Posts Filed Under going pro
This month, as part of my Answers.com gig, I penned a short article offering a selection of Halloween Wines Without the Kitsch. I mention it because, well, 1) it’s Halloween and 2) I like to piss off the people who have a near-apoplectic fit at the mere mention of holiday wine selections. [ Editor’s note: to those people – get over it; a lot more people want wine guidance over the holidays than don’t ].
Of course, that doesn’t mean that the holiday topic is sexy or isn’t almost entirely played out – in fact, every holiday wine pairing article I’ve ever written more or less boils down to “drink what you like, but most of all don’t screw it up by buying bad wine gussied up in cute packaging for the holidays.”
But because that’s too short of a sentiment for a paying article, we have to give it the ol’ college try, and so try I did. Look at it this way: if Halloween provides an excuse for people to explore interesting, otherwise-off-the-radar wine options like Bull’s Blood, or a familiar grape from a not-so-familiar region like Romania (now one of the top twenty wine producers in the world by volume, by the way), or a really good wine with a bad name (like The Dead Arm Shiraz), then I say what the hell, let’s go for it.
In any case, Halloween isn’t about trying to find a bottle of booze with a sticker of a werewolf or a zombie on the label; it’s about enjoying a glass of tasty vino about which you don’t have to think too much so that instead you can focus on important things, such as taking pictures of your daughter in her triceratops costume that you will eventually use to embarrass her right before her wedding many years from now (seriously… this costume below is pretty sweet…). At this point, I should add that one of my daughter’s imaginary friends is her “T-Rex dino husband” who “travels a lot for work” and “lives in a house on the beach.” Which I think bodes scarily somehow for my future as a father-in-law, but I’m not 100% sure about all of that yet.
Anyway… If you want werewolves and zombies, buy a Halloween themed thermos in which you can put that Bull’s Blood while you walk the kiddies around the neighborhood trick-or-treating, okay?
Cheers – and have a spooky, but safe, Halloween!
In the “this is fun, and you’ll learn something, but it’s definitely NSFW!” department, I recently appeared on Playboy Radio’s “Playboy’s Playbook” (which airs Tuesdays at 11AM PT), chatting about all things wine with host Kevin Klein.
Klein seemed to know quite a bit more about wine – and, more importantly, how it should be enjoyed and provide pleasure – than he lets on during the interview, but then I suppose we should expect that kind of comfortable focus on pleasuring oneself (and potentially others) when it comes to Playboy, right?
We chat about my Playboy.com gig, how to superstitiously order wine at restaurants, why wine critics aren’t actually out to totally screw you over, the all-important wine-and-panties connection, and why it’s important to always have a bottle of inexpensive but good quality Cava chilling the refrigerator, especially if you’re single.
You can download a copy of the interview here, stream it at Playboyradio.com, or listen via the embed below; just break out the headphones for this one, because it is NOT safe for within-earshot-general-public consumption (I did mention this was Playboy radio, right?). Oh, and leave the hangups and inhibitions at home before listening, okay?
And before you ask: yes, we’ll get back to more wine recommendations next week. In the meantime, pour yourself a decent glass of Cava and listen to the interview!
1WineDude on Playboy Radio’s Playboy Playbook – Chapter # 33: Wine Wine Wine
A quick round-up of some of my articles from last month’s Answers.com gig, for your tomato-tossing enjoyment.
Continuing the series on getting insiders to talk about what to expect from various varietal wines:
On the wine book review front:
Odds & ends:
I should also mention that at the very end of the month I managed to sneak in my first contribution to the Why The PLCB Should Be Abolished blog, a smack-down of a shill of an editorial supporting anti-privatization efforts in Pennsylvania. Not a paying gig, but I’m hoping that one will pay in karma points one day when the PA Liquor Control Board finally goes the way of the dinosaurs.
I’m not-so-freshly back from Cape Town, where last week I delivered the keynote address at the 39th annual Nederburg Auction. Somehow, my back survived the jaunt (though the sciatica and disk issues did some relatively serious damage on my anxiety).
Since the Nederburg organizers don’t invite keynote speakers back, I felt even less pressure than normal (and I don’t start with much in this regard to begin with) to censor my thoughts… and so I think I delivered on the promised “tough luv” messages about the difficulty, complexity, and insanity of the U.S. wine market, and my ideas on how South Africa can still “win” there.
The organizers were absolutely lovely people, the event was top-notch, and the hospitality beyond any reasonable sense of expectation. Also, I’ve now officially tasted impala and can now tell you that I understand why the big cats prefer to hunt those suckers down in Africa (after the lunch of it I had at La Motte’s fabulous restaurant in Franschhoek, I was ready to try to run a few of those things down and eat them raw myself).
Anyway, the auction itself was successful this year, with price per bottle up over last year’s event. Some amazing juice got auctioned off on day two during the charity portion of the event (including two bottles of 1981 Hill of Grace that were generously donated to the auction by Nederburg in my name… and no, I didn’t get to drink any of it). Below are some images that pale in comparison to actually being in the beautiful country of SA, and (eventually… hang in there!) an embedded video of me getting all Southern-Hemisphere-Keynote on everyone…
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