The (Too) Many Faces of Promoting Portugal (Going Pro at the Wines of Portugal International Conference 2010)

Vinted on December 8, 2010 binned in going pro, wine industry events

Ok, so I probably need to explain the (relatively) recent twitter update by VisitPortugal.com involving an interview with me focusing on my take on Portuguese wines.

Below is the tweet in question, which takes you to the Facebook Notes page of We Love Portuguese Wines. [ Warning: The Portugal promotion connections get a lot more complicated from here, so if you’re already as confused reading this as I was typing it, you might just want to pour yourself a glass of tasty vino and stop reading now. ]

The most interesting aspect of this interview (for me) was that I didn’t know it was an interview. I therefore had no idea that it would be published; my answers were part of an on-going conversation with Vini Portugal regarding my participation in the upcoming 2010 Wines of Portugal International Conference in Oporto this December.  For those of you who are counting, this brings the number of seemingly-related Portuguese-promoting on-line properties to (at least) four.

I don’t mind at all that the questions I answered for Vini Portugal were used by VisitPortugal.com on the Facebook property We Love Portuguese Wines to help promote the WoPIC.  Or, I don’t think I’d mind if I could keep track of all of this.

I need a beer!…

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1WineDude Radio: The Tanya Scholes Interview (and possible last-minute holiday gift idea for wine lovers!)

Vinted on December 7, 2010 binned in 1WineDude Radio, interviews, wine books

Today I’m very pleased to announce the launch of an idea that I’ve been contemplating in my noggin’ for a long time, which is to add podcasts to 1WineDude.com for interviews (trust me, no one wants to hear a podcast of me talking to myself).

Author and designer Tanya Scholes braved illness, jet lag, and guinea pig status to become the first victim kind-hearted soul to help me launch this podcast idea, which I’m dubbing “1WineDude Radio” because I lack the inventiveness to come up with a catchier name.

Tanya has just released her first book, The Art And Design Of Contemporary Wine Labels, and it’s a beauty (and one that his been garnering praise recently throughout the wine world), which details the previously hidden stories behind the designs of hundreds of stunning wine labels. Yes, I did receive a review copy (for those of you work in the FTC), but that won’t stop me from recommending this as a potential holiday gift for those of you looking to treat yourselves that special wine-lovin’ someone.

Anyway, in this inaugural podcast episode, Tanya talks about how the book came to be, recalls the reaction she gets to the book from winemakers, instructs me on the correct pronunciation (both English and French-Canadian) of her last name, and contemplates why wine label designers seem overly-preoccupied with cephalopods. You know, just another day at the office!

Also – a few of quick points on this whole podcast thang:

  • I am NOT attempting to usurp radio programs like (the excellent) Wine Biz Radio, who are actually sponsored, on-air programs.
  • I am NOT planning on abandoning the written word (or video).
  • YES, I am throwing this format into the mix to spice things up a little bit, and mostly to provide a means for giving more exposure to (hopefully interesting and thought-provoking) back-and-forth interviewing repartee.

Cheers!


1WineDude Radio Episode 1: The Tanya Scholes Interview


   
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A Question of Balance (and Not Hating on California Wine)

Vinted on December 6, 2010 binned in California wine, commentary

“To learn as we grow old

The secrets of our souls.”

– Question, Moody Blues

My intention today is not shock you into your Monday morning with cheesy Moody Blues lyrics (though I’ll admit to jamming out the bass line to Question dozens of times when I was in high school and songs like Question seemed really, really deep and important), but to call your attention to a blog post today by my friend, Wine Enthusiast editor Steve Heimoff.

The more astute reader will immediately recognize that I refrained from calling Steve a colleague, since in my mind that would actually be insulting him, though now that I think about it maybe I should have done that and then asked him for a small fee to remove the reference… anyway…

In said blog post, Steve talks about a recent Napa tasting in which he tasted some big-ass Cabernet wines and walked away thinking that many were, on the whole, quite balanced despite their, uhm, generous sizes. In reflecting on the tasting, he hits on what I consider the king-among-princess of a wine’s better qualities:

“Among all these impressionistic words… I think the most important is balance. Balance is central to wine’s quality.”

On this point, Steve and I are, using a term of which one of my friends is particularly fond, in “violent agreement.”

For my money, nothing, and I mean nothing, in a wine’s lineup of admirable qualities – including things like place of origin and pedigree – trumps balance…

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