Wine News: March 2009 Archives

Mutineer Makes Good

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mutineer.jpegBy Courtney Cochran

Twenty-something sommelier Alan Kropf tried going the traditional route - logging stints as a floor sommelier at The Beverly Hills Hotel and alongside resto great Gordon Ramsay in West Hollywood - but ultimately, his career calling came from somewhere wholly unexpected: the page. Now Editor-In-Chief of alt-beverage publication Mutineer Magazine , Kropf and his team of snarky scribes pen edgy editorial that encompasses the worlds of wine, beer, spirits, coffee, tea, soda and even water - and are attracting no shortage of intrepid beverage advertisers and readers along the way.

Wine Country Wackness (In a Good Way)

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juddhill.jpgBy Courtney Cochran

I've always admired second-generation Napa vintner Judd Finkelstein's penchant for marching to his own beat.  Whether playing the ukulele in his wine country band, The Maikai Gents Featuring The Mysterious Miss Mauna Loa , or producing award-winning Cabs at his family's Judd's Hill winery, Finkelstein doesn't do things the typical wine country way.  And so when I bumped into his wife, Holly, several weeks ago at Premiere Napa Valley at the CIA Greystone in St. Helena, I was thrilled to hear that Judd has undertaken a refreshingly "out there" new adventure: an online wine show featuring his family's winery and his very own brand of quirky humor.

Recession Proof?

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domperignon96.jpgBy Robert Farmer

You see the term "recession proof" tossed around a lot these days. Yet increasingly things that have been deemed to be so are turning out to be anything but. And so it was with great curiosity that I saw an item recently proclaiming select French wines to be valiantly resisting the downward economic trend. According to the global wine search website Wine Searcher.com, French wine has remained in high demand during this downward spiral into the financial abyss. Based on the data collected by the world's largest and most widely used wine search engine, shows that houses like Lafite, Margaux, and Dom Perignon remain in hot demand across the globe.

By the Glass Bargains - An Upside to the Recession

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By Courtney Cochran

When it comes to restaurant wine sales, the news is largely not good - for the restaurateurs, at least.  To that end, the Wine Market Council - in conjunction with The Nielsen Beverage Alcohol Team - reported this winter that on-premise sales of wine have slipped dramatically from 2007 and early 2008 levels, with some restaurants even forced to shut their doors as a result of sluggish sales.  Happily, there's a silver lining to this latest tale of recession-induced woe: by-the-glass sales at on-premise locations are still strong, and restaurants are responding by injecting new life - and appeal - into their BTG programs

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