The Wine Curmudgeon on Blog Talk Radio

This is last Sunday ?s Art of Living with Olivia Wilder; I ?m on for the first 30 or 40 minutes. We talked about local wine, good cheap wine, and the debut of Palate Press and my wine nutrition label story. We also offered wine suggestions for a woman in the chat room who wanted to start drinking red wine.

Winecast 11: Matt Cain of Yellow + Blue

Matt Cain of Yellow + Blue The Yellow + Blue boxed wines ? malbec, torrontes and rose — have been some of the best cheap wines to come on the market in the past 18 months. And Yellow + Blue founder Matt Cain tell us why: ?There ?s not necessarily a direct connection between cost and quality. ?

Needless to say, Cain is the Wine Curmudgeon ?s kind of guy. We talked about his wines, as well as boxed and organic wines in general; what ?s next for Yellow + Blue (sauvignon blanc from Chile); trends in the wine business; and his days working with the legendary Kermit Lynch. And there ?s a great explanation about how bulk wine is shipped into the U.S. and why that harms quality.

The podcast is about 15 minutes and 14 megabytes. The sound quality is good, and it ?s even in stereo. You can download or stream the podcast here.

Screwcaps — again — on Internet radio

I made my third appearance on Olivia Wilder ?s New Art of Living program Sunday. I ?m the third guest, about 70 minutes in. We chatted about wine for warm weather, how to tell if a wine is sweet, and couldn't avoid screwcaps again. I'm also told the audience was at an all-time high. Click on the The New Art of Living link below to listen.

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Winecast 10: Texas wine trends

My pal John Bratcher and Alfonso Cevola, the Italian wine guy, joined me for a discussion about what ?s new and interesting in Texas wine. (The podcast was originally recorded for Advocate magazines in Dallas, where I do the wine writing.) And, it turns out, quite a bit is new and interesting, including a number of wineries in Dallas – ? urban wineries, no less — that do quality work. The podcast is about 15 megabytes and 16 minutes. To download or stream it, click here.

Winecast 9: Joel Peterson, Ravenswood Winery


Joel Peterson is one of the pioneers of modern zinfandel in California, starting Ravenswood in in 1976 with 327 cases. He did it so well, in fact, that the best zinfandel producers in California were known as the three R ?s ? Ravenswood, Rosenblum and Ridge. In 2001, Constellation Brands bought Ravenswood, and Peterson remained to run the winery for the multi-national.

We talked about Peterson ?s start in the business, and about zinfandel and its reputation (or lack of same). Peterson also offered some sage wine advice. To stream or download the podcast, click here. It ?s about 10 minutes and 9 megabytes long.

Winecast 8: Eric Renaud, Bern’s Steak House

image Eric Renaud is a breath of fresh air in the restaurant wine business. Renaud, in this late 30s, is the passionate, intelligent and customer-focused senior sommelier at the legendary Bern's Steak House in Tampa, Fla. Bern ?s is renowned for its wine list, which has 6,800 different selections and more than one-half million bottles. Frankly, if more restaurants took Renaud's approach, they'd sell more wine and make more money doing it ? and wine drinkers would be better off.

We chatted during a break in judging at the 34th annual International Eastern Wine Competition in Watkins Glen, N.Y. Renaud, as he says, is an example that anyone can learn about wine. He started at Bern's lugging cases and bringing bottles up from the cellar. This perspective has taught him to give customers what they want, and not what he wants to sell them; to help them find value on a restaurant list; and to treat wine as something to be appreciated ? and not something to be intimidated by.

The stream or download the podcast, click here. It's about 9 megabytes and 10 minutes long. You ?ll even hear some wine judging and glass tinkling going on in the background.