Many professional athletes enjoy wine, but few are as passionate about it as the subject of our cover story, NBA star Carmelo Anthony of the Portland Trail Blazers. In this issue, “Melo” shares stories from his 17-year journey in the NBA, an illustrious career that recently earned him the No. 11 spot on the list of all-time leading scorers.
Anthony’s interest in wine is not as well-known as his basketball career, but it’s nearly as long in the making. He’s been a student of wine for 15 years. He tells the tale of his love affair, from neophyte to evangelist, as he progressed from drinking white wine by-the-glass to becoming a serious collector and aficionado. Many star players in the NBA credit Anthony for sparking their own interest in wine, a dynamic that has made it the unofficial drink of the league.
But Anthony doesn’t preach wine to just his teammates and competitors. With the debut of his YouTube TV show, What’s in Your Glass?, he brings wine and conversation to a diverse group of viewers. With around 140,000 followers, his show has attracted a wide fanbase with its eclectic roster of guests from the worlds of sports, entertainment, restaurants and more. Anthony’s charisma and sincerity make him almost as much of a natural on camera as on the court. Some of his YouTube videos have garnered more than 1 million views.
At the top of the list of Anthony’s favorite wines are the Pinot Noirs of Burgundy. And devotees of these wines will find much to look forward to with the release of the 2018s, which senior editor Bruce Sanderson analyzes in his report beginning on page 60. Sanderson rates the vintage 93 points in the Côte de Nuits and 92 points in the Côte de Beaune, which is especially notable for its bountiful values in this vintage. Trophy hunters will find plenty of must-have bottles recommended.
In a more personal look at Burgundy, contributing editor Robert Camuto interviews Jean-Nicolas Méo, who propelled his family estate in Vosne-Romanée to the pinnacle of the elite region. Camuto also traces Méo’s path to Oregon, where the Burgundian now adds Pinot Noir from top appellations in the Willamette Valley to his portfolio under his Nicolas-Jay label.
And after a long winter, we’re excited to get outside and welcome spring. To inspire us, energetic chef José Andrés is serving up a number of garden-inspired dishes from his new book, Vegetables Unleashed. Too often considered merely a side dish, vegetables take center stage in these flavorful and healthful recipes, made even better by pairing with Sherry and Spanish whites. However, they could work equally well with a vibrant tequila cocktail featuring perfectly matured reposado tequila. You’ll learn more about this style, and how it features in some classic drink recipes.