Opinion

    • When is a review not a review?

      The San Francisco Chronicle’s restaurant reviewer, Michael Bauer, really stirred up a dust storm with this post, “DNR: Three restaurants I’m not reviewing,” on his blog. First, let me say that I’m a Bauer fan. If I’m checking out a restaurant in the Bay Area, I first want to know what Michael said about it. I might look at Yelp, but I don’t entirely trust Yelp.

      STEVE HEIMOFF- 8 readers -
    • How about some fruit juice with that Chardonnay?

      It must drive some winemakers crazy to hear that two-thirds of younger wine drinkers (ages 25 to 40) in America are mixing their wine with fruit juice, that nearly half are making club soda-based “cocktails” with wine, and 46% actually add ice to their vino! Those are some of the findings from a new consumer survey by E&J Gallo on “the current state of Americans’ wine drinking attitudes an.

      STEVE HEIMOFFin Chardonnay- 3 readers -
  • Real wine-drinking countries don’t need wine critics

    … wines.” The former need no context to be appreciated, only the discerning powers of the critic. The latter can be appreciated—must be appreciated—only in context. This is a very strange dualism. For one, if the world can be divided into “truly great wines” and everything else, who’s to say which camp any particular wine is assigned to? When…

    STEVE HEIMOFF- 2 readers -
  • On those mega “wine rooms” that are so popular out there

    … of them were buying wine to out-do their friends in the show-off game. Oh, the stories I could tell (and have told, if you care to wade through my older posts). I felt one could be a good critic while decrying the tendency on the part of some to slavishly label-shop the latest critical darling. What about all the honest, good vins ordinaires…

    STEVE HEIMOFF- 1 readers -
  • Those Parker scores: Score inflation?

    …” or a variant of it to describe the increase in Parker 100s. Wine-Searcher used it last Wednesday (“the list is growing with exponential speed”), while Narsai’s phrasing elevated the adjective to adverbial status (“this number has grown exponentially in recent years”). This naturally all gets picked up and echoed on social media; Terroirst blog quoted…

    STEVE HEIMOFF- 2 readers -
  • Lots of wine books, not very many good ones

    … to impose your own will and conditions upon it. Some books claim to have identified historical trends, but as the immortal baseball manager and existentialist philosopher, Casey Stengel, warned, “Never make predictions, especially about the future.” The psychologist and Nobel economics laureate Daniel Kahneman expanded on this: “Most successful pundits…

    STEVE HEIMOFF- 2 readers -
  • A nation that twitters together fritters together

    … This scares me: “Calvin Lee, a graphic designer, is a massive tweeter. ‘I really can’t stop,’ he joked. In Twitterland, Lee has become a rock star. ‘I’ve gone through life wondering what my ‘thing’ would be. I believe I’ve found it.’ Lee describes himself as a ‘social media ho. I tweet at least 200 times a day.’ He has been quite successful…

    STEVE HEIMOFF- 3 readers -
  • O.K. , you have your social media data. Now, what good is it?

    … media. We know beyond a doubt that the metrics of social media use are huge. Everybody is Facebooking, tweeting, Instagramming, pinning and so on. They’re liking and following and retweeting each other like crazy. For this reason, wine companies feel, with “the fierce urgency of now,” that they have to get onboard, before the train leaves…

    STEVE HEIMOFF- 4 readers -
  • Matt Kramer got it right about bullies who put wine down

    … This think piece by Matt Kramer is a little opaque.(I hope you can open the Wine Spectator link.) I had to read it twice to understand it—and I’m not sure I do even now—but it seems to be a rebuttal to the notion, widespread in America and somewhat anti-intellectual, that expertise is a form of pretentious bull. With specific regard to wine…

    STEVE HEIMOFF- 1 readers -
  • Monday Mayhem: Drinking too much, and memories of a P.R. guy

    … years ago, when he was running Robert Mondavi’s P.R. shop. Then he went over to Fred Franzia’s outfit, Bronco. We had fewer contacts after that, but one was memorable. I’d long wanted an interview with Fred, who was notoriously shy of publicity. I called Harvey for years, but the answer was always “No.” One day, I was in San Francisco, and picked up…

    STEVE HEIMOFF- 4 readers -
  • The importance of an editor ~ So get over it

    … as we know they should be, not as they are. I’ve had some of my stories printed in magazines, and some mistakes are still missed by an editor. It happens. When this meme below showed up on Facebook, I thought, “This is so me.” I’ll never forget the agitated reader, who decided that because he didn’t agree with my opinion, he’d leave a comment…

    Jo Diaz/ Wine Blog- 4 readers -
  • The emotional intelligence of wine blogging and its vitriol eruption

    … to the accusers of the panel that I didn’t agree with their estimation of “old, white men.” I’m thankful that husband rightfully and respectfully disagreed with me about my own, “old, white men” logic. He pointed out that it’s not about “old, white men.” It’s about Right Wing extremists. So, I’ve stopped using the “old…” phrase, because…

    Jo Diaz/ Wine Blog- 6 readers -
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