Archive for July, 2014

Wine Reviews: Weekly Mini Round-Up For July 7, 2014

Vinted on July 7, 2014 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!

  • 12 Longoria Lovely Rita Pinot Noir (Sta. Rita Hills): Not exactly lovely, but it's mete-ring out rich berry fruit & 'maid' to please. $32 B+ >>find this wine<<
  • 11 Longoria Fe Ciega Vineyard Pinot Noir (Sta. Rita Hills): Like an abstract painting of a field, it's green in all the right places. $48 A- >>find this wine<<
  • 11 Longoria Tempranillo (Santa Ynez Valley): Well, it most definitely has got 'em, and it most definitely is smoking 'em, too. $36 B+ >>find this wine<<
  • 11 Dunstan Durell Vineyard Pinot Noir (Sonoma Coast): Poised to please, & to grow on you; the pleasure increases as the night goes on $50 B+ >>find this wine<<
  • 13 Dunstan Durell Vineyard Rose Wine (Sonoma Coast): Somehow, paradoxically, both somewhat reserved & ostentatious at the same time. $25 B+ >>find this wine<<
  • 11 Dunstan Durell Vineyard Chardonnay (Sonoma Coast): A bit too much showy jewelry and makeup, but a very pretty lady nonetheless. $35 B+ >>find this wine<<
  • 10 Cadaretta Cabernet Sauvignon (Columbia Valley): Deliciously, tastefully, crowd-pleasingly in the Now, & seems quite happy about it $40 B+ >>find this wine<<
  • 10 Merryvale St. Helena Estate Cabernet Sauvignon (Napa Valley): Tough for Cab to smell any purer, just needs a spring in its step. $95 A- >>find this wine<<
  • 11 Frei Brothers Reserve Dry Creek Valley Zinfandel (Dry Creek Valley): Muscles will be flexed, dried herbs smelled, & jam devoured. $20 B >>find this wine<<
  • 12 Clos Du Val Sauvignon Blanc (Napa Valley): About the only things missing from this tropical scene are the beach & the coconut tree $24 B+ >>find this wine<<
  • NV Lallier Premier Cru Rose (Champagne): Well-bred, intelligent rich kid cranberries with unspoiled, down-to-earth, spunky attitudes. $44 B+ >>find this wine<<
  • 11 Soho McQueen Pinot Noir (Central Otago): A slight misnomer; it's big, but much more nuanced than its Hollywood tough-guy namesake. $39 B+ >>find this wine<<



Crowd Pleasers For The Grill, From Cretans (Highlights From Wines Of Crete 2014 Tastings)

Vinted on July 3, 2014 binned in crowd pleaser wines, going pro, wine review

Last month, I had the pleasure of speaking about the native varieties of Crete at tastings in both NYC and D.C., organized by The Connected Table and Wines of Crete.

Minor pronunciation snafus aside, I had a blast introducing the trade to the grape varieties and wines on display at both events, and it’s exciting to see where Crete is taking things from a vinous quality perspective as they move out of their modern bulk wine phase, the irony of which is that Crete used to own the fine wine market in the Mediterranean for nearly 2000 years (much more on that when my feature on Crete hits the pages of the newly revamped SOMM Journal in the August issue; in the meantime, you can watch Nostos Wines’ Alexandra Manousakis – also in attendance at the tasting events – talk about Crete’s wine challenges).

Now that those gigs are behind us and the checks have been cashed (meaning I am off the payroll, so to speak, when it comes to Crete’s wines), I can give you a couple of quick-hit selections from those tastings, just in time for 4th of July outdoor grilling duty.

In this case, the recommendations are from bonna-fide Cretans, and not from a cretin (meaning me) as is usually the case here on 1WD (fine, whatever, I’ll cut it out); both hail from Heraklion, the center of winemaking on Crete (and just about the center of the island itself)…

Read the rest of this stuff »



How Bad Is The Wine Biz At Digital? According To This, Really, Really Bad.

Vinted on July 1, 2014 binned in commentary, wine industry events

My friend Paul Mabray, of Vintank, recently gave a speech at the 2014 Wine Communicators of Australia event. The topic was, roughly speaking, the digital divide in the wine world. You can read a transcript of the entire talk given by Paul here. And if you’re in the wine biz, you really, really need to read the entire thing.

Yes, all 70+ pages of it. Because this speech shows just how bad the wine biz is at digital right now. How bad? Calling the wine biz staggeringly, hilariously bad at digital is probably slightly understating the scenario a little bit.

This is the wine biz at digital in 2014:

And here’s what the wine consuming populace wants wine to be when it comes to interacting with them in the digital space:

The disconnect is immense, which is what Paul’s speech deftly demonstrates in the kind of blood-splattering, gory, Mortal Kombat (“FINISH HIM!!!”) detail that is representative of ass that the wine biz ought to be kicking when it comes to digital (but doesn’t). Now, while I certainly appreciate that there will likely be at least some complainy-pants moaning criticism regarding the details of this topic, please read Paul’s entire speech before levying them. Seriously, there’s that much ammunition in this lengthy but excellent talk.

Below I offer some of the money-shots from Paul’s speech (emphasis mine), that I think illustrate just how far we in the wine world have to travel before being able to collectively call ourselves up-to-speed on the digital consumption of wine media…

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