? Texas winemakers in Washington: They’ll be featured at Texas at the Smithsonian, part of the 2008 Smithsonian Folklife Festival aty the end of June and the beginning of July. Among those participating will be Wine Curmudgeon favorite Kim McPherson of McPherson Cellars in Lubbock, Texas wine pioneers Ed and Susan Auler of Fall Creek Vineyards, master sommelier Guy Stout, and a couple of up and comers, Justin Wiggins of Kiepersol Estates in Tyler and Jason Englert of Grape Creek Vineyards in Fredericksburg. If you’re in the D.C. area, check out the schedule. It should be worth a visit.
? James Beard wine winners: The Beard awards are food and wine’s version of the Oscars, and it’s a big deal to win one. This year, Eleven Madison Park in New York won the restaurant award, while importer Terry Theise won for outstanding wine and spirits professional.
? Pour another riesling: Wine insiders have insisted for a couple of years that riesling is the next big thing, and they may have some numbers to bear their forecast out. Riesling was the fastest-growing white varietal and second-fastest growing of all varietals, behind pinot noir, according to 2007 AC Nielsen data. Sales of riesling have increased 54 percent over the past three years. It still isn’t popular as chardonnay, which has more than 20 percent of the market in terms of dollar sales.