DeepWine is your source for Blog Aggregation in the Wine industry

Steve Heimoff| Wine Blog

View This Blog Frequency: 0.6 posts / day

 

Sparkling wine may be “hot,” but what does that really mean?

 Mark As Read    

  Is there any wine category that's had more ups and downs than sparkling wine? Twenty, thirty years ago and more here in California, many of the French Champagne houses, looking forward to the coming Millennium (not the religious one, but the turn of the 21st century), believed so strongly that Americans were turning into […]

Happy 50th, Robert Mondavi Winery

 Mark As Read    

  Believe it or not, kids, there was a time when Napa Valley possessed no Robert Mondavi Winery (RMW). Prior to 1966 Napa was a sleepy little wine valley, dominated by legendary wineries already perceived as old-time, like Beaulieu, Inglenook, Charles Krug and Louis M. Martini. A few newer wineries had sprung up over the […]

The heavy hand of neo-prohibitionism, Down Under

 Mark As Read    

  In the late 1980s and 1990s we witnessed a movement in this country that came to be called “neo-prohibitionism,” a neologism that expressed a very dangerous trend. The “prohibitionism” part was of course a reference to the disastrous “noble experiment” by which America outlawed alcoholic beverages between 1919 and 1933. That stupid, unconsti...

When drinking is your job

 Mark As Read    

  I can relate to Richard Betts, the 44-year old “alcohol entrepreneur” whose drinking is “endemic to his work.” Profiled in the Wall Street Journal last Thursday, Mr. Betts described how he avoids the “belly” and other unpleasant consequences of the near-constant drinking he does as part of his job; the Master Somm is on […]

Are Millennials killing CA wine? NY Post says for sure

 Mark As Read    

  The New York Post long has been famous for its outrageous headlines: “Obama Beats Weiner,” “A-Hole” (about A-Rod’s steroid scandal), “Cloak and Shag Her “ (the Gen. Petraeus love affair). Now they have this tasty little tag, “Millennials are ruining the American wine industry,” and if you don’t feel compelled to read the actual […]

When generational leadership changes at a winery

 Mark As Read    

  The drinks business reported the other day, based on a 2013 interview, that Aubert de Villaine is “training [his] nephew, Bertrand,” to take over the Domaine de la Romanée-Conti. That must surely have caused some to wonder if Burgundy’s most famous winery will still be the same when Aubert is gone. My 2 cents: […]

Does DTC mean the death of the wine store?

 Mark As Read    

  Yesterday’s big new from ShipCompliant that direct to consumer wine sales grew four times faster than sales from traditional wine retailers is quite stunning. If you project the rate of increase out into the future, you can easily foresee a time when the DTC sales line crosses the retail sales line, eclipsing it. And […]

French wine month names, the California drought, and growing weed in Napa Valley

 Mark As Read    

  Here’s how a wine-crazed country thinks: On Sept. 22, 1792, the First French Republic was born, amidst the fiery pangs of the French Revolution. It was a good day for the middle class of Paris, not so good for Louis XVI and his Queen, Marie-Antoinette, both of whom who already had been deposed and […]

Happy 40th Judgment of Paris! But you had a downside

 Mark As Read    

  This year, 2016, marks the 40th anniversary of the Judgment of Paris, which was one of the most important events in the history of the wine industry. If you’re a regular reader of this blog, you’re tuned into history, so I will recapitulate only an abbreviated version. Before 1976 California wines were widely perceived […]

Fred Franzia largely got it right

 Mark As Read    

  I’m largely in agreement with Fred Franzia when he defends the Central Valley and “California”-appellated wine, as he did the other day when he presented the keynote address at the Unified Wine & Grape Symposium. Fred’s affection for the Central Valley comes naturally: he runs Bronco Wine Co., whose scores of brands, including Two [̷...

A tasting of Sonoma County Cabernets and Bordeaux blends: Call me a Verité kinda guy

 Mark As Read    

  I couldn’t have been more pleased that in yesterday’s tasting I gave the Verite 2012 La Joie * a perfect 100 points. (All wines marked with an asterisk are from Jackson Family Wines.) It was back in 2009 that I gave the 2006 La Joie a near-perfect 98 points. A year later I gave […]

As consumers turn against Big Box stores, supermarkets feel the heat

 Mark As Read    

  The death of the Big Box store (think Wal-Mart) has been widely predicted, as for instance here, here and here. “Just about every major trend we're following right now bodes poorly for power center retail," says the Business Insider article. Those trends include the facts that “Americans are driving less than they have in […]...

The fatal flaw at the heart of social media: Compromised information

 Mark As Read    

  Investment banks, hedge funds and other for-profit speculators of the world’s money supply are “scooping up computer scientists, not economists and investment bankers with MBAs,” because “artificial intelligence” is now the Holy Grail of investment strategy, not old-fashioned gurus like Warren Buffett, who are increasingly viewed as “redunda...

Hello Los Olivos! Welcome to the California family of AVAs

 Mark As Read    

  I haven’t been the biggest fan of California’s AVA system, which contains far too many utterly meaningless appellations. (Sonoma Coast, anyone?) But now, the TTB has made an eminently worthy decision, in the case of Los Olivos, which on Jan. 20 was approved to become California’s latest appellation. (The actual effective date will be […...

A wine review, and a Millennial take on wine snobbery

 Mark As Read    

  King Estate 2006 Block 4D Clone 777 Pinot Noir. Originally $75. The appellation on the label is “Oregon.” Wine Enthusiast (I think it was Paul Gregutt) gave it 92 points back in 2009; oddly, they said nothing about its ageability. Spectator gave it only 89 points and recommended drinking it only through 2014. I […]

Woman winemakers in CA? Still not very many

 Mark As Read    

  Reading about the upcoming Women of the Vine Global Symposium, a great event which takes place this April in Napa Valley, made me think of how difficult it was for women to gain a toehold in the wine business, even in “liberal” Napa Valley, as recently as the 1970s. I was talking just yesterday […]

More wine scams, this time in Berkeley

 Mark As Read    

  We never saw this level of wine scam before. Now it’s Premier Cru, which had been a very well respected wine shop in Berkeley until their recent collapse. Coming on the heels of the Kurniawan scandal and others, Premier Cru’s problems raise a troubling question: Why so many of these wine Ponzi schemes and […]

Soil versus climate: The old Pinot Noir question

 Mark As Read    

  Someone who’s a wine professional and knows a lot about wine recently told me that Oregonians believe that soil and rocks play the dominant role in Pinot Noir while Californians think it’s weather and climate. I guess by that standard you can call me a Californian. By that I don’t mean that the stuff […]

Reflections on the NY Times’ demolition of Per Se

 Mark As Read    

  Pete Wells’ scathing review of Per Se in the New York Times is a schadenfreud-eque joy to read. Twitter lit up with #PerSe hooting and laughing—one tweet calls Wells “my hero,” another accurately notes that “Harsh restaurant reviews are so much more fun to read than glowing ones,” while another comes right out and […]

What you know influences what you taste

 Mark As Read    

  If I you were told that this was painted by a knockoff painter who specializes in fake Renaissance paintings, would you like it? Would you buy it? Would you hang it in your livingroom? What if I told you that, actually, it was painted by Raphael—arguably the third most-famous Renaissance painter (after Leonardo and […]

Pffft! That’s the sound of the wine blog bubble bursting

 Mark As Read    

  Kudos to Tom Wark—the original wine blogger—for doing research showing how “interest in wine blogs has been waning now for a good six years …”. Tom ran the numbers to prove his contention. And there it is, in his first graph: interest in wine blogs, as indicated by Google Trends, peaked in 2009, and […]

Wineries can’t have it both ways

 Mark As Read    

  It’s an old story: Wineries that get mediocre scores from famous critics say they don’t care because critics are irrelevant. Wineries that get high scores love critics and cite their great reviews in their marketing materials. But what I mean by “you can’t have it both ways” is that you can’t criticize critics and […]

When did Cabernet Sauvignon arrive in Napa Valley?

 Mark As Read    

  I’m doing some research for a project I’m involved with at Jackson Family Wines, and one of the things I’m interested in establishing is when the first Cabernet Sauvignon vines were planted in Napa Valley, by whom, and where. You’d think such things would already be well-documented. After all, Napa Valley is one of […]

Napa Valley Pinot Noir: gone, but not forgotten

 Mark As Read    

  We were up at Freemark Abbey yesterday and some of the people who work there showed me some old bottles someone had found and brought to the winery. Among them was this bottle of Pinot Noir.   Despite the "Selected Vintage" designation, it didn’t have a vintage date. But the thinking was that it […]

Save the date: Petite Sirah in Paso Robles, Feb. 6

 Mark As Read    

  Old pals Jose and Jo Diaz, who own Diaz Communications in Windsor, have long worked with wineries in the North Coast for their Petite Sirah advocacy efforts, but now they’ve extended their reach into Paso Robles, with the launch of their first-ever Petite Sirah event down in the Central Coast. Called PS I Love […]

Wine, beer and spirits for Millennials: which is cooler? (Hint: It’s not wine)

 Mark As Read    

  If you’ve been reading this blog for any length of time, you know I’m interested to the point of obsession with industry issues, such as who’s buying wine, how it’s doing with Millennials, price points and so on. One thing I’ve been keeping my eye on is restaurants. Everybody loves to eat out, but […]

Fake wine? Consumers don’t care, and with good reason

 Mark As Read    

  Not sure I agree that “fake wines take a toll on everyday consumers,” as this opinion piece from the Boulder Weekly claims. (The article is by Terroirist.com’s David White.) It’s hard, on the surface, to see how or why 99.9% of wine drinkers are harmed by the shenanigans of a Rudi Kurniawan. They don’t […]

2016? Here’s what I think

 Mark As Read    

  This is not a Top 10 predictions list. It’s just stuff I'll be talking about in 2016. Here in California, it’s all about the money: profits vs. losses. It comes down to the nesting circles of financial health: how is the overall economy doing? How does California fare within that? How is my tier […]

Happy New Year!

 Mark As Read    

  I’d like to wish everyone a happy, healthy New Year. 2015 was kind of weird for me in some respects, with lots of twists and turns—but then, life always provides the unexpected, doesn’t it? The thing I’m learning, or trying to, is that I usually land on my feet, and that, no matter what […]

Rich Smith passes to that great vineyard in the sky

 Mark As Read    

  I can hardly believe the news that Rich Smith has died. I’ve known Rich for so long, I can’t even remember when we met. He was instrumental in educating me about the appellation he helped to pioneer, the Santa Lucia Highlands, and was a good person to ask about all things viticultural. As for […]

Those emotional components of wine? Not going anywhere

 Mark As Read    

  There’s been much analytical writing lately about the mental, psychological, intellectual and emotional aspects of wine, such as this think piece in Decanter, in which Andrew Jefford ruminates on the concept of wine “as a dream.” He writes of the way wine “commands our emotions” and of its “cultural depth,” referring to historical effluvia [...

Christmas, and here’s El Nino!

 Mark As Read    

  We had a quiet, low-key Christmas Eve dinner down in San Mateo. Maxine made a prime rib of beef, perfectly cooked, with her specialty creamed broccoli and good old-fashioned baked potatoes with butter. I paired it all with a Corison 2002 Kronos Cabernet Sauvignon. That particular wine is well-known for aging, but at 13 […]

Too many chefs? A culinary academy closure raises questions

 Mark As Read    

  It’s a real shockeroo that the Culinary Academy in San Francisco is closing. Its graduates include Ron Siegel, now of Michael Mina but I remember dining at the old Charles Nob Hill restaurant, which he eventually left to go to Masa’s. Talk about a resumé! There are two outposts of the culinary arts in […]

How does our taste in alcohol change over time?

 Mark As Read    

  When I was a young man I didn’t care at all for wine, except for its obvious ability to make a college freshman (me) drunk. Years later, I learned to appreciate and eventually love wine. At first I sought out Cabernet Sauvignon because that was the wine all the critics at that time (the […]

A rainy interlude in the Willamette, then snow

 Mark As Read    

  I’m back from my trip to Oregon, where I got to know the byways of the Willamette Valley a lot better than before! Nothing like going back and forth along highways 22, 99 and all those lonely little country lanes to finally figure out who’s who and what’s what. I’d planned my trip a […]

The problem with sparkling wine

 Mark As Read    

  Good article from Esther Mobley in the San Francisco Chronicle exploring the challenges of sparkling wine in California, particularly the question of why our State doesn’t have a burgeoning grower-producer movement, the way Champagne (in France) does. Esther points out the principle stumbling blocks: making sparkling wine is way expensive; t...

In defense of drinking politicians

 Mark As Read    

  Winston Churchill drank a lot of booze. I consider myself something of a student of the Second World War, having read an enormous body of literature on the topic, and I find it interesting that all three of the Allied leaders, Churchill, FDR and Stalin, liked to drink. FDR preferred his cocktails. Stalin, needless […]

On the road to Willamette Valley

 Mark As Read    

  It was a pretty ride up to Oregon yesterday, bright sun and blue skies the whole way. Shasta looked like a Japanese painting, although when we got to the Siskiyous the fog descended. I think that this part of the land must be behind the rain shadow: the conifers suddenly disappear, so does the […]

2016 wine trends

 Mark As Read    

  One differs with Tom Wark and Julie Ann Kodmur with no small amount of trepidation. These two veterans are among the ablest and most effective of California winery publicists. I worked with them both for a great many years, and know for a fact that they have their fingers on the beating pulse of […]

The score as shortcut

 Mark As Read    

  Richard Hemming MW had a provocative posting last week on Jancis’s Purple Pages. The header says it all: Excoriating Scoring. It was in fact a commentary, fairly scathing at times albeit with some fine and amusing phrases, on “nonsensical rating systems masquerading as obdurate fact,” and compared the writers of such scoring systems to [R...

Putting wine into a greater context

 Mark As Read    

  When educators talk about wine at the kinds of consumer events I’m doing this week at Karisma Resort, it seems to me that more than just the hedonistic and technical aspects of the wines should be discussed. I mean, wine is more than just “cherries” or “limes” and bright acidity or steak-worthy tannins and […]

From Mexico, a great wine and food pairing, and the perils of poorly-conceived advertising

 Mark As Read    

  I’m down here in Mexico on the fabulous Maya Rivera, at the Karisma El Dorado resort, south of Cancun, where I’ll be doing a bunch of wine education classes and dinners, some of them with the chef/partner of San Francisco’s new Aaxte restaurant, Ryan Pollnow. This is a very exciting opportunity for me. The […]

Live, from Mexico

 Mark As Read    

Getting my bearings. Back tomorrow. This is the 74th anniversary of Pearl Harbor. Remember those who lost their lives defending us.

A Syrah super-tasting

 Mark As Read    

  I’d call it a super-tasting, our event on Wednesday in which we sampled 13 of the top Syrahs from California. The background was Jackson Family Wines’ purchase, about a year ago, of Siduri Wines, which also included the Lee family’s lesser-known brand, Novy. Now, I’d always given very high scores to Novy’s Syrahs and […]

Bill Gates’ “Content is King,” 20 years later

 Mark As Read    

  We’re coming up on the 20th anniversary of Bill Gates’ now-famous manifesto, “Content is King,” in which he made a number of predictions concerning the future of the Internet. Keep in mind that, in January of 1996, the Internet, or World Wide Web, was still an object of curiosity to most people, including even […]

Still relevant after all these years? I guess

 Mark As Read    

  I suppose I should be happy to have made #31 on this list of the Top 100 Most Influential Wine Bloggers. To tell you the truth, when I stopped working for Wine Enthusiast in March, 2014 and went over to Jackson Family Wines, I was perfectly aware of the fact that I had lost […]

Are red wines more “serious” than white wines?

 Mark As Read    

  “To be recognized by journalists, to be famous, you have to produce red.” That's from Aurélie Bertin Taillaud, the proprietor of a winery in Provence, Chateau St. Roseline, who was quoted in Benjamin Lewin’s new book, Wines of France, which I am enjoying as much as I did his previous books. The quote arose […]

Why are the most ardent defenders of a free market so dead-set against DTC?

 Mark As Read    

  Republicans and Democrats alike take campaign contributions from liquor wholesalers, as you can see from this data compiled by The Center for Responsive Politics, but perhaps the poster child for alcohol distribution companies is the Republican Senator from Texas, John Cornyn, who heads CRP’s list. Our system of wholesalers and distributors ...

Pinot Gris gains at Chardonnay’s expense

 Mark As Read    

  We all know that Chardonnay is the leading wine grape in California, in terms of both acreage and sales, right? So tell me, did planted acreage go up or down last year? Answer: Down. After hitting an all-time high of 94,854 acres in 2013, acreage dropped to 94,279 in 2014, a reduction of 575 […]

OMGNAs: The wine writer’s nemesis

 Mark As Read    

  When I was a working wine writer, it seemed like every year the magazine wanted the same story right around this time: WHAT WINE TO DRINK AT THANKSGIVING I dutifully handed in my assignments, but I never felt particularly proud of them. These kinds of stories are known in the trade as OMGNAs, as […]

Wine
Welcome!
DeepWine aggregates blogs for the Wine industry.
Custom Feeds
Add any RSS feed to the information you read daily.
Blocked Feeds
Block feeds to remove blogs you’re not interested in.
Account Settings
Customize the site by adding or removing feeds.

About Us

DeepWine is your source for all your Wine news.

Become a Featured Contributor

Become a featured contributor on DeepWine.com Get featured, it’s free

Have a Suggestion for Us?
Know of a Wine blog that we're missing? Let us know!

Share DeepWine.com