Archive for July, 2014
- 11 Blackbird Vineyards Arise Proprietary Red (Napa Valley): Ohhhhh…. I like herbs and blackberries…. I like toast and jam…. $45 B+ >>find this wine<<
- 10 Rodney Strong Rockaway Cabernet Sauvignon (Alexander Valley): Smokey club, dark shadows, hot jazz, strong drinks, sultry evening. $75 A- >>find this wine<<
- 08 Terlato Vineyards Devil's Peak Red (Napa Valley): Overall looking good but it's too late to hit the treadmill & shed that midriff $45 B+ >>find this wine<<
- 11 Michael Mondavi Family Emblem Oso Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon (Napa Valley): Smoooooth operataaaahhhh… Smoooooooth operatahhhhh. $60 A- >>find this wine<<
- 12 Isabel Mondavi Chardonnay (Carneros): Tasteful tale with a long, elegant ending, longer than the admission price would suggest. $30 B+ >>find this wine<<
- 12 Hourglass Blueline Estate Cabernet Franc (Napa Valley): Not all the characters will make it out of this darkly complex tale alive. $135 A >>find this wine<<
- 13 Hourglass Estate Sauvignon Blanc (Napa Valley): Encapsulating all that's right about NV SB, jettisoning everything that ain't. $40 A- >>find this wine<<
- 12 Hourglass Blueline Estate Malbec (Napa Valley): Big, but not letting go of its tastefully dusty, mineral, or tangy prettiness. $75 A- >>find this wine<<
- 12 Hourglass Blueline Estate Merlot (Napa Valley): Molding itself out of earthy clay with gorgeous, iron-like and plummy intensity. $75 A- >>find this wine<<
- 10 Rodney Strong Alexander's Crown Cabernet Sauvignon (Alexander Valley): The crown is a heavy one, & laden with dark fruited jewels. $75 A- >>find this wine<<
Disappointed that your wine sales aren’t seeing an impact from your social media efforts?
Then this study of the social media impacts experienced by nearly 400 U.S. wineries strongly suggests that you are approaching social media incorrectly. Which will come as a surprise to exactly.no-one who reads this big regularly.
A quick quote:
“The results show that 87% of wineries in the sample report a perceived increase in wine sales due to social media practices.”
That’s it, we’re done here, the end. Seriously, go read the summary, and then if you decide that you’d rather not increase sales, don’t bitch and moan if your winery or band tanks eventually.
The debate on this topic is over. If you still think social media has no/little place in wine, then in the words of Obi-wan Kenobi, “you are lost!” If that remains your stance, I cannot help you; go back to sticking your head in the sand in your flat, 3,000-year-old earth where humans didn’t evolve from primates and the climate isn’t warming.
Every once in a while, you get a gig that is so good, you just have to pinch yourself to test if it’s all real and you’re actually getting paid to have so much fun.
Such was the case at the 2014 San Francisco International Wine Competition, which wrapped up a couple of weeks ago and recently announced its results. Over 30 countries and 26 U.S. states compete in this competition, which is billed as America’s largest such international vinous battle royale. The pinch-inducing vibe came courtesy of my lucky draw in amazing wine competition panel-mates, which included cult winemaker Heidi Peterson Barrett (small tidbit of advice: do not get between her and shoe shopping!) and competition organizer Anthony Dias Blue. The latter meant, of course, that at some point our panel would probably be getting some of the better wines entered into the comp, and that indeed did come to pass when we kicked off the second day of judging and were greeted with the wine lover’s breakfast of champions: a stellar flight of mostly vintage bubbly.
Did I mention that I love my “job?” Well, I do.
As for the specifics: the judges were divvied up about 3-4 at a table, tasting several related flights blind, knowing basically only the residual sugar, grapes, and price points of each wine. A splendid time was had by all (at least as far as I could tell), and I was happy to have leant my judging palate to a competition that was so well-organized, well-run, and that represented such a stellar group of wine-biz-insider-type judges. As always, I felt that I was bringing the overall class levels down a few notches by my attendance, though I think I made up for it in humor (we laughed a lot at our table…).
Anyway, here are a few of the stellar picks from that stellar bubbly lineup that had my table more-or-less swooning..
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This weekend, I’ll be partying at attending the 2014 Wine Bloggers Conference in Santa Barbara, an area with which, I’m happy to say, I am now quite familiar, and where I have quite a few friends trying to make a living in this crazy wine business of ours.
During the first full day of the conference (Friday, July 11), I will be part of a panel discussion (along with wine industry veterans Steve Heimoff (formerly running the CA wine beat for Wine Enthusiast) and Patrick Comiskey (a friend, and a great writer and taster, from Wine & Spirits Magazine).
Our topic, as described by the WBC organizers:
How do we analyze a wine while capturing its unique story? Discover more about the sensory and analytical process employed by wine pros as they translate what’s in the glass into words on the page. You’ll refine your own strategy for critiquing wine while learning more about the complexities and insights behind wine evaluation. The discussion will be led by Steve Heimoff (former California wine critic for The Wine Enthusiast) and features panelists Joe Roberts (acclaimed wine blogger) and Patrick Comiskey (wine critic for Wine & Spirits Magazine) as they reveal the methods behind effective wine assessment and wine writing for the public.
Critical wine tasting is a topic about which I think way, way, way too much, as in totally-unhealthy-obsessive-compulsive levels of “too much…”
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