From July 22nd through 24th in Charlottesville, Virginia, the fourth annual North American Wine Bloggers' Conference will take place. I am stunned by the honor to attend, bestowed by the generosity of conference sponsors, that I may report to you about the proceedings and charming digressions of #wbc11 through my own aficionado's lens and lingua franca.
Cheers Saint Helena is a marriage made in heaven for the merchants, entertainers, restaurants, and winemakers meeting first Fridays throughout the growing season from 6 to 8 p.m.
I interviewed senior wine educator Michael Jobes on Global #Chardonnay day (May 26, 2011) at The Hess Collection winery in the Mount Veeder AVA of Napa Valley. Working our way through the portfolio, my jaw hit the ground upon diving into this rare gem of noble rot.
On May 26, 2011 (aka #Chardonnay Day), Julianne Laks, winemaker at Cakebread Winery, presented an overview of how their philosophy guides their practices in pressing, fermentation, and aging of Chardonnay. Each wine should be made with an eye toward quality improvement, longer lifetimes, and higher valuations from release going forward.
On May 14, 2011 Raymond Winery briefed a contingent of the wine press on transformations taking place throughout the Boisset Family Estates. Approaching the visitors' center, a Daliesque landscape offers clues to the innovative programs which lay in wait ahead.
A #VibrantRioja energized opinions about Tempranillo, Garnacha, Graciano, Viura, Mazuelo, Malvasia, and Macabeo on May 2, 2011, as the Regulatory Council members of the Rioja DOC winemakers presented their best to the wine trade and press in San Francisco at the Westin Saint Francis.
Another route by which to expand the realm of food-wine pairing possibilities is "Take-Out" or "To-Go" because this affords you a larger choice of dishes done better than you yourself might be able to execute in your own kitchen, while unshackling you from the restrictions of choosing from a particular restaurant's wine list. It's both a rare and wallet-deflating situation when you can get everything you want from a single provider, so I ventured out on the evening of April 12, 2011 with intent to pair a dinner dish to a bottle in the cellarette.
On April 7th, 2011 I attended a meeting of the Conseil Interprofessionel des Vins du Languedoc in San Francisco as one of the venues for their third annual Ambassadors Tour, with 32 wineries presenting current releases. Languedoc is a new official designation among the wine growing regions in France. Here is a subset view that encompasses a couple of wineries which I shall highlight in the context of well-known name-places.