Archive for the ‘Rating Wine’ Category

Oct 2, 2013

Reaching for Everything In Wine: Vintage Hugh Johnson

The first edition of Hugh Johnson’s Pocket Wine Book I ever picked up was the 1987 edition. Hugh had already been writing the annual guide for ten years. This year’s 2014 edition of the ubiquitous handbook is his 37th edition. For a number of years, the Hugh Johnson Pocket Wine Book was indispensable as a quick guide to the most important wineries (along with the author’s opinions of them), the basics of the world’s varied wine regions, reports on recent…

Sep 30, 2013

How To Understand Really Stupid Wines

The wine was a 2006 Grenache from the Barossa Valley in Australia.  It clocked in at 18.5% alcohol. It was carried to me by a good Aussie friend who purchased it in New York. The wine was absurd in every respect—in its size, in its lopsided nature and in its imposing heat. The alcoholic mask worn by this wine was complete in every way. What lurked underneath the heat was a blueish fruit. But it was hard to either notice…

Aug 22, 2013

Winemakers Turned Wine Reviewers

Off the top of my head, I can’t think of any winemakers that moonlight as wine reviewers or critics. I may be forgetting someone, but even so, the list is surely very, very short if there is a list at all. I know a few critics/writers that have turned winemaker. But not the reverse. That’s why I was intrigued upon being directed to a new website being called, “Winemakers Recommend”. The concept is simple: videos of winemakers recommending wines they…

Jun 12, 2013

The Secret To Wine Writing Success Revealed

As he often does, wine scribe Joe Roberts wrote something relevant the other day. He explained that for those considering how they might make a name for themselves, for their writing and for their wine knowledge through publishing, this person should strongly consider SPECIALIZING. By this, Joe simply means it’s much easier to get the attention of potential readers if your authority and wine writing revolves around a specific subject within the wine niche, rather than trying to publish information…

May 15, 2013

Help! I’ve Fallen and Can’t Get Up—The Natural Wine Edition

It’s nearly time again for what now appears to be an annual celebration of unsubstantiated and unsupported claims and assertions about wine. It’s time again to denigrate 99% of the world’s wine and winemakers. Of course, I’m talking about the coming RAW WINE FAIR, a celebration of “natural” wine taking place in London on May 19 and 20. On the cusp of this important occasion, I think it appropriate to examine some of the claims that are being made about…