Wine in the Wake of Charlottesville

Wine in the Wake of Charlottesville

Do Americans drink more during moments of cultural upheaval? Do they reach for the bottle when its culture and people are ignited and roiled by doubt, consternation and the unknown? We know Americans drink more when they collectively celebrate. Just ask beer producers around Independence Day. Talk to wine retailers about their sales in advance of Thanksgiving and Christmas. Query sparkling wine producers about sales on December 31. As we watch the Charlottesville debacle and tragedy play out, are we examining…

Aug 3, 2017

It’s Official: Cannabis and Wine are a Poor Pairing

It's Official: Cannabis and Wine are a Poor Pairing

Cannabis and wine are alike only in the same way that wine is like carrots. Both are produced with plants. I’ve been inching toward this conclusion for quite some time. However, it took the experience of listening to presenters and exhibitors at Wine Industry Network‘s brilliantly produced Wine & Weed Symposium on Thursday, for me to fully embrace this conclusion. This was not, however, the conclusion being delivered at the Symposium. Nor is it the position that the Cannabis legalization…

Jul 28, 2017

The Pros and Cons of Living in Napa Valley

The Pros and Cons of Living in Napa Valley

The longer you live in the paradise known as Napa Valley, the more you appreciate the benefits and downside of being a resident of paradise and the more apparent the “Quality of Life Equation” becomes. And there is an equation. On The Positive Side: CLIMATE: There simply is no arguing this point: The climate in Napa Valley is a near perfect environment for humans. The air is dry, save for the quickly developing and dissipating fog, which is itself moderate and…

Jul 26, 2017

Demolishing Natural Wine

Demolishing Natural Wine

One of America’s most experienced, accomplished and insightful wine writers recently demolished both the idea of “natural” wine and the intellectual artifice of the “natural” wine movement. This is notable because outside of intellectually disciplined observers of the wine world and some hacks like myself, there hasn’t been all that much push back against the foundations of “Natural Wine”. In the course of schooling the natural wine movement at Wine Review Online, Paul Lukacs made the following point that deserves…

Jul 25, 2017

Nevadans Get a Taste of the Parasitic 3 Tier System — Not So Tasty

Nevadans Get a Taste of the Parasitic 3 Tier System — Not So Tasty

One of the best ways to evaluate the efficacy of a system or process is to present it to someone who has not spent time engaged with the system. That’s exactly what happened in Nevada when advocates of marijuana legalization and those overseeing implementation of recreational marijuana’s regulatory system were confronted with the 3 Tier System that governs alcohol distribution. That same 3 Tier System was adopted when Nevada voters approved Question 2, the initiative that legalized recreational marijuana sales…