Bud break in Bordeaux

It is always a happy coincidence when Mother Nature cooperates and bud break occurs around En Primeur in Bordeaux. Here are some picture from around Margaux.

Château Dauzac:


Château Brane-Cantenac:

Château Margaux:

Château Palmer:


Château Kirwan:












Loudoun Wineries Brace for Frost on Tuesday



This is why only the most passionate winemakers make wine in Virginia, you never know what you are going to get. With the recent bit of nice weather the vines are starting to come alive. They have been weeping for a while and some vineyards are even reporting bud break. 

Now comes he weather report, with two chances for frost: Tuesday and Saturday. Frost at this stage could seriously damage the vines, a few years back Fabbioli Cellars lost their entire Cabernet Franc crop because of a late frost like this one. 

Now, vineyards will be scrambling to build fires, bring in frost abating equipment and even renting helicopters. Though none of these things will help if the temperatures dip down to 22 degrees, as originally predicted. The good news is that the temperature is ticking up a bit, though not enough. 

At this point all the ...

Château Haut-Bailly Space Bottle



Most people have never given any thought to the challenges of drinking wine on a space ship, or for that matter drinking anything on a space ship. But, there are unique challenges to drinking in a low gravity environment. Liquid does not flow in a low gravity environment the way it does on earth. Instead, it pools into droplets that look almost like floating bubbles. That is why astronauts drink water, and other drinks, through a straw.

That is fine for water and juice, but it is not a good way to drink wine.  Fortunately, a young designer, Octave de Gaulle, got curious about drinking wine in space and spent a lot of time, studying the problem.  According to him:
Nowadays drinking in space is no longer a technical problem. However if you drink alcohol from the existing plastic bags, you ruin everything beautiful and good in wine.
You just have ...

11th Annual Weekend des Grands Crus


Next week thousands of journalists will be in Bordeaux to celebrate the 2015 vintage, but just a few months after that thousands of people who love Bordeaux will be in town for what is absolutely the best wine tasting event of the year.

Union des Grands Grus de Bordeaux will hold its 11th annual Le Week-End des Grands Crus on June 4th and 5th this year.  This is an incredible tasting of 120 Bordeaux wines and a chance to chat with the Château owners and winemakers.

But, what makes the event special for me is the chance to have dinner at various Château.  These dinners are always an amazing experience, and one of the hostesses this year is Sophie Schyler Thierry, the charming Director of Communication at Château Kirwan who will show off their completely redesigned cellar.

This really is an amazing experience, you will find the many things to do ...

.WINE and .VIN Domains Available for Registration


In 2014 I wrote about the potential creation of the .WINE and .VIN domains thought domain registry Donuts.  Well, you can officially register your own .wine and .vin domains through one of the Donuts-affiliated Registrars!

In fact, one at least one Virginia Winery is already on-board, Stephen Mackey at Notaviva Vineyards has already registered notaviva.wine and NotavivaVineyards.wine. I asked him why he did it so quickly:

It's too soon to tell if having a .WINE Generic Top Level Domain (gTLD) will actually boost your search engine rankings, as Google has indicated that the gTLD does not inform your score.  However, other studies from respected search engine experts do seem to indicate that having keyword-rich domain names does in fact boost your SEO scores.  Though the story still seems to be unfolding, it is Mesh Omnimedia's recommendation that the potential benefits of making the minimal investment required to secure ...

Interview with Adam Centamore, Author of Tasting Wine & Cheese



[Full Disclosure: I received a review copy of this book from the publisher]

Wine and cheese pairing is something that many people, including a surprising number of restaurants get wrong. I think a lot of that has to do with how we in the United States think about how we pair our cheeses.  I have been to restaurants where they offer cheese plates based on region (e.g. American cheeses vs European cheeses), but there is such a wide variety of cheeses from each region that it makes it difficult to pair a single wine with the plate.  Consumers often have it worse, unless there is a cheese shop around, or a grocery store with a good cheese selection and a knowledgable staff you are often relegated to choosing a pre-made cheese tray with no control over the types of cheeses used.  

That is one of the things that ...

Château Angélus Makes an Appearance in Spectre


The latest James Bond film, Spectre, has a number of famous stars including a bottle of 2005 Château Angélus.  This is the second Bond film in which Château Angélus has made an appearance, a bottle also appeared in the 2006 Bond film Casino Royale. The bottle appears in an action-packed train scene featuring James Bond (Daniel Craig and Madeleine Swann (Léa Seydoux).

If you would like to drink like Bond you can pick up a bottle of 2005 Château Angélus from Zachys in New York for $439. That being said, even though it is starting to open up I would wait a few more years to drink it.