Category Archives: FRANCE

Château de Maltroye and Why I Don’t Write Wine Books Like Hugh Johnson

Someone whose palate I respect poured a wine saying, “This is what California Chardonnay wants to be when it grows up.” Behind such a statement I can find many points with which to agree, but in general, although the idea … Continue reading

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Thursdays With Maury

Many years ago I pledged a troth never to write a Thanksgiving wine column unless one of two things happened:  Either I thought of a really bad pun or I found a really good wine. Merveille des merveilles, this year … Continue reading

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Fitou Be Tied: Domaine Les Mille Vignes

The thousand vines of Domaine Les Mille Vignes may be metaphorical, but the thousand points of light that light up my tongue when I drink the wine is very real indeed. First, Fitou is first: The first Languedoc red wine … Continue reading

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Domaine du Pegau: The World’s Best Jug Wine?

Pegaü  is an old French word meaning ‘jug’—specifically, a fourteenth century terracotta jug discovered in the Palais des Papes in Avignon. That, of course, makes Domaine du Pegau the most exclusive jug wine in the world. As for pronunciation, DdP … Continue reading

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Swashbuckle Up: It’s Gonna Be a Bourdy Ride

Before you discuss Chardonnay with Jean-François Bourdy, take a moment to stand back, exhale, and simply admire the visage. He is an imposing and potent-looking gentleman whose shirt is open a button or two lower than necessary; his eyes are … Continue reading

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Gevrey-Chambertin and the Hangover of Guy Accad

A bat and a ball cost a dollar and ten cents in total. The bat costs a dollar more than the ball. How much does the ball cost? On the surface, the question seems easy.  That’s the way our brains … Continue reading

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Foillard Morgon 2013—Lesson Learned: Renounce Tasting Notes Forever

A week ago, Decanter Magazine’s Andrew Jefford published a good column on tasting notes.  It shadowed Bianca Bosker’s July New Yorker article referring to the ‘state of modern winespeak’.  Hers was, in turn, a reaction to James Suckling’s stylistic evaluation … Continue reading

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Long Live the Rothschildren: The Pink of Perfection

No serious debate that the first family of wine is Rothschild, at least from a historical perspective.  They are to wine what the Kennedys are to political dynasties, what the House of Medici is to art patronage, what the Simpsons … Continue reading

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Sultanas, White Chocolate, Eminem and Beaujolais Blanc

Q:  Why can’t pilots take Viagra? A:  I know you thought that was a lead-in to a punch line, but the fact is, pilots are forbidden to fly within six hours of taking a boner bolus because it may affect their … Continue reading

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Lyrical Lirac: Rhône’s Sleeping Beauty

What do Lirac and Châteauneuf-du-Pape have in common?  Other than grapes, climate, tradition and soil structure, not much. And other than price, just about everything. Rodolphe de Pins, winemaker at Château de Montfaucon, in town to accentuate the positive, made … Continue reading

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