Today's Terroirist Blog: Fantastic Read

The Terroirist wine blog is the first wine blog I view every day. It’s primarily a blog that has links to other wine blog commentaries. When I find a particularly interesting blog/article, I will often post the link here (with attribution to Wine Terroirist). And I particularly like the articles on it that IsaacBaker writes.
Today’s Terroirist blog is probably the best one ever:
March27Terroirist .

Instead of taking my afternoon nap (something us old folks particularly need) today, I spent over an hour reading thru all the blog entries.

Today’s blog was in response to last week’s NYTimes article by BiancaBosker (who she?):
IgnoreTheSnobs/DrinkTheCheapDeliciousWine ,
an article that doesn’t seem to have drawn much reaction on the various WineBoards. The article is a thinly-veiled attack on the “natural” (what that?) wine movement. She did a visit to TreasuryWineEstates who makes low-end wines targeted to wine-drinkers w/ little sophisticated tastes (what that?) but know what they like. The wines are “engineered” to achieve those particular tastes. That is, wines made by the marketing department, not by the winemaking department. She argues that these engineered wines have their place and might very well serve as a gateway drug to better/more sophisticated wines that these idiot wine-drinkers might move on to.
My original reaction to the article was “meh”. So what? These are not wines I (knowingly) drink and it won’t matter to my wine choices. Plus…the article was clearly designed to be rabble-rousing/stir-the-pot/controversial/attention-getting (something I would never be accused of doing…never/ever/no-siree) article in order to sell/peddle her new book “CorkDorks”. One that I’m not inclined to buy now.

As designed/expected, the article got the WineBlogoSphere all up in arms and stirred up. The blog/article by MarkoKovac (who he?) was so hilarious that it actually made me laugh by the degree to which he was frothing at the mouth. He is apparently a guy firmly entrenched in the “natural” wine movement. He rails against the use of powdered eggs whites as a fining agent to remove tannins in these industrial/manufactured wines (but no doubts approves of Ridge’s use of egg white fining because it is somehow more “natural”). Conveniently overlooking the fact that we don’t actually consume these powdered egg whites once they’ve done their job of taking out the tannins. His other points against these industrial wines are equally stupid. He goes on to praise the response of AliceFeiring to the article. I did not bother to read SweetAlice’s response…so entirely predictable. I’m still waiting, with baited breath, for her to save the World from Parkerization!! [snort.gif]

The other blog entries are not nearly as amusing. AlderYarrow/Vinography gives a very open-minded response, I thought. JasonHaas’ TablasCreek blog is particularly good and most thoughtful, exactly what I would expect from Jason.

The RachelSigner blog entry is also amusing as she gets all worked up and her knickers in a knot over the original article. ClaudeKolm’s response is particularly worth reading as he criticizes the “natural” wine movement. And BlakeGray’s response is particularly good and, for once, I am in agreement w/ Blinky. He takes Rachel to task for her narrow-mindedness and actually praises the writing and the point of the article…that Bianca went and tasted these industrial wines w/ an open mind. The descriptions she writes of these does not want to make me try these industrial/manufactured wines. But she did…and now we know. Sometimes you have to take one for the team (think BigChurn Chard).

Anyway, it’s very much worth taking the hour or more and reading thru all the stuff linked to on today’s Terroirist blog. It’s a tough slog…but very educational. Jeez…you might even have to give up your afternoon nap!! :slight_smile: [snort.gif]

The SFChron’s EstherMobley weighs in:

with a very well-reasoned response to all the foaming at the mouth rants in the BlogoSphere to Bosker’s original article.

I find I like Esther’s writing more&more as she settles into her job.

merci… flirtysmile

And W.BlakeGray chimes in w/ a well-reasoned take on the original article:

Tom, thanks for your comments and for reading. I actually read Bosker’s book first (and wrote my review) before even becoming aware of her NYT piece. Unfortunately, I think that piece has skewed the conversation, and given many people a perhaps false impression of the book (which I reviewed on Terroirist on 3/28). So, I went back, read Bosker’s NYT piece… I found it kind of click-baity and somewhat silly. Also, surprising. This is by no means the thesis of her book, and it’s based on a portion of one chapter where she, as you points out, digs into the super manufactured vino from Treasury. This chapter is like an odd divergence from the rest of her story. Good job pointing out Alder and Jason Haas’ responses - they both say everything I would want to say on the subject. But the book “Cork Dork” shouldn’t be written off as some sort of anti-natural wine manifesto - it’s anything but. Like many of these dust-ups in the wine world, a lot of nuance and detail is overlooked, which is why some of it sounds like, as you put it, “foaming at the mouth rants”

Thanks for your comments, Isaac. Ester’s comments were along the same line as yours and she convinced me I should order the book, which I did.
I’d forgotten that you’d done that review of the book.

First the article, then the book:

Bianca does seem a little more forgiving of Treasury type wines than the average Berserker, but look, she managed to get folks from Treasury and enologic to talk, and they are usually quite tight-lipped. If I were her editor, I would assign her to Russia-Gate next.

Now to the book . . .

Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. You really showed a side of this wine world; the somms and the wine groupies, that usually doesn’t get displayed. And honestly, I hated almost every single one of them.

“Don’t say your name!” (When walking up to a guest’s table) “That’s so Applebee’s”! - A judge critiquing a sommelier competition.

Honestly, sir, that statement reveals more about you than your idea of the typical Applebee’s customer. Much more.

And she does ask some hard questions, about restaurant culture and the constant turnover and risk of burnout, that few journalists have touched. Hopefully other writers will deep dive some of the topics she only had room to skim.