Category Archives: Uncategorized

How Sharper Than a Serpent’s Tooth it is to Have a Thankless Clerk

When Nick Rowley is not seething silently behind wine shop counters, he sits loudly on the board of a Shakespearean theater group in—of all places—Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. I note that as an incongruity because of all the things that the … Continue reading

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Popping the Cherry on Michigan Maraschinos

When Otto von Bismarck quipped, ‘The less people know about how laws and bar cherries are made, the better they sleep at night,’ he wasn’t talking about sausages. Likewise, if The Jungle had been set along the Croatian coast instead … Continue reading

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The Madrone Ranger Rides Again

You have your Lone Rangers and you have your Rhone Rangers, and you probably have Heidelberg Tuns filled with preposterous puns, but as always, rising above them all in the rarefied atmosphere of Spring Mountain, you have Smith-Madrone. Founded in … Continue reading

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The Man, the Myth, the McClelland

There comes a time in the life of every curmudgeon, no matter how mordant or cynical or jaded, when he must—if only for a moment—wax a little sappy. When confronted with a new, powerful wine created by a potent, old-school … Continue reading

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Window on ‘Indo’—And William Schwab’s Drink List

In my halcyon youth, I used to write extensive wine lists for expensive restaurants. If you’re a total novice to the game, such an endeavor may sound intimidating, but if you’ve advanced beyond Level Apothic and Kendall Jackson and surround … Continue reading

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Elie and Chris, Halloween, 2016: ‘Black Tongue Tastes’

Horticulture is a word that most of you winefolk know and love; it’s the branch of agriculture that deals with growing, improving, marketing and using produce–and grapes, of course, are produce. Horrorculture is, perhaps, less familiar to you, probably because … Continue reading

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Oenophiliacs Beware: Lettie is Upsettie

If there is a wine title more obnoxious than ‘critic for the {terminally dull} Wall Street Journal, I can’t think of it.  Maybe being the Minister of Stemware for the Sultanate of Siak Sri Indrapura or an Environmental Commercial Flooring … Continue reading

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