Archive for September, 2014

Is That A Wine Book In Your Pocket, Or Are You Just Happy To Be Reading The September 2014 Wine Article Roundup?

Vinted on September 30, 2014 binned in going pro

Well… I’m not exactly sure how to follow up that title, so let’s just jump into it; forthwith are the articles I published this past month:

Three Things You Didn’t Know About Portuguese Wine – I’m scheduled to do some touring (and speaking) in Portugal in November, and in boning up on all things Portuguese for that trip, I came across a few trivia tidbits that fascinated me (because, well, I am a nerd).


Three Things You Didn’t Know About Chablis – My next contribution over at will be a vinous tour of some of the levels of Chablis. As a primer, here are some interesting facts about the wine snob’s wine snob’s favorite Chardonnay region. Yes, I did two of these in September; sorry, I have so much fun learning as I research them that I can’t help myself, alright?


Wine Book Review: “Hugh Johnson’s Pocket Wine Book 2015” – Does the world need yet another edition of this perennial little reference? Indeed, it does, as the format of this book, packed with an impossible amount of useful information for such a small footprint remains a winning formula (but if you have the 2013 or 2014 editions, you can probably hold off on replacing it for now, or opting for the digital version instead).


Wine Book Review: “The Essence of Wine” by Alder Yarrow and Leigh Beisch – Full disclosure, Alder is a friend of mine. Now, that wouldn’t stop me from panning his new coffee-table style wine book if it sucked, which it most certainly doesn’t. The short version is that this gorgeous book deserves the attention of budding and jaded wine aficionados alike.

Cheers – and happy reading!



Wine Reviews: Weekly Mini Round-Up For September 29, 2014

Vinted on September 29, 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!

  • 11 Swiftwater Cellars Pinot Noir (Willamette Valley): Looking for an excuse to use the phrase 'high-toned?' Well, now you've got one! $30 B+ >>find this wine<<
  • 11 Westrey Wine Co Oracle Vineyard Pinot Noir (Dundee Hills): Unfolding very slowly & deliberately in its crazy levels of freshness. $29 B+ >>find this wine<<
  • 12 Domaine Drouhin Oregon Dundee Hills Pinot Noir (Dundee Hills): Comes off soft & understated, but has intensity in its spicy soul. $40 A- >>find this wine<<
  • 11 Chehalem Reserve Pinot Noir (Ribbon Ridge): Juicy & focused, leading you on trails lined with tart red berries, pith & fresh herbs $66 A- >>find this wine<<
  • 10 Villa Maria Estate Taylors Pass Vineyard Pinot Noir (Marlborough): More tea than a Tetley plant, if those had dark berry orchards. $40 B+ >>find this wine<<
  • 11 Marchand-Tawse Gevrey-Chambertin (Gevrey-Chambertin): Acerbic & tough to know, but pretty to admire once you get past the defenses $50 B+ >>find this wine<<
  • 11 Domaine Dublere Pitures Premier Cru Volney (Volnay): Less sexy than typical Volnay, & more reserved, but equally apt at the table. $50 B+ >>find this wine<<
  • 12 Maison Ambroise en Rue de Chaux Nuits-Saint-Georges (Nuits-Saint-Georges): A lovely lightness of being, just maybe a tad too light $65 B+ >>find this wine<<
  • 12 Patz & Hall Gap's Crown Vineyard Pinot Noir (Sonoma Coast): If it's heft you want, heft – & mid-palate spice – you shall receive! $70 A- >>find this wine<<
  • 12 Navarro Vineyards Deep End Blend Pinot Noir (Anderson Valley): The blend is, for sure, deep; and so are the fresh, brambly fruits. $50 A- >>find this wine<<
  • 12 Donum Estate Carneros Pinot Noir (Carneros): Carneros flexing its more muscular side, and posing with focused, terse intensity. $50 A- >>find this wine<<
  • 11 Byron Monument Pinot Noir (Santa Maria Valley): Sometimes oak is not the spawn of Satan; here's 750 ml of powerful, balanced proof $60 A- >>find this wine<<



A Few Hundred Bucks Worth Of Cult California Cab, Definitely Not Made By Metallica Roadies (Tanner Dafoe Recent Releases)

Vinted on September 25, 2014 binned in kick-ass wines, sexy wines, wine review

Question: What do you get when you cross a law-school trained producer of films and commercials with a former professional mountain snowboarder?


In the case of Tanner Dafoe (named after Jeff Tanner and Rob DaFoe, the producer and snowboarder, respectively), you get some fairly complete and substantial Cabernet Sauvignon priced like the California cult red that it is, only (blessedly) with more acid.

What, you didn’t see that one coming?

That Tanner Dafoe can price their (very) small production wines (less than 200 cases for the most part) the way that they do (over $100 per bottle), and yet produce Santa Ynez Valley Cab so complex that the lofty price tag seems justified, is a bit of a minor miracle in the high-end CA wine world. Based on the uncorked contents of a large wooden box full of samples that I received recently from this duo, the hype surrounding their mini-cult endeavor ought to be entertained seriously, if not believed outright.

Even if the guys look like a pair of Metallica or Rolling Stones roadies (sorry, somebody had to say it… c’mon, just look at that picture!)…

Read the rest of this stuff »




Everything That I Know About Investing (I Learned From Wine)

Vinted on September 23, 2014 binned in commentary, wine appreciation

[ Warning: This post has very little to do about wine. But, it might just help to make you a millionaire. Your mileage may vary. ]

Back in March, when I let the cat out of the bag on my personal financial situation, I got a lot of interesting reactions. Most of them were of the attah-boy! variety, but since that time there’s been no shortage of questions coming to me in private about it.

Most of those are some variation on the theme: “how the f*ck did you do that?!??”

I am here today to tell you everything that I know about investing. Interestingly, I learned the most important aspects of it from tasting wine, though I am not trying to fool anyone that one will lead to the other in any meaningful way.

The bottom line is that after spending some countless hours delving deep into the pits of wine and tasting knowledge, I emerged in nearly the same place where I began, which is to approach the topic humbly, simply, and with a plan that lets me tune out the “noise” of scores or similar attempts at taste-making / gate-keeping that purport to tell me what is “right” or “wrong” to drink. When it comes to personal satisfaction, 90% of what we see in terms of wine coverage is more or less “wine porn.”

And after spending the last two years delving deep into the pots of investing and finance knowledge, I’ve come to the conclusion that successful investing requires almost exactly the same approach: ignore the porn.

Ah, simplicity, thy name is investing!

Here’s the skinny on how (in my somewhat learned opinion) 90% of those reading this can find success and wealth through investing…

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