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Wine Swingers

Be a Swinger, or Divorce Your Wine Guy!

People love to ask about our favorite local wine merchant. Truth be told, we do not have many. In fact most of our wine is shipped to us. So it is pretty safe to say our favorite wine usually comes via FedEx. When I wrote a version this post back in 2010, we did not have a favorite wine guy. Or girl, in Houston. Then our good friend Iris Allen invited us to a hidden gem in […]

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The Trouble with Wine “Super” Stores

You are a sophisticated wine consumer. You are looking for wine from a particular region. If it’s Old World, then that’s pretty easy. Need a French Pinot Noir? Head to any wine shop’s Burgundy section. Cabernet or Merlot? There’s the Bordeaux section over there. Sparkling? Look for the bottles with a shiny foil-covered round cork — those you can spot from over the tops of the aisles. But suppose you want something from California. From […]

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Not your Grandfather’s Wine Blog

Wine blogs are in a flurry in response to comments made here, and elsewhere to the print writer panels’ critique and advice to bloggers on wine writing at the recent annual Wine Bloggers’ Conference. Several blogs authored by both females and forward-thinking males call for more diversity in presentation panels. More women, more bloggers of color and diverse ethnicity and more young faces are the requests in response to the “grand-fatherly white traditional male print writers” […]

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WBC 2014 and the Wine Blog Awards – Part 1

Before we begin… Later in this post I mention that some of my fellow bloggers might be too genteel to express themselves the way that I tend to do. If I had to pick one person that I know to apply that word to, it would be my fellow Texas import, Melanie Ofenloch, otherwise known as DallasWineChick. As far as I know,  I’ve never done this before, but I would like to dedicate this post to her. […]

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Top 10 Things I Learned at WBC 2014

The 2014 Wine Bloggers’ Conference co-mingled about 150 citizen bloggers and 200-plus wine and related industry personnel with wine makers and producers from all over the world last week at the Santa Ynez Valley Marriott in Buellton, California. This was the seventh year of the annual event started by Joel Vincent and Zephyr Adventures in 2008, and now run primarily by Zephyr with a small board of advisors. In addition to Buellton, the North American WBC conventioneers have […]

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I’m looking California, and feeling Minnesota…

There is an image in Soundgarden’s video for “Outshined” with a guy walking in a life-sized hamster wheel. For those of us not passionate about our jobs, or those who feel like every day is just the same rat race day in and day out, online learning is the perfect answer to the prolonged drudgery of life. For those with a genuine interest in California wine study without the time to sit inside a class, […]

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Summer of Riesling VII in Full Swing

Paul Grieco is at it again, and swears this one will be his last season. Wines of Germany and Grieco are again partnering to celebrate one of our favorite grapes of many expressions in the 31 Days of German Riesling. Participating wine shops all over the United States are dedicating the entire month of July to German Riesling, with in-store tastings and discounts on bottles for the entire month of July as well. Restaurants such as Gramercy […]

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Wine Bloggers Conference Scholarships: From Donor to Recipient the WBC changed my life!

Many of my friends, and much of what I know about wine started with the first Wine Bloggers Conference in Santa Rosa, California in 2008. Sure I had taken a few seminars through University of Toledo’s own wine expert, Professor John A. Barrett, and we had traveled once to Sonoma on our own as a post American Bar Association Annual Meeting. But then it was mainly about drinking the wine, rather than immersion in the […]

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Black Sears 2010 Estate Howell Mountain Napa Valley Zinfandel

The Black Sears Estate 2010 Napa Valley Zinfandel is one for the ages. Bittersweet chocolate, black raspberry preserves, black pepper, baking spices and dusty sun-dried strawberry on the nose, with a hint of the ceremonial cedar box of warm sake. With Bing cherry, sweet tobacco leaves, cinnamon flavors and legs like Tina Turner, the 2010 is even better with another year in the bottle. I tasted this in January 2013 at the Zinfandel Advocates and Producers (ZAP) […]

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