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From time to time, I receive emails from a few retailers letting me know about new releases they have in stock. To get readers of these emails excited about how great these wines are, they include an excerpt from a leading wine "guru" along with his or her point rating. That's standard stuff these days, so nothing particularly newsworthy regarding this.
There are some brands of Champagnes that are very familiar to consumers and connoisseurs alike; Laurent-Perrier is certainly one of those. Situated in the town of Tours-sur-Marne, a bit west of Epernay, the house recently celebrated its 200th anniversary in 2012. Like most Champagne houses, Laurent-Perrier produces a range of wines, from its non-vintage (or multi-vintage, ...
There have been several books written about Champagne over the past few years and most of them have been excellent. The latest entry is from Australian author Tyson Stelzer, who has delivered a work of great complexity and depth, somewhat akin to one of the great Champagnes he describes in this work.
Reference books on wine (or any subject) can be a great source of information. They can also be a bit boring at times, as the author can sometimes include vast information without much organization. Bigger does not make better in such instances. That's why it's such a pleasure to read Wines of South America: The Essential Guide by Evan Goldstein.
Vineyards at Weingut Landgraf, Saulheim, Rheinhessen (Photo ©Tom Hyland) After visiting the Rheingau (read here and here), I was excited to see a few producers in the Rheinhessen region of Germany. Both areas border the Rhine River with the Rheinhessen east of the Rheingau. It's a land of rolling hills, not as dramatic as that of the Rheingau, but the wines are often as splendid.
(Photo ©Tom Hyland) This is part two of my report on my visit to the Rheingau in early July; part one dealt with Georg Breuer and Leitz. This post is about my time spent touring and tasting wines at two other celebrated estates, Weingut Robert Weil and Weingut Staatsweinguter (Eltville). Weingut Robert Weil, located in the town of Kiedrich (very near to Eltville) is ...
Vineyards along the Rhine River across from the town of Bingen (Photo ©Tom Hyland) It had been far too long a wait, but I finally made it to Germany to visit wine regions. I had been on German soil, so to speak, dozens of times, but it was always to connect to a flight to Italy or back home to Chicago.
In my two previous posts on Riesling (here and here), I wrote about the two most classic origins of Riesling from the Old World - Germany and Alsace. This post will deal with some favorite examples of Riesling from the New World, namely Australia, New Zealand and California. Whenever you speak about Riesling, you think of Germany and Alsace for their beautiful expressions of t ...
Barolo landscape, early May morning (Photo ©Tom Hyland) I recently tasted more than 125 examples of Barolo from the 2010 vintage at the Nebbiolo Prima event in Alba, Piemonte. This event is held each year for a select few dozen journalists (about 70) from around the world, who taste the wines blind over the course of several days.
Photo ©Tom Hyland Continuing with my series of posts on Riesling (click here for the last post on Germany), this article will deal solely with Riesling from Alsace. Tucked in a far northeastern corner of France, not far from the border with Germany, Alsace is one of the most northern wine regions in the world, making this an ideal home for most white varieties, especially Riesling.
Vineyard in Germany's Rheingau Region (Photo from Peter Jakob Kühn website) Recently I wrote a series of posts about Sauvignon Blanc (click here), calling it the "greatest grape." Of course, there is not one grape variety that is the greatest- there are several and Sauvignon Blanc is one of my favorites, if not my single favorite.
I am hosting a special Italian wine and food class on Friday, May 2 at I Monelli Pizzeria (5019 N. Western, Chicago. This will be an intermediate class on pairing Italian wines and food (though beginners are certainly welcome) - and what better way to learn about this subject than by hosting it at a trattoria! We will try five or six wines, paired with several dishes off the men ...
Philippe and Veronique Glavier, Champagne Philippe Glavier, Cramant (Photo courtesy of Champagne Philippe Glavier) I admit it - I'm in love with Champagne. And why not? Each to his own, but I don't understand people who don't care for Champagne. But I don't have the time to argue with them - either you love it or you don't.
When it comes to California wines, the media loves to talk about the new kids on the block. There are plenty of stories about some small producer who's got a few acres on a Napa Valley hillside or in the Sonoma Coast just a few miles from the Pacific Ocean. The fact that many of these estates don't produce much wine is also another reason they get coverage - the wines are often difficult to find.
Gianluca Grasso, Az. Agr. Elio Grasso (Photo ©Tom Hyland) The Gambero Rosso Tre Bicchieri tasting was held in Chicago yesterday - stops in New York City and San Francisco are also part of this current tour - and wine lovers in the trade and media were treated to an embarrassment of riches, as far as Italian wines go.
The Gambero Rosso Tre Bicchieri tasting is back in the United States and if you're a lover of Italian wines - you need to be there. I'll be there on Tuesday, February 11 in Chicago; there is also a tasting in San Francisco on Thursday, February 13. Gambero Rosso is the bible of Italian wines, rating wines of every type from all twenty regions of Italy.
Views on wines from Italy, California, Chile, Argentina and other great regions of the world from a freelance writer and photographer