extend my procrastination streak gather together my notes in anticipation of (finally) getting around to writing up my most recent wine jaunts, I figured I’d get a jump on the wine product roundup for May (part of my monthly attempt to put some wine product samples through the wringer).
First up this month is the Premium version of Bacchus Break, a set of two stemless, flexible – and presumably unbreakable – wine glasses made from silicone (about $18). The product tag line, appropriately, is “because drunk people drop shit.” And, indeed, we do.
I love the concept of this sort of product; ideal for casual parties (especially outdoor gatherings), I’ll take a properly (tulip) shaped wine glass made of just about any inert material over a standard-shaped glass or cup, any day. The Bacchus Break glasses provide that, once their silicone-rubbery-smell dissipates (which, for me, took several days). Light, and flexible to a fault, you’re not going to be able to break these things; and the Premium set includes an expandable bag for holding wine, something of which I’m also a big fan (because they’re so much more cooler-friendly than bag-in-box or glass packaging).
The flexibility comes at a cost; two costs, actually. First, the rim of the glasses is a bit thicker than is ideal for wine imbibing. Second, the glasses seem almost too flexible; they don’t feel sturdy in the hand, and require a gently touch (lest you grab it too forcefully and create a sort of juice-box-squeeze mess). In my experience, the similar Govino products perform slightly better; they are more apt to break if you step on them, but have a nice balance between flexibility, rigidity, and size (the new 10oz is a particularly good choice for bubbles, by the way).
Next up, something for your reading pleasure…
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image: TMRW Engine
So much of the material upon which 1WD was built consists, essentially, of opinion pieces (in fact, four or five years ago I sat on a panel focused specifically on opinion writing alongside Lettie Teague and Jon Bonne, about which I imagine both of whom are still scratching their heads).
But over the years, I’ve tempered (well… by my standards, anyway) the opinion-heavy pieces here in favor of conclusions that can be drawn from data. The older that I get, the more I want to see opinion bolstered by something other than the biased, fallible memories of people’s experiences (including my own).
Which is why I get royally pissed at the the wine world’s penchant for defaulting to the data-devoid opinions of entrenched personalities, particularly when it comes to denying the return on investment (ROI from here on out) of wine online (usually with the concept of social media directly in the cross-hairs).
While it seems common sense that their must be at least some ROI for wine brands in talking directly with their consumers (which is part and parcel of what social media online can catalyze), remember that data trump opinions, even when those opinions align perfectly with common sense.
Fortunately, the wine world now has some compelling data that demonstrate a plausible link between online social interactions and ROI. Yes, in terms of real people actually spending real money on wine…
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- 13 Dutton-Goldfield Emerald Ridge Vineyard Pinot Noir (Green Valley): Blueberries and violets, starring as a not-so-odd couple. $62 A- >>find this wine<<
- 13 Dutton-Goldfield Dutton Ranch Cherry Ridge Syrah (Russian River Valley): That is one hella-good Northern Rhone impersonation. $50 A- >>find this wine<<
- 14 Dutton-Goldfield Dutton Ranch Chardonnay (Russian River Valley): What we really, REALLY need now are soft-shell crab sandwiches. $38 A- >>find this wine<<
- 13 Dutton-Goldfield Walker Hill Vineyard Chardonnay (Russian River Valley): I think that the word we're looking for here is "triumph." $50 A >>find this wine<<
- 15 Le Charmel Cotes de Provence Rose (Cotes de Provence): If a wine could belt out an extended Deee-Lite dance club mix, it'd be this. $13 B >>find this wine<<
- 13 Hickinbotham Brooks Road Shiraz (McLaren Vale): Single vineyard, singularly focused; and for us, a powerfully multilayered payoff. $75 A- >>find this wine<<
- 14 Capture Wines Tradition Sauvignon Blanc (Lake County – Sonoma County): Successfully captures the territory between rich & vibrant. $30 B+ >>find this wine<<
- 13 Galerie Latro Cabernet Sauvignon (Knights Valley): Might be the valley of Knights, but the juice is pretty much king-worthy. $50 A- >>find this wine<<
- 14 Galerie Terracea Spring Mountain Riesling (Napa Valley): From "this smells really nice" to "fill that glass back up" in seconds. $30 B+ >>find this wine<<
- 12 Mt. Brave Mt. Veeder Cabernet Sauvignon (Napa Valley): Plums for minutes, spices & blueberry for hours, violets and silk for days. $75 A- >>find this wine<<
As I’m recovering from mouth surgery, I am currently into my second consecutive week without a sip of vino. This scenario has created something angry and sinister very deep inside my psyche; the type of thing that is best left in its evil slumber and not forced upon the fragile, gossamer-like veil that separates what we know of as civilized society from its dark, savage underbelly.
So, yeah, I have some hate happening.
As a result, I am waaaaaay behind on writing up my recent wine travels, finishing up my paying gigs, tasting through samples, and what-have-you.
Despite the angry railing against the heavens, I did manage to pen a little love letter to some of my favorite Italian white wine grapes for Fix.com, titled The Grapes Behind Italian White Wines. Long-time 1WD readers will not be surprised to find Fiano and Carricante on that list. The full-on infographic format of the article is embedded below after the jump, but the curious among you will want to head over to Fix.com for the Full Monty on the article, which contains some geek-tastic bits of history and trivia about the grapes, and about Italian wine in general.
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