Flavor Profiles of Wine – Back to Basics

In the first in a series, we examine what makes up the flavors and aromas that make wine such a magical beverage. Sometimes we make things so much more difficult than they have to be. Wine is definitely one of those things. Those of us who work with wine and wine people on a daily basis need to find all sorts of descriptors for our favorite drink. The average wine drinker does not need to […]

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Belt Buckles, Saddles & Chaps? Oh My!

Wine Competition Winners named for 2009 Houston Rodeo The Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo™ Wine Competition Committee has announced the winners for their International Wine Competition for 2009. In its sixth year, the International Wine Competition awarded 1080 medals among a field of 1800 participants for the 2009 HLSR Season. Like other Rodeo events, winners were awarded belt-buckles, saddles and chaps. The Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo™ International Wine Competition is unique in that in […]

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Part II – White Zin: Guilty Pleasure or Virtuous Vice

White Zinfandel can be compared to Viagra, in that it came about as somewhat of a fluke; it’s a great wine for production in the age of instant gratification; and its success has been wildly profitable. The debate among bloggers and wine industry professionals puts White Zin somewhere between guilty pleasure and virtuous vice. Back in August, we had volunteered to provide pairings for a Wine Tasting fundraiser for some local candidates running for office. As […]

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White Zinfandel: Virtuous Viniculture or Viagra of the Vine

Part I: The Art of Zin True Story: One Saturday night we “cheated on” our favorite wine haunt, Chelsea Wine Bar in El Lago, and tried a new one in Kemah. After the waitperson, unprompted, told us us that we couldn’t order draft–to which I jokingly replied, “you don’t have any draft wine?”–we asked about their Zinfandel selection, pointedly looking at the “Reds by the Glass” section of the wine menu. Without missing a beat, […]

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How do restaurants price their wine?

A recent article in the Wall Street Journal tried to demystify the pricing used in restaurants for their wine lists. I say ‘tried’ because, while they discovered a lot of information, the real answer still remains, “Who the *@#$ knows?” The article is entitled “Cracking the Code Of Restaurant Wine Pricing” and here are some excerpts: Never mind trying to understand oil prices; for complexity, inscrutability and sheer customer frustration, it’s hard to match restaurant […]

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Pouring for Retail: Wine Sampling 101

Ever wonder how those hotties pouring sample shots at bars and sporting events got their jobs? On any given weekend, especially around the holidays, you can walk into our local wine merchant and sample wines without paying a dime. At our local wine “superstore” on Saturday afternoons you can troll the aisles tasting a number of different wines and spirits. Most of the liquor samples are served by young hotties who know little about the […]

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Wine Industry & Blogger Interaction: What Crosses the Line?

At the recent North American Wine Blogger Conference (WBC) in Santa Rosa, California, one of the breakout sessions focused on “Wine Industry and Blogger Interaction.” Two topics getting the most discussion were about industry marketing and blogger ethics. Specifically the questions were: (1) “I sent out a hundred press releases, why didn’t anyone write about my wine,” and (2) “Is it ethical for a bloggers to accept free stuff (wine, gifts, tours) from the wine […]

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My Favorite Four-Letter Words: Free and Wine

Free you ask? Yes free, or for a very small cost. By using the proper marketing and public relations techniques, you can get what amounts to thousands of dollars of print space for a fraction of the cost of advertising. At the recent North American Wine Bloggers Conference in Santa Rosa, California, one of the breakout sessions focused on “Wine Industry and Blogger Interaction.” Two questions garnering the most discussion were, (1) “I sent out […]

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