Fad, Fad Wine
November 26, 2019 2:39 PM   Subscribe

By the mid-two-thousands, though, consumers’ tastes were changing. People who shopped at farmers’ markets, drank craft beer, and ate heirloom tomatoes at farm-to-table restaurants were alarmed by reports of lab-made yeasts, grapes doused in the weed killer glyphosate, and enormous corporate conglomerates. The qualities that had once made natural wines seem unsophisticated or suspect—the obscure grapes, the rustic producers, the occasionally funky taste—began to look like authenticity. How Natural Wine Became a Symbol of Virtuous Consumption [The New Yorker] posted by chavenet (55 comments total) 22 users marked this as a favorite
 
Ah the naturalistic fallacy. I run into this one a lot working in a garden center. Mind you- we do not sell commercial pesticides or weed killers or anything by miracle grow (cursed be their name) but we still get “but is it organic?” “But is it a chemical?” From people wanting insecticidal soap or freaking horticultural oil or neem oil for their aphids. Which like? Water is a chemical guys- and no the copper fungicide isn’t organic, it doesn’t contain carbon, though it is certified organic because... Modern times are weird. And yet you absolutely don’t want to breath some of this stuff in because just because it has an organic label on the front doesn’t mean it’s safe to freaking breath...
I’m a wine drinker and while I’ve had some good “natural” wines- it’s absolutely an affectation. That being said there’s a vegan wine from I think Chile or Argentina that is omg amazingly delish (Malbec) so they can be amazing. But I’m gonna judge a wine on its merits (taste) rather then it’s pretensions. That being said, since eggs can be used to clarify wine I think this trend is great for folks who have allergies. So IDK viva vino? In all it’s myriad forms!
posted by Homo neanderthalensis at 3:02 PM on November 26, 2019 [28 favorites]


I have a simple rule: I don't drink wine or beer that doesn't have living yeast in it. All you anti-hipsters can stick to your dead drink.
posted by No Robots at 3:08 PM on November 26, 2019 [2 favorites]


It tasty tho
posted by ominous_paws at 3:14 PM on November 26, 2019 [10 favorites]


I have a simple rule: I don't drink wine or beer that doesn't have living yeast in it. All you anti-hipsters can stick to your dead drink.

🤣 Ok. More wine for me!
posted by Homo neanderthalensis at 3:15 PM on November 26, 2019 [7 favorites]


I'm with HN, tasty wine or GTFO.
posted by grumpybear69 at 3:18 PM on November 26, 2019 [4 favorites]


I’m a motherfcuking chemistry professor. I know and can prove there is no difference between a molecule in wine made in a lab and in the field - be that field chemically fertilized or demeter certified. I especially think biodynamics and Rudolf Steiner is full of it - burying shit-filled cow horns in your fields and childhood diseases being a struggle of the reincarnated soul as exhibits 2 and 1 (of many) for the unsuitability of the vast majority of his toxic, evidence-free worldview on pretty much…… anything.

I think that natural wine, like most fads originating in the West where the Cleanliness/Hygeine/Purity/axis is plucked for all its worth, is in most cases sign of fucking neurosis or too much free time. Don’t even get me started on now we have 8 billion humans we should all go back to low yield agriculture because it’s “in balance” with some edenic view that originated at 1/1000th of the population and 1/10000th of the knowledge that we have about the world these days…..

and yet i fucking love natural wine and will fight people about it.

“Organic” and “Biodynamic” if done well correlates most strongly (but not perfectly!) with “takes great care of their fields and of the vinfication process”, because of the lack of shortcuts, and that attention yields straight up more interesting wine, because these producers often dance at the edge of control and it shows in their product

“Natural wine” to me means : open to a wider and more delicious range of flavor and aroma compounds and textural experiences than either “safe focus-grouped flavor profiles designed for the international market and for shelf-stability” or ”trophy hunting, ‘big’ bottles that are designed to replicate some corpulent tastemakers idea of the Perfect 100 Point Wine. “

I’ve had delicious natural wines - most of which would be described as unbalanced or straight-up-faulty that taste of sweat and funk and of soil - like a small death..... like a good aged cheese or steak , some fizz that reminds me of bubblegum at the beginning of the mouthful and a fizzy, slightly dusty disco party at the end of that mouthful, some that have topnotes of papaya and are almost tropical like a cocktail, some that twang with subtle acidity and fizzy cherries but offset a burger like no-one’s business, some briny like the sea, some iodinous and oily and complex and oxidative, some that tastes like an apple and an oyster shell got into a drunken knifefight, and on and on and on.

while I’m all for de gustibus non disputandum…… life is short: try new shit!. that new shit can be different wine from traditional producers, but often the wildest and most satisfying bottles come from the natural winemakers


tl;dr Homo neanderthalensis
posted by lalochezia at 3:38 PM on November 26, 2019 [75 favorites]


^Erm, isn't Homo neanderthalensis arguing against natural wine, ie. against me, who is arguing for it?
posted by No Robots at 3:45 PM on November 26, 2019 [2 favorites]


Nope I’m for it I just think it’s also a stupid anti-science overreaction to modern life but it’s one that’s producing some tasty wines so whatever life is short drink good wine
posted by Homo neanderthalensis at 3:49 PM on November 26, 2019 [17 favorites]


The one I really like is Inkarri which is an organic Argentinian Malbec. Not sure it’s natural but it is organic and it’s super yummy. I’m just gonna keep drinking conventional wine too because... I like wine! Taste is king!
posted by Homo neanderthalensis at 3:51 PM on November 26, 2019 [3 favorites]


(full disclosure: I grow grapes and make wine as a very small scale hobby. I don't use pesticides or herbicides, but I do use synthetic fungicides because I grow European grapes in a marginal midwestern climate.)

“I had five glasses last night and I woke up this morning, went to the gym at 5 a.m., and felt amazing,” Ben Greenfield, a triathlete and fitness influencer, enthused on his podcast.

For a man, 5 drinks in a sitting is the CDC's definition of binge drinking. Just as a side note, since we're talking about a drug here.

“Just like I can’t go to a steak house and order a filet mignon unless I know it’s grass-fed and grass-finished, I can’t order a Cab without thinking about seventy-two different toxins.”

Grass fed cows are generally happier and healthier than those raised or finished in feed lots, but unless you think grape vines are conscious (and hey, maybe you do) it's not really a fair comparison. Also, is ethanol one of the seventy-two toxins Greenfield is thinking about? Because ~110mL of ethanol in a night is a hell of a lot worse for your health than a bit of residual sulfur dioxide.

Aside from all of that, the article does at least touch on the fundamental problem: yields and commercial viability. Grape varieties are propagated by cloning and grafting (not very natural!), and so they inevitably require increasing amounts of artificial support in order to be able to survive insects and diseases that have continued to evolve while the grapes have been frozen in time. The varieties most favored by the market are hundreds of years old. Combined with climate change and invasive species, this one-sided arms race makes it very difficult to grow grapes in a commercially viable way without at least some reliance on pesticides, fungicides, and herbicides.

I guess what I'm saying is that if the natural wine producers in California had any real principles, they'd be growing wild North American grapes and "enjoying" the results, which would be lucky to hit 8.5% ABV with a pH only marginally higher than lemon juice.
posted by jedicus at 3:55 PM on November 26, 2019 [29 favorites]


Like you want some living yeast? Go for it! You want to claim your wine is the best because only virgins pick the grapes and you bury bones at the roots during the full moon? And you’re charging 100 bucks a bottle? Nope.
posted by Homo neanderthalensis at 3:55 PM on November 26, 2019 [7 favorites]


dude, quality wine bones are $$$$
posted by grumpybear69 at 4:34 PM on November 26, 2019 [18 favorites]


I tend to like lesser known, rustic regional and village wines but not all of the currently faddish wines have that character. Some are just as much a science project as the previous eras in Napa, just an artisanally inflected (hipsterish) one. Either way, they can be good or bad.

What I've never understood is the whole biodynamic thing. It feels like a survival of olden times, like homeopathy and osteopathy (to the extent it hasn't collapsed into allopathic practice), carried on more out of tradition than any validity. Whatever a pit of stuffed cow horns tastes like, it isn't a "natural" expression of the existing terroir.

Or, what HN just said.
posted by snuffleupagus at 4:34 PM on November 26, 2019 [4 favorites]


(On review that closing sentence might read a lot more snarkily than it was intended to be, which was very tongue-in-cheek.)
posted by jedicus at 4:34 PM on November 26, 2019 [1 favorite]


very tongue-in-cheek

Which is a difficult way to drink wine.
posted by Greg_Ace at 4:39 PM on November 26, 2019 [5 favorites]


I didn't know but should have guessed that bio-dynamic wine has become an insufferable thing in general. Specifically I first had a bottle of it about 15 years ago and it was pretty fantastic, It smelled like pig shit and kept changing flavor in your mouth. It really was a pleasant experience. I would never try buying it on my own because I cannot keep the identity of a bottle of wine in my brain or even identify different kinds by taste, my predilections sit right at the middle of the bell curve though as pretty reliably when ever I go to a wine tasting what ever I like best is the most expensive,(I'm not confident that that would work in reverse though .) Fortunately my wife is a wine enthusiast so I can delegate all that to her. The bio dynamic though it has to come from a trusted restaurant that isn't insufferable but still into food.
posted by Pembquist at 4:42 PM on November 26, 2019 [1 favorite]


For a little while, I snipped next to DeLuca, who told me about the harvests she’d worked at conventional wineries. At a winery in the Finger Lakes region of New York, the vines were sprayed with mildew-killing chemicals.

So, interestingly, winemakers in the Finger Lakes AVA are experimenting pretty heavily with colder-climate grapes (e.g., Saperavi), i.e., wines that can grow there with less intervention.

I've had some really interesting and delicious natural wines. I've also had some that were...well, either an acquired taste or Most Definitely Not For Me.

Godforsaken Grapes offers a pretty balanced opinion on a bunch of the stuff that comes up in the articles in the FPP.

What I've never understood is the whole biodynamic thing. It feels like a survival of olden times, like homeopathy and osteopathy (to the extent it hasn't collapsed into allopathic practice), carried on more out of tradition than any validity. Whatever a pit of stuffed cow horns tastes like, it isn't a "natural" expression of the existing terroir.

Yeah, biodynamic farming is very much of that genre.

Somewhat related, re: Rudolph Steiner, there's this Behind the Bastards take on him...aaaaand the title of the following article could also be a very questionable band name:

The Right-Wing Organic Farmers of Germany.
posted by mandolin conspiracy at 4:43 PM on November 26, 2019 [10 favorites]


Oh mandolin conspiracy you link to my fanfare post I feel so seen! Also hilariously I posted my first comment while at my favorite Sausalito wine bar so the serendipity of this post is amazing. Look- if your wine is good and not so hideously expensive that I can’t afford it and you think the phases of the moon affected it, I’ll give it a try while rolling my eyes but if it’s good hell I’ll buy it! But don’t piss on my leg and tell me it’s raining you know?
posted by Homo neanderthalensis at 4:53 PM on November 26, 2019 [8 favorites]


I just did a bit of vendage this year in the Ain, and the winery had just switched to bio one or two years ago. We drank wines from the same place before and after the switch. I wouldn’t say all the bio ones were better, but they did have a lot broader range of flavors. In the case of these producers, and maybe others, bio goes hand in hand with accentuating the local flavor rather than working to hit a specific profile.
posted by snofoam at 5:02 PM on November 26, 2019 [3 favorites]


Also, traditionally excellent village and country wines are often no secret at all — it's just that most of it is consumed either where it's made or at least in the home country. Why export the stuff that's good and cheap, unless there's extra? Not to mention it would compete with the more profitable exports.

Lirac tastes a lot like Chateauneuf, but the French drink most of it.
posted by snuffleupagus at 5:02 PM on November 26, 2019 [9 favorites]


I knew a vineyard Cooperative Extension researcher who worked in a trendy wine-growing area and was in despair on how to help her growers, who tended to be stockbrokers with too much money and no knowledge of growing anything. They were happy to spend thousands of dollars on negative ion generators, or to use homeopathic magnetic compost tea (wish I were making that up, but I'm not). She had to decide whether to continue to validate known methods of integrated pest management, try to find good new organic measures or to waste a lot of time testing whether negative ion generators did anything in the field. She's still working at getting a balance.
posted by acrasis at 5:11 PM on November 26, 2019 [7 favorites]


Homo neanderthalensis - Thanks for posting that to Fanfare - it's how I came across the book.

IMHO, the thing that makes natural wines interesting and good is basically "Look, what's in the bottle has a bunch of funky notes that we're told are faults. Like a funky cheese, that funk may be where the fun is at."

Also, traditionally excellent village and country wines are often no secret at all

That's kind of the jumping-off point for Godforsaken Grapes. The author's initially chasing the experience he had with a country wine he had while living abroad in his younger days. It's a pretty fun read about wine and the tastemaking around it.
posted by mandolin conspiracy at 5:12 PM on November 26, 2019 [4 favorites]


I still really want to try some of the natural Georgian wines from that book but I haven’t been able to find them.
posted by Homo neanderthalensis at 5:15 PM on November 26, 2019 [1 favorite]


A Cote, in the Rockridge neighborhood of Oakland, has recently gone deep on Georgian & Greek wines. It's a really interesting wine list, if you're in the neighborhood.
posted by suelac at 5:18 PM on November 26, 2019 [6 favorites]


I’m a bart ride away and I now have a new destination! Thanks suelac!
posted by Homo neanderthalensis at 5:31 PM on November 26, 2019 [5 favorites]


I favored a lot of natural wines before I ever knew that’s what they were. There’s a lot of fantastic wineries that are making natural wines that don’t market on that - and there’s both great and terrible wines that foreground that they’re natural.

“These past few years, it’s out of control,” Feiring said. “There was no place to drink wine in Boston—then, last year, Rebel Rebel opened.”

Yeah, right, suuuuuure there was no place to drink wine in the Boston area until Lauren Friel opened Rebel Rebel. There definitely wasn’t haley.henry, or Nathálie, or any of the many restaurants where Friel served as sommelier or consultant.

Rebel Rebel is a fantastic natural wine bar, but hands down the most radical thing that Friel is doing there is challenging the norms of the hospitality industry to create an explicitly feminist, queer, inclusive space that is absolutely intolerant of the sexual harassment and violence issues endemic to the hospitality industry, issues Feiring herself notes are a problem. Friel also happens to have a killer palate and skill for education as well.
posted by amelioration at 5:33 PM on November 26, 2019 [8 favorites]


I had a long conversation with a vintner in the Dry Creek Valley about just what it was that made their wine "natural" and after lots and back and forth it came down to well we just call it that. Like there wasn't anything in particular that distinguished natural wine from corporate wine, they even used sulfites for some of their wines.

But goddamn, it was good wine. And they had goats!
posted by dis_integration at 5:33 PM on November 26, 2019 [5 favorites]


My Reason-for-living and I have spent the last five years helping manage a vineyard with a friend who owns the vineyard, the Viticulture expert at the local Big Ten university, and one of his graduate students. We're in Wisconsin. The first year the wine was absolute shit. The second year it made an acceptable drain cleaner. The third year the birds got 99% of The crop. The fourth year the hard frost came early, and this year the winter freeze killed 90% of our vines. Anyone who gets an acceptable product from a fucking grapevine is a hero, no matter what they've had to go through to get there. If they can do it with a minimum of chemical input and intervention I must bow in awe to their abilities. The amount of labor, capital, intelligence and craft that are required to make a drinkable bottle of wine is just staggering. Every bottle represents a heroic effort, to which I raise a toast.
posted by Floydd at 5:40 PM on November 26, 2019 [18 favorites]


and yet i fucking love natural wine and will fight people about it.

“Organic” and “Biodynamic” if done well correlates most strongly (but not perfectly!) with “takes great care of their fields and of the vinfication process”, because of the lack of shortcuts, and that attention yields straight up more interesting wine, because these producers often dance at the edge of control and it shows in their product


Wine nerd here! (One of few self-identified folks around here with a wine cellar, I guess?) You are absolutely on point. The best wines I find coming out of California are the ones whose vintners work with the soil and the vines, rather than trying to impose their wills on them. Forgive me for naming names, but my absolute favorite producers in the world, Bedrock Wine, personify the ethos. Where nature permits, they dry-farm (e.g. no irrigation beyond what weather provides) their vines. Where it doesn't, they eschew pesticides for marigolds planted between rows of grapes. The owner, Morgan Twain Peterson, waxes lyrical in every release note, because he has poured his heart and soul into every drop of fermented grape juice that bears his name, and he is openly reverential of the soil and the history of the grapes he is harvesting. They're lucky enough to own rights to grapes produced from vines that predate phylloxera (the nasty vine-eating mites that almost destroyed wine-making as a commercial venture), but treat those vines with such reverential respect that it's impossible not to see the love and attention that goes into every bottle.

They're also half the price of their contemporaries (because they believe in making their labor of love available to everyone, rather than pricing to fit what the market will bear), and their North Coast Syrah is the single best deal in the state of California if you can get on their mailing list.

"Biodynamic," much like "organic," means little without context. What you want to look for are producers who work with the soil and the vines they are dealt, and don't try to coerce Robert-Parker-score material out of regions that demand a little more TLC.
posted by Mayor West at 5:53 PM on November 26, 2019 [19 favorites]


You are all my people
posted by Homo neanderthalensis at 5:57 PM on November 26, 2019 [5 favorites]


🍷
posted by Homo neanderthalensis at 6:11 PM on November 26, 2019 [4 favorites]


The natural wines I've had have been fantastic, but that's likely because I've only had highly-curated examples. I'm sure there is bad natural wines, and I have noticed the hype -- it's the current fashion, at least until the next big thing comes along.
posted by Dip Flash at 6:11 PM on November 26, 2019 [2 favorites]


I guess what I'm saying is that if the natural wine producers in California had any real principles, they'd be growing wild North American grapes and "enjoying" the results, which would be lucky to hit 8.5% ABV with a pH only marginally higher than lemon juice.

If you have any interest in this experience, go visit Georgia (Republic of, not State of). Make friends with someone - anyone, it doesn't matter. Just make good enough friends they have you for dinner. They will have homemade wine from their family vineyard, and it will be funky and crazy sour and great.
posted by solotoro at 6:58 PM on November 26, 2019 [6 favorites]


I was a happy and very eclectic wine drinker for years when wine abruptly started giving me bad headaches.

But a very few didn't, and the thing they had in common was that no sulfites had been added. I realize that all wines have sulfites, and that sulfites have been added to wine since the Middle Ages, but nevertheless only wines that had no sulfites added did not give me headaches.

They did not taste any better — in fact, they mostly tasted worse — but they didn't give me a headache.
posted by jamjam at 7:29 PM on November 26, 2019 [4 favorites]


As a bartender and sometimes sommelier over several decades I can assure you the best wine is the wine you like best. The rest is social pressure, a need to belong or differentiate and advertising. Therefore I am now perfectly content with my 5 liter box of Chateau d'Cardboard Chardonnay. Cheers...
posted by jim in austin at 7:42 PM on November 26, 2019 [14 favorites]


Cardbordeaux!
posted by clew at 7:49 PM on November 26, 2019 [9 favorites]


I am delighted by the winemakers who are so traditional they’re still working with pointy-based clay amphorae.
posted by clew at 7:49 PM on November 26, 2019 [7 favorites]


I have a simple rule: I don't drink wine or beer that doesn't have living yeast in it. All you anti-hipsters can stick to your dead drink.

So are you saying I shouldn't be microwaving this beer, or...?
posted by curious nu at 8:26 PM on November 26, 2019 [8 favorites]


+ Skin Contact

Making white wines as if they were red by macerating them on their skins—resulting in what is referred to as “orange wine” that can range in color from blush to full-out amber—has been with us since the beginning of wine, but has seen a significant resurgence over the past decade. Beyond changing color, it alters the flavor and texture of a wine, often promoting savory aromas and tannins that could rival a red wine. For some countries—like Georgia, Slovenia and Croatia—this tradition evolved as a matter of practicality for those who aim to make white wine without sulfur, as the tannins in the skins act as something of an anti-oxidant, as well as a way to add tension to wines that might lack acidity. The con? The argument against skin contact is similar to the cold carbonic debate, in that many believe that it obscures terroir, yielding wines that express technique over place.


So, my first...contact, as it were, with an orange wine was at a local wine bar that described one of its more mellow bottles of same as "a gentle foray into the world of skin contact whites." Unable to resist that unnerving description, a table-wide decision was made to give that one a go.

Skin contact whites are definitely a style. I'm "meh" on what I've tried (in some cases some curated selections), but, kind of like sour beers, I can see them pairing well with certain foods. I'm personally not sold on them, but hey, YMMV.
posted by mandolin conspiracy at 9:18 PM on November 26, 2019 [3 favorites]


So I have a pal who is an expert in wine/beer testing things from a chemical perspective as the Director of the VT Enology Analytical Services Laboratory and I messaged him about how I recently had some not great experiences with organic wines. Some fun facts from him: 1) Well start with what natural means. The most toxic substances on earth are all-natural and readily available. 1 gram / 1 thimbleful (roughly the same amount) of botulinum toxin is enough to kill everyone on earth, ricin is pretty bad too. 2) Basically, stay away from two buck chuck, but if you must, use an aerator, it will open it up by oxygenating it. 3) Yes wine yeast are lab grown, but they are not "lab-made". No genetically modified yeast are used in winemaking because people would lose their minds. The commercial yeast strains are selected from ?natural? sources...not dug outta the ground, but isolated from wineries or fruit...and selected and propagated for flavor and fermentation characteristics
posted by recklessbrother at 9:46 PM on November 26, 2019 [5 favorites]


Recklessbrother - A clarification - wines labed 'Organic' mean only that the vines are farmed organically, it doesn't have anything to do with to decisions made in harvesting or in wine making.
posted by FGR at 11:44 PM on November 26, 2019 [5 favorites]


"Skin contact" wine sounds like something that infects you when you splash it on yourself or bathe in it.
posted by Greg_Ace at 11:59 PM on November 26, 2019 [5 favorites]


growing wild North American grapes and "enjoying" the results

Our local winery produces a couple of varieties from Muscadines. The results are... interesting.
posted by saladin at 3:32 AM on November 27, 2019 [2 favorites]


Gah, I hate the purity framing and wish the Steiner people could go stick with their feathers and free play. And I challenge anyone to track down some naturally occurring wine.

But I suppose in its affect on my actual life, "natural" wine is sorta like the "paleo" diet, in that by getting a whole bunch of basic ideas about the basics of history, chemistry, and nutrition . . . slightly wrong, their proponents have caused a proliferation of products and recipes that are often somewhat improved from the previous couple decades of mass production.

I'm frustrated with the fundamental misunderstandings, but it sure is a lot easier to get coconut milk and almond flour these days . . .
posted by aspersioncast at 5:39 AM on November 27, 2019 [7 favorites]


all i care about is finding more puffeney arbois and being able to afford more lopez de heredia whites
posted by lazaruslong at 6:27 AM on November 27, 2019 [4 favorites]


Hey I'm the guy who dumps cider yeast in a bottle of Frutopia with an airlock cap and in six weeks pronounces it drinkable -- though six months it's dry as fuck, smooth as hell, and will fight you -- and a lot of this is over my head please just sign me up for Dry Red camp. Oh, and port. MMM.
posted by seanmpuckett at 8:07 AM on November 27, 2019 [3 favorites]


being able to afford more lopez de heredia whites
You should check out the CVNE Monopole Classico. Not quite the same thing, but in the same ballpark, for a lot less.
posted by neroli at 8:09 AM on November 27, 2019 [4 favorites]


oooo thank you!
posted by lazaruslong at 8:42 AM on November 27, 2019 [1 favorite]


Hey I'm the guy who dumps cider yeast in a bottle of Frutopia with an airlock cap and in six weeks pronounces it drinkable

My brother used to do this when we were kids, although he used little balloons to sort of track the fermentation process. As long as you keep the temperature and ph steady it's really easy. And sense you're generally starting with pasteurized juice, you've already significantly reduced a bunch of disease vectors.

"Natural?" No more or less so than tofu, I suppose.
posted by aspersioncast at 9:23 AM on November 27, 2019 [1 favorite]


What I've never understood is the whole biodynamic thing. It feels like a survival of olden times, like homeopathy and osteopathy (to the extent it hasn't collapsed into allopathic practice), carried on more out of tradition than any validity.

Wow, that link is a revelation. I had no idea there was so much crazy about this. When I hear "biodynamic" I just think "has yeast", meaning all the added nutrients and complexity that ongoing yeast activity provides, as well as indicating a general absence of hyper-efficient industrial practice, like the difference between Wonder Bread and home-made pumpernickel. I'm tired of going to parties where a bottle of Yellow Tail is expected to elicit admiration rather than contempt. To get out of this whole social thing, it is easiest just to say, "No yeast, no feast."
posted by No Robots at 9:38 AM on November 27, 2019 [1 favorite]


Natural biodynamic wine accounts for about 2% of the wine sold in this country. When Accounts Receivable registers significantly higher numbers, then you will see big wine concerns move on it. I am paraphrasing a friend who has been in the wine business for over 35 years.
posted by DJZouke at 10:06 AM on November 27, 2019


"Skin contact" wine sounds like something that infects you when you splash it on yourself or bathe in it.

The first time I heard the term, my mind went to more prurient places.

it's dry as fuck, smooth as hell, and will fight you

Now THIS is excellent marketing copy.
posted by mandolin conspiracy at 12:15 PM on November 27, 2019 [4 favorites]



“Organic” and “Biodynamic” if done well correlates most strongly (but not perfectly!) with “takes great care of their fields and of the vinfication process” ... these producers often dance at the edge of control and it shows in their product.

This really is the best description I've seen of a point I've long thought as well. I think there's also a selection effect on the winemakers. I was talking with a really great Oregon wine maker at a tasting and asked her why there are so many more interesting, "natural" wines from Oregon than Washington state despite the proximity. What she thought was that it was also about temperament. If you are happy to grow wines that require irrigation, like is the case for a lot of Washington vineyards, then you are often aiming for a particular style (bigger, juicer flavor) that can admit or even flourish with more correctives than dry farmed, low intervention approaches that you can get more frequently Oregon vineyards.

That said, I'm exhausted by the idea of 30 dollar bottles of California glou glou.
posted by Schismatic at 4:42 PM on November 27, 2019 [2 favorites]


[T]he best wine is the wine you like best.

I'm tired of going to parties where a bottle of Yellow Tail is expected to elicit admiration rather than contempt.


I think I know who I want to party with.
posted by agentofselection at 5:53 PM on November 28, 2019 [1 favorite]


I think I know who I want to party with.

People who like Yellow Tail? I'll stick with my father-in-law's homemade vino: honest, homey, no pretension.
posted by No Robots at 7:43 AM on November 29, 2019


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