Thursday, August 20, 2015

"You see, in this world there are three kinds of wineries, my friend . . ."

"The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly."

Just kidding - that's a takeoff on Clint Eastwood's line to Eli Wallach at the end of Sergio Leone's marinara masterpiece, and while a loaded (squirt)gun can be useful when confronted with an obnoxious wine writer, digging pomace is killing work.

Pardon me: that train of thought derailed before it left the station!  I'll start over.
The three kinds of wineries are:
"The Authentic, the Vanity, and the Corporate."
(There will be no pseudoscientific Venn diagrams here to tell you that the categories partially overlap - I just did.  Other types of wineries we will ignore: e.g. Hopeless Amateur Vinegar Works.)

The Authentic Winery's owner and winemaker are often the same person;  if not, the owner knows how to do some parts of the winemaker's job, not just lying to wine writers.  If there is a pristine copy of a book on biodynamic wine somewhere on the property, perhaps hovering in midair or buried in a compost pile of unicorn dung, there is also a much-worn copy of Professor Emile Peynaud's textbook in office or lab.  The wines are at least palatable, in proportion to the achievable quality in the region and the experience level of the Authentiste, and for the purposes of authenticity it matters not if the winery is in a garage in Bordeaux or a cement monolith on the edge of Death Valley.  I withhold judgement on the winery in downtown Chicago, and no, I did not make that up.

The next blog post will discuss Vanity wineries, which are a lot funnier.  Stay tuned!

Band practice

Band practice