Category:Wine Curmudgeon

Get the Wine Curmudgeon’s new weekly blog post recap

wine curmdugeon

How can anyone not want to get the WC’s new weekly email roundup?

Now you can catch up on the blog over the weekend with one visit to your inbox — for free

Didn’t have time to read all of the Wine Curmudgeon’s award-winning blog posts during the week? Want to double-check my cheap wine finds? Missed my edgy wit? Want to see me in a hat? Or just want to catch up on the blog over the weekend?

Then subscribe to the Wine Curmudgeon’s new weekly roundup, which highlights each day’s blog post and arrives in your email box on Saturday evening. And, of course, it’s free. Just click this link, and tick the weekly roundup box on the page that comes up. Best yet, you can still subscribe to the daily emails. Talk about best of both worlds!

A tip of the WC’s fedora to Dave Crawford, who navigated the rocky shoals of the third-party newsletter service to make this work.

Wine Curmudgeon blog ranked 29th among Internet wine sites

Internet wine sites

The WC is No. 29 — suck on that, premiumization.

British retailer’s top 101 Internet wine sites list says WC can really pound that keyboard

The Wine Curmudgeon blog is ranked 29th among wine sites on the Internet, according to a survey by a British wine retailer. Yes, I know there are many ways to interpret that, and most aren’t printable here.

But given all that has happened to the blog over the past 18 months, including declining visitor counts, less love than ever from our overlords at Google, and the increasing difficulty in finding cheap wine worth drinking, it’s worth mentioning that our cause is still making an impression in the cyber-ether.

Hence, the details about Corking Wines’ Top 101 Wine Writers of 2020. There I am, at No. 29, between Great British Wine and The Wine Stalker, and just two spots behind the Indian Sommelier. But I’m also two spots ahead of The Wine Ninjas, so that’s something.

Jonathan Doubtfire, a marketing executive for Corking Wines, an on-line wine retailer in York, emailed that the rankings are based on “a number of factors. … We started off using a tool that estimates traffic, readership levels, etc. Then the wider team got involved and we reviewed each site on the shortlist, in order to establish the final order on there.”

Using site numbers is typical for these kinds of lists, which usually include various social media metrics (and yes, one has to use the word “metrics” when one writes a sentence like that). Given that I haven’t used social media in almost a decade, I suppose my performance is that much more impressive. And the selectors liked one of my wine tariff posts, which is surprising since it’s not traditional wine writing, but consumer journalism. Which, of course, is about as anti-wine writing as possible.

The sites on the list are most of the usual suspects, though it’s more international than this list (where I am merely No. 44). Also shocking: No Wine Spectator or VinePair, which are usually among the top handful of sites on most lists. But Jancis Robinson (No. 4) and Wine Folly (No. 1) are ranked here, and those are more or less the same kinds of sites as the Spectator and VinePair.

Does this ranking mean anything? Hopefully. Maybe it means there is still an audience for quality cheap wine, despite all of the indications otherwise. Because there are days when I have my doubts.

But if I did this for awards or rankings, I would have quit long ago. I do this because I love wine and want others to know they can enjoy it without deep pockets or wine foolishness. It’s about professionalism and writing for the people who come to the site, and not to impress anyone in the wine business with how smart or wonderful I am. Because how will that help anyone learn to love wine?

Meet Churro, the new Wine Curmudgeon blog associate editor

Churro

Churro, left, and the Wine Curmudgeon want the blog to reach even more young consumers.

Churro, the new member of the Wine Curmudgeon blog, will help the WC extend his cheap wine mantra to younger consumers

Churro, an 11-month-old Chihuahua mix, has joined the blog as an associate editor. He’ll help Wine Curmudgeon Jeff Siegel in his continual quest to convince younger consumers that wine can be cheap and fun.

“Everyone knows that that the wine business doesn’t understand young people,” says Siegel, proprietor of the world-famous Wine Curmudgeon blog. “Now, with a younger voice and palate — as well as a keen sense to help me sniff out new and exciting wines — the blog will appeal even more to young people. Churro and I will be able to show them that wine is a lot more fun than hard seltzer, and not just something for their parents and grandparents.”

Churro, from suburban Dallas, was among the dozen or so applicants for the job, and was easily the most qualified. “He’s really the only one I talked to who thought wine should be fun and not be about winespeak or scores or initials after your name,” says Siegel.

“I can’t tell you what an honor it will be to work with someone who cares about wine as much as the Wine Curmudgeon does,” says Churro. “He wants to help people enjoy wine as much as he enjoys it, and that’s something that’s rare to find in the wine business these days. Mostly they want to sell you overpriced wine and don’t care about much else.”

No word yet on whether Churro will wear a hat. He did say he was excited to use an Asus eee netbook running Lubuntu to write and edit for the blog, since he says Linux as the future of the computing world.

Join the Wine Curmudgeon for a virtual Happy Hour tonight

virtual tasting

“Damn. Who knew a WC virtual tasting would be this popular?”

The WC will taste two great cheap wines, take questions, and maybe even go off on a rant or two

Blog readers spoke, and the Wine Curmudgeon made it work – with lots and lots of help from my friends at the American Wine Society. Hence, a virtual happy Hour at 7 p.m. EDT tonight. Best yet, everyone is welcome, even if you’re not a member of the AWS.

So what will we taste? Cheap wine, of course – one of the blog’s favorite roses, the La Vieille Ferme, as well as one of the best cheap pinot noirs out there, from the always top-notch McManis family.

Don’t have those? Not to worry – drink what’s on hand, and we can visit anyway. I’ll talk about why I do what I do and why cheap wine is important, discuss the two wines, offer a few thoughts about wine during the duration, and perhaps go off on a rant or two. Plus, of course, take questions. Click this link to join the fun; the AWS uses Zoom for their events.

Join the Wine Curmudgeon for a virtual Happy Hour on June 11

virtual tasting

“Damn. Who knew a WC virtual tasting would be this popular?”

The WC will taste two great cheap wines, take questions, and maybe even go off on a rant or two

Blog readers spoke, and the Wine Curmudgeon made it work – with lots and lots of help from my friends at the American Wine Society. Hence, a virtual happy Hour at 7 p.m. EDT on June 11. Best yet, everyone is welcome, even if you’re not a member of the AWS.

So what will we taste? Cheap wine, of course – one of the blog’s favorite roses, the La Vieille Ferme, as well as one of the best cheap pinot noirs out there, from the always top-notch McManis family.

Don’t have those? Not to worry – drink what’s on hand, and we can visit anyway. I’ll talk about why I do what I do and why cheap wine is important, discuss the two wines, offer a few thoughts about wine during the duration, and perhaps go off on a rant or two. Plus, of course, take questions.

Click this link to join the fun; the AWS uses Zoom for their events. I’m part of an impressive group doing this for the AWS that includes Marnie Old of California’s Boisset Collection; Chris Pearmund of Virginia’s Pearmund Wine Cellars; and Meaghan Frank of New York’s Dr. Frank’s Vinifera Wine Cellars.

And a tip o’ the WC’s fedora to AWS executive director Dave Falchek for putting this thing together and asking me to participate. Few people are as passionate about showing Americans how much fun wine is than Dave.

The sixth do-it-yourself wine review

do-it-yourself wine review

I’m really going to have to practice if I ever hope to write as well as this.

The blog’s sixth annual do-it-yourself wine review — what better way to enjoy the duration than to poke fun at wine?

Technology keeps threatening to make wine reviews obsolete, but that doesn’t mean we can’t still revel in the snobbish gibberish that has made them infamous. Hence, the blog’s sixth annual do-it-yourself wine review.

So write your own wine review, using the drop-down menus in this post. Just click the menu and choose your favorite line. Those of you who get the blog via email may have to go to the website — click here to do so.

As always, thanks to Al Yellon, since I stole the idea from him. This year, the format is a little different — reviews of four wines. A special tip of the WC’s fedora to those who contributed classic lines.

This French red blend:

This California cabernet sauvignon:

This Italian Prosecco:

This $50 rose:

More do-it-yourself wine reviews:
The fifth do-it-yourself wine review
The fourth do-it-yourself wine review
The third do-it-yourself wine review

60 days in: Your favorite WC posts during the duration

favorite

No doubt more of us would wear masks if we all looked this stylish.

You’re looking for wine advice, crappy wine TV ads, and Barefoot wine (still)

Blog traffic has evened out since the coronavirus pandemic hit the U.S., and we’re back to more or less normal daily numbers. The intriguing thing? Traffic was approaching holiday season levels for the first couple of weeks of April. I’m guessing people wanted to find quality cheap wine to stock up on, and what better place to find those wines than here?

Cue GIF of WC patting himself on the back.

The good news is that the pandemic outlook seems to be better. But that doesn’t mean we should be any less careful.  So stay home unless you need to go out (and no, the mall food court isn’t a necessity), wash your hands, and keep out of sneezing range when you go to the supermarket.

Your favorite posts during past 60 days:

Ask the WC 1: I figured out why this seven-year-old post has been so popular — cava recommendations. You wanted to stock up on good, cheap bubbly, and why not?

• The Kim Crawford TV ad: I’m not the only who dislikes it, and that dislike has been shared by increasing numbers of visitors.

Residual sugar in wine: Note to wine business: Wine drinkers want to know how sweet you’re making their wine. So why not be honest with us?

Changes in the three-tier system after the pandemic: How do I know this post has made an impact? Because I lost a dozen or so email subscriptions in the couple of days after it ran, always a sure sign I annoyed someone.

• Barefoot wine, three times: Because Google. In those deep, dark nights when I grow despondent about the future of wine, I think about the time and effort I put into the blog, and that it doesn’t matter because Google sends people to these three posts. And then I get even more despondent.

The wine bottle workout: Because Google, again. This was a bit of humor that no one paid much attention to when it ran almost three years ago. But if you’re stuck at home and start searching for “workout,” I guess it shows up.

The Grocery Outlet cheap wine story: Note to wine business: We want to find retailers who sell quality cheap wine. So make some for them to sell.

The Mafia winery story: Just wish there was a way to update this, short of repeating denials from the winery’s corporate headquarters.

What’s missing? The do-it-yourself “Wine during the duration” post. It’s pretty damn funny.

Photo (and mask): Lynne Kleinpeter, using a Creative Commons license