Rosemary George MW, The Wines of Roussillon (The Infinite Ideas Classic Wine Library, 2021) It’s not easy to write a book about a complicated wine region like Roussillon — a place with such varied terroir and interesting history. It is especially hard when the approach is personal and intimate. But it must be nearly impossible
The Chinese economy is booming, recovering from the pandemic sooner and stronger than any other country, although the pace of recovery seems to have slowed. The wine economy in China is still struggling, however, with high inventory levels remaining due to last year’s lockdowns. Selling off the surplus stock without eroding price points and reputations
Fonte: UN Comtrade Il Portogallo ha registrato una delle migliori performance tra i grandi esportatori nel settore del vino nel 2020, l’unico in crescita a occhio insieme alla Nuova Zelanda. L’origine di questo incremento del 3% del valore esportato (contro un calo medio intorno al 5% nel mondo) e del 5% del volume (rispetto
Fonte: UN Comtrade Il post odierno è particolarmente interessante. L’Australia ha costruito negli ultimi anni una posizione di leadership nel mercato cinese del vino e, da dicembre 2020, ha subito l’applicazione di dazi doganali proibitivi che le autorità cinesi hanno deciso ipotizzando pratiche concorrenziali scorrette (ossia esportazioni di vino sottocosto). Come vedrete dal grafico all’interno
Wine lovers on wine and the vinous life.
My next participant in the By the Bottle series is Martin Sinkoff. I first met Martin in 1980 in Dallas, where he had recently taken a job as the fine wine director for a small but growing wine wholesaler, Glazer’s (now SGWS). Martin brought the company into the world of fine wine and changed a lot of lives (including mine) as a result of the waves he created. He went on to start his own import company, Martin Sinkoff Wines, Inc. and a very successful wine label, Reserve, St. Martin. Martin sold the company to a budding importer, looking for a bevy of well-made and value-driven French wines. Not content to rest on his laurels, Martin was lured back into the world of fine wine by Richie Cacciato of the Frederick Wildman, where he helped redefine the company’s image and direction. He now heads up an international consulting bureau, Martin Sinkoff Associates, with offices in New York and Tel Aviv. And he moved to Tel Aviv, where he is a (still new) Oleh Hadash in Israel (almost two years). He writes a frequent wine column for the Times of Israelwhen he is not devoting time to enriching his cultural spirituality, studying the Torah. Martin is fluent in French and is now learning another language, Hebrew. He is the embodiment of a modern-day Renaissance person. [*Note: This "conversation" took place before the current violence. We are both wishing for peace and calm.] What wines do you have standing up right now? Tzora Vineyards “Judean Hills” 2018 (Judean Hills, red); Chateau Senejac 2016 (Haut Medoc, red); Moulin de Gassac 2019 (Languedoc, red); Itay Lahat “Adom” 2019 (Galilee, red); Francesco Cirelli Montepulciano d’Abruzzo 2019 (Montepulciano, red). What’s the last great wine you drank? Hmmm. Depends on the definition of “great”. The last wine that took my breath away was Chateau Beaucastel served by Marc Perrin himself at my friend, Etienne Hugel’s, wedding, now I am guessing close to 10 years ago (maybe fewer). Etienne is now no longer with us and so the wine and the event both remain in loving memory. Are there any classic wines that you only recently had for the first time? Not classic but “up- and-coming”: several wines from Georgia (the country not the state). With thanks to my friends Lisa Granik MW (in the US) and Vova Diachenko (in Tel Aviv) for the introductions.
Describe your ideal drinking experience (when, where, what, how). Summertime, outside on a shaded terrace with great friends (and a lover or two if available) around 2.00 pm in the afternoon; caprese salad or mezze (eggplant, stuffed grape leaves, olives), grilled fish with olive oil, ground pepper and sea salt, sheep milk cheeses and peaches in red wine for dessert; chilled rose from a local vineyard (Israeli roses are terrific) or southern France (not necessarily Provence) in unlimited quantity from the most recent vintage. And PS. fresh pesto on the side for everything! What’s your favorite wine no one else has heard of? Everyone has heard of everything these days but my answer is the wines of Corsica. What wine should everybody drink before the age of 21? / What wine should nobody drink until the age of 40? One answer to both questions: everyone should taste the great wines of the world starting when a person is young and continuing throughout a person’s life. Like great books, only great wines really teach us. Fine Burgundy, Bordeaux, Champagne, Loire, Barolo, Chianti (good, true Chianti), Rioja and some wines from the “new world” too: Napa Cabernet Sauvignon, old-vine Grenache from Australia. All of these are essential references (and I am sure I am missing some too). Who in wine — winemakers, winery owners, writers, retailers, collectors — active today do you admire most? I can’t answer this question for one good reason: I will inevitably miss people whom I love and I will hurt someone’s feelings. Do you count any wine as guilty pleasures? The only “guilty pleasure” associated with drinking wine is drinking too much! Has a wine ever brought you closer to another person, or come between you? When I have shared a wine with another person and we both respond to the wine in the same way, we are drawn closer to each other. This has happened to me more times than I can count (and happily so). The opposite is also true: when I have not liked a wine (or liked a wine) and another person responds otherwise, inevitably, the relationship between me and the other person will not deepen. Fortunately, this does not happen often but it does happen. Wine, art, and our sensual personalities are intimate and profound and if two people don’t share the same feelings, they will not get along other than superficially. What’s the most interesting thing you learned from a wine recently? Not something I learned recently but simply confirmed each and every day: wine makes life sweeter. What moves you most in a wine? Wine brings people together, lets our minds expand, brings buried thoughts into consciousness. Wine is essential to adult, moral, mature life. Which styles do you especially enjoy drinking? It’s easier to answer this question in the other way: In general, I do not enjoy sweet wines nor sparkling wines. And I do not enjoy wines aged in American oak nor wines that are too high in alcohol or are over-extracted (late-picked wines). How do you organize your wines? Easy: I don’t! What wine might people be surprised to find in your racks? There is no wine that I drink or own that would surprise any of my friends. What’s the best wine you’ve ever received as a gift? Petrus 1989! Amazing gift from one of my most revered teachers and mentors in Bordeaux. How have your drinking tastes changed over time? I prefer wines that are balanced, dry, energetic, “mineral”, refreshing much more than before. Fruit bombs (fruit forward wines) that impressed me years ago no longer do. I appreciate classic wines more and more too. My palate has always been an “old world” palate and is more so today than ever. You’re organizing a dinner party. Which three people from the wine world, dead or alive, do you invite? I will not limit this dinner party to three and I reserve the right to add to the guest list: Andrea Hagar, John Rector, Shelly Barsotti and Harry Hudson, Jim and Liz Baron, Alfonso Cevola, Kim Pierce, Dotty Griffith, Mary Malouf and Louise Owens. Also, Anne and Francois Chandou, Paula Lambert, Willard Spiegelman, Ginger Reeder, Diane Teitelbaum, Bobbi and Larrie Weil, Frank and Helen Stevenson (A Dallas dinner party!) What wines are you embarrassed not to have drunk yet? I am not embarrassed at all about not having drunk this or that. I would love to have a vertical tasting of Chateau Latour going back to 1982. What do you plan to drink next? The same thing I am drinking now: delicious, young Pinot Grigio from Pasqua, Rose from Ostal Cazes and La Vieille Ferme, Cirelli Montepulciano d’Abruzzo red (chilled) and lots more (these are only the wines I am drinking now….my selection changes by the week). I drink wine every day and straightforward pleasures are more important to me than “epiphany”. I look to wine for pleasure every day not for revelation.
transcribed and photographed by Alfonso Cevola limited rights reserved On the Wine Trail in Italy
wine blog + Italian wine blog + Italy W
Guido Terreni is running out of time. And he knows it. Terreni, who is in his mid-50’s, left a comfortable and prestigious job as president of Bulgari’s watchmaking division, to go to work for a smaller watchmaker, Parmigiani Fleurier, as their CEO. What does this have to do with Italian wine? I pondered this thought as I glanced through a recent interview with him. I’ve been getting interested in watches, thanks to a friend of mine who is shoulder deep in the study of horology and timepieces. I’d noticed, when I would go to Italy, that the Italians loved watches and timepieces. In fact, it borders on a national mania. I would always have a dependable watch on, but my Italian counterparts would have these electronic sundials and steampunk chronometers flashed upon their wrists. It was fascinating to observe. That said, I’ve been running the idea up the flag pole that the Swiss watchmakers could impart some valuable lessons upon the Italian viticultural landscape. This quote (with additional following ones) from Terreni that really drove this idea home was this: “Emotions don't come from the turnover that you make or the profit that you make. Emotions come from what you can give in terms of pleasure to people who buy the products and crave what you are making. This is something that evolves over a long period of time.” We often pooh-pooh the notion of emotionality, as if it is an uncontrolled, irrational thing. You read in the business pages that the stock market is going haywire, running amuck, feeding off emotions, and one might get the idea that an emotional basis might not be most stable foundation. But Terreni thinks differently. It’s how one captures loyal customers, and keeps them. I find this path to be a solid one, as it was something that I saw again and again. If you’re just filling a slot, making a product for a possible demand, it could be very successful. But it might be a flash in a pan. Look at some of the classic wineries in Italy, they seem to be more like watchmakers than trendsetters. They are moving from generation to generation, at a slower pace, with not quite such a steep angle of ascension. But they are moving towards their summit. That’s part of their evolution.
E la nave va “If it's just technique it's a cold tool, because you have to do something with that. When you exalt the technique, that's not the emotion you are looking for. Emotions come from much more than the technique itself. The technique is the level of execution that you put into the creation, and it's incredibly high.” How many times do we hear the litany of techniques winemakers use, as if they’re reciting the necessary words for entry into a world they want to be admitted to? They spout the oak regimen, down to the forest they found the oak in. The pH is chanted religiously, as if 99% of the people they tell it to has any idea what pH is. The titratable acid, the alcohol content even. All this blather about technique, technique. Or scores, even worse. What is missing from the incantation is the creation, the rendering, resulting in the energy that goes into the wine. It’s the stuff of the soul.
“Where I found my pleasure, and where I found my role becoming full, was in shaping the soul of what we were providing to the client, to somebody who falls in love with your brand.” Soul, the holy grail of rabbit holes for marketer and cynics. How many times have I heard, “Keep the woo-woo factor out of it; give the wine buying public a drinkable wine, a snappy label and a good value.” Nothing about soul. I was in enough of “those meetings” to know that soul-shaping in the alcoholic beverage industry is not exactly the mainstream. But Italy? That’s a different story. People look to Italy and to the Italian winemakers, and their marketers, for soul. Emotion and soul, against everything we were taught in business school, but I’d say for Italy and Italian wine, essential. Where there is soul, the brand will follow. “It's quite an insane thing to spend that kind of money to know what time it is when you get it for free on your mobile phone.” How many Italian winemakers have spent $5-6,000 for a watch (or more) but when it comes to their wine, they find it hard to ask a price for a hand-crafted wine that in France no one would blink an eye at. I know, there are some pre-existing conditions in Italy. But 60 years later, it’s time to stop trying to make the monkey dance to the music of the hurdy-gurdy. Italy is an artistic center for the world, it’s been estimated that between 40-70% of the world’s art is located in Italy. I’m not saying we all have to drink the daily equivalent of a Rolex watch when we open our Chianti or Verdicchio, but it is also important to remember that this is a product born of the earth and emotion, and you get what you pay for. I’m just saying, clumsily, that when it comes to Italian wine, the Italians constantly apologize for their craft and undersell themselves, too often.
“Niche brands have an extraordinary, bright future ahead of them if they nail why they exist.” This is an existential notion, isn’t it? And while Terreni is talking specifically about watches in this quote, I see applications in the world of wine, and Italian wine, without a doubt. We are seeing more of this from Italian winemakers, much more than we did 30-40 years ago, so we are heading on the right track, in my opinion. Our connection to the land, to the wide variety of indigenous grapes and styles of winemaking, all of this feeds from the wellspring of intention and the “Why am I here?” question. My quixotic answer? Scratch your niche. “The culture of watchmaking is not something you measure in quarters or in years — you measure it in decades, in centuries.” I don’t think the Swiss watchmakers and the Italian winemakers are too far apart from this idea, but it is worth emphasizing, that time in wine is just as crucial as it is in timepieces. And while even a well-made wine might not have as long of a lifespan as a well-made watch, it’s instructive to remember the saying, “The mill of God grinds slow, but exceedingly fine.” We’re talking wine, as well as watches, at a very high level. Grand Cru’s, first growths, the best of the best. The top tier. But it can also be as much of an aspiration to the producer of Barbera D’Asti or Salice Salentino as it can be for the landowner and wine maker on Cannubi or in Montalcino.
“My passions are very focused. My job is a passion. Living (in) the present is probably one of the most difficult things you can do in life. And trying to grasp every moment of what I'm doing is what I'd like to do. It's not always easy.” “Living in the present.” I love how a watch-man talks about time as one thing – one time – the present. And even though the hand in the watch moves along, marking each present moment, it really is a precious thing – time. And likewise in wine. For the winemakers reading this, you have about all you can manage, right here and right now. Worrying about the next trend, or trying to shape it, takes away from the task at hand. That is to keep your passions focused on making the best, most delicious, and beautiful wine you can make. And I’m glad to report, that has been a largely prevailing mindset that I’ve witnessed in my lifetime, in this magical place, which we love, and know, as Italy.
All quotes by Guido Terreni. His full interview here: https://www.hodinkee.com/articles/guido-terreni-bulgari-left-to-run-parmigiani
written by Alfonso Cevola limited rights reserved On the Wine Trail in Italy
wine blog + Italian wine blog + Italy W
In questo periodo di giornate e tasche vuote, la caccia a prodotti “furbi” che garantiscano una discreta soddisfazione a prezzi contenuti è una costante, almeno per me. Gli e-commerce sono di grande aiuto in tal senso, perché si può fare … continua »
Librandi prende i suoi primi 3 bicchieri con il Gravello 1989, un risultato che all’epoca fece scalpore e metteva anche la Calabria a sedere al tavolo insieme alle regioni dove si poteva produrre un grande vino. Nonostante svariate ripartenze … continua »
Una bella iniziativa anche in vista della Festa della Mamma, il 9 maggio.
Un albero che cresce in Kenya con il nome della mamma è un originale regalo
che assolve allo scopo di festeggiare una persona centrale della nostra
vita e dare una mano al nostro tribolato pianeta. E se per caso alla mamma
la grappa non piace, siamo certi che non andrà comunque sprecata.
Poil de Lievre 2017 - Domaine Bobinet, un vino quotidiano, in equilibrio tra luminosità calde e luci fredde, generoso nei sapori e ritmato dalla tensione acido/sapida.
The post Poil de Lievre 2017 – Domaine Bobinet appeared first on Into the Wine.
Quando vedo che mi stanno morendo così sulla neve le raccolgo nel palmo della mano e con il fiato le rianimo e poi le ripongo sull’uscio delle loro case. Ecco, per tutto questo, per non lasciarle senza scorte in primavera, nel tardo autunno opero in maniera che i favi siano ben ricolmi di miele perché solo così, a maggio, quando i prati appariranno come un quadro di Van Gogh per l’esplosione della fioritura del tarassaco, le arnie si ritroveranno popolate; e con l’aiuto del sole la raccolta di polline e di nettare sarà abbondante e acuto e aspro, a sera, il profumo attorno all’apiario.Mario Rigoni Stern, Uomini, boschi e api, Einaudi, Torino 1980Il più importante ruolo dell’apicoltore è quello di essere un traduttore, interprete del linguaggio degli insetti tutti. Il suo rapporto intimo e privilegiato con l’ape permette di raccogliere il grido allarmato e salvifico di questi minuscoli animali per mettere al centro della nostra attenzione la salute del pianeta. L’apicoltore è ambasciatore di lingue “naturali”, ancestrali e diverse per dare luogo a una nuova letteratura il cui soggetto protagonista si chiama rispetto. Andrea Paternoster, Miele, in M. Donà-E. Sgarbi (a cura di), Pantagruel, La Nave di Teseo, Milano 2020, p. 401.
a sinistra Andrea Bezzecchi, proprietario dell’Acetaia San Giacomo e, a destra, Andrea Paternoster
a cura di lavinia e sandro sangiorgi
Sono stata alla cooperativa “La porta dei parchi” ad Anversa degli Abruzzi (AQ) in una piovosa domenica di ottobre. La nebbia che copriva le cime delle montagne mi ricordava i paesaggi delle Highlands scozzesi; Nunzio Marcelli, pastore, mi ha subito impressionata per la stazza e l’acume. Ho pranzato nel suo agriturismo con i formaggi da lui prodotti e la carne delle sue greggi. Dopo l’abbondante pasto gli ho chiesto se potevo fargli qualche domanda, non so se fosse contento, ma ha accettato e ha parlato a lungo.
[...] Questo viaggio è un’idea e durerà la mia vita, ogni amore è una strada, l’orizzonte è laggiù. Perché Francesco è un pastoree ha vissuto trent’anni in un deserto di pietreper la sua verità.Sì, ma quei suoi fragili fiori hanno messo radici,son sbocciati nel vento infiniti nel blu, infiniti nel blu... [...]
Ivan Graziani, Radici nel vento, dall’album Ivangarage, Carosello 1989
Perhaps you’ve heard, there’s been, yet again, devastating early frosts throughout France and in other parts of Europe, such as Northern Italy. This was very early on in the vintage, at the beginning of the plants leafing out. Some are reporting anywhere between 100% and 30% loss in places like the Loire, Auvergne, Northern Rhône, Jura, and Burgundy. Those who pruned late, which delays the spring growth, got lucky. The true damage won’t be known until May. Is it possible that the plant just sprouts new leaves? Yes, but will the vine flower? That’s another question. Fingers crossed that nature’s instinctual repair comes through so the 2021 vintage is not as devastated as it appears to be at this moment. Have you been getting out a little more? I have. Last night I met up with a friend at the newly reopened Ten Bells. Yassine has been busy fixing the place up and it looks fantastic. The floors are clean (!), the cruddy bathrooms are spruced up, the back room is enlivened by a Rousseau mural, banquettes are coming, the backyard has a plant wall. I sat near that green wall and shared a pichet of the 2019 Dufaitre Prémices. This was a humble, unpretentious and satisfying wine. I was
Today is the very remarkable Becky Wasserman Hones’ birthday. Being stuck here instead of over there in France where I should be, she is fiercely on my mind. Our connection was one of meeting the myth that became beloved family. Becky, with her musical voice and deep wisdom, mirth and view. So today, I dug into the archives to remember an idea that never came to pass but it was a quiet and sublime afternoon. And tonight, I’m thinking about endive mornay, and dammit, I’m going to try to channel Mr. Hone’s skill and make something grand. Back in 2011, the photographer Clay McLachlan and I were contemplating a book project. To mull over the possibilities he traveled down from Paris to meet me at Becky and Russell’s place in Bouilland. Don’t know Becky Wasserman? Having landed in Burgundy in the early 70’s, she took the alternative route (you’ll have to wait for the film version) and eventually started Le Serbet (Becky Wasserman Selections)– the first prominent women on the business side of wine. A tiny bundle of energy, she nurtured almost every nascent pinot noir grower in the U.S., including David Lett & Eyrie Vineyards and Josh Jensen & Calera. She was the American connection to Burgundy, they
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