? Wine Magazine subscriptions: Wine drinkers who use Cellar Tracker to manage their wine inventory aren ?t subscribing to the Wine Magazines the way they did three years ago. The site, which I use and highly recommend, says 49 percent of its members get the Wine Spectator and 35 percent get the Wine Advocate. This compares to 53 percent and 49 percent in 2006, and it ?s a difference I find quite intriguing. I would have thought that Cellar Tracker users were big-time wine magazine people, if only because they have a lot of wine and make a lot of money. More than half of the respondents said household income was more than $100,000 a year. That so many of them don ?t get a Wine Magazine, assuming the survey is statistically valid, could mean the magazines don ?t have quite the clout they once did.
? Hugel patriarch dies: Though I never met Jean Hugel, I mention his death last week for two reasons. First, to show the continuity in the French wine business, since the Hugel family has been making wine since 1639, and his nephews are the 13th generation to run the winery. Second, because Hugel Gentil is a terrific wine for non-wine drinkers ? a white blend that inexpensive and soft yet interesting. Please take note, New World winemakers,
? Blue Nun makes a comeback: Those of us of a certain age remember this sweetish German white wine, which was quite the rage 30 years ago — ?the white wine that ?s correct with any dish. ? It ?s still around, albeit quite less popular, though its owners have a new plan: bubbly. It will launch a sparkling white wine that contains 22-carat gold flakes in Great Britain this summer.