Results tagged “Courtney Cochran” from Wine

World Wine Forecast Fair, In Spite of Economic Heat

By Courtney Cochran

According to a study just released by The International Wine & Spirit Record, demand for wine is projected to grow roughly 6 percent to 2.8 billion cases between 2008 and 2012, a figure close to in synch with pre-recession trends.  Global production is also predicted to grow over the same period to an estimated 3 billion cases annually, an increase of approximately 3.83 percent over earlier levels.  The findings support a long-held belief that wine is more or less "recession-proof" - meaning that drinkers continue to enjoy the beverage even when spending power is down.

It's Jail Time for High-End Wine Heister

By Courtney Cochran

Last year when I attended a gala release party for Verité Wines - a mega-high-end Sonoma property that's part of the Kendall-Jackson empire - I never imagined that the winery's directors would allow its wines to sell online at prices far below their stated retail price.  That's probably because the folks behind this critically acclaimed producer of elegant Bordeaux-style reds would never do such a thing - to do so would risk eroding the prestige of the brand and would almost certainly make it difficult to command full price for the wines elsewhere.

But, as it turns out, someone else would do such a thing - and did.  Illegally. 

Recession Ups and Downs Trickle to Wine Country

By Courtney Cochran

With our nation now fully entrenched in a recession, no one can deny the ripple effects of the economic downturn coursing through our lives and those of friends, colleagues and family.  And, though we'd all like to imagine the wine industry impervious to the nation's economic ills, the fact is that wine country, too, is feeling the effects of the crisis.  Fortunately, it's not all bad news when it comes to financial affairs and wine.  

Recession Edition: Wines to Brood Over

By Courtney Cochran

With the Dow marching steadily south, unemployment on the up and deflation dangerously near, it's easy to feel there's little source for cheer these days.  Still, if there's anything a trying economic clime coupled with an already frigid winter welcomes, it's uncorking a wine worth brooding over.  Read on for a list of our top picks for wines with which to weather the current season - whether your portfolio is up, down, or you just can't bear to look.  No matter what, we've got you covered.

SF Wine Week: Sommelier Mark Bright

By Courtney Cochran

markbright.jpgWhen I first met Mark Bright several years ago, I was struck by the way the twentysomething wine guru seemed wise beyond his years.  I suppose that's inevitable for someone who was named sommelier at the venerable Bellagio Hotel in Las Vegas on his 21st birthday, then turned heads as a sommelier standout at lauded San Francisco restaurant Michael Mina.

Now a partner in the popular SoMa eatery and wine shop Local Kitchen & Wine Merchant, Chicago native Bright oversees the restaurant's wine program - an imaginative collection that includes edgy selections from his recent travels in China and Japan - and adjacent retail shop, as well as the wine program at partner eatery Oola.

On Second Thought: Putting Used Bottles to Use


Anyone able to pull a cork is capable of enjoying the spoils of a bottle of wine, but it takes a truly savvy enthusiast to take the good stuff where few mere fans have taken it before. Read on for tips on re-using wine bottles – because your enjoyment shouldn’t end just because you’ve swilled the last drop.

Savvy Centerpiece
Pour the contents of a bottle of wine into a decanter in advance of a festive meal. Decanting works wonders when it comes to opening up young reds, and even helps some whites to show their full potential (it certainly doesn’t hurt ‘em), so pour away! If you don’t have a decanter on-hand, any clean, empty flower vase or water pitcher will do the trick.

Next, pluck some flowers from your yard or local florist shop and arrange them inside the empty wine bottle. Voilà – you’ve got a centerpiece with panache, and you and your guests can admire the bottle on the table while enjoying the wine from the decanter. If you’re pouring from the flower vase, you can also share a good chuckle over the ironic role swap.

Wine Bottle As Found Art
Those interested in taking their bottles to still greater heights of innovation can experiment with empty wine bottles as found art. More and more, wine bottles are turning up as decorative elements in lighting fixtures (wine bottle chandelier, anyone?) and wall dressings (making the phrase “wine wall” quite literal). Even better, planning for your art installation is a fabulous excuse to try new wines.

Message In a Bottle
One of the best things about wine is the way it brings us together with friends and family. For a great way to harness the memories you generate while enjoying a special bottle, jot down highlights from your gathering on a piece of paper, roll it up and slide it inside the empty bottle. Store this “time capsule” along with others from particularly memorable occasions, and plan a time to open them up and savor your memories – ideally, over more great wine.

I can’t think of a better excuse to start enjoying the good stuff this very moment.

contributed by: Courtney Cochran