Monthly Archives: August 2011

The Map, Part I

Chapter 50 Today I have something a little different.  I don’t have a rant, or a story, or some nerdy list of facts.[1] I have an invitation. I have a wine atlas.[2] It’s beautiful.  It’s insanely detailed in places.  It’s as comprehensive as is reasonable to be in a book that won’t cause back injury […]


Chapter 49 There’s a debate ongoing about Riesling and that classic ‘petrol’ flavor.[1] At a tasting back on May 11th, Rhone winemaker Michel Chapoutier came out sniffing that this note is a flaw in the grapes. “Riesling should never smell of petrol. That is a result of a mistake during winemaking… historical defects in wine […]


Chapter 48 Now I want to talk a little about the new world.  This section is going to be shorter, because the new world is a little more relaxed about these things.  The fundamental difference in appellation laws between the two is that the new world focuses more on the grape varieties than on the […]


Chapter 47 In 1923, the Baron le Roy, who ran Chateau Fortia, which was the preeminent producer of Chateauneuf de Pape in the way-back-then, noticed[1] that the very best wines seemed to grow on those parts of the hill hot and dry enough that both lavender and thyme could flourish.  So he found a map […]