NY Times On Wine: A Motivational Tool


I think it’s pretty clear that Eric Asimov likes his job.

Read this evocative description of the Bollinger 1970 Vielles Vignes Champagne he tasted at the House of Bollinger from his most recent column in the New York Times:

“It was sedate for a Champagne, the bubbles soft and delicate, the color golden, bordering on amber. It was bone dry and quiet at first, but with a little air, it took on richness. It was still lively, graceful yet intense, with a succulence that comes from good acidity. The toasty, nutlike flavors were precise and finely etched. This was a profound wine, and though it came from pinot noir, it had the majesty of an old white Burgundy.”

I think it’s pretty clear that Mr. Asimov was in the mood. How could you not be?

Based on the recent posts at Asimov’s wine blog it appears he has been traipsing about France these past few days. His recent dispatches have beautiful insights into the winemaking minds and wines of that Old World.

But here’s the thing. As clear as it is that Eric Asimov loves his job as the New York Times wine columnist and satisfying as it is to see that kind of appreciation for someone’s vocation, the real treasure is that one of the greatest newspapers the world has ever seen sees fit to devote a
position to this genre of writing.

Wine is not earth shaking stuff. It’s fermented juice with a history. There are a lot more important topics than the old vines of champagne. Yet, The NY Times seeks out great writers to cover wine. Of course, so does the LA Times, the Wall Street Journals and the San Francisco Chronicle, while not quite the paper of record that the NY Times is, devotes an entire section to the subject. These kinds of commitments in turn motivate publishers and editors at small market newspapers to do the same…or at least to buy a syndicated column.

This is the sort of thing great newspapers do. They deliver great insight and commentary on subjects of little import but of great concern to those with broad views and taste.

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