Tag: wine

WSET Exam-Type Question: Dealing with Hail

Identify and evaluate three options for dealing with the treat of hail in an established vineyard.

As someone that grew up in the Bay Area, hail, for me, is a once-in-awhile thing, not an every vintage thing. Those tiny little pellets that hit against my window or get stuck in my hair have nothing on the major rocks that slam down in other regions. Hail is a real threat in many areas: Bordeaux, Languedoc, Beaujolais, Argentina. So…what does that mean for the grapes and wine?


This Week’s Latest Wine Headlines: June 28—July 3

It’s a short week this week for those of us in the US, and I hope everyone has some way they’ll be enjoying the time off. Of course, celebrating our country’s heritage is a bit bitter sweet this year—for many reasons—so, I’d like to highlight a few positive pieces that came out in this week’s wine-related news. Wine Industry Advisor speaks to Sonoma viticulturist Brenae Royal, who speaks to how racial inclusivity within the wine business means creating a simultaneously broader, yet more intimate and meaningful, wine consumer base. For more on that kind of perspective, check out the Forbes piece that profiles three Black wine experts—including one of my favorite local producers Theodora Lee. And for those of you in the biz who are looking to hire, work or network with, or just become familiar with qualified Black wine industry pros, Julie Coney has spearheaded, and officially launched, the Black Wine Professionals website just this past week.

Need a bit of a laugh? Well, there’s a company making wine bottles out of paper. Yeah…

Oh, and for my wine nerds out there, check out Tim Gaiser’s blog post on deductive tasting and Young Gun of Wines’ dive into ageable Aussie Chard.

That’s some of the good/fun news. However, I do want to say that if you have outdoor plans for this Fourth of July weekend, please stay safe. Here in California Newsom has shutdown indoor businesses (including bars, restaurants, wineries, and tasting rooms) in 19 counties, as well as state beaches from Monterey to Sonoma. But before you get any ideas about packing up the truck and heading toward the North Bay, be warned: Sonoma County is not immune and is, in fact, probably next on that list.

So, again, wherever you are, however you choose to celebrate, please make smart decisions, stay safe, protect yourself and others. That’s all from me for now. Have a happy weekend and drink some good wine.


19 Crimes 2017 The Warden

If you read my last post, I mentioned that I’m going to start pulling directly from my WSET wine notes notebook for some of my reviews. Some of these wines (like the wines below) were specifically requested by my course. (Again, we are meant to try a variety of quality levels in order to gain a better understanding of how to gauge different wine tiers.) These reviews are quick, fairly succinct, but include an explanation as to my reasoning behind any conclusions I’ve determined. I, of course, welcome any feedback from those who have gone through the program. Cheers.


This Week’s Latest Wine Headlines: June 20—June 26

Hello. How are you? Are you, like me, still sheltering in place or are you venturing out into the wide wine world already? I admit, on a personal note, that the offers to go to in-person tastings are tempting. I miss people, physical interactions, side-by-side vineyard and cellar walk throughs and interviews. But I’m just not *there* yet. As the SF Chronicle reports, Wine Country is attempting to reopen, but the rise of the spread of coronavirus is real—in my town, in this county, in our state, and all across the country. So, if you are going out, I urge you to please be safe, careful, make healthy choices.

If you want more drama than that, I’m sure you’ve all heard about the recent resignation of several Master Sommeliers from the Court of Master Sommeliers in protest to the immoral attitude and actions of the organization. The CMS finally sent out a public statement addressing the issue, but that statement is, in many eyes, just not good enough.

The wine industry, just like the rest of the world, is in a constant state of flux at the moment. Scroll through, catch up on some news and anecdotes (don’t forget to check out this week’s Blog call-outs) and let me know your thoughts.