Any winemaker can tick off the harvest hazards that make or break a vintage: birds, bears, rot, fires, bandits who pick/pocket your ripening grapes right off the vine in the dead of night, vandals who hack apart your winemaking equipment with a mace in misguided protest of trade policies—it's always something. This week, fall's fails came early to California wine country, when a truckload of red grapes took an unfortunate spill on a road in the area of Central and Chateau Fresno. The Paccar semi-truck was hauling two trailers of an unidentified harvest when it missed a turn in the wee hours Tuesday morning, and all went quite literally sideways from there.
“Our determination is that [the driver] was traveling way too fast for the prevailing conditions at that time,” California highway patrol officer Victor Taylor told Unfiltered, which sounds pretty open and shut. The driver received only minor injuries and no criminal charges; as for the escaped grapes, they almost rolled their way home to familiar territory—landing in the dirt just a few feet from a Fresno vineyard next to the road.
In recent years, talk shows have proved a fruitful testing ground for wine-related jokes and antics, whether it's John Oliver bag-guzzling (and bagging on) Long Island's finest or Amber Ruffin canoodling with koalas and knocking back Chardonnay in Australia.
Across the pond, they're called "chat shows," but the wine flows with no less gusto. The BBC's Graham Norton first dipped his toe in the wine world in 2014, teaming up with New Zealand winery Invivo to bring Sauvignon Blanc up to the stage. "The guys [from Invivo] got in touch, offered to give wines to our green room [on The Graham Norton Show], our guests, which is clever, good PR: famous people drinking your wine," Norton told Unfiltered via email.
A Sauvignon Blanc grew to an endeavor encompassing Shiraz, rosé, a podium appearance in the 2016 Wine Spectator Video Contest, and now a new "Blend It like Norton" video, in which Norton sits down with Invivo wine guys Rob Cameron and Tim Lightbourne, and a panel of beakers and flasks of vintage juice, to compose his 2018 wines. "It’s one of the days in my year that I really look forward to," said Norton. "2018 has been really good."
Norton also recently added a Prosecco, so that he may soon join Conan O'Brien in suffering show guests who shoot the corks off bubbly bottles all over his set.
After two successful seasons of the Emmy-nominated show Martha & Snoop's Potluck Dinner Party, it shouldn't come as a surprise that one of the hosts of the culinary romp is coming out with a new cookbook. What might be a surprise, though, is that it's not Martha Stewart announcing the release, but her laid-back co-host Snoop Dogg.
“You know it’s blazin’ up in my kitchen," Snoop explained in a press release about his new gastronomic tome, From Crook to Cook. "I’m takin’ the cookbook game higher with a dipped and whipped collection of my favorite recipes, ya dig?”
The cookbook features 50 of the rapper's favorite recipes, including OG munchies like baked mac 'n' cheese and chicken and waffles, plus some more elevated fare including lobster Thermidor and filet mignon. At least one cocktail—the Gin & Juice, named for the 1993 single from Snoop's debut album Doggystyle and likely also the two primary components required for the recipe—will grace the pages. No word yet on a "Peaches N Cream" dessert.
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