Wine Openers - Blog

Page 9 of 18

Growers still cautious after December freeze

By Dave Buchanan
Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Unruly stems shoot off in multiple directions, like lightning trapped in the veins of a plant. Normally, by this time grape vines are close-cropped and orderly, simply awaiting the hot days of spring to burst out of the winter doldrums and turn sunlight into grapes. But this year has been far from normal. Two frosts, one in October and a double-digit below-zero zapper in December, has made this spring a period of wait-and-see for valley grape growers. What they’re ...

April is the time to check your summer wine calendar

By Dave Buchanan
Tuesday, April 13, 2010

It’s mid-April but not too early for planning summer’s wine-related travels. There’s quite a lineup planned, from this month’s Spring Barrel Tasting to the Wine & Food Magazine Classic in Aspen set for June 18–20. I'm putting together a file of this summer's goings-on, but here is some early information about events I've heard about. The annual “Barrel into Spring” wine tasting will be April 24–25 and May 15–16 ...

Aspen Food & Wine Classic lineup shines

By Dave Buchanan
Wednesday, March 31, 2010

I just received the lineup for the 2010 (and 28th annual) Food & Wine Magazine Classic in Aspen (June 18-20) and the list of chefs includes Mario, Jacques, Giada, Thomas Keller, David Chang and other great names. The deadline for early tickets has passed but you can still find tickets (all three days, $1,185, includes seminars, demos and Grand Tastings) on the Web site here. That's a lot of money in this economy – heck, it's a lot of money in any economy – but ...

Winefest taking on social media role in outreach to fans

By Dave Buchanan
Monday, March 22, 2010

The Colorado Mountain Winefest is making the most of the surging popularity of social media by updating its Web site and increasing its public outreach through Twitter, Facebook and YouTube. The new Web site, said Elaine Matthews of the marketing firm Ryan, Sawyer & Whitney of Grand Junction, not only is more user-friendly but also allows guests to purchase Winefest tickets, find updated schedules and explore the many events planned for the Sept. 16-19 event. Colorado ...

Go Facebook to Facebook with Colorado Mountain Winefest

By Dave Buchanan
Thursday, March 11, 2010

Colorado Mountain Winefest has joined the burgeoning world of social media by tagging into Facebook, Twitter and YouTube along with offering an updated and more user-friendly Web site at The Web site allows you to  purchase tickets to the September 16-19 Winefest, check out the latest schedules and take a peek at the events planned for the annual late-summer get-together. Plus, you can stay in contact with Winefest through Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. ...

Colorado Champagne? Only one, winemaker says

By Dave Buchanan
Monday, March 8, 2010

A recent article on two Colorado wineries headed this month to the U.S. Ambassador’s tasting in France brought a response from Rick Turley, owner and winemaker at Colorado Cellars, one of the oldest wineries in the state. One of the wineries, Varaison Vineyards and Winery in Palisade, mentioned it made a Colorado Champagne and Turley was quick to take ownership of that label name. He said Colorado Cellars is the only Colorado winery producing what can be officially labeled as a ...

Showing support for Chilean wines

By Dave Buchanan
Thursday, March 4, 2010

It's almost like spring in western Colorado and to me nothing says spring more than enjoying a chilled sauvignon blanc on the outside patio. We may be jumping the calendar a bit, but this week's Wine of the Week is the Santa Rita 2008 Reserva Sauvignon Blanc ($11.99, purchased). The wine is pale gold in color and has terrific acidity, making it a great food wine. There's plenty of fresh apricots and peach flavors along with citrus, mostly grapefruit, adding to the ...

News from Chile expresses hope for future

By Dave Buchanan
Thursday, March 4, 2010

Reports from the Chilean wine industry change every day as more information comes in from earthquake-rattled wineries just now getting communications back to near normal. What’s known so far is the losses, while staggering on the surface, won’t ruin the country’s wine industry. "We are estimating a loss of 125 million liters of wine [about 14 million cases] with a value of approximately $250 million," said René Merino, president of Wines of Chile, ...

Chilean earthquake shocks wine industry

By Dave Buchanan
Monday, March 1, 2010

The news of Friday's 8.8 magnitude earthquake in Chile brought concern for many people and places. Reports filtering out of the country, where damage has severely interrupted all types of standard communications, are coming mostly through the social media sites such as Twitter, Facebook and many diverse Google sites. There's a good story about these sites here. Damage has been reported particularly heavy in wineries and infrastructure in the regions of Maule and Rapel ...

My wine review policy

By Dave Buchanan
Tuesday, February 16, 2010

I occasionally receives queries about the wine reviewed in this space and where and why anyone could/would buy them. In an attempt to promote openness and transparency, I adopted the following wine review policy. First, no one pays me to review their wines, although I'll occasionally accept samples from wineries. That doesn't assure anyone I'll give the wines a positive remark or that I'll say anything at all about the wine, preferring to remain silent when something ...

Wine of the Week

By Dave Buchanan
Monday, February 15, 2010

Bodegas Jumilla Wrongo Dongo 2008 750ML The 2008 Wrongo Dongo is from the Juan Gil family estate in the Spanish DOC of Jumilla, a transition zone between the Mediterranean coastal area and the high central plateau of Castile-La Mancha. This wine is 100 percent monastrell (known in France as mourvedre and California as mataro) sourced from a Gil family estate vineyard. Monastrell is the most widely planted grape in Spain. A  deep purple wine with notes of spice and ...

Wine Lover’s Trail in Hotchkiss

By Dave Buchanan
Monday, February 8, 2010

This week brings us to Valentine’s Day, and if you’re just figuring that out, heaven help you with your plans for the weekend. It’s unfortunate, and I think a missed opportunity, to see how few local wineries are jumping on the Valentine’s Day theme. Actually, only Yvon Gros (hey, he’s French, he knows about these things) at Leroux Creek Winery in the North Fork Valley is advertising a special event this week. He’s calling it The Wine Lover’s ...

Modern styling the latest from Spanish winemaking family

By Dave Buchanan
Monday, December 21, 2009

Christmas came early last week with some wines from a familiar winery but an unfamiliar face. The wines came from the Spanish winemaking family Osborne (their Navidad Web page is worth seeing, even if you don’t speak Spanish), which has had a major presence in Spain and Portugal wine-making for more than 200 years. But the latest Osborne is much younger, very much younger. She’s Rocio Alonso-Allende Osborne, the sixth generation of the family to undertake winemaking. ...

‘Tis the season for shipping wine

By Dave Buchanan
Thursday, December 17, 2009

'Tis the night before Christmas... no, wait, wait, it's not quite that late. There still is time to get that bottle of wine (hey, don't be a Scrooge, make it two) for that favorite person on your list, or maybe even everyone on your list. But don't wait too long, the sleigh is getting full and shipping is slowing down. The query "How do I get wine to someone out of state?" has two easy answers and maybe a lot more answers that I haven't yet figured out. Probably the easiest way to ship ...

Trailing Italy’s DOCG list

By Dave Buchanan
Wednesday, December 9, 2009

In the world of Italian wines, change, it seems, is the only constant. I've been trying to figure out how many new DOCGs ([designation of controlled and guaranteed origin, specific grapes grown in specific areas, the highest recognition of quality allowed by Italian law) have recently been enacted by the Italian government and how many of these limited areas of production there are now. The list isn't something most wine drinkers wouldn't bother about, I suppose, but there are lot of ...

Page 9 of 18


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