Food and Wine

July 4, Ashbrook Style

Featured image So I’m team-teaching an intensive (six hours a day in the classroom, which is one reason posts are erratic this week) course on the Cold War this week at the Ashbrook Center at Ashland University.  But all is not spies and beatdowns on the Soviet Union.  Here’s how we roll at the Ashbrook Center (at least at last night’s warm-up party at Roger Beckett’s well-stocked house): Stephen Tootle (College of »

Up in my Grill

Featured image In addition to observing our civic obligation to meditate on the Declaration of Independence, it’s also a prime day to celebrate the Great American Barbecue.  And just in time, our pal Remy Munasifi is out with a brief video (just over a minute long) observance of how the government is out to screw that up too: »

Fine Whining

Featured image A reader of my suggested LGBT wine blends a while ago points to a provocation by our friends over at Riccochet.com about wine criticism and wine rating in general, the point of which is that wine tasting is “all hooey.”  (Actually Riccochet cleaned up the original material, which was predictably bovine in origin.)  Wine experts disagree and often contradict themselves (unlike other experts?); the point-scale rating system is clearly subjective; »

A New Wine for Our Times

Featured image As I mentioned here once before, the fad in California wines for more than a decade now has been the heavy emphasis on what I call MSG wines.  No, that’s not a designation of something to order in your favorite Chinese restaurant; rather, it refers to Rhone-style blends featuring Mourvedre-Syrah-Grenache.   Many of these blends are knockouts, and adjusting the blend allows winemakers to bob and weave depending on the weather »

Viognier Does Not Rhyme with Wagner

Featured image And thank goodness it doesn’t.  Time for our monthly installment from the Paso Wine Guy, this month extolling the virtue of Viognier.  I heartily approve.  Can’t get enough good Viognier.  Just picked up the new 2012 Viognier from Denner Vineyards, but it needs a couple more months in the bottle before it’s ready to drink.  So I’ll be thirsty for a couple of months I guess. Anyway, here it is, »

Climate: Perfect for Whining, as Usual

Featured image Ben Boychuk of City Journal California (and the fine InfiniteMonkeys blog) has been after me for a while to write for its pages now that I’ve been foolish enough to move back to the less-than-golden state, but I’ve been too busy to oblige.  But when he pointed me to the latest nonsense from the climate capos about how California’s wine industry was imperiled, I had to swing into action.  The result »

Powerline’s Monthly Wine Update

Featured image It’s the first week of the month, which can only mean one thing: a new short video from the Paso Wine Guy!  (See below.)  This time, about the old mainstay of California winemaking, Cabernet Sauvingon. Meanwhile, the Puffington Host has a feature out today on the Paso wine region, though it is a bit odd in places.  For instance, there’s the claim that Paso is less than three hours from »

It’s March, So It Must Mean Zinfandel

Featured image March means the Zinfandel festival on the central coast next weekend, though I’ll be away, and in any case I’m cutting back right now in my effort to shed a few el-bees.  But with the turn of the calendar it’s also time for the latest installment from the Paso Wine Guy; here’s 45 seconds of total oenophilic awesomeness about Zinfandel: »

Who Reads Power Line?

Featured image Michael and Ellie Sheldon of Seattle, Washington, that’s who.  Michael and Ellie are the proprietors of Xmedia Communications, a marketing firm (check ‘em out), found themselves on vacation down here in my neck of the woods, and asked for some winery recommendations.  Better idea: I’ll show them a few.  An excuse for a winery trip for me!  (As if I ever need much of an excuse to do that.)  The »

Thoughts on Eating Horse

Featured image If you follow the British press, you are aware that the second-biggest scandal in Great Britain, after the ongoing horror of the National Health Service, is the discovery that for years, suppliers of various food products have been substituting horse meat for beef. The horse meat frequently originated in Poland, but recent investigations have found horse meat that originates in Britain itself and has been masquerading as beef. English beefeaters »

In Politics, as in Wine, Keep the Fancy Rhone-Style Under Control

Featured image No, I don’t mean “Rhone-style” here as an oblique reference to France.  Bear with me a moment.  Scott’s post two months back (“Hey”) on how Republicans need to study, match or exceed the superb technical skill the Obama campaign showed this year is well-taken.  Last week I was privy to a presentation by the Obama’s campaign’s director of digital operations in California, Vance Hickin.  Now, you may well be wondering, »

Does This Government Make Me Look Fat?

Featured image As a person who, like Scott, has occasionally flirted with joining the minority group known as “Hefto-Americans,” I tend to follow news about obesity and nutrition.  And like Scott, I’ve become a huge fan of Gary Taubes—though a little less “huge” than I was a few years ago because of Taubes’s advice. But the news reported in the New York Times the other day that overweight people might actually have »

Gas Prices and a Saturday W(h)ine

Featured image Okay, so gas prices are seriously harshing my mellow for this Saturday’s wine excursion, as the first photo here attests. Plus, the recent heat wave has sped up the fall harvest.  Here’s the haul of cab grapes this morning at Calcareous Vineyards: Plus a few more thoughts to get you through the day: Now, what shall I serve with tonight’s wine: beef or lamb? And finally, this important safety tip: »

Because It’s The Weekend, Time for Some Oenophilia

Featured image And because it’s getting close to the fall wine grape harvest, and the fall releases are ready to be snapped up, I think I know what I’ll be doing this afternoon.  Where shall I stop in first?  Here, here, or here?  I’ve got wine reserved at all three places.  In the meantime,   Power Line needs to keep up its oenophilic imagery: »

Grill a Burger, Go to Jail–The Video Sequel

Featured image With my post earlier in the week about how environmental regulators have designs on grilled burgers, I thought perhaps the best way to end the week was with a totally transgressive meal of grilled red meat and decanted red wine (I mean, what would Michelle and the climate campaigners say?), accompanied by a background Beat beat (you’ll see).  So, here it is–from Power Line Films, a 2 minute preview of »

Brief Time Out For a Wine Update

Featured image My pal the Paso Wine Guy is out with a new video last week (only 2:44 long, but definitely worth it): »

California Dreaming, Chapter 3

Featured image For this installment I take time out from observing California’s socialist-utopian dysfunctionality to observe a few of those “exploitable asymmetries” mentioned previously that make it possible for California to get away with so much of its nonsense.  The other day a pod of whales frolicked on the water just offshore from me, and I managed to catch a great blues act, Rod Piazza and the Mighty Flyers, at one of »