American Wine Blog Award winners – and other blogs you should read

The votes have been tallied, added to the jury’s vote (70% popular vote, 30% jury), and the results are now official. The winners for the 2009 American Wine Blog Awards have been announced.

Nice bunch of blogs in that list: Vinography (twice, and a winner for two yars in a row), Lenndevours, The Good Grape, The Wine Collector, Michel Schlumberger’s Benchland Blog, and Bigger Than Your Head, a blog I discovered as a finalist in the 2008 AWBA. 

Congratulations to all, and happy blogging for many years to come.

While I’m at it, though, (more…)

Poetry in a bottle, and all the hard work that goes into it

Opening a bottle, pouring yourself a glass, sensing the complex aromas and flavors, the velvety texture: that’s the pleasure of wine.

But to get there, it’s good to remember just how much hard work has been put in by everyone that’s hard at work in the vineyards and cellars. As Wayne Young writes on the Bastianich Winery blog:

There’s  romantic misconception about the harvest… Grape Picking. Most people imagine lovely ladies in sun-dresses happily carrying their wicker baskets of beautiful fruit through the vineyards…

I would rather spend 8 hours in the cellar working with tanks and pumps and hoses, than 4 hours picking grapes. It’s messy, buggy, sticky, hot, nasty work.

Wayne has been doing a great job giving a sense of what harvest is all about, by describing everything from the equipment and how it’s used to fermentation, grape varieties, the method of drying grapes by appassimento, wasp attacks and the quick onset of a storm, just as fresh grapes are waiting to be brought into the winery. In other words, (more…)