Jancis Robinson on the next cult wines

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Sc0tt F!tzger@ld
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Jancis Robinson on the next cult wines

#1 Post by Sc0tt F!tzger@ld » June 28th, 2020, 7:59 am

Interesting article on the next big thing in wine.

https://www.ft.com/content/023a298f-0a ... 145bb00606


Looks like the article is behind a paywall (it wasn’t when I first clicked through), but below are the wines which were mentioned.

“Up-and-coming wine stars”

Muchada-Léclapart, Lumière 2018 Vino de España
Muchada-Léclapart, Univers 2017 Vino de España (younger vines)
Verum, Las Tinadas Airén 2018 Vino de la Tierra Castilla
David & Nadia, Swartland — pretty much any wine, red or white
Van Loggerenberg, Graft Syrah 2018 Polkadraai Hills
Van Loggerenberg, Kameraderie Chenin Blanc 2018 Paarl
Clément et Florian Berthier, Terre de Silex 2018 Coteaux du Giennnois
Last edited by Sc0tt F!tzger@ld on June 28th, 2020, 10:32 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Jancis Robinson on the next cult wines

#2 Post by m. ristev » June 28th, 2020, 8:28 am

there is a pay wall...

however, it seems unlikely leclapart's jerez project will become a 'thing' especially considering how under appreciated his champagnes are.
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Re: Jancis Robinson on the next cult wines

#3 Post by Sc0tt F!tzger@ld » June 28th, 2020, 8:43 am

Interesting, I didn’t run into a paywall when it showed up in my news feed.
Last edited by Sc0tt F!tzger@ld on June 28th, 2020, 10:28 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Jancis Robinson on the next cult wines

#4 Post by Cris Whetstone » June 28th, 2020, 8:55 am

If it is behind a paywall, copying the whole thing here is probably not legal.

I know putting "cult wine" in the subject is more clicky. I think it's more probably titled 'exciting new projects'. Many new projects come and go every year that could become the next cult wine. As evidenced by the Keller thread, some will say the wines were always amazing as Jancis notes with Sassicaia. And many others will shrug. It's a very fickle game that probably has a lot more to do with things like guerrilla marketing and luck than it does quality.
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Re: Jancis Robinson on the next cult wines

#5 Post by Marc Hauser » June 28th, 2020, 9:50 am

I don’t think one can say what wines will become “cult” - otherwise, it can’t really be cult.

That’s like calling yourself cool.
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Re: Jancis Robinson on the next cult wines

#6 Post by Mattstolz » June 28th, 2020, 9:58 am

I have a feeling this will depend on your definition of the word cult for wines. if you're talking secret small project that few have ever heard of but are entirely devoted to: maybe. if you're talking screagle/DRC where everyone knows the name and wishes they could have them: I have a hard time believing that will happen for a wine from Jerez in my lifetime. not saying I would be sad if it did though.

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Re: Jancis Robinson on the next cult wines

#7 Post by Fred Davis » June 28th, 2020, 11:16 am

I'd be skeptical of what she says, along with other "wine journalists." On a recent wine podcast regarding journalistic integrity, Jancis was outed for serious conflict of interests. Not that some folks on this board don't have conflicts, but in general, I value the opinions here--especially from deeply knowledgeable people like Tim Heaton and others, for example--far more than any wine publication.





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Re: Jancis Robinson on the next cult wines

#8 Post by Sean S y d n e y » June 28th, 2020, 11:34 am

Fred Davis wrote:
June 28th, 2020, 11:16 am
I'd be skeptical of what she says, along with other "wine journalists." On a recent wine podcast regarding journalistic integrity, Jancis was outed for serious conflict of interests. Not that some folks on this board don't have conflicts, but in general, I value the opinions here--especially from deeply knowledgeable people like Tim Heaton and others, for example--far more than any wine publication.
The entire wine industry is pay-for-play. Since there's no magazine (remember those?) who is going to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars to fly a critic around the world and buy hundreds of thousands to millions of dollars worth of product a year, every wine journalist depends on the very people they are supposed to be critiquing to subsidize their work.

It's a baked-in conflict of interest.
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Re: Jancis Robinson on the next cult wines

#9 Post by Fred Davis » June 28th, 2020, 11:40 am

Sean S y d n e y wrote:
June 28th, 2020, 11:34 am
Fred Davis wrote:
June 28th, 2020, 11:16 am
I'd be skeptical of what she says, along with other "wine journalists." On a recent wine podcast regarding journalistic integrity, Jancis was outed for serious conflict of interests. Not that some folks on this board don't have conflicts, but in general, I value the opinions here--especially from deeply knowledgeable people like Tim Heaton and others, for example--far more than any wine publication.
The entire wine industry is pay-for-play. Since there's no magazine (remember those?) who is going to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars to fly a critic around the world and buy hundreds of thousands to millions of dollars worth of product a year, every wine journalist depends on the very people they are supposed to be critiquing to subsidize their work.

It's a baked-in conflict of interest.
That's right.

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Re: Jancis Robinson on the next cult wines

#10 Post by Sean S y d n e y » June 28th, 2020, 12:55 pm

Fred Davis wrote:
June 28th, 2020, 11:40 am
Sean S y d n e y wrote:
June 28th, 2020, 11:34 am
Fred Davis wrote:
June 28th, 2020, 11:16 am
I'd be skeptical of what she says, along with other "wine journalists." On a recent wine podcast regarding journalistic integrity, Jancis was outed for serious conflict of interests. Not that some folks on this board don't have conflicts, but in general, I value the opinions here--especially from deeply knowledgeable people like Tim Heaton and others, for example--far more than any wine publication.
The entire wine industry is pay-for-play. Since there's no magazine (remember those?) who is going to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars to fly a critic around the world and buy hundreds of thousands to millions of dollars worth of product a year, every wine journalist depends on the very people they are supposed to be critiquing to subsidize their work.

It's a baked-in conflict of interest.
That's right.
I've just found out that one major publication does pay for all flights and meals, which I did not know.
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Re: Jancis Robinson on the next cult wines

#11 Post by Max S. » June 28th, 2020, 2:17 pm

Sean S y d n e y wrote:
June 28th, 2020, 12:55 pm
Fred Davis wrote:
June 28th, 2020, 11:40 am
Sean S y d n e y wrote:
June 28th, 2020, 11:34 am


The entire wine industry is pay-for-play. Since there's no magazine (remember those?) who is going to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars to fly a critic around the world and buy hundreds of thousands to millions of dollars worth of product a year, every wine journalist depends on the very people they are supposed to be critiquing to subsidize their work.

It's a baked-in conflict of interest.
That's right.
I've just found out that one major publication does pay for all flights and meals, which I did not know.
Which one?
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Re: Jancis Robinson on the next cult wines

#12 Post by Marc Hauser » June 28th, 2020, 3:52 pm

Sean S y d n e y wrote:
June 28th, 2020, 11:34 am

The entire wine industry is pay-for-play. Since there's no magazine (remember those?) who is going to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars to fly a critic around the world and buy hundreds of thousands to millions of dollars worth of product a year, every wine journalist depends on the very people they are supposed to be critiquing to subsidize their work.

It's a baked-in conflict of interest.
The *entire* wine industry? Or do you just mean the entire professional wine writing industry? (I don’t agree with that, but you may want to clarify what you mean)
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Re: Jancis Robinson on the next cult wines

#13 Post by Doug Schulman » June 28th, 2020, 3:59 pm

Fred Davis wrote:
June 28th, 2020, 11:16 am
I'd be skeptical of what she says, along with other "wine journalists." On a recent wine podcast regarding journalistic integrity, Jancis was outed for serious conflict of interests. Not that some folks on this board don't have conflicts, but in general, I value the opinions here--especially from deeply knowledgeable people like Tim Heaton and others, for example--far more than any wine publication.




Care to provide some detail on the Jancis “outing” for those of us who don’t want to listen to the podcast?

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Re: Jancis Robinson on the next cult wines

#14 Post by AD Northup » June 28th, 2020, 4:00 pm

m. ristev wrote:
June 28th, 2020, 8:28 am
there is a pay wall...

however, it seems unlikely leclapart's jerez project will become a 'thing' especially considering how under appreciated his champagnes are.
As a big Leclapart fan, would be interested if anyone has tried any of this? Seems to really only be available in and around Spain
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Re: Jancis Robinson on the next cult wines

#15 Post by William Kelley » June 28th, 2020, 4:57 pm

M a x S w o m l e y wrote:
June 28th, 2020, 2:17 pm
Sean S y d n e y wrote:
June 28th, 2020, 12:55 pm
Fred Davis wrote:
June 28th, 2020, 11:40 am


That's right.
I've just found out that one major publication does pay for all flights and meals, which I did not know.
Which one?
The Wine Advocate. It's the same for Vinous, too. And I'm sure a few others. I believe that Brad Baker, for example, makes a point of purchasing all the wines he reviews. For all the faults of contemporary wine journalism, there is still some independent criticism out there! And I think that it's quite easy to identify which publications / writers pull punches and which don't, just by reading the reviews and tasting the corresponding bottles. From my perspective, working in Burgundy and Champagne, the politics is not as complicated as you might imagine, and I am not really afraid of "loosing access" if I publish a negative review. In fact, I'm not hugely concerned about maintaining access to any estate whose wines I don't admire, and I would imagine that plenty of other writers feel the same way.
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Re: Jancis Robinson on the next cult wines

#16 Post by William Kelley » June 28th, 2020, 5:07 pm

Doug Schulman wrote:
June 28th, 2020, 3:59 pm
Care to provide some detail on the Jancis “outing” for those of us who don’t want to listen to the podcast?
I skimmed it and couldn't find it, so would be curious, too.

As someone who works in the field, I'm as acutely aware of the shortcomings of contemporary wine writing as anyone, but, for all that, I think there's plenty of good material being produced today. The themes of the interview seemed to be that only the interviewee Don Kavanagh tells it how it is, and that writing about expensive wine is elitist and therefore irrelevant. Which I find a bit over-drawn. Sure, there is a lot of crude "advertorial" wine writing, empty credentialism, and label bias out there; but there is also writing that's better technically informed, more contextualized, and wider-ranging than anything that existed a decade ago to be found. As a consumer, if you want to learn about places such as the Jura or the Santa Cruz Mountains, or things such as wine redox chemistry or vineyard geology, you are better served today than at any time in history.
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Re: Jancis Robinson on the next cult wines

#17 Post by Sean S y d n e y » June 28th, 2020, 5:24 pm

Marc Hauser wrote:
June 28th, 2020, 3:52 pm


The *entire* wine industry? Or do you just mean the entire professional wine writing industry? (I don’t agree with that, but you may want to clarify what you mean)
I meant specifically the wine writing/critic industry. But it appears that there are some outlets who still try to maintain an arms-length relationship with producers by not accepting travel/lodging/dinners.
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Re: Jancis Robinson on the next cult wines

#18 Post by Adam Frisch » June 28th, 2020, 5:34 pm

When I connected with Eric Asimov about how to submit wines, he responded that NYT only reviews wines that they buy and any submission to Eric is for "his edification" only. Not entirely sure what that means. I did send them some wine, but have no idea if they will ever get reviewed or how it works.
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Re: Jancis Robinson on the next cult wines

#19 Post by Tomás Costa » June 28th, 2020, 5:40 pm

William Kelley wrote:
June 28th, 2020, 4:57 pm
M a x S w o m l e y wrote:
June 28th, 2020, 2:17 pm
Sean S y d n e y wrote:
June 28th, 2020, 12:55 pm


I've just found out that one major publication does pay for all flights and meals, which I did not know.
Which one?
The Wine Advocate. It's the same for Vinous, too. And I'm sure a few others. I believe that Brad Baker, for example, makes a point of purchasing all the wines he reviews. For all the faults of contemporary wine journalism, there is still some independent criticism out there! And I think that it's quite easy to identify which publications / writers pull punches and which don't, just by reading the reviews and tasting the corresponding bottles. From my perspective, working in Burgundy and Champagne, the politics is not as complicated as you might imagine, and I am not really afraid of "loosing access" if I publish a negative review. In fact, I'm not hugely concerned about maintaining access to any estate whose wines I don't admire, and I would imagine that plenty of other writers feel the same way.
Seems like suspicions of lack of transparency in wine journalism might be an externality from competition among publications. Here in Portugal there is one magazine with a virtual monopoly on the subject; I know the critics' panel well on a personal, off the record level, and I've found there is zero incentive for mollycoddling producers since they've already got the market in their hand and it wouldn't bring any benefit to the table. Funny things can happen with the blind tastings, and these are accepted with curiosity and enthusiasm rather than dread for having lavished praise on a lesser producer or trashed an established one, both of which have happened (although only grades above 14,5/20 are published). Needless to say the wines are sent rather than bought, and accepting courtesies is commonplace.
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Re: Jancis Robinson on the next cult wines

#20 Post by Marc Hauser » June 28th, 2020, 6:02 pm

Adam Frisch wrote:
June 28th, 2020, 5:34 pm
When I connected with Eric Asimov about how to submit wines, he responded that NYT only reviews wines that they buy and any submission to Eric is for "his edification" only. Not entirely sure what that means. I did send them some wine, but have no idea if they will ever get reviewed or how it works.
I encourage everyone to send me wine for my edification.
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Re: Jancis Robinson on the next cult wines

#21 Post by Max S. » June 28th, 2020, 9:00 pm

William Kelley wrote:
June 28th, 2020, 4:57 pm
M a x S w o m l e y wrote:
June 28th, 2020, 2:17 pm
Sean S y d n e y wrote:
June 28th, 2020, 12:55 pm


I've just found out that one major publication does pay for all flights and meals, which I did not know.
Which one?
The Wine Advocate. It's the same for Vinous, too. And I'm sure a few others. I believe that Brad Baker, for example, makes a point of purchasing all the wines he reviews. For all the faults of contemporary wine journalism, there is still some independent criticism out there! And I think that it's quite easy to identify which publications / writers pull punches and which don't, just by reading the reviews and tasting the corresponding bottles. From my perspective, working in Burgundy and Champagne, the politics is not as complicated as you might imagine, and I am not really afraid of "loosing access" if I publish a negative review. In fact, I'm not hugely concerned about maintaining access to any estate whose wines I don't admire, and I would imagine that plenty of other writers feel the same way.
Thanks William. I'm naturally skeptical and I admit I always wonder who is bought and paid for.
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Re: Jancis Robinson on the next cult wines

#22 Post by Marcus Goodfellow » June 28th, 2020, 9:51 pm

William Kelley wrote:
June 28th, 2020, 4:57 pm
M a x S w o m l e y wrote:
June 28th, 2020, 2:17 pm
Sean S y d n e y wrote:
June 28th, 2020, 12:55 pm


I've just found out that one major publication does pay for all flights and meals, which I did not know.
Which one?
The Wine Advocate. It's the same for Vinous, too. And I'm sure a few others. I believe that Brad Baker, for example, makes a point of purchasing all the wines he reviews. For all the faults of contemporary wine journalism, there is still some independent criticism out there! And I think that it's quite easy to identify which publications / writers pull punches and which don't, just by reading the reviews and tasting the corresponding bottles. From my perspective, working in Burgundy and Champagne, the politics is not as complicated as you might imagine, and I am not really afraid of "loosing access" if I publish a negative review. In fact, I'm not hugely concerned about maintaining access to any estate whose wines I don't admire, and I would imagine that plenty of other writers feel the same way.
Without intending to pick a fight, I don’t think too many wineries are as worried about negative reviews as they used to be either.

I can’t speak to other wineries, but no critic has ever inclined in any way that my reviews could be affected by anything other than how the wines show when tasted. It has been helpful to taste with them, as it gives me the opportunity to choose the tasting order and answer questions. That said, I have never tasted with Josh Raynolds, and he does an exceptional job, in my opinion.

My overall experience is that most reviewers work hard and do the best job they can with a finite amount of time in the day and an ever growing population of wineries and wine regions. For premier growing regions, I would guess that the level of knowledge and interaction of critics is exceptional. Your own posts here more than prove that.

For backwaters like the Willamette Valley, every critic I have ever tasted with has done an excellent job with the wines. But the in depth knowledge has always been a work in progress. Where we have continuity with a critic, I have few complaints. But transition has not always been smooth, and somehow that isn’t what makes it into the reviews.

Fortunately, bad reviews of a good wine don’t really slow down sales these days. And great reviews don’t open the floodgates. Which is great, because it means that critical reviews are back to being a helpful reference work for interested people, rather than a marketing tool to create a feeding frenzy.
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Re: Jancis Robinson on the next cult wines

#23 Post by Adam Frisch » June 28th, 2020, 10:22 pm

A winery owner told me when I was starting that: "Submit all wines you make. If you get a bad score - nobody knows because nobody reads them. If you get a good score - use it in your marketing. Can't lose".

Seems about right.
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Re: Jancis Robinson on the next cult wines

#24 Post by Marcus Goodfellow » June 28th, 2020, 10:31 pm

Sean S y d n e y wrote:
June 28th, 2020, 11:34 am
Fred Davis wrote:
June 28th, 2020, 11:16 am
I'd be skeptical of what she says, along with other "wine journalists." On a recent wine podcast regarding journalistic integrity, Jancis was outed for serious conflict of interests. Not that some folks on this board don't have conflicts, but in general, I value the opinions here--especially from deeply knowledgeable people like Tim Heaton and others, for example--far more than any wine publication.
The entire wine industry is pay-for-play. Since there's no magazine (remember those?) who is going to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars to fly a critic around the world and buy hundreds of thousands to millions of dollars worth of product a year, every wine journalist depends on the very people they are supposed to be critiquing to subsidize their work.

It's a baked-in conflict of interest.
The major flaw in your logic, is that it’s all worthless if there is no integrity.

Critical review is a useful tool for wineries. From small underfunded ones like mine up to the behemoths. It’s a useful tool for the consumer. And it’s a profession, and pays rent(hopefully) for the critic.

But if the consumer loses trust in the critic, then the whole thing goes down the drain.

So while the opportunity for abuse is there, it’s not worth risking the whole apple cart for a payoff(even a really lucrative one). It’s really not worth it for wineries with great vineyard sites, as they should be making great wines and doing all right anyway. It’s not worth it to the critic to boost a mediocre winery.

Not to say that there has never been an instance where someone broke the trust. But a situation such as happened with Rudy Kurwanian, if it’s once the fine wine market will bear it. If there are 1000 Rudy K.s, there will be no fine wine market. The same logic applies to corruption in critical reviews.
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Re: Jancis Robinson on the next cult wines

#25 Post by Marcus Goodfellow » June 28th, 2020, 10:33 pm

Adam Frisch wrote:
June 28th, 2020, 10:22 pm
A winery owner told me when I was starting that: "Submit all wines you make. If you get a bad score - nobody knows because nobody reads them. If you get a good score - use it in your marketing. Can't lose".

Seems about right.
Pretty much.

I don’t submit everything anymore because I make a rude number of cuvees for a small winery and most appointments with a critic are scheduled at 60-90 minutes.
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Re: Jancis Robinson on the next cult wines

#26 Post by Sean S y d n e y » June 28th, 2020, 10:56 pm

Marcus Goodfellow wrote:
June 28th, 2020, 10:31 pm

The major flaw in your logic, is that it’s all worthless if there is no integrity.

Critical review is a useful tool for wineries. From small underfunded ones like mine up to the behemoths. It’s a useful tool for the consumer. And it’s a profession, and pays rent(hopefully) for the critic.

But if the consumer loses trust in the critic, then the whole thing goes down the drain.

So while the opportunity for abuse is there, it’s not worth risking the whole apple cart for a payoff(even a really lucrative one). It’s really not worth it for wineries with great vineyard sites, as they should be making great wines and doing all right anyway. It’s not worth it to the critic to boost a mediocre winery.

Not to say that there has never been an instance where someone broke the trust. But a situation such as happened with Rudy Kurwanian, if it’s once the fine wine market will bear it. If there are 1000 Rudy K.s, there will be no fine wine market. The same logic applies to corruption in critical reviews.
Not at all worthless, but suspect and not entirely trustworthy. I understand that critics need producers and vice versa. It's like that in any consumer-driven area of commerce, whether it be selling cars, wine, handbags or anything else.

Speaking of Rudy, I thought this was kind of instructive as to the issues with the wine biz:

https://www.richardhemmingmw.com/blog/w ... to-account

I at least appreciate the fact that Hemming is remarkably straightforward and admits that he's not really a journalist. But claiming you write for a wine publication and then out-and-out saying you won't report something that happened of great interest to the community you ostensibly serve because the subject of that hypothetical article asked you to is eye-poppingly antithetical to the entire idea of criticism, journalism, or just plain ethics, to say nothing of admitting that you acquiesced because you didn't want to damage your own relationships in the industry. If you can't clear this extremely low bar, you should not be writing for a site that is one of the largest half-dozen wine criticism sites on the planet and they should not have you working for them.

In my personal experience, my partner is a journalist. Even in the nominally uncontroversial worlds of culture and fashion that are her main beats, she's had multiple instances of sources or subjects of pieces she's written flip out after an interview or profile is published where she had the gall to faithfully reproduce the words of someone who didn't realize how utterly foolish/arrogant/terrible they'd look when they opened their mouth. She's had lawsuit threats, dozens of emails and phone calls to her editors insisting she misquoted or lied about them and demanding her pieces be taken down, and countless other intimidation tactics. She has never bowed to that pressure if the facts are straight, which they always are (and she's got the tapes to prove it). Even so, she left her job at a major fashion magazine last year to return to freelance work because she was uncomfortable with the unabashed pay-for-play system between the brands and the people who write about them which is remarkably similar to the way a lot of wine critics and publications (and a lot of other industries) work that make it impossible to freely speak one's mind or critique without fear of reprisal from either the companies paying the ad bills or the place you work for that relies on their money to survive.
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Re: Jancis Robinson on the next cult wines

#27 Post by Gareth H » June 28th, 2020, 11:11 pm

The article has been posted on Jancis' website as 'free for all' so I assume it's ok to share it here:

https://www.jancisrobinson.com/articles/stars-tomorrow

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Re: Jancis Robinson on the next cult wines

#28 Post by Marcus Goodfellow » June 28th, 2020, 11:22 pm

It’s an interesting article, but there are a couple of issues. (Edit-Sean’s article is the one I’m referencing)

One-Ponsot was offering opinions, as opposed to facts. He also stated he was working on publishing them himself. While a “serious” journalist might have gone ahead and scooped him, I would bet that said serious journalist would wind up without access next time regardless of industry.

Two-Laurent Ponsot is a winemaker, and speaking at Sour Grapes he’s there as a celebrity winemaker/owner. Publishing his thoughts are interesting(to a relatively small number of people) but they’re hardly “news”.

That said, his willingness to connect it directly to not wanting to upset the lodging of Laurent in Singapore seems pretty laughable. I’m betting M. Ponsot can afford a hotel room. Or to disturb his friends.

In the end, it’s the consumers desire to participate that matters. It’s too both the critic and the wineries benefit to keep reviews, which I view as different than news, independent.
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Re: Jancis Robinson on the next cult wines

#29 Post by Jürgen Steinke » June 29th, 2020, 12:57 am

An article with the headline "the next cult wines" is of no interest for a wine lover. It may be interesting for speculators and managers of wine funds.

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Re: Jancis Robinson on the next cult wines

#30 Post by Jürgen Steinke » June 29th, 2020, 1:07 am

William,

I agree that some journalists offer interesting insider info to producers, wines, wine making, "Terroir" and so forth. But only few people read those informations. What matters in the industry and does people interest most is the score. This is what the merchants spread. You can see it right now in the Primeur campaign "Bordeaux 2019". You get few background information about the Chateaux if any at all. But one can see many hit lists of the top rated wines or wines of the vintage.

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Re: Jancis Robinson on the next cult wines

#31 Post by William Kelley » June 29th, 2020, 8:04 am

Marcus Goodfellow wrote:
June 28th, 2020, 9:51 pm
Without intending to pick a fight, I don’t think too many wineries are as worried about negative reviews as they used to be either.

I can’t speak to other wineries, but no critic has ever inclined in any way that my reviews could be affected by anything other than how the wines show when tasted. It has been helpful to taste with them, as it gives me the opportunity to choose the tasting order and answer questions. That said, I have never tasted with Josh Raynolds, and he does an exceptional job, in my opinion.

My overall experience is that most reviewers work hard and do the best job they can with a finite amount of time in the day and an ever growing population of wineries and wine regions. For premier growing regions, I would guess that the level of knowledge and interaction of critics is exceptional. Your own posts here more than prove that.

For backwaters like the Willamette Valley, every critic I have ever tasted with has done an excellent job with the wines. But the in depth knowledge has always been a work in progress. Where we have continuity with a critic, I have few complaints. But transition has not always been smooth, and somehow that isn’t what makes it into the reviews.

Fortunately, bad reviews of a good wine don’t really slow down sales these days. And great reviews don’t open the floodgates. Which is great, because it means that critical reviews are back to being a helpful reference work for interested people, rather than a marketing tool to create a feeding frenzy.
That's certainly true of the top estates of the Côte d'Or. Sure, there are some (or at least two) domaines that I sense consider it lèse magesté if they don't come out at the top of the report, and I would probably feel the same were I in their shoes. But as you say, the top producers in Burgundy don't need to be reviewed to sell their wines many times over, and I'm under no illusions about that. Equally, however, I think even the top addresses appreciate the validation of hard work that comes from good reviews from tasters they respect. And they are perhaps more interested than they might readily admit to have a sense of where their wines are situated in a broader regional context—as obviously, no producers taste as widely as I do within Burgundy. Where the reviews begin to have a bigger impact is when you leave Chassagne and go to Santenay, for example: in the less celebrated appellations, taking the same time and attention to visit estates as I do in the important villages can have a big impact, and one sees good producers getting new importers, and in turn, consumers drinking the wines. In places such as the Côte Chalonnaise and Beaujolais it's even more impactful. I think this has the potential to encourage good practice, especially at a viticultural level, without imposing any particularly idiosyncratic stylistic preferences on the wines. So the positive power of reviews, even in Burgundy, is still quite potent.
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Re: Jancis Robinson on the next cult wines

#32 Post by Doug Schulman » June 29th, 2020, 8:21 am

Sean S y d n e y wrote:
June 28th, 2020, 10:56 pm

Not at all worthless, but suspect and not entirely trustworthy. I understand that critics need producers and vice versa. It's like that in any consumer-driven area of commerce, whether it be selling cars, wine, handbags or anything else.

Speaking of Rudy, I thought this was kind of instructive as to the issues with the wine biz:

https://www.richardhemmingmw.com/blog/w ... to-account

I at least appreciate the fact that Hemming is remarkably straightforward and admits that he's not really a journalist. But claiming you write for a wine publication and then out-and-out saying you won't report something that happened of great interest to the community you ostensibly serve because the subject of that hypothetical article asked you to is eye-poppingly antithetical to the entire idea of criticism, journalism, or just plain ethics, to say nothing of admitting that you acquiesced because you didn't want to damage your own relationships in the industry. If you can't clear this extremely low bar, you should not be writing for a site that is one of the largest half-dozen wine criticism sites on the planet and they should not have you working for them.
I don't think this makes sense at all, for the reasons that Marcus pointed out. You seem to want there to be something unethical going on.

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Re: Jancis Robinson on the next cult wines

#33 Post by Sean S y d n e y » June 29th, 2020, 8:24 am

Doug Schulman wrote:
June 29th, 2020, 8:21 am

I don't think this makes sense at all, for the reasons that Marcus pointed out. You seem to want there to be something unethical going on.
I mean, what that article outlines is unethical by every accepted tenet of journalism.

What the problem is should probably better be described as "there are precious few actual wine journalism outlets", because what the majority of them do is not journalism. When you don't pretend to abide by ethical standards, I guess there is, indeed, nothing unethical going on. Whether you think that matters is up to you.
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Re: Jancis Robinson on the next cult wines

#34 Post by Doug Schulman » June 29th, 2020, 8:30 am

Sean S y d n e y wrote:
June 29th, 2020, 8:24 am
Doug Schulman wrote:
June 29th, 2020, 8:21 am

I don't think this makes sense at all, for the reasons that Marcus pointed out. You seem to want there to be something unethical going on.
I mean, what that article outlines is unethical by every accepted tenet of journalism.

What the problem is should probably better be described as "there are precious few actual wine journalism outlets", because what the majority of them do is not journalism. When you don't pretend to abide by ethical standards, I guess there is, indeed, nothing unethical going on. Whether you think that matters is up to you.
Would it be ethical to write a story that cast a very negative impression of some people in the business based on someone's theories rather than facts? Is that journalism?

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Re: Jancis Robinson on the next cult wines

#35 Post by Sean S y d n e y » June 29th, 2020, 8:36 am

Doug Schulman wrote:
June 29th, 2020, 8:30 am

Would it be ethical to write a story that cast a very negative impression of some people in the business based on someone's theories rather than facts? Is that journalism?
Reporting what somebody says is not the same as reporting them as fact.

You could also - wait for it - do a Big Boy Journalism and go to those people with Ponsot's claims and ask for comment.
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Re: Jancis Robinson on the next cult wines

#36 Post by Corey N. » June 29th, 2020, 9:04 am

Adam Frisch wrote:
June 28th, 2020, 5:34 pm
When I connected with Eric Asimov about how to submit wines, he responded that NYT only reviews wines that they buy and any submission to Eric is for "his edification" only. Not entirely sure what that means. I did send them some wine, but have no idea if they will ever get reviewed or how it works.
This is an older post, so things may have changed, but I remember finding it quite interesting.
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December 28th, 2009, 4:12 pm
I can't speak for all wines, but this is how each reviewer gets (or used to get) our wine:

Wine Spectator - We hand deliver 2 bottles of each wine to their office in Napa. No payment for the wine.

Pinot Report - We ship 2 bottles of each wine to their office in Sonoma. No payment for the wine.

Connoisseurs' Guide to California Wine - They purchase our wine at retail, so we never know what's being reviewed.

California Grapevine - We ship 1 bottle of each wine to their office. No payment for the wine.

Paker - We ship 1 bottle of each wine to his office in Maryland. If he'd asked for the wine, he asks to be billed. We billed at a silly low amount. If submitting unsolicited, no payment for the wine. The last two vintages we submitted (2006 and 2007) were sent in unsolicited, and Parker didn't review them. We sent them in early because he used to ask us to ship in July [shock.gif]. We no longer submit wines.

Tanzer - We ship 2 bottles of each wine to his office. No payment for the wine. We no longer submit wines.

Burghound - We ship 2 bottles of each wine to his office. No payment for the wine. We no longer submit wines.

Wine Enthusiast - We ship 2 bottles of each wine to their office. No payment for the wine. $900-ish per review to include a label image in the magazine. We no longer submit wines.
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Re: Jancis Robinson on the next cult wines

#37 Post by Adam Frisch » June 29th, 2020, 12:04 pm

Brian Loring wrote:
December 28th, 2009, 4:12 pm
I can't speak for all wines, but this is how each reviewer gets (or used to get) our wine:

Wine Spectator - We hand deliver 2 bottles of each wine to their office in Napa. No payment for the wine.

Pinot Report - We ship 2 bottles of each wine to their office in Sonoma. No payment for the wine.

Connoisseurs' Guide to California Wine - They purchase our wine at retail, so we never know what's being reviewed.

California Grapevine - We ship 1 bottle of each wine to their office. No payment for the wine.

Paker - We ship 1 bottle of each wine to his office in Maryland. If he'd asked for the wine, he asks to be billed. We billed at a silly low amount. If submitting unsolicited, no payment for the wine. The last two vintages we submitted (2006 and 2007) were sent in unsolicited, and Parker didn't review them. We sent them in early because he used to ask us to ship in July [shock.gif]. We no longer submit wines.

Tanzer - We ship 2 bottles of each wine to his office. No payment for the wine. We no longer submit wines.

Burghound - We ship 2 bottles of each wine to his office. No payment for the wine. We no longer submit wines.

Wine Enthusiast - We ship 2 bottles of each wine to their office. No payment for the wine. $900-ish per review to include a label image in the magazine. We no longer submit wines.

Thank you Corey. Illuminating.

I did try to submit to Vinous/Galloni, Jeb Dunnuck and James Suckling, but they all sent out emails basically saying "if we want to review wines from you, we'll ask you to submit a sample". Which they haven't. Dacanter never responded. So far Hawk at Jancis Robinson's US arm has taken some (and was very responsive), Wine Enthusiast and Wine Spectator, Esther Mobley at SF Chronicle (who even called to do a kind of informal interview) and a few Instagram wine reviewers like Wine1Percent etc. Honestly, the online ones result in more instant sales than anything - it seems like that's where the future is. The print stuff I'm not so sure will result in anything, so I might concentrate on those that have a good social media presence and skip the rest in the future. Just have to be careful with the "influencers" online that basically see you as a way to support their wine habit/lifestyle. But I'm finding my way still, no idea what's best.
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Re: Jancis Robinson on the next cult wines

#38 Post by Marshall Manning » June 29th, 2020, 12:05 pm

Marc Hauser wrote:
June 28th, 2020, 6:02 pm
Adam Frisch wrote:
June 28th, 2020, 5:34 pm
When I connected with Eric Asimov about how to submit wines, he responded that NYT only reviews wines that they buy and any submission to Eric is for "his edification" only. Not entirely sure what that means. I did send them some wine, but have no idea if they will ever get reviewed or how it works.
I encourage everyone to send me wine for my edification.
Yeah, I'll critique the hell out of wine if I get it free! [wow.gif]
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