Archive for the ‘Culture and Wine’ Category

Nov 18, 2020

The Evolution of Social Justice Wine Writing

If you don’t think we are living in the Golden Age of Wine Writing then you just aren’t paying attention and you are certainly aren’t taking notice of James Sligh’s recent “The Myth of ‘Old World’ Wine,” recently published at Punch. This article just couldn’t have been written at any moment other than in the past five years when wine writing has not only continued to pursue stories about wineries and winemakers and varietals and wines from a myriad of…

Nov 17, 2020

Wine Writing In the Age of COVID

Thinking about my 16th anniversary at the helm of FERMENTATION, it is the uniqueness of the current moment rather than the longevity of my efforts that strikes me today. I don’t think I am alone among those that write about wine and the wine industry in noticing that the wine writing space has been enveloped by a filter colored by COVID’s impact and the adjacent influences particular to the moment. The analytical effort of describing and commenting on this industry…

Nov 8, 2020

Election Day Is Turning Into A Drinking Holiday

Perhaps because Americans were pre-occupied with getting in their last digs at the enemies with slurs of “Fascist!” and “Communist!”, we didn’t hear this last election a refrain we normally hear from thoughtful citizens on Election Day: “Why is it held on a Tuesday and not a weekend?” This is a good question. You’d have a higher turn out and more orderly precinct voting. I’ve always agreed that Election Day should be on the weekend. But the real argument I’ve…

Oct 27, 2020

The Question of Cancel Culture and “Feminine” Wine

Gendered words such as “feminine” and “masculine” have come under some pretty severe criticism as wine descriptors in recent years. In nearly every example of a commentator discussing such terms, the conclusion has been that they are, in today’s world, inappropriate for describing wine. These condemnations—and they have been condemnations—are misplaced, rely on a misunderstanding of the utility of gendered wine descriptions, confuse gender expression for gender identity and, when they lead us to jettison the words from our wine…

Sep 22, 2020

Hey Wine Industry—Let’s Try to Dial It Back a Few Notches

Maybe you have noticed. It’s getting a little tense out there. Say what you will about the wine industry. It’s elitist! It’s systemically racist. It’s behind the curve technologically. It is regulated through archaic laws. One thing you must also say about the wine industry is that it is extraordinarily congenial. Yet this congeniality specific to wine, be it due to the nature of the product or to the folks it attracts to the industry, is being stressed and stretched,…