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December 15, 2006


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What I find strange about the California-craze is that it seems to be an obsession for those who want the US, aka California, to be the focused center of quality wine in the world. People who advocate California as the mecca of wine growing are sometimes unbending in this point-of-view.

In a good year, LI produces some good reds. Heck, in an absolutely ideal year the Finger Lakes can produce some good reds. These wines don't have to compete with anyone; they are what they are.

California is and always will be the center of wine production in this country, so why the sensitivity? Cabernet Sauvignon is king, zinfadel is unique and fun and sometimes amazing, and the rest of the varieties have done pretty well despite some imperfect results. In the long run, it might be the case that more limited production regions like Oregon, Washington, and New York will result in a couple of stars or at least interesting and complex variations of the noble grapes.

Does anyone expect Bordeaux to grow every grape in France at its absolute best? No, it does well in only a few. How can California expect to be absolutely, 100% ideal for ever single varietal?

I'll have to visit and learn more about Long Island wines, sounds like you're the maven. Honestly, don't know that I've tried them from LI--any recommendations for one that can be found readily (I'm in Boston area). I posted on a local Mass. sparkler for my first WBW, so I know the Northeast can produce good wines!

You need to establish a wine hotline for the holidays. I was picked to buy a case of white and a case of red wine for two holiday parties and I had no idea with what to get! Help!

I wound up with a Woodridge Pinot Grigo and a Little Penguin Merlot. I have no idea if these were the best choices under $10 a bottle. I hate asking advice in the liquor store, I think they only recommend what they make money on or isn't selling.

I didn't taste the pinot, but I really liked the merlot.(I picked the little penguin brand because they had an ad from the Wine Spectator there that said it was good.)

If you can't do a hotline - can you do a post on suggested wines for the holidays? Maybe a list of best under $10 - best under $25 - and a list of wines that will impress?

Thanks bud!

Thanks fr

An East Coast competitor for the domestic Merlot tiara? Jeez, they can have it.

"It's as good or better than a California Merlot!" One hears that generic comment or something like that every once in a while. Usually from somebody delightfully naive but earnest. Give it some time. When somebody says that about one of my Merlots I will often say something like- "Whoa! I hope you're comparing it to one of the good ones! California makes more bad Merlot than any other jurisdiction in North America!"

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