Posts Tagged ‘wine tasting’

Tough life – Wines of Loire Valley

Friday, August 8th, 2008

You know, the life of a wine industry professional is real tough. Going out to taste wines, being given samples to taste, speaking with winemakers – some of the coolest people around – let me tell ya, I don’t know how I do it.

Last night I had the arduous task of tasting through some wines made from Chenin Blanc from the Loire Valley with some contemporaries.

Loire Valley

We started with a sparkling wine, the Vouvrey Brut, Pinon NV. I’m still figuring out exactly how to better assess sparkling wines, but this one did have a nice chalky minerality and crisp tight bubbles – or so I think. Apparently these are desirable sparkling wine characteristics and that darn power of suggestion can be really influential.

Following the “bubbly” we tried 5 still wines. (more…)

Tonights Wine & Cheese tasting

Tuesday, July 8th, 2008

Boy were some of the people at this wine tasting idiots…

GWBush toast

KIDDING!!!  No really I AM KIDDING.  I actually had a lot of people from tonight’s tasting (which had a very nice turnout) tell me that they will be visiting our blog for the first time.  So I thought I’d mess with them a bit.  You don’t think any of them will take it personally….do you?

Seriously though, there was a great turnout at tonights tasting event.  (more…)

NYC Wine & Cheese Tasting

Wednesday, July 2nd, 2008

A quick heads up. I will be co-leading a wine tasting at Bacchus Wines on Broadway (off 70th St) in Manhattan next Tuesday night, July 8th at 7PM. The event is open to anyone and is being held to raise money to help elect a special friend, Ari Hoffnung, who is a candidate for NY City Council 2009. I’d love to meet YOU there…

Details below…

Hoffnung wine & cheese tasting

You can sign up here.

Hope to meet some of my local NYC readers there.


Misinformed – what to do with a bad wine educator?

Tuesday, June 10th, 2008

I attended an Israeli wine tasting at a local cultural center earlier this week. The instructor spoke both about the Israeli wine industry as well as basic wine appreciation. Among the instructor’s opening statements was a proclamation that the Israeli wine industry took a major step forward with the introduction of the Golan Heights Winery 15 years ago  (it was more like 25 years ago). Shortly thereafter we tried the first wine, a sauvignon blanc.  He began by pointing out that it is not straw in color, as a straw color indicates a flaw (not true).  Upon tasting the wine he pointed out that this wine was NOT oaky like some other whites since Sauvignon Blanc generally only spends 6 months in barrel (when in reality this Sauv Blanc was made in stainless steel tanks and saw no oak – hence the non-oakiness).  Finally he alleviated the concerns of an attendee regarding sulfites in wine informing the class that white wines, although written on the label “contains sulfites”, don’t really contain sulfites. I raised my hand and announced that i thought all wines contained sulfites, even organic wines (albeit in smaller quantities). He emphatically responded that I was wrong, reds contain sulfites but whites do not.

Speaking of his angry response, in a crowded room with over 50 people drinking (not spitting) wine, he consistently “sshhh-ed” the crowd. I can appreciate the challenges of speaking before a loud audience but while drinking wine in a crowded room did he really expect the audience to remain perfectly silent??

fire-bad-teacher.png (more…)

NYC residents – YOU ARE INVITED!

Wednesday, May 21st, 2008

Hey NYC wine lovers. I met a great guy at the Rioja tasting I wrote about two weeks ago. He organizes wine events in NYC and has asked me to extend an invitation to YOU to an upcoming event. Here are the details. I expect to be there one of the days so if you plan on attending and would like to say hi drop me a note and we’ll try to coordinate a meet & greet. Hope you are able to attend…

Be sure to join us at Astor Center again on Tuesday and Wednesday June 3 & 4, 4pm – 8.30pm for more tastings in the Study, 70 wines from Murcia to sample in the Gallery and tapas. Invite your friends, put it on your blog if you would be so kind, we welcome all wine lovers to join us. Here’s the info –

Free Tapas Party and Wine Tastings from Murcia, Spain (more…)

Toast of the Town – NYC

Tuesday, May 20th, 2008

Wine Enthusiast magazine put on their “Toast of the Town” wine & food event yesterday in NYC at Lincoln Center.  A very large event that took place on two levels & a large balcony & included some of NYC’s finest dining establishments.  There was lots of good food, good wine & happy people.

But it wasn’t all perfect.  (more…)

Wine Pleasures

Friday, May 9th, 2008

Eric Asimov of the NY Times wrote in his blog “The Pour” an article titled “Wine’s Pleasures: Are They All In Your Head?“, about “what motivates the wine shopper”. The article (or I suppose really blog post) is the second most emailed article on the NY Times website today as of 7PM and has so far amassed 231 comments (and counting I’m sure). (more…)

La Rioja – Wine Tasting @ Astor Center in NYC

Thursday, May 8th, 2008

I attended the La Rioja Wine Tasting at the Astor Center yesterday. I had some nice wines, 1 standout wine (which I will get to) some nondescript wines and one or two corked wines. But what is more important to me is HOW this tasting was conducted. Held at the very professional “study” in the Astor Center this FORMAL tasting was led by a Rioja winemaker who was familiar with all the wineries whose wines he was discussing (but maybe not intimately familiar with all the wines as it turned out).

Astor Center “Study”


NorCal day 2: Sonoma

Tuesday, May 6th, 2008

Woke up at the hotel bright and early..OK, maybe not THAT early, and went to the hotel courtyard for a “continental breakfast” of cereal, fresh pastries & coffee. I tried to get down a “bug juice” of sorts that was simply awful. Another cup of coffee (and I normally don’t drink coffee) and I was on my way.

I stayed in a northern part of Napa known as Calistoga and made my way North West to Sonoma county. I ended up in Healdsburg in the Russian River and started at a winery called Sausal winery. (more…)

They don’t make ’em like they used to

Monday, May 5th, 2008

oak-chips.jpgI just read a recent post by Eric Asimov of the New York Times on his blog The Pour. The post, titled “Does Your Wine Need Viagra” deals primarily with the issue of alternative sources used by wine producers for imparting the OAK flavors to wines (chips, powders & staves instead of barrels). But the article itself, as well as the myriad of comments that follows seems to be praising the old world producers, how they let the wine make itself, without the use of modern technology. While the New World producers (specifically California) are using all sorts of alternative technologies and products to make wines that lose that something special. (more…)