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Weekly Wine Web Wrap-up – V-Day Hangover Edition

Vinted on February 16, 2008 under wine news


Welcome to the post-Valentine’s Day Hangover edition of the Weekly Wine Web Wrap-up (where Dude highlights some of his favorite wine news items over the past week)!

Is it Getting Hot in Here, or is it Just Me?
You’d have been hard-pressed (ha-ha) to miss stories this week about the impact of global warming on the wine world, such as this nice article from the AFP. According to the report, the French in particular are in big trouble. The article does not state how the U.S. will save France this time around (we can only assume America will want to go for the “Bail France Out Trifecta” having already performed that service when France was threatened by phylloxera, and zee Germans…).

And the Winner Is…
Once again, Gallo is tops in U.S. domestic wine sales, shipping an estimated 66 million cases in America during 2007. That’s about 792 million bottles of wine, or 59.4 billion ml of our favorite beverage. The only comparison to that in the scientific world in terms of concentration is spermatozoa. Yuck. OK, let’s just agree to forget that I said that…

Yeaaaahhhhh
Looks like Tennessee is trying to do things right when it comes to Internet wine sales, according to this little blurb on TriCities.com. The article even cites the benefits that the state can reap by opening up their markets to Internet and mail-order wine sales. When will the other states listen to reason? Tennessee is showin’ you folks how it’s done (with good ol’ Southern hospitality)!

Boooooooooo
By contrast, Colorado is getting it way wrong, as liquor stores and grocery stores battle it out to see who will get the Sunday liquor business from the state’s consumers. Can’t we all just get along?

Never Judge An Appellation by its Label
If you think total wine consumption and wine sales are the only titles the U.S. is battling the French and Italians over for the #1 spot, you’ve obviously missed this SanLuisObispo.com article on the debate over proposed changes to their appellations’ wine labels. Because now it appears that CA is trying to catch up France & Italy in the battle of who has the most complex appellation and labeling laws. Drat.

The WORST News EVER!
This story is, like, the worst news EVER! I can’t even finish reading it… Oh the humanity!!! Close your eyes, Marion! Keep your eyes SHUT!!!

Searching for Wine 2.0
Finally, the San Francisco Chronicle has given some nice publicity to Doug Cook’s new wine search engine venture AbleGrape.com. Right On!!!

Cheers!

Wine Makes You Sexier (I’m just sayin’…)

Vinted on February 14, 2008 under best of, holidays, wine news, wine tips

(image: www.yandy.com)

And it’s not because the object of your desire becomes more desirable after you’ve put on the “wine goggles.”

According to a survey jointly sponsored by the Australian Wine Council and on-line dating service Match.com, having a healthy knowledge of the world’s most romantic beverage makes you more attractive, with those people preferring Italian wines being viewed as particularly “sexy” and “stylish.”

There’s still plenty of time for you to order up a copy of Vino Italiano and join us for the first Wine Book Club. Just sayin’…

Wine X Magazine (as reported by autumnilia) backs up the “wine = sexier” conclusion in an interview with sexpert Dr. Ruth, who tells us that wine is an essential element of foreplay (she prefers Beaujolais Nouveau, gewurztraminer, and CA white, so those may be some of the sexiest wine choices, seeing as how she’s a sexpert and whatnot- again, just sayin’).

Finally – If you’re totally desperate on this most Hallmark of holidays, Yahoo! Answers has a thread about what wine choices make a drinking partner appear the most attractive. Chianti and Sake got the nods there. Just sayin’.

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Weekly Wine Web Wrap-up – In-Flight Dining Edition

Vinted on February 9, 2008 under wine news

Welcome to the 2nd edition of the Weekly Wine Web Wrap-up, where Dude highlights the wine news stories of the past week (complete with snide Dude commentary, of course!).

Cover Globally, Vinify Locally
The highest profile wine news coverage of the week is likely this article in U.S.A. Today, which details the growing trend of ‘micro-brew’ wineries in urban areas that source their grapes and/or juice from rural vineyards. A handful of these wineries and their winemakers in NY and the midwest are featured by name (thus ensuring that their websites crash and their ISP demand additional hosting charges for their traffic overages).

“Pardon me, old chap, but can I have my $36,000 back?”
The UK Press Association reported this week of a Zafferano restaurant customer (in London) who returned a bottle of the legendary 1961 Ch. Petrus that cost the bargain price of £18,000 (about $36K USD), under the complaint that it might have been a fake. The restaurant told him that the wine was off-tasting anyway – a case of sour grapes, perhaps…?

Whew-yew! Now you can pay even more for Yellowtail!
ABC news in Australia reports the comforting news that the recent oversupply of cheap Aussie wine is on the decline, which should result in a halting and then reversal of the recent declining price trend for those wines locally. Presumably, they’ll be shipping those more expensive bottles of Yellowtail over to the U.S. since we seem to be drinking it up, even though most of them taste like plonk…


When We Got There, There Was No ‘There’ There
Don’t you just hate it when you fly to Bordeaux to visit the Chateau of your favorite French wine only to find when you get there that the place doesn’t exist? Me too. So do the British, as do the Fédération des Grands Vins de Bordeaux, according to this story in the Times Online. Apparently some Bordeaux wineries are selling wines under multiple labels, with specious references to non-existent Chateaus. The crackdown has begun in earnest against this practice – which has been outlawed in France since 1993. So to be fair we should give them about 20 more years to get things under control…?

Poisoning The Youth of Canada?
The St. Catharine Standard ran a story of a movement in Canada to introduce their younger drinking generation to Canadian wine. Youth that was weaned on Canadian wine? Does that include ice wine? Plus they have free health care, almost no crime, and legalized marijuana. Dammit, why couldn’t I have grown up in Canada!!!

“Does That Come in a Double D?”
Uhm… uhhh…, well, you just can’t make this kind of stuff up, can you?

A bra. That holds wine. You know what? Put Chateau Y’quem in anything and I’ll probably drink out of it…

U.S. Kicks Britain’s Butt Again!
And finally, despite the fact that British Airways has the venerable Jancis Robinson picking their wines for them, Fox reported that American Airlines bested the competition for in-flight wine quality in a recent international face-off (wine-off?). While it’s too bad that you may need several stiff drinks at 30,000 feet just to deal with AA’s notoriously poor service, as least those drinks will be the best that an airline can offer!

Cheers!

Reds for Winter: Main Line Magazine

Vinted on February 3, 2008 under pennsylvania, wine news

Just in time for the not-so-Super-Superbowl (or any party occasion during these last few brink winter weeks), Jason Whiteside, my partner in crime over at 2WineDudes, has written a great article about soul-warming big red wines that are perfect for staving off the nasty chill of Winter, for the current issue of Philly’s Main Line Magazine.

[ Just a bit about Jason, so you know why you should trust him when you read his stuff: Jason is a fellow CSW, was previously a Sommelier & Wine Consultant on the Dutch/French Island of St. Martin, and is part of the Wine Educator staff at ChaddsFord Winery. Like the Dude, Jason also holds the Level 3 Advanced Certificate in Wine & Spirits from the Wine & Spirit Education Trust. He's got bad-ass wine smarties. ]

Jason shares both bargain and splurge wine recommendations for each of the Big Red varietals that he features in the article, so you can put your newfound red knowledge to good use immediately (or at least before the weather warms up).

You can check out the article on-line here (go to page 108).

Cheers!

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