Wine + Spirits

  • American Taste for French Wine

    By Ann Yungmeyer

    It wasn’t so long ago that a ‘superior’ bottle of wine meant a French wine.  Recently, I was surprised to hear a small town wine shop owner tell me he no longer carries a large selection of the wines of France - “People have quit buying French.”  Immediately I thought of the troubling ‘freedom fries’ movement years ago, but as a longtime Francophile, I hoped the reason wasn’t due to political sentiment.

    Last Updated ( Thursday, 08 October 2009 )
  • What Makes A Great Vintage?

    By Bill Shepard

    I was recently sent a wine column predicting that the 2009 vintage may well be the finest in Bordeaux since the heralded 2005.  Several well known Bordeaux estate owners are quoted in the article as being very optimistic. This sounds somewhat self-serving, since the last few vintages have not been very successful. And my first reaction was that you can’t predict the vintage before the September harvest, three weeks from now, any more than you can predict with reasonable certainty which baseball teams will be in the World Series, based on the standings at the All Star Game in July.

    Last Updated ( Monday, 12 October 2009 )
  • Downsizing Your Wine Budget

    By Bill Shepard

    One reads a lot about the “new normal” in spending patterns during this recession. It seems that most people have taken a good look at what seemed to be indispensable, from designer coffee to dinners out, and then cut back. Savings are in: credit card spending is out (at least temporarily). Many have said that they will not go back to old spending patterns when good times resume.

    Last Updated ( Sunday, 08 January 2012 )
  • A Case of Summer Wines - 2009

    By Bill Shepard

    For the wine lover, beginner or expert, it is now time for a pleasant seasonal errand. Go to your wine retailer, and lay in a case of twelve reasonably priced French wines that will go perfectly with your summer dinners. Make sure that they are good wines, and that you don’t spend over $125.00, taxes included.

    Last Updated ( Friday, 03 July 2009 )
  • On Canines and Wine

    By Bill Shepard

    I was reading a column in our local newspaper the other day by “Uncle Matty,” who writes regarding dogs (www.unclematty.com). His theme was the careful choice of an animal for lasting benefit to both the family and the animal, and he wrote following President Obama’s choice of a new family pet. It struck me that most of his precepts, which I have numbered and italicized, could apply to wine enjoyment as well. So here goes.

    Last Updated ( Friday, 03 July 2009 )
  • Enjoying Central European Wines

    By Bill Shepard

    Two quite different wine tastings in Washington recently gave us the opportunity to become familiar with some quality wines that deserve to be better known. More than that, the grape varietals, Kekfrankos, Gruner Veltliner and Chasselas, are largely unfamiliar, although they are grown in a belt of temperate climate between the 46th and 47th Parallels where fine wines are produced. This belt includes the great regions of Bordeaux and Burgundy. As I was soon to learn, however, wines from Switzerlnd, Austria and Hungary are produced within this same parallel. Exploring these areas therefore offers new possibilities for discovering fine wines.

    Last Updated ( Friday, 03 July 2009 )
  • Biodynamic Wines Please at French Embassy

    By Bill Shepard

    The French Embassy in Washington, with the indispensable help of the French Wine Society, presented a delicious introduction to wines created by winegrowers devoted to the elimination of additives in winemaking. There was a lecture by Nicolas Joly, a leader in this movement, and some information about the varying practices of the 153 winemakers in 13 countries now said to comprise this dedicated group. More to the point, 47 producers from 10 different nations participated in the tasting. They seem to differ considerably in approach, if not in devotion to making good wines.

    Last Updated ( Saturday, 12 September 2009 )
  • Another Look At Wine Point Scores

    By Bill Shepard

    Readers of this column will know that I find point scores for wine generally unhelpful, if not absolutely counterproductive. The reasons for this are various, but they were all highlighted a week or two ago, when I received an email notice from one of my favorite wine retailers. It announced the fact that they were taking orders for futures purchases for the 2007 Châteauneuf du Pape, Château de Beaucastel.

    Last Updated ( Sunday, 22 November 2009 )
  • A Christmas Medley

    By Bill Shepard

    This is the season to bring a long saved wine out of your cellar or closet and serve it with a festive holiday dinner. After all, one of the pleasures of having a collection of wine is that you buy them when the bottles are young (and, until recent years, relatively affordable). This is also the time when you will have the best selection of wines from a new vintage. But wines are to drink, not to collect, like postage stamps on an album page.

    Last Updated ( Sunday, 02 August 2009 )
  • Enjoying Port Wine and Madeira

    By Bill Shepard

    Have you ever attended a large scale wine event, and wished that instead, you could spend an enjoyable hour or two sipping good wines, and learning about them from a knowledgeable person who enjoys sharing her information? How about if the wine seminar were held in a town mansion, and were reasonably priced?

    Last Updated ( Sunday, 02 August 2009 )
« 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 »

ADVERTISEMENT

Recent Comments


Ask a Question on Bonjour Paris