But First, Wine Books (August 2016 Wine Product Roundup)

Vinted on August 31, 2016 binned in wine books, wine products

Squeaking this one in juuuust under the wire, here’s the August 2016 edition of the wine product roundup, in which I highlight non-drinkable wine products from the ever-growing sample pool.

Annoyingly, I’m not going to actually be reviewing this month’s products, only mentioning and recommending them. This is due to the fact that said products – both of them upcoming book releases – were authored by people that I consider to be wine writing friends and colleagues; so the potential conflicts of interest are of war-torn Bosnian proportions.

American Rhone

The first is American Rhone: How Maverick Winemakers Changed the Way Americans Drink ($35, University of California Press), by Patrick Comiskey. The only thing that I don’t like about Patrick’s upcoming book is the lack of the word “that” in the title. I’ve known Patrick for several years now, though our paths cross far too seldom. In this new book, he takes on the struggles of the people behind the movement to produce and promote wines made from Rhone varieties grown in the U.S.

Comiskey has a skeptical reporter’s mind, a poet’s way with turns of phrase, an editor’s sense of conservation of words, and a keen (and deep) understanding of – and respect for – wine as a subject matter, all of which come to bear in American Rhone. I’ll just leave it at that…

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Wine Reviews: Weekly Mini Round-Up For August 29, 2016

Vinted on August 29, 2016 binned in wine mini-reviews

So, like, what is this stuff, anyway?
I taste a bunch-o-wine (technical term for more than most people). So each week, I share some of my wine reviews (mostly from samples) and tasting notes with you via twitter (limited to 140 characters). They are meant to be quirky, fun, and easily-digestible reviews of currently available wines. Below is a wrap-up of those twitter wine reviews from the past week (click here for the skinny on how to read them), along with links to help you find these wines, so that you can try them for yourself. Cheers!

  • 14 Wakefield Jaraman Shiraz (Clare Valley-McLaren Vale): Woody, spicy, lip-smacking, and serving up plenty of postprandial coffee. $30 B+ >>find this wine<<
  • 13 Chimney Rock Cabernet Sauvignon (Stags Leap District): Think Bs; bold, blueberries, black currants, black licorice, bad-assery. $85 A- >>find this wine<<
  • 14 Chimney Rock Elevage Blanc (Napa Valley): Elevating ripe tropical fruits and white flowers to impressive levels of seriousness. $48 A- >>find this wine<<
  • 15 Pfendler Rose of Pinot Noir (Sonoma Coast): The color of salmon, which is precisely the kind of burger you should serve with it. $18 B >>find this wine<<
  • 13 Schramsberg Blanc de Blancs (North Coast): They're probably firing on all cylinders now, only without the "probably" part. $39 A- >>find this wine<<
  • 14 Cadaretta SBS (Columbia Valley): Columbia Valley, but apparently acquiring tastiness with brief stops in Bordeaux and New Zealand. $25 B+ >>find this wine<<
  • 15 La Croix Belle Caringole Rose (Cotes de Thongue): Witness one of the more ridiculously drinkable bargains in the wine world. $10 B+ >>find this wine<<
  • 14 Ernest The Artist Pinot Noir (Sonoma Coast): Earnestness as art? This makes a decent case for it – and a delicious one, too. $55 A- >>find this wine<<
  • 15 Dutton goldfield Dutton Ranch Shop Block Pinot Blanc (Green Valley of Russian River Valley): Well, vibrant tastiness wins again. $30 B+ >>find this wine<<



89 Years Of Kicking Ass (1927 D’Oliveiras Bastardo Madeira)

Vinted on August 24, 2016 binned in kick-ass wines, wine review

I was heartened by all of the positive reaction to a recent Book of Face post regarding the combination of two aging souls who are still kicking all kinds of ass.

The first is my cousin Kathleen, who turned 89 years old this past Saturday. The second was a certain rare-ish Madeira wine that happens to share Kathleen’s birth year, and so became one of the (very) few wines that I actually purchased with my own hard-earned cash when I toured the Portuguese island earlier this year.

Kathleen 1927 Madeira

Both kick ass, but I’d give the edge to the one on the right.

Since posting the above photo of the two of them together at Kathleen’s birthday party, I’ve been contacted by, well, several of you about spilling the beans on how this wine tasted. And so I shall, but not before I give a shout-out to the coolest relative I’ve ever known…

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