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Posts Filed Under giveaways

Do You Take Wine Notes? (Giveaway! 33 Bottles of Wine Pocket Notebook Edition)

Vinted on April 26, 2010 binned in giveaways, wine products

Well… do ya?

We’ve got another nifty giveaway this week (this time courtesy of Scout Books) to help stimulate some stimulating conversation about taking detailed wine tasting notes.

The thing is, I don’t do it.

I know.  I suck.

Seriously, though, I don’t take copious notes when it comes to tasting wine.  At massive tastings such as Premiere Napa Valley I certainly do take notes, because otherwise it would be hopeless – but those notes certainly aren’t detailed, and usually are just enough text to jar my memory, where the real tasting notes are kept.

In similar fashion, I don’t keep a very good written record of what’s in my cellar (personal or wine samples), tough I’d argue that the record in my brain is pretty damn good.

Fallible?  Certainly, but it doesn’t seem to be slowing things down on 1WineDude.com so I’ve no plans to change it.  But that doesn’t mean that I advocate anyone else mimicking my behavior; in fact, I preach just the opposite, I’ve spent a lot of time studying systematic approaches to wine tasting, and I think it’s essential for those learning about wine to record detailed thoughts on their experiences. I just don’t do it myself, in the same way that my band can play successful gigs without practicing – there comes a time when you get comfortable enough that you don’t need to do those things as often (though of course you still benefit from doing them!).

Which is where tools like Scout’s 33 Bottles of Wine come in – and we’re giving away a three pack ($12 value) of their way-cool tasting journal

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Wine and Music: The Latin Party With Italian Wine Edition (Giveaway!)

Vinted on April 15, 2010 binned in giveaways, Italian Wine, wine review

Alright folks – time for another giveaway, this week featuring a brand new release from leading World Music label Putumayo.  The new CD, titled Latin Party, is a funky, dance-infused, eclectic mix of tunes from Latin American artists, and features bands hailing from Cuba, the U.S., Peru, Columbia, Mexico, and Jamaica.

From the album press release:

“It includes a mix of boogaloo, funk, cumbia, son, salsa, ska and dancehall and spotlights cutting-edge bands and rising stars that pay homage to Latin music’s past while creatively moving it into the 21st century… features songs from New York-based hip-hop collective Brooklyn Funk essentials, Texas-raised Mexican-American musician and producer A.B. Quintanilla III (Selena’s brother), Peruvian salsera Cecilia Noël, multicultural French/Cuban collective Mas Bajo, Afro-Cuban group Luis Mangual y su Conjunto Mangual featuring José Mangual Jr. and from Colombia, three respected groups: salsa super group Fruko Y Orquesta, popular salsa band Orquesta Lo Nuestro and ska/reggae band Coffee Makers. The CD liner notes also feature a drink recipe by Food Network chef Daisy Martinez and an appetizer recipe by leading Mexican chef Patricia Quintana, owner of renowned Mexican restaurant Izote.”

And YOU can win a copy of Latin Party just by commenting on this here post!

Here’s the dilly-yo:

Leave a comment and tell us what wine would you pair with this album of funky Latin dance grooves?  At the end of next week, a winner will be randomly selected from the commenters using a super-secret, totally objective process that involves my dog (details are best left unexplained).  That winner could, of course, be YOU!

I’ll kick things off with my choice of wine pairing…

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Your Screwing Preferences (Giveaway!)

Vinted on March 15, 2010 binned in giveaways, wine products

I’m talking about corkscrews, people.

Geez, what were you thinkin’?  Honestly, this is about wine, it’s supposed to be sophisticated, right?  So get your mind out of the gutter already!

Since I read up on the topic of corkscrews in the excellent Pocket Edition of Wine For Dummies, I’ve been wondering what corkscrews people prefer.  Also, giveaways of some excellently cool wine gear are involved, so pay attention!

A few days ago, I had a visit from a buddy of mine who just passed his WSET Dimploma, and we got to opening, well, a lot of wine to celebrate.  My buddy is left-handed, and he has a left-handed waiter’s friend corkscrew, which doesn’t sound all that strange until you try to insert the thread of the left-handed corkscrew into a cork using the common right-handed approach, and then it more or less becomes a total mind-f*ck.  It’s like trying to tie your shoes backward.

I find that wine geeks (like me) tend to get almost religiously passionate about their corkscrews.  Or, in my case at least, passionate about the corkscrews that they don’t like.

My corkscrew of choice is the waiter’s friend model (portable & trusty), but I’ll gladly use any corkscrew that has a thread that will easily insert into the cork without destroying it. Which is why I despise “winged corkscrews” with an angry passion bordering on jihad; those things tear up a cork mercilessly, and I’m convinced the model was designed by someone who hates wine and thought it would be funny watching wine lovers chew on bits of cork while they were sipping their favorite beverage.  Jerks.

Anyway, today I’m teaming up with TrueFabrications.com, purveyors of wine goodies and accessories, to find out what corkscrew styles YOU prefer, and to give you free stuff! (read on for dets)…

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Marlborough’s 2009 Vintage, The Artists’ Lounge, and a Chance to Win a Kiwi Vacation

Vinted on January 12, 2010 binned in giveaways, wine review

Given that the Southern Hemisphere, whose “reversed” seasons give their winemakers a leg up on vintage releases, already have 2009s hitting the wine store shelves, it’s not too early to call the 2009 vintage for Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc a strong one.

I won’t go so far to protest 2009 as excellent for all of New Zealand, because I’ve simply not tasted enough ‘Kiwi’ wine (yet) to make a determination, but I can say that the `09 Marlborough SBs that have made their way into my sample bins have, for the most part, been very good and in some cases excellent.

Case in point is the 09 Drylands Sauvignon Blanc, which is absolutely screaming with passion fruit goodness and a quality finish that is much longer than I’d have expected at a price point under $15.  The QPR on that wine is just roof-busting.

Anyway, it seems that every big wine brand has some sort of social network initiative popping up these days, and New Zealand is no exception – Kim Crawford, who produce a few very good Marlborough wines, has recently jumped into the social networking game in a unique way with their Artists’ Lounge concept.  The interesting thing about the Artists’ Lounge is that Kim Crawford actually has four artists in residence as part of the community – a poet, a songwriter, a painter, and a photographer.  So if you’re into art and NZ wine, Artists’ Lounge might be a cool place for you.

If you’re into winning trips to NZ, then Artists’ Lounge might also be a cool place for you – from now through the week of January 18, members of the Lounge have a chance to win a trip to New Zealand by posting ideas for artistic inspiration in the member forums – the winning entries are chosen by the resident artists, who will create new art works based on the winning entries.

That seems like a pretty cool idea for a contest (and there are worse prizes than visiting the land where Lord of The Rings was filmed!).

More details available here: http://theartistslounge.clmclient.com/contest.php.

Got thoughts on the 2009 NZ wines, the land of Kiwi, or the Artists’ Lounge?  Let’s hear ‘em!

Cheers!

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