Posts Filed Under commentary

Silver Surfer Sighted near Napa! Constellactus (“Devourer of Wine Brands”) Approaches Earth!

Vinted on August 30, 2010 binned in best of, commentary, Inebriated Press

Special Report from the IP (Inebriated Press) – Constellactus, devourer of wine brands, appears to be heading towards Earth, with dire consequences for the planet’s wine industries.

Fueled by the mysterious “power cosmic” and a recent rise in market share, Constellactus Brands – devourer of wine brands and the largest wine producer in the known Universe – is expected to reach Earth in a matter of days, say world scientist and wine industry analysts.

“At this point, we know Constellactus is coming and we strongly suspect that he is interested in the wine brands of Napa,” Napa Valley Vintners Association Executive Director Linda Reiff told reporters yesterday at a hastily-organized press conference held at the Culinary Institute of America in St. Helena, CA.  “What we don’t know what brands here will survive – if any at all.”

The wine industries in Napa and Sonoma have been sent into near-chaos this week after multiple reports of local sightings of The Silver Surfer, Constellactus’ primary brand ambassador.  It is widely believed within the global wine industry that the appearance of the Silver Surfer heralds doom for the independent wine brands of that local area.  When pressed about whether or not the Sonoma wine industry – which has yet to respond publicly to the coming threat – should also be concerned about the coming of Constellactus, Reiff responded, “I am not aware of a wine industry in Sonoma… but if they are making wine there, then they ought to be very, very concerned right now. All we know is, wherever the Surfer goes, two weeks later that wine industry dies.”

Constellactus is widely feared throughout the known Universe for its seemingly insatiable ability to devour a planet’s entire population of wine brands, in some cases leaving the Profit and Loss statements of those brands a mere husk of their former selves and laying waste to their market positions.

The Surfer was last seen on Sunday, flying low across the sky in the Carneros region which straddles both the Napa and Sonoma American Viticultural Areas (AVA).  At first mistaken to be a plane or some type of experimental aircraft, the Surfer eventually slowed down his flight to the point where it could be photographed and confirmed to be the harbinger of its galactic master, Constellation.  The Surfer was largely unresponsive to the mass of reporters seeking comment and asking questions about the intentions of Constellactus, pausing only on Sunday afternoon to address the media with the cryptic statement, “All the wine that you know, is about to end,” before speedily taking flight towards the East…

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Step Forward For Big Brother, Step Backward For PA Wine Lovers

Vinted on August 19, 2010 binned in commentary

Last week, the excellent (and hilarious) Tom Johnson published an article titled “Pennsylvania, Cradle of Liberty” in which he highlighted a Pittsburgh Post-Gazette article about the expansion of PA’s wine kiosk device.

Besides Tom’s normally laugh-out-loud funny and on-point commentary, the post is worth a read (and a click-through to the article) if only for this well-meaning but (in my view) misguided quote in the P-G piece, regarding the expansion of the “automated” wine kiosks to more grocery stores throughout the state (emphasis is mine):

“I’m all for it,” said Marsha Cuffia, a member of American Wine Society of East Pittsburgh. “We should be up with the modern world.”

Call me crazy, but I don’t see how the use of technology equates to being modern, especially when it doesn’t go hand-in-hand with modern common sense.

For example, wouldn’t it make more sense to get “modern” by catching up with some more basic items than the technological marvel of the wine kiosk?  You know, lower-tech things like the free market system, and increasing profits across the state.  Before dumping money into a technology that requires over ten steps, a breathalyzer test, and takes two-and-half minutes to make a single purchase, I mean.

I know, I know… I’m a real pimple on the ass of progress, right?

I’m just not a fan of throwing tech (or money) at a problem when there’s potentially lower-hanging fruit.  Like being more profitable, offering more consumer choice, improving customer service, and (last but not least) getting a bit more in-line with the U.S. Constitution…

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Tattoo You: Hate Points? Get Some Body Art!

Vinted on August 10, 2010 binned in commentary, wine news

I don’t normally read press releases that are e-mailed to me (usually they are destined for the Delete key), but this one hit my (perpetually overflowing, groaning from the strain and taxed beyond all logical, sane measure) Inbox last night and it caught my eye for reasons that will appear obvious in just a minute.

First a bit of background: A few days ago, the Mutineer Magazine blog pointed out a unique contest being held by Washington producer Hedges Family Estates, in which they (HFE, not Mutineer) were offering magnums of HFE wine and other culturally-minded prizes to seven contest winners who would be chosen after submitting mission statements for the terroir of the Red Mountain AVA on Hedges’ Facebook page.

Oh, yeah – and also agreeing to tattoo the Red Mountain AVA symbol (a red triangle with sunbursts surrounding it) somewhere on their bodies.

No, I am not making this up.

In any case, it was substantiated by the press release that I received last night.  What really struck me, though, was not the call to ink (I’ve certainly got nothing against tattoos, and in fact have been waffling on getting my own for about, oh, four or five years now), but that the AVA tattoo itself was being proffered as an act of rebellious defiance.  Against the 100 point wine scoring system…

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