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james laube's wine flights archive

Photo by: Greg Gorman
James Laube

July 2007

Reflecting on Winiarski and Stag's Leap Cabernets
Posted: Jul 31, 2007 1:04pm ET
The sale of Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars ends an era—even if founder Warren Winiarski refuses to use the word "sale," calling the winery's changing of hands a "transition" instead.  That manipulation of semantics is classic Winiarski.
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Catching Up on a Few Recent Items
Posted: Jul 30, 2007 4:20pm ET
I’ve been on the road for most of the past two weeks, so today I'd like to use this space to follow up on a couple of recent blog posts. My experiment with freezing wine was successful—not once, but twice—but it came with an unexpected surprise.
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Attitude Can Spoil a Dinner, Too
Posted: Jul 27, 2007 4:27pm ET
We were finishing the last of a three-course dinner last night (out of town), and one of my friends decided that we should try the 2004 Goats Do Roam , a South African Syrah that’s gotten good reviews.
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A Wine Haven in Surf City
Posted: Jul 23, 2007 12:31pm ET
We caught the first albacore, a hefty 30-pounder, just as dawn broke. The mighty tuna, captured 50 miles off the coast of Mexico, was caught on a lure anglers call a "Mexican flag" for its vibrant red, white and green colors.
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Is Pizza the Perfect Wine Food?
Posted: Jul 20, 2007 12:14pm ET
Is there a perfect food, or ideal meal, that’s versatile enough to work with every wine? My friend Pizza Larry thinks so. As his nickname suggests, he thinks the pie is the perfect “food,” since just about anything can be put on a pizza.
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2004 Cabernets Get a Chilly Reception
Posted: Jul 18, 2007 12:20pm ET
I’m off for a few days, and in the spirit of research, I’m putting a trio of 2004 Napa Valley Cabernets in the freezer. Nothing wrong with the wines: they’re great and were part of a recent blind tasting.
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A Close Look at a Controversial Closure
Posted: Jul 16, 2007 3:45pm ET
It’s too bad a book on corks can’t solve the billion-dollar TCA problem in cork that ruins so much good wine. But at least it can get you thinking, or rethinking, your position on the controversial stopper.
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More on Grapes and Wine, With Christian Moueix
Posted: Jul 12, 2007 2:51pm ET
My time yesterday with Christian Moueix, of Dominus, was so informative that I thought I'd share more details from our discussion with you today. Winemakers everywhere are fighting higher alcohol levels in wine, and Moueix is no exception.
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A Day at Dominus
Posted: Jul 11, 2007 1:33pm ET
Yesterday I caught up with Christian Moueix of Dominus , in the now-chic Napa Valley hamlet of Yountville. It's always fascinating spending time with Moueix. He brings a unique perspective to Napa Valley wine—his roots are in Bordeaux’s Right Bank communes.
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Why Winemakers Seek Greener Pastures
Posted: Jul 10, 2007 11:56am ET
In response to one of my recent blogs , an industry veteran questioned why winemakers in California change jobs. He also asked about my thoughts on the vintner-winemaker “power-relationship.” Winemakers seek greener pastures for new opportunities, manifested in many ways, not the least of which is money.
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A Three Dog Night in Sonoma
Posted: Jul 9, 2007 12:21pm ET
Midway through what amounted to a cellar cleansing, my friend Ms. V sighed, “God, do I have a lot of swill in here or what?” Ms. V is a hip wine drinker, with a first-class collection and plenty of gems, stored under prefect cellar conditions in her home in Sonoma.
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Beware of the Heat
Posted: Jul 6, 2007 12:04pm ET
In the spirit of brevity, with hot weather upon us, now is the most dangerous time of year to ship or receive wine. Heat is wine’s greatest enemy, and even a few minutes of sizzling sunshine can ruin your prized possessions.
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How Two-Buck Could Have Won
Posted: Jul 5, 2007 1:54pm ET
People can accept the fact that Two-Buck Chuck Chardonnay is a decent wine at an incredible price. But the best Chardonnay in California ? That’s harder to swallow. This isn’t a rant against wine competitions.
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July 4 Wines: Patriotic or Independent—or Both?
Posted: Jul 2, 2007 12:05pm ET
Should Independence Day cause us to be patriotic and celebrate with American wines like Zinfandel, an obvious choice? Or should we embrace independent thinking and try something completely new, whether it’s from the good old US of A or beyond our shores? If you decide to focus on homegrown wines, try uncorking and drinking one that you’ve never tried.
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