The winelands of South Africa, as they are called, are among the most stunning landscapes in the world. Most are located in the mountain valleys and coastal areas of the Western Cape, not more than a couple hours’ drive from Cape Town. Within the region, there is considerable climate and soil variation from district to […]
The south of France is not known for its Pinot Noirs. That distinction, of course, belongs to Burgundy, which is synonymous with the variety and the benchmark region to which Pinots throughout the world are compared. But the south of France, which is defined by red grapes that do better in a warmer climate, such […]
You might find this hard to believe, but a wine critic’s job can be tough at times. For example, tasting a big Cabernet Sauvignon for potential review in the heat of late August is not exactly refreshing. Fortunately, this time, the effort paid off.
While the days of summer may be numbered, the heat is sticking around, and as we head into the long Labor Day weekend, I’m thinking of fresh, interesting, and affordable white wines that are easy to drink on their own but pair well with a variety of foods. One that stands out is from Austria, […]
I recently asked VinePair’s co-founder, Adam Teeter, for a few new restaurant ideas. At the top of his list was the recently opened Fiaschetteria Pistoia on New York’s Lower East Side. When I went last Friday, I immediately understood why.
France’s Loire Valley is best known for its white wines, mainly Sauvignon Blancs and Chenin Blancs from such famous appellations as Sancerre, Vouvray, and Savennières. But this large and varied region is also worth exploring for its terroir-driven red wines, which typically have moderate levels of alcohol and often have highly attractive price tags.
It’s understandable that Barolo and Barbaresco get most of the attention among red wines from northern Italy’s Piedmont region, or Piemonte, as it is known there. Made from the Nebbiolo grape, they are endlessly fascinating studies in terroir, layered complexity, and how great wines can evolve over time.
When it comes to Chardonnay, I prefer a leaner, lower-alcohol style with subtle oak treatment, which means that I naturally gravitate toward Burgundy, the French region that sets a benchmark against which Chardonnay throughout the world is compared, if not judged. The same is true for Pinot Noir, Burgundy’s signature red variety.
For almost four decades, Randall Grahm has been producing wines that are, in a word, intriguing. Knowing Grahm, the founder and self-proclaimed “president-for-life” of California’s Bonny Doon Vineyard, I think he would appreciate the description. Unlike many winemakers, Grahm, for better or worse, has never been particularly focused on critics’ scores or on making what […]