Articles Tagged jancis robinson
I’ve been inundated with wine book samples this month (which I’ll note is November 2016, for posterity’s sake, and for those of you still sobering up from Thanksgiving), both the electronic and the good, old-fashioned dead-tree varieties. And so, I’m going to use this edition of the wine product roundup to give you a little taste of the current wine book scene (all prices noted are for hardcover editions).
Hugh Johnson’s Pocket Wine 2017: 40th Anniversary by Hugh Johnson ($16.99, Mitchell Beazley)
Bottom line: highly recommended.
Every year for the last several years, I’ve received a sample of the latest edition in this series. Every year for the last several years, I think that this insanely useful little gem cannot possibly get any more insanely useful. Every year for the last several years, I have been wrong, and 2016 continues the trend. The high bar that’s been set for this go-to reference book for the last forty years has predictably been matched, but I’d argue it’s also been exceeded, in that the “If you like this, try that” and “wine stories” article themes that have been reserved for this edition’s color pages sections are superb (and make the book even more useful). If you’ve skipped the last couple of editions, it’s time for an upgrade.
The 24-Hour Wine Expert by Jancis Robinson ($12.95, Abrams Image)
Bottom line: recommended, with reservations.
It’s not that The 24-Hour Wine Expert isn’t a very good wine book; it is, and Jancis Robinson brings her sharp prose and equally sharp mind to pop many a wine myth balloon within its short 112 pages. The idea, espoused by Robinson in the opening Welcome section, is to use the book to answer common wine questions (how is wine made?, how should one buy wine?, what hardware should be used?, etc.) as they come up. The trouble is, the book is positioned in a way that leverages the very kinds of sweeping generalizations and shortcuts that Robinson has spent nearly her entire career in the public spotlight battling against, and ignores a more comprehensive wine knowledge resource of which Robinson has become a particularly skilled champion: the Internet. There’s useful information here, no doubt, but the usefulness of a hardcover copy is debatable…
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Last week, Tara Devon O’Leary and I had the pleasure of hosting the modern world’s equivalent of wine royalty, Jancis Robinson, on Episode 4 of The Punch Down. An embed of the broadcast is below for your viewing pleasure.
Jancis was in tip-top form, sharing wine with us (a Moravian Riesling… yes, really…), fielding questions about her accomplishments in the once-stodgy old boys’ club world of wine, and not shying away from questions about her past spats with Robert Parker, her strong views on alternative wine closures, and what she thinks of emerging wine regions. She also professes love for the Finger Lakes region, and we geek out a bit about the Local Wine movement.
And yes, a week later I’m still a bit upset that no one said anything about the Millennium Falcon t-shirt I was wearing during this interview…
Anyway… Just another day at the office, when your office involves drinking wine in the middle of the afternoon while talking to some of the world’s best wine educators…!
Mentioned in this episode:
The Punch Down Episode 4 With Jancis Robinson
We continue to live by the motto “Go Big Or Go Home” when it comes to guests for The Punch Down show (if you missed March’s guest – Gary Vaynerchuk, finally coming back to talk about wine – then get your butt to the video and get caught up), and it’s with great pleasure that we will host wine industry icon Jancis Robinson for Episode Four next week, April 2 at 1PM ET!
A Master of Wine since 1984, Jancis has authored over 25 books on wine, including The Oxford Companion to Wine (the hefty text that serves as the number one resource for WSET Diploma students), and the more recent (but equally weighty) tome, Wine Grapes – A complete guide to 1,368 vine varieties, including their origins and flavours.
Jancis has garnered nearly as many awards as there are grape varieties profiled in her latest book – she was Decanter Magazine Woman of the Year (UK) in 1999, won the Grand Award at the Society of Wine Educators in Sacramento in 2009, and in 2011 was voted third most powerful person in wine by Decanter.com.
I’ve had the pleasure of hanging out with Jancis a bit, and I think the best way to give you a glimpse into her personality is to recount the exchange we had when we first met (at an event in Portugal a couple of years ago; you know, in the time before Interest). It sent something like this: Jancis walked up to me and said: “Hello! I had to introduce myself, you’re ‘The Dude,’ aren’t you?” To which I replied, “Ohhhh, no, that is not how this introduction is going down. You’re awesome, and I’m just a bug!”
Jancis could probably be forgiven if she decided to put on airs and offer ivory tower pronouncements about what wines we all ought to be buying. She’s taken exactly the opposite approach, however, embracing social media full-tilt and engaging with wine lovers directly in two-way on-line dialog, as well as pouring much of her efforts into her online presence at JancisRobinson.com.
So… think we’ll have much to talk about? Follow along at http://www.1winedude.com/thepunchdown/ for details, and as always hit us up with questions beforehand.
See you on April 2!
I’m crazy excited to tell you that I will soon be authoring a freelance wine column on Playboy.com.
So now you have some legitimacy behind the “I’m just going there for the articles, honey!” excuse (you’re welcome!).
The folks behind Playboy.com reached out to me many moons ago, and the whole thing has been even many more moons in the making, so I’m thrilled to be able to get started – and humbled and honored by the opportunity to work with such an amazing brand. I don’t know how long this gig will last, and the column doesn’t have an official name yet (please shout out your ideas in the comments – I’ve got a feeling those will be very entertaining!), but we have some great ideas for content, which naturally will be exploring the more sensual sides of wine.
Now, I’ve never featured beautiful nude women on 1WineDude.com (though I’ve come close!), but I suppose you could say that there’s a bit of “spiritual alignment” in my writing style and the serious-but-accessible-and-slightly-irreverent take on the subject of wine that Playboy.com was looking for. To me, it’s a bit like Forbes.com bringing on Jeff Lefevre’s smart, analytical writing style, or how the populist, grounded voice of Vinography’s Alder Yarrow fits in so well with JancisRobinson.com. So you can add one more name to the list of home-grown wine bloggers being tapped by long-standing on-line brands.
There are a few things you probably should know about this Playboy.com gig…
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