Archive for the ‘Wine’ Category

Wine preservation methods for an open bottle


At our home,  weekday wine drinking habits are erratic, meaning we often open a bottle that may be left around for up to 4 days.  On  ‘pour and store’ occasions, I keep some important tools on hand to prevent the bottle from spoiling and wasting not only the wine, but my money as well. The [...]

Like it or not, iPad wine lists are coming

iPad wine list

While I do think that we are headed into a “fad-of-the-iPad” era where we will see many laughable failures, I hold open the possibility that tablet PCs — paired with brilliant wine service strategy — could ultimately turn into a 1+1 = 3 situation.

Here is a case where a tablet PC wine list is sorely needed: Last night, I was at Waterfront in San Francisco. The paper wine list came out with the menus, and we quickly ordered a bottle of pinot grigio from Alois Lagerder ($44/decent QPR). No less than 10 minutes later, the server told us that the sommelier was backed up, and coming shortly. At minute 15, he comes out — does an extremely minimal presentation of the wine, unscrews the cap, and pours it. The minute I accept it, he is gone for the rest of the night.

2011 wine blogging trends and predictions

Kurt in wine glass2

It’s that time of year again, where I’m thinking about the big themes and stories that broke in 2010 and what may come in 2011.  But this time, I’m going to be bold and not just jot down some things to myself, but instead, throw out some prediction in public.  Gulp.  There goes the last [...]

Private wine sale web sites — reviewed


The newest phenomenon to hit wine retail: limited-time and private sales.  Great wine.  Killer prices.  Limited time only.  Sounds great, right? As I’ve written several times lately, the weak economy has forced surplus of wine on the market.  One result of this trend is there are many interesting new players on the web contributing to [...]

The so-called greatest wine buying opportunity in decades


I mostly despise recessions. We get too grumpy as a whole. But isn’t the recession supposed to be over?  Not if you talk to wine pushers.  Adler’s recent post in Vinography provides the most dire viewpoint yet about the current wine inventory problem, especially among smaller and leveraged producers.  While the State of the Wine [...]

Time to stop beating up on domestic chardonnay

Time to stop beating up on domestic chardonnay

Overheard at least 5x yesterday at the tasting tables of the Pebble Beach Food & Wine show: “I CAN’T STAND American chardonnays, because they are too…oaky, syrupy, monodimensional, unbalanced, (enter adjective here)…”  Also heard at least 5x by servers of chardonnay(with insecure, apologetic tone):  “Our wine is more BURGUNDIAN in style , unlike those other [...]

Why is it so hard to find an awesome $10 bottle?

parker bargain2

Pick a random $100 wine at Costco and you are likely to get a very memorable bottle. But if you walk further down the aisle and pick a random bottle in the $10 range, I’ll estimate your chances of finding an outstanding wine to be about 1 in 50. (And Costco is great, BTW. Your [...]

NYC perfects the recession-era wine list


I was in New York last week.  You can definitely feel the recession’s pinch on Manhattan’s food scene. But as usual, restaurateurs are rising above the challenge. Their latest invention: the perfect recession-era wine list, featuring a wealth of carefully chosen value wines from around the world. The key words here are carefully chosen.  It’s one [...]

Wine medal competition study reveals…randomness!

My first bout with Lafite can only be seen as wasted opportunity!

I’m pretty transparent about my pet peeves about the wine industry, and near the top of that list is wine medal competitions.  It’s because, with few exceptions, I haven’t been able to correlate  gold-silver-bronze with my personal experience.  And because, I see many people rely too heavily on such medals. But recently, I’ve felt vindicated.  [...]

Winery clubs are for suckers


Winery clubs are a brilliant marketing invention.  They are a way to seize the buzzed moment in their tasting room to forge a deeper relationship with the customer, and sell a lot more wine at a much higher profit margin than they can through distributors. To this, I hope you would say:  “Great for the wineries, [...]