When more wineries start putting the actual ingredients on the back of their labels, it will be a very interesting day for some. I’m not trying to panic the consumer, it will just clearly define the fine wine producers. It will be an eye opener for many. It will define the have and the have nots. But ultimately, if producers are doing the best they can with what they have and they are striving to do better each day, then of course it will show in the product. And hopefully, ten years from now, these winemakers will look back and say “I remember when I learned that.”
Wine has captured our interest for generations, but currently we have wine grabbing our attention for another reason.
The jury is still out on wine in a can. The jury will be discussing celebrities buying vineyards for a while as well. We are also seeing experiments of aging wine under water. All of this is showing that we are being very different with wine. We are being progressive. The intrigue is heightening the putting attention to the grape and what is in the bottle. That is what I like to see. Stay tuned to many more discussions on these advancements, the revolution is just beginning.
Somebody wrote the show to ask about wine trends for 2013.
I think you are going to start seeing some great wines in places where you might not normally think you could grab a nice glass of wine. Maybe you will be in your local sports bar, or shopping at your neighborhood grocery store. New wines are out there and you need to take notice. Whether it is a South African white wine in a phenomenal bottle, Protea White, or a Syrah based blend 13 years in the making, Sokol Blosser Evolution Red. Try something out of your comfort zone. Toss the playbook around and If You See Kay (Red Blend), let me know.
I strongly believe there are 5 P’s that make wine your beverage of choice. Why you drink what you drink when you drink it.
Proximity, Price, Publication… And the last two are very simple, I preach them all the time. The fourth is Paradox. Let’s face the facts, the health values of wine shot up wine consumption 15% in the first 3 months after the reports began coming out…and sales continue to rise due to these statistics. The argument still rages on, but it is still a deciding factor on why consumers switch to wine. The fifth P is the life and soul of the what the Wine Crush represents .. Perception. The lifestyle, glamour, fun…easy drinking. You can define yourself by what you drink. There is a different varietal for each of your moods. Again, it is based on what you like. Ultimately, the perception has change. You can sit at a pub and order a glass of wine, it is not the rich man’s drink anymore, and you will always find something you like.
I get a lot of emails and calls asking how a certain winemaker becomes famous, why his or her wine is better than another, and it has always been a challenge to find the right words. A recent guest, Winemaker Charles Smith, assisted me on this…
“You can’t talk a wine into being great.” I love this phrase and I thank Charles for his unique perspective. You can’t manipulate the wine, you can’t stand over the barrel and will it to be great, it is the sum of all the parts that come together that make that wine outstanding. It is the art of the winemaker and their building abilities. It is a process to be respected.
Expiration dates, Kegs, Junk Food, Brats…Am I discussing wine?
Yes! It is part of our every day, every outing, or it can be. Wine has a place at your table, no matter where that table may be. A bar, a courtyard, on your patio watching your grill. Wine has a place in your lifestyle, all you have to do is find it! Wine drinkers are expanding. My odd cravings haven’t stifled my regular glass in the evening. You know what I have recently discovered? Chardonnay goes great with fried cheese sticks and that stop at the Mexican place down the street… Riesling does pair nicely with tacos and nachos! Email me your pairings at email@example.com.
Yes, it is the season for hustle, but we need to take the time to slow down.
Take a moment, catch your breath and think about a great wine you want to try. We get busy and plan for the moment, but forget to plan ahead. When speaking on a larger scale, winemakers need to be thinking about harvests and business plans, but on a more individual scale, you may want to think about what wine you want try past tonight’s choice. So I challenge you, what are you planning ahead for this season? When it comes to wine, there is always a tangible goal. Something to look forward to reaching… I want to know what you have in mind.
Is information over-load a problem when trying to learn about wine?
Here are some basic rules that I like to remember when trying new wines:
1) Find what you like and drink it
2) Do not let anyone tell you what to like or not like
3) Weigh and measure everything you read, hear…If it relates to you, appreciate it. If it has nothing to do with you, throw it out the window.
These three rules will help you be more successful in your wine endeavors. I do not want any of our listeners going to a party, a tasting, or wine market and be embarrassed by what they drink or the questions they want to ask. Feel comfortable with your learning experiences, we all have them.
The most common question I am asked is, “Why do you stay in the wine business?”
It has taken me several years to come back with a concrete answer. It used to be because I never got bored, but I’ve discovered the true reason why I have kept up with the wine business is simply because there is ALWAYS an opinion. Whether it is about how a wine should taste, how regulations should be handled, which varietal is the best, or how a wine label should be designed, everybody finds a way to express their opinion. Whether you have studies for 15 or 5 years, you are ENTITLED to your opinion. The focus shouldn’t be on if you are right or wrong, but the fact that you are speaking out about something. So, as I always like to remind you, there is no such thing as an instant expert, there is only your own palate. No matter what you think of a wine, a wine maker, regulations, or wine labels, feel free to discuss it, you can only learn more.
As a wine buyer, when you go into your local mega mart, Trader Joe’s, or wine shop, are you concerned about being seen buying a bottle of $2.99 wine?
I have the luxury, because of my background and reputation, whether I bring a $2.99 or $299.00 bottle, people really don’t know what to anticipate out of me, they just know what I bring is going to be good. I have a fail safe, I don’t have to be concerned about what others will think. But I want to know what you think. When you are buying for your home, a gift, for your table, does the price make a difference? I have a good friend who has been in the business for over 25 years. She is the director of several wine lists in some of the finest restaurants. I was recently at her house having a glass of wine and she brought the rest of it out in a carafe. After my long day, I didn’t want to play “guess the wine.” I looked at her with my tired eyes and said, “Please don’t tell me I have to guess. I’m enjoying the wine, but don’t want to guess tonight.” She looked at me puzzled and said, “I just don’t want to bring the box in here.” For the rest of the night we all enjoyed this boxed wine immensely.
My point to this story is, if we don’t care, you shouldn’t. That’s the root of this show. To instill in you that you shouldn’t be embarrassed by what you pay for a bottle of wine. It’s just what you do while you drink it.