Wednesday, February 25, 2009

return turn turn...

...well the Biodynamic Tasting, ‘Return to Terroir’ at the Metropolitan Pavillion in NYC was quite a lovely show the other day—among the great highlights was nearly everything from Alsace, especially Josmeyer and Tempé, and—big surprise—the In Weingebirge Grüner Veltliner 06 Smaragd and Steiner Hund Riesling 04 from Nikolaihof. The Wittmann rieslings from Rheinhessen made quite an impression, especially the 07 Grosses Gewächs Morstein and its brother Auslese—which was rather tasting like a detonated pineapple. Much has been made of riesling’s affinity for slate, but the laconic gentleman from Westhofen proves easily that limestone can provide special interest as well.

I was particularly fond of the pinot noirs from Robert Sinskey in Napa—beautifully expressive and nicely balanced. Rob’s 1988 pinot noir was one of the first Carneros wines that I truly loved. And Peter Weygandt was in attendance pouring some magical ancient-vines grenache from Domaine les Aphillantes on the Côtes-du-Rhône.

...but I will admit that the highlight for me was the awful photo (see above) I took of two people who must be the hardest working couple in the wine business, Juliette Pope and Ralf Kuettel. Juliette runs the wine programme at Gramercy Tavern, while her husband Ralf is proprietor of the Swiss-accented fine-wine-oriented dining establishment Trestle on Tenth.

...I had an unhappy fantasy—that the only time the two of them see one other is at trade tastings ~

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

how wonderful life is, and how small the world...

~ so was up early today working on the new Winemonger Imports catalog,

and was taking a break long about 8AM to go to the gym.

and as I was collecting my gym-gear and finding car-keys and the like, a song went through my head, “Lily, Rosemarie and the Jack of Hearts” from Bob Dylan’s very fine mid 70s album “Blood on the Tracks”—

and my thoughts hung upon one line from this song, “the hanging-judge was sober, he hadn‘t had a drink...” for no particular reason

then half an hour later I am in the gym and riding the stationary bicycle, which has recently been blessed with a TV monitor.

I do not watch television as a rule. My own television was made in 1979, and spends the entire year when it’s not football season unplugged down in the basement. Its days are numbered, I understand—

but if it is there attached to the stationary bike in the perspiration emporium, I will watch it. sometimes Sopranos, sometimes Star Trek, or History Channel or M*A*S*H...

this morning it was a re-run of the adventure/drama show JAG which got me through my half-hour of huffing and puffing.

the villain, a disaffected psycopath who is all set to blow everybody to h-e-doublehockeysticks, is wearing a t-shirt that says

Hanging Judge

go fig...