by Jeff Miller of Artisan Family of Wines (Seven Artisans, Sly Dog Cellars, Red Côte)
Every Wednesday I post my recommendations of the best of last week’s postings concerning wine, whether blogs or news. I list them in the order I read them, so you shouldn’t infer anything about the order in which I list these posts.
After judging at a Rosé tasting last week, this discussion of rosé by Heimoff couldn’t help but catch my attention. It’s worth noting that his preference (pretty much a requirement) that rosés be dry is just that, a personal preference, one that many others (including me) don’t share.
“Context-sensitive” wine tasting
Heimoff discusses the three main ways you can go about tasting wine: double blind (you know nothing about the wines you’re tasting and go only on what you taste), single blind (where you know something, such as you’re tasting Napa Cab, but the identify of the wines are not known), or open (you know what you’re tasting). My views on this are pretty clear—double blind is best, single blind is ok, and open is worthless. Heimoff notes that the results of double blind can’t be repeated in other tastings, even by the same judges, which really goes to show how much a wine’s popularity is based on other things, such as pedigree, or even things such as label design. I think a lot of what passes for a defense of open tasting is just an excuse to perpetuate a system (i.e., that wine judging has any validity at all) that, if objectively judged, falls flat on its face.
Turning up the sizzle on an already hot commodity ~ Petite Sirah Symposium
Petite Sirah has gone from a sideshow to something close to mainstream, even if it’s not quite there. The Petite Sirah symposium, and the organization that sponsors it, P. S. I Love You, is in large part responsible. Petite Sirah is a love it or hate it wine. I love it, but for those who like their wines lighter and less tannic, I can understand why this wine is a pass. But for those who like big and brawny, Petite Sirah is one of the best wines out there.
Winebits 280: “Value” wine, blind tasting, wine scores
The Wine Curmudgeon
Apropos of Heimoff’s post is this succinct summary of the power of blind tasting, which I quote in full: “The power of blind tasting: Mike Veseth at the Wine Economist talks about several recent tastings, where “where the wines easily fooled us (or perhaps we just fooled ourselves). ..” The point being that the tastings were done blind, and the results did not jive with what was expected. Wrote Veseth: “Our perception of wine is sometimes less about truth and more about context and expectations than we might want to think. That’s not the conclusion I thought I would find when I set up this tiny experiment.” He also writes interestingly about the power of cheap wine (in this case, Two-buck Chuck) to skew the results. This is why blind tasting is the most powerful tool the reviewer – or any wine drinker, for that matter – can use.”
How Much Do Wineries Really Make?
SVB on Wine
The answer: not enough. And his data is abased on larger wineries. Smaller wineries I’m sure fare even worse.
For keeping up to date with what’s going on the in wine world, the best all around source is http://winebusiness.com.