My pal Dave McIntyre, the wine writer at the Washington Post, got a surprisingly nasty email from a reader. Why, asked the email, is Dave wasting the reader's time writing about Virginia wines, which no one is interested in, which cost too much, and which stink? And, by the way, Dave should stop pandering to Virginia wine producers and recommend French wines for people to drink.
On the other hand, I was talking to a wine drinker at a French wine event in Dallas last night (ironically enough). Ralph Lewerenz is a huge advocate of Texas wine, and he has the knowledge and wherewithal to drink just about any wine he wants. "It would be outrageous not to drink Texas wines," he told me. Yes, some of them aren't very good, Ralph said, but a lot of them are. Best yet, when Ralph travels, he tries regional wines. I almost hugged him in the middle of the event.
I feel sorry for Dave's emailer. Wine is supposed to be fun, which Lewernez understands. It's about exploration and discovery. How alienated from the joy of wine must someone be who sends nasty emails to a wine writer trying to helping them have fun?