I am saying goodbye to Le Cigare Volant, at least to the wine that I’ve made in a certain, distinctive style for so many years. It’s just a wine, of course, and presumably for as long as I continue to ply my trade, I will make other cool wines, maybe even a few ultimately far more […]
I’ve been asked to talk about the somewhat abstract notion of “quality,” as it pertains to wine. Of course, every winemaker or winery owner thinks about or should be thinking about quality in some sense, but I believe that any discussion of “quality” should have a context and arise from a larger value system or […]
This post(mortem) is a bit of meditation on the 2009 Contra, a wine I have utterly adored (we’ve just recently sold out) but has been, in spite of very favorable press, very favorable price, and a strenuous, if not Herculean marketing effort—we really pulled out all the stops on this one—a bit of a commercial […]
Sources I had the distinct pleasure of speaking to a group of wine bloggers in Portland, OR recently – some of you may have been there – in which I reflected somewhat pensively on the state of the wine business in the U.S., mostly lamenting a certain palpable loss of innocence and idealism. The gist […]
DOMAINE DES BLOGGEURS ((Perhaps it’s little too precious to footnote a title, but in case you have forgotten, Bonny Doon Vineyard once imported a Syrah wine from the Languedoc called, Domaine des Blagueurs. I have gone from being a blagueur (joker) to bloggeur..)) I find it more or less ironic to be standing in front […]
In planting my new vineyard/garden/Eden in San Juan, I aim to bring something of real beauty into existence. But I also see it as an opportunity to connect myself to Nature—both the natural world and, more pointedly, my own essential nature.
I’m a little nervous about characterizing my quest to produce a vin de terroir—a wine expressive of a specific place—as a “spiritual journey.” Any journey must be grounded in genuine action, but whither forward?
If one is looking for true originality in a New World wine, grape hybridization may well be the most rational way to proceed. But I have some nagging doubts about the potential brilliance of vinifera hybrids, and what might really be meant by “wine quality.”
Terroir’s self-evident truth carries with it a deep, almost elemental, psychic force and resonance, and in a very real sense, terroir cannot exist without human beings to discover it, express it, and in the end, to appreciate it.
Real success in the wine business simply may lie in making real wine, and of course having the ability to communicate about this real wine you have somehow achieved.
Solstice 2010 has come and gone, and the year has started once again to wax, with an auspicious, adumbrating total lunar eclipse to boot, providing an excellent moment to reflect upon what’s behind us, and to look ahead with hope.
By amplifying the qualities of terroir, and by growing grapes from seeds, we may be able to create a real sensory paradigm shift in how we experience wine.
There are some problems in pursuing anything approaching a consensus about what constitutes “good” or “great” Grenache. It seems to suffer a bit from the perception that it is a second class citizen, a supporting actor rather than the star cépage. In an age of the cult of personality, of the superstar chef, superstar everything, how is Grenache to comport itself?