March 25: NYC’s First BBQ Contest — Grillin’ on the Bay

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Think real-deal BBQ competitions don’t happen outside of the south? Think again…New York City is going to be hosting its first BBQ contest on March 26 — Grillin’ on the Bay. Some of the region’s best pit bosses will be cooking up chicken, pork, fish and even dessert. I know that I’m going to go if I can (never been to such an event) and if you want more information, visit White Trash BBQ’s great site.

To the Victor Go the Spoils

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And a bottle of Matthew Cellars 2001 Columbia Valley Red, compliments of the Culinary Fool and her Seattle Seahawks losing in the Super Bowl. We had a bet, and my winnings arrived yesterday. As you can see above and to the right, B tried to cover up her obvious shame by burying the bottle in Seahawks gear. She’s a gracious loser, I’ll give her that. I think Ben Roethlisbeagle will enjoy ripping the wrist bands to shreds. (Just teasing, I know a Seahawks fan here at the office I think he has kids. So they’ll get the gear most likely).…

Another Argument Against Wine Spectator Scores as Gospel

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Wine lovers and writers often debate the validity and usefulness of wine scores. I think they have their place, when taken as a part of a complete review that includes tasting notes and background information. But then I finally thumbed through the February issue of Wine Spectator and came upon some disturbing scores. It’s not often that I see many New York wines listed, even in the back. But this was their "ratings roundup" so there were quite a few. Some scary numbers: Yellow Tail 2003 Reserve Shiraz: 88 Bedell Cellars 2001 Reserve Merlot: 87 Wolffer Estate Vineyards 2001 Estate…

Wine Blogging Wednesday #19 Announced — When In Rhone…

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Du you Rhone? Whether you do or not, join food and wine bloggers the world over with the latest vintage of Wine Blogging Wednesday, hosted by Jathan, founder of the newly re-designed Winexpression.com. For this, the 19th edition of WBW, Jathan has asked us to focus on the wines of the Rhone, specifically the intricate blends (unless you can find a rare varietal bottling). It looks like I’m going to have to leave my local New York wines for this one…but that’s half the fun. More than half really. His annoucement provides a lot of excellent information with links to…

Sulfites and Additives — Join the Discussion

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A discussion of sulfites and American vs. European winemakers seems to be underway here on LENNDEVOURS. One of my contributing columnists, Richard posted The Urban Legend of Sulfites a week or so ago and my other contributor, Charles, has chimed in with his feelings. What do you think? One of my favorite things about wine is the discussions (and sometimes arguments) that erupt from my love of it. Join in the fun and be heard.

To Score, or not to score…that is the question

As if often the case, there is a lively discussion over at Vinography right now about wine reviews and whether or not we, as wine writers/critics, should use point scales or grading systems. Check it out and scroll through the comments to see my current thoughts. This is a topic I’ve often wrestled with…mostly because no one has been able to convince me that one way or the other is the be-all-end all. What do you think?

Bring on the Steel — The Chardonnay Shift is On

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Heavy, over-manipulated chardonnay is one of the wine community’s least appealing members, at least in the eyes, and palate, of this wine lover. Wine geeks often label these wines “flabby” but I compare drinking them to sucking on a butter-slathered two by four. And, despite what some sales-minded winemakers will tell you, pairing these wines with food is a crapshoot at best. Of course, chardonnay is a key chameleon variety, with a seemingly endless array of styles. On one end you have crisp, fruity, acidic chardonnay — those that don’t spend any time in oak barrels during or after the…

WTN: Channing Daughters Winery 2005 Scuttlehole Chardonnay

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Crisp, clean and refreshing, this is a wine for those of you who think you hate chardonnay. Fermented 100% in steel tanks, you won’t find any overbearing, heavy-handed oak influence. No…what you get is ripe apple and pear, fresh citrus and hints of minerals on the finish. This is what chardonnay actually tastes like — and it’s delicious. (This "Vintage of the Week" appeared in the Long Island Press)

Watch Out Bay-Area Bloggers…

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…it looks like I’ll be invading San Francisco in late June for part of Usability Week 2006. Assuming my day job doesn’t cut the training budget, they are sending their content manager (that’s me) out your way for a few days. And, I’ve graciously volunteered to stay an extra couple of days if it saves the company on my flights. I probably won’t know the details of my stay until April, but I hope to "bump into" as many of you as I can. Now I just need to figure out the best way to pack up a bunch of…

WBW #18 Round-Up Published

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TWell, by my count 34 of you took part in Wine Blogging Wednesday #18 Wine Shops That Feel the Love, hosted by Dr. Vino. This was a great theme idea and I’m glad we had such a great turn out. The good doctor has posted the round-up, so let’s all take a look, feel the love and thank him for hosting this time ’round. I’ve hit a slight snag for March’s edition of the event (the blogger scheduled to host has gone missing it seems) but I think I have a backup plan that will work just fine. Stay tuned…