Winebits 261: Joe Pollack, Texas wine, most powerful women

? College scholarship: The St. Louis Media History Foundation has established a college scholarship in honor of Joe Pollack, who died earlier this year. Joe was not only a great wine writer, but a fine human being who was a huge supporter of what we did with DrinkLocalWine. He could also tell a story with the best of them, and I missed that this year. I can hear him analyzing everything that happened, whether the presidential election or Robert Parker. Contributions to the scholarship fund are tax-deductible; contact the foundation for donation information.

? Best Texas wines: Two of the state ?s best critics have published their top 2012 wines, and there are some impressive efforts on both lists. What struck me about Jessica Dupuy at Texas Monthly's selections was the breadth ? not just the same old names. Russ Kane at Vintage Texas had red and white posts; Russ does love his tempranillo (which I note because I never thought it would amount to anything in Texas, and I was quite wrong).

? Most powerful women: The Drinks Business trade magazine, based in Britain, shows why it may be the most insightful liquor trade in the world with this top 50 list. It includes two Americans in the top three, neither of whom has initials after their names or has anything to do with Bordeaux, which are usually the only types who make these lists. Gina Gallo is No .1 because her family ?s company, E&J Gallo, ?sold 75 million cases of wine last year, up 7 percent on 2010, dwarfing second place Concha y Toro ?s 29.7 million. ? In third was Costco ?s Annette Alvarez-Peters, one ?of the most powerful wine buyers in the world, responsible for influencing hundreds of thousands of consumer palates. ?