Weekly Twitter Wine Mini-Reviews Round-up for 2010-01-30

Vinted on January 30, 2010 binned in wine mini-reviews
  • 08 Rodney Strong Chardonnay (Sonoma): For the $ you can buy some oak bomb, or go w/ this lively & balanced crowd-pleaser. Your choice. B- #
  • 08 Rodney Strong Pinot Noir (Russian River Valley): This is like magic, it makes the finish totally disappear! Spice & cherry cola help. C #
  • 07 Rodney Strong Cabernet Sauvignon (Sonoma): A straight shot of dried black cherry from the 1st sniff all the way thru the tart finish. C+ #
  • 09 Jam Jar Sweet Shiraz (Western Cape): Q: A product can’t jump the shark as soon as it hits the market, can it? A: Actually, yes it can. C- #
  • 05 Pierre Sparr Gewurztraminer (Alsace): Lychee bomb wrapped in rose petals & sprinkled w/ spice. Could lose a few lbs, but still pretty. B+ #
  • 07 Bressia Monteagrelo Syrah (Mendoza): Just like your overpriced, food-unfriendly New World Syrah, except fairly priced & food-friendly! A- #
  • 06 Bressia Profundo (Mendoza): I don’t often get goosebumps from smelling a wine, esp a Malbec; but this black fruit masterpiece delivers. A #
  • 05 Familia Langley Reserva ‘Urraca’ (Mendoza): As dark as its namesake & lovely, but I’m not convinced it’ll ever grow into its own skin. B+ #

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YOU Can Keep Them Honest at VINO 2010’s Wine Blogging Discussion

Vinted on January 29, 2010 binned in Italian Wine, wine 2.0, wine industry events

It looks like my fears of VINO 2010’s “Blogging on Wine and Social Networking: New Tools in reaching Consumers of Italian Wine ” panel discussion possibly deteriorating into a blogger-bashing session can probably be put to rest.

In an attempt to expand the reach of the event beyond the walls of the Waldorf Astoria, VINO 2010 appointed James Rodewald, former Drinks Editor of Gourmet magazine, as its official blogger representative.  James will be tweeting live from the event as well as covering the event on the official blog (which contains a blogroll of the bloggers who are attending VINO 2010) – all steps in the right direction.

What really convinced me, though, are the panelists for the session on Blogging, which include friends of mine who I know for a fact understand the power of blogging in the wine world – namely, Alder Yarrow of Vinography.com and Steve Raye from Brand Action Team

And what sold me lock, stock, and wine barrel was this: for the panel on social media and blogging, the details will be covered live via the web and James will be taking questions for the panel via twitter:

On Thursday, February 4th at 10AM – the "VIRTUAL VINO, MILLENNIALS, AND SOCIAL MEDIA DECANTED" panel discussion moderated by Anthony Dias Blue with Alder Yarrow (vinography.com), Dave Cook (Twitter), Steve Raye (Brand Action Team), and Ronn Wiegand. James will be monitoring the Twitter feed and posing questions Tweeted in from throughout the country. The seminar will focus on social media and wine bloggers as the future of consumer wine education, and potentially the wine trade.  You and your readers can tune in to the panel discussion at www.italianmade.com/vino2010.”

Now, if the on-line wine community excels at anything, it’s keeping people honest.  So I expect a pretty balanced and honest discussion about wine blogging and social media for that panel.

Whew… ok, I feel better now…

Cheers!

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Wineries and Social Media: A Totally Unscientific Case Study (Franciscan)

Vinted on January 28, 2010 binned in commentary, wine 2.0, winemaking

A funny thing happened on my way to the 2010 Pro Wine Writers Symposium.

I did some research, and found what I was looking for, just not where I expected to find it.

Since my Symposium fellowship was underwritten by Franciscan, I’m planning on a visit to the winery when I’m in Napa next month.   So I was digging around on the ‘global interwebs’ to get my bearings on all things Franciscan before the visit.  Reasons being that I wanted to get a solid starting point of Franciscan knowledge from which to branch out when I ask them questions and generally get all, you know, in-depth on them (you know how I am); also I’m a total geek and that kind of stuff is fun for me.

Not that I am without some knowledge of Franciscan – I’ve tasted some of their flagship wines, and their website is chock full of background on their Napa legacy (and with a past that featured Agustin Huneeus and one of the first real “Meritage” wines, your bragging rights around having a ‘legacy’ are pretty safe) and their take-it-to-perfectionist-extremes focus on blending.

As for what’s happening now (and I mean, right this second) at Franciscan… not so much.  I didn’t find anything at their website to connect me to the current happenings of the people there.

Nada.

I did find some of that information, though – just not at Franciscan.com, and not without a bit of digging…

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Little Sister Is Serious (Wallis Family Estate’s New Parker-Friendly Cab Release)

Vinted on January 27, 2010 binned in California wine, wine review

This may be the first time that anyone has compared a high-end inaugural Napa Cabernet with a creepy video game. Probably because no one has been quite foolhardy cavalier enough to try it before, right?

The wine in question is a sample of Wallis Family Estate’s “Little Sister” Cabernet Sauvignon, which is seeing its first release with the bottling of the 2006 vintage; only 300 cases were made.  Wallis produces a (much) more expensive Diamond Mountain District Cab, hence the “Little Sister” moniker for the new release, a lower-priced (but still pretty expensive at $40) version that shares estate fruit with fruit from the wider Napa Valley.

And it was the “Little Sister” moniker that got me free-associating with the creepy video game.

The game in question is the award-winning Bioshock, which I stopped playing because, well, it’s creepy. The game is beautifully rendered, and the play is fantastic, but… it was just so damn serious.

Let’s see, for those unfamiliar with the plot of Bioshock, this ain’t gonna be easy…

Bioshock takes place in the 1960s in an enclosed underwater world called Rapture where society has completely broken down. The survivors of Rapture are genetically-enhanced, murderous psychopaths who are addicted to the substances that allow them to control their genetic powers.  Spooky school-aged girls called (wait for it…) Little Sisters (with sea slugs embedded in their stomachs – yeah, I know, just go with it) roam the halls of the underwater world, protected by huge, explosives-tossing zombies in antique dive suits, wielding large needles which they (this is the Little Sisters now, not the huge dive suit guys) use to extract the genetic super-substance from any dead psychopaths they come across.  Whew.

I told you it was creepy!

Anyway…

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