitably) asked about the wines being served – a crisp, tangy Fratelli Prà Soave Classico 2005 and a bright, refreshing Château d'Oupia Minervois Rosé 2005.
Posted: August 14, 2006 By James Laube
When winemakers ask me what’s new I often reply, well, lots. New brands are popping up like mushrooms on an over-watered lawn. Then I cite this figure (which we checked in our database): In the past year--August 2005 to August 2006--we recorded 261 new brands just in California.
Posted: August 14, 2006 By James Suckling
A wine merchant friend was staying with me for a few days, and I was curious to hear that he was receiving, via his Blackberry, offers for big bottles of rare and expensive 2005 Bordeaux like Pétrus and Le Pin….
Posted: August 11, 2006 By James Laube
A reporter from the New York Times called the other day to talk about ratings and reviews and the 100-point scale. (He said his story would run this Sunday.) How, he asked, does one determine the difference between a 92-point wine and a 91-point wine? Me: I liked one wine a little better than the other… Another thing he wanted to know, apparently courtesy of a comment from a producer, was how much time I spend analyzing a wine.
Posted: August 11, 2006 By James Suckling
I limped into the covered market in the Tuscan coastal town of Follonica this morning to buy some fresh fish with some friends. I say limped because I pulled my hamstring last night playing tennis on a clay court.
Posted: August 11, 2006 By James Molesworth
Spoke to Didier Virot last night at Aix. In addition to being a really good chef, Virot is also an avid and knowledgeable wine collector. He's unhappy with the '05 Bordeaux pricing, as it seems most other folks here in the U.
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