Oregon’s Path to Pinot Perfection (and beyond)

By David Skinner Nearly 15 million years ago, nature exploded in a maelstrom of chaos that cast a blanket of molten rock upon the marine-rich land where a receding ocean once lay. As the newly born volcanic terrain matured, the hillsides softened and westerly flowing flood waters receded enrobing the land in nutrient-rich soil. It would take until 1965 for winemakers to begin transforming the gentle slopes of the Willamette Valley from woodlands to the now familiar landscape lined with rows of vines eager to yield some of the best quality vinifera grapes anywhere. Since then, more than a dozen […]

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Randall Grahm: A Californian Blend of Wine, Wit and Wisdom

What a terrific chat with Randall Grahm of Bonny Doon Winery in California! Click on the arrow above to watch the video. Listen to Randall’s stories about hosting a funeral for an open casket of corks in NYC’s Grand Central Station, his experiments with adding rocks to wine and why he has a meteor named after him. Discover why his wines are superb, his new project on a very special piece of land and his push for ingredient labeling on wine. Next Sunday, July 30 at 6 pm EST, writer Mark Oldman joins us from New York to chat about […]

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Wachau Valley’s Liquid Gold: Austrian Wine Shines

Wachau Valley By Brigitte Hasbron of The Food Tease Known for its picturesque natural and cultural landscapes around the world, the Wachau Valley is a region where wine enthusiasts and aficionados want to immerse themselves in all things liquid and gold. A wine lover’s place to be. Being a food blogger and seeing how food and wine are synonymous with the perfect marriage, it was fitting that I was invited to two well-known vintners in Lower Austria, specifically in the famous Wachau Valley. The sites of the Danube River and the enchanting towns that we drove through to reach our first vineyard were postcard worthy… even on […]

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15 Sommeliers + Bloggers, 60 Wines, 700 Wine Reviews Live Posting + Tweeting Today

Heather Wall, wine columnist for the Huffington Post and a frequent contributor to our review site, talks about our tasting yesterday with 15 sommeliers, wine writers and bloggers working their way through more than 60 wines. More than 700 wine reviews will be posted online and shared on social media, including Twitter and Facebook. Stay tuned for our next tasting! Martha Kelly is the regular wine expert on the Rogers Daytime Television Show in Ottawa, as well as a regular writer for our site. She is the owner of Capital Wine School, teaching the Wine & Spirit Education Trust (WSET) […]

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How to Spit Wine Without Losing Your Dignity

Spitting out your wine—it’s an acceptable part of winery tasting room etiquette. In North America, we associate spitting with crudeness and great gobs of wet tobacco. Europeans, however, are completely uninhibited about spitting wine—as they are about nude bathing and May-December sexual liaisons. The French call it recracher, and they have no qualms about doing it in the vineyard, down drains, or even on the barrel room floor. (Here are my top reviews for wines not to spit.) But don’t think it’s a mark of European sophistication to spit on a floor that’s finished in bird’s eye maple or covered […]

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How to Get the Most from Your Winery Visit: 20 Tasting Room Tips

1. Plan your visits Visit wineries clustered together, such as the ones in Niagara-on-the-Lake area. Visit no more than three to five a day: two in the morning, one for lunch and one or two in the afternoon. That leaves you time to taste and talk. (I know, I crammed in more visits, but a drink writer in wine country is like those stunt drivers in car commercials—you’re not really supposed to do those tricks in real life.) Go to both small and large places to get a sense of the range of wines produced. 2. Designate a driver If […]

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