Wine Blogging Is Dead! Again! Long Live Wine Blogging!

Tom Wark recently asked me to chime in for an article he was considering for his blog, on the topic of whether or not interest in wine blogs was waning. I offered my views, some of which are quoted in his thoughtfully-considered piece.
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Alive, though maybe not totally well (image: Grape Collective)

As to whether or not I agree with Tom that wine blogging has “died without a funeral,” I think we first have to ask ourselves if wine blogging is inherently different from other niche blogging topics. If we accept that it isn’t (in the same way that, say, DVRs aren’t inherently different from one another – they all basically do the same thing at the core, which is record broadcast video media), then Tom is also asking if niche blogging is dead. To which I would say, No, it’s not dead. This is the kind of question that ...

The Golden Age Of Wine Writing? Sorry, Wrong Question!

Almost four (holy crap!) years ago, I wrote on these virtual pages a response (ok, rebuttal) to a claim by the thought-provoking PR maven Tom Wark that we were in a “golden age” of wine writing. Fast-forward to last week, and we have Tom taking umbrage with a satirical piece by Ron Washam, a.k.a. The Hosemaster of Wine, in which wine writer Karen MacNeil delivers a keynote address to the Wine Bloggers Conference in which she offers the helpful advice that most wine bloggers ought to hang it up: “Your prose is like box wine—a collapsing plastic sack of crap.” Steve Heimoff, formerly of Wine Enthusiast, also got in on the discussion, essentially wondering aloud if wine writing is doomed. With me so far? Tom’s rebuttal essentially restates his position from 2011; that we are in a golden age of wine writing, ...

The Wine Vacation: Napa vs Sonoma

A holiday in Northern California's wine country usually means heading to Napa Valley, Sonoma County or a little of both. In realty and for most people, it means choosing between one or the other. Choosing between Napa and Sonoma isn't...

Examining Antonio Galloni’s Palate

The appointment of Antonio Galloni to the California reviewer position at Robert Parker's Wine Advocate a year and a half ago was an important event in the world of California Wine. For years, Robert Parker's palate was the source of...

Dishonesty and Deception Among Alcohol Partisans

The "Annual Alcohol Law Symposium" sounds pretty important. Alcohol law is pretty serious stuff, impacts just about everyone in the land, and is an important field in the area of law. So it should be that an "Annual Alcohol Law...

Examining Wine Blogging: The New Publishers

While it is true that upon launching a wine blog a "writer" does not necessarily appear, it is equally true that upon launching a wine blog, a new "publisher" has appeared. Continuing to think about the nature of wine blogging...

Examining Wine Blogging: Responsibility

A week from today, upwards of 300 wine blogger will converge on Portland, Oregon for the Wine Bloggers Conference. They will come from across the country and in some cases around the world to examine their chosen avocation, to commune...

Reviewing One of the Finest Napa Valley Wines

I am absolutely compelled to report on a newly released wine that, as far as I can tell, is among the finest Napa Valley wines. This 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa Valley can be described as boasting black jammy fruits,...

The Art of Wine Criticism and Robert Hughes

I have in the past defended and lauded the wine critic and wine criticism, be it in the form of reviews or prose. Like most other forms of professional criticism, wine criticism I think is an act of reverence. When...

Enacting Joy: The State of Wine, Consumers and Sunday

In every state where long-standing bans on sales of alcohol on Sunday have been lifted, consumers express their approval after having experienced the new convenience. This, predictably, appears to be the case in Connecticut where the long-standing ban on picking...

What’s Best For Wine Consumers?

What set of regulatory circumstances "results in the best situation for a state's wine consumers"? This is the underlying question in a Memphis Commercial Appeal article written by Fredric Koeppel that considers the impact of locally-owned alcohol wholesalers that are...

The Return of Great Wine Content

Great wine content doesn't die. It just gets re-platformed. This is the case with much of the important reference content on AppellationAmerica.com. Today, the recently launched Appellation America App (for the iPhone), provides mobile users with one of the best...

Relationships Between Wine Blogs, Ads and Readers

There is a symbiotic relationship between the publisher, the advertisers and the readers. While that church/state line must always separate what gets printed and what gets advertised, it's an important fact of publishing life that the publisher, readers and advertisers...