Archive for September, 2012

Cellar Masters In Peril As “Weeping Angels” Attack Barrels For “Angels’ Share” of Wine

Vinted on September 18, 2012 binned in Inebriated Press, wine news

Dispatch from The Inebriated Press

Cellar masters – those who toil in the barrel cellars of wineries everywhere – are being urged to exercise extreme caution when entering their workplaces, as reports of several deaths and disappearances of cellar workers continue to flood municipal law enforcement offices worldwide.

The fine wine region of Rioja – where nearly 60% of all of the deadly cases have been reported to date – seems particularly susceptible, though dozens of cellar workers in winemaking areas throughout the globe have disappeared without leaving a trace, usually after going to work in their dark cellars alone. Others (though a much smaller number) have been found dead with their necks snapped violently.

Barrels in the crime scene areas have excessive amounts of wine missing from them, an extreme case of what winemakers call “the angel’s share” – a portion of wine thought to evaporate during aging in wine barrels, requiring them to be periodically “topped up” with additional wine to keep the barrels nearly full. In many of the reported cases, sightings of life-sized stone statues of weeping angels among the barrels have been reported, only to later unexpectedly disappear without any physical evidence of break-in or other theft.

These strange events took an even more fantastical turn when the Spanish Ejército de Tierra, called into Rioja to assist local law enforcement in the ongoing investigation, installed motion-detection cameras at various points in the subterranean crime scenes near Rioja Alta…

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Wine Reviews: Weekly Mini Round-Up For September 17, 2012

Vinted on September 17, 2012 binned in wine mini-reviews

So, like what is this stuff, anyway?
I taste a bunch-o-wine (technical term for more than most people). So each week, I share some of my wine reviews (mostly from samples) and tasting notes with you via twitter (limited to 140 characters). They are meant to be quirky, fun, and easily-digestible reviews of currently available wines. Below is a wrap-up of those twitter wine reviews from the past week (click here for the skinny on how to read them), along with links to help you find these wines, so that you can try them for yourself. Cheers!

  • 10 Municipal Winemakers Syrah (Santa Barbara County): Blueberries in enough juicy quantity that it would make a fruit stand jealous. $27 B >>find this wine>>
  • 10 Municipal Winemakers Dark Red (Santa Barbara County): Considerably more dusty, juicy, spicy & rustic fun than its name implies. $27 B >>find this wine>>
  • 10 Municipal Winemakers Bright Red (Santa Barbara County): Aptly named, but also rustic, meaty & savory enough to get serious. $27 B >>find this wine>>
  • 11 Municipal Winemakers Blanche Chenin Blanc (Santa Barbara County): Pear, blossoms & as much bright fun as Chenin will let you have. $24 B >>find this wine>>
  • 09 Drake Entropy Pinot Noir (Bien Nacido): Working its hands away in the garden dirt, all the while wearing beguiling perfume. $55 B+ >>find this wine>>
  • 09 Drake Les Galets Laetitia Vineyard Pinot Noir (Arroyo Grande Valley): Kicking your ass w/ sweet spices, black raspberries & stones $55 A- >>find this wine>>
  • 09 Drake Pinot Noir H Block (Bien Nacido): Last vintage due to disease, but it’s making a sexy, pouting-lipped, dark-eyed exit. $55 B+ >>find this wine>>
  • 10 Fess Parker Crockett (Anniversary Release; Santa Barbara County): Syrah & Petit Sirah showed up with all the spices for the BBQ. $75 A- >>find this wine>>
  • 09 Fess Parker Rodney’s Vineyard Syrah (Santa Barbara County): Rodney likes his meat charred & prefers a stogie when the meal is done $49 B+ >>find this wine>>
  • 10 Fess Parker Clone 115 Pinot Noir (Sta Rita Hills): Generous, dark, plumy, tinged with herbs, & hot; bright enough to still shine. $55 B+ >>find this wine>>
  • 09 Fess Parker Ashley’s Pinot Noir (Sta Rita Hills): If you stay for tea at the finish, you’ll be staying for a very long time indeed $50 A- >>find this wine>>
  • 10 Fess Parker Riesling (Santa Barbara County): Gave you limes, pumped your gas, and then you got a sweet candy kiss at the end. $15 B >>find this wine>>
  • 10 Fess Parker Viognier (Santa Barbara County): Mouthful of melon, nosefull of white grapes & flowers, & a bellyful of happy. $25 B >>find this wine>>
  • 11 Epiphany Grenache Blanc Camp Four Vineyard (Santa Barbara County): Fruit basket, pretty white flowers, side of mineral water. $25 B+ >>find this wine>>
  • 10 Fess Parker Ashley’s Chardonnay (Santa Rita Hills): A pretty touchdown pass. & they successfully went for the two-point conversion $35 A- >>find this wine>>
  • 09 Clos Marie Manon Blanc (Coteaux du Languedoc): Melons, nut, & a floral sea breeze that feels like it’s just blown in from Italy. $26 B+ >>find this wine>>
  • 09 De Toren Fusion V (Stellenbosch): A red in the mood for a porterhouse steak; but it already practically *is* a porterhouse steak. $50 B+ >>find this wine>>
  • 10 Ken Forrester The FMC Chenin BLanc (Stellenbosch): Toasty, concentrated, funky & fabulous, should get Chardonnay lovers swooning. $65 A- >>find this wine>>
  • 11 Georges Duboeuf Domaine Jean-Ernest Descombes Morgon (Morgon): Plum, pepper, pith & pretty flowers; take it out for sausage pizza. $15 B >>find this wine>>



Weekly Wine Quiz: Who You Callin’ Sweet?!?

Vinted on September 14, 2012 binned in wine quiz

Welcome to the Weekly Wine Quiz, where things are about to get a little… sticky

Standard disclaimer: based on feedback from ever-so-vocal-and-intelligent peeps like you, I supply the quiz question each week, but I do *not* supply the quiz answer at first. YOU supply your best guess for the answer in the comments, and then tune back in later today in the comments section for the official answer. An answer which might again be delayed as I’m on the road for about the 1,927th time this year (or thereabouts) – your continued patience is of course continually appreciated!

Who You Callin’ Sweet?!?

True or False: One of the best ways to pair dessert wines with dessert is to make sure that sweetness of the wine matches or exceeds the sweetness of the dessert.

  • A. True
  • B. False

Cheers – and good luck!

13 TV Episode 54: The Gina Gallo Interview (Tasting Through Gallo’s Signature Series Recent Releases)

Vinted on September 13, 2012 binned in 1WineDude TV, crowd pleaser wines, interviews, on the road, wine review

Wanna get inside the head of one of THE most powerful people in the entire wine world? Start watchin’ already – because that’s exactly what we do with Gina Gallo in today’s episode of 1WD TV. TV Episode 54: The Gina Gallo Interview

[ Editors note: For those not totally up on the current events in the love lives of the wine world’s richest-and-most-famous, part of the vid might get a bit confusing; Gina is married to Jean-Charles Boisset, scion to the largest negociant business in Burgundy and a man best described as a charming whirling dervish and with whom Gina has recently sired twin baby girls. Incidentally, JCB makes me look like I’m standing still, which those who know me will understand isn’t all that easy to do! ]

I caught up with Gina at the 2012 Sonoma Wine Country Weekend’s Taste of Sonoma event, and we talk about what it takes to get motivated to work when you’re so rich that you could have somebody killed and buried at the bottom of the Russian River and not have anyone ever know a thing about it.

If you’re interested in what that wine we were drinking in the video was like, by the way, read on

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