Fraud In The Wine Business

August 25, 2014

The finale of a high-profile wine-fraud along with a review of the Barkan Assemblage Tzafit 2010 and a look at Irish Whiskies including a review of Tullamore D.E.W. Irish Whiskey.

A few weeks ago, wine fraudster Rudy Kurnaiwan was sentenced to 10 years in prison and fined $20 million, according to The New York Times. The court also required him to pay more than $24 million in restitution to the victims of his elaborate wine forgery scheme. Once his prison sentence has been completed, Kurnaiwan will also be deported to his native Indonesia. All things considered, this seems a fair verdict to us.

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Wish List For Chanukah Gifts

November 25, 2013

Some suggestions for wine and spirits related holiday gifts.

With the beginning of Chanukah falling on Thanksgiving, many folks will be focused on the traditional turkey-centric meal and related Thanksgiving aspects of the day. But it is good to remember that Chanukah is not only the more important of the two holidays, it also lasts longer — far longer than any Thanksgiving leftovers. So a little more thought and contemplation are required. With this in mind, relevant to a column on wines and distilled spirits, it seems worthwhile to discuss some great booze related gifts.

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Better Than Chanukah Gelt

December 6, 2012

Four Gates Winery

Our Chanukah wish list including some kosher wines and a bunch of the great spirits we’ve recently enjoyed.

Chanukah gift-giving is really just an American transmogrification mimicking Xmas of the actual Jewish custom of giving Chanukah gelt (money). Still, we have nonetheless given in to modern convention and have compiled a list of a few things that we wouldn’t mind being given.

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From Italy’s Piedmont To The Scottish Highlands

September 14, 2011

Glenlivet 18

A review of Bartenura Dolcetto D’Alba Ovadia Estates 2010, the Glenlivet 18 year old Single Malt Scotch Whisky and the Jameson 18 year old Limited Reserve Irish Whiskey.

There’s more to Italian wines than just Chianti and Soave. In actuality, Italian varieties range from bone dry to enticingly sweet, and they are produced in nearly every corner of the country. While many are fine for sipping anytime, most are best appreciated with food, especially cuisine from the same region as the winery. Northern Italy’s Piedmont region is best known for its Barbaresco and Barolo offerings, which are created from the Nebbiolo grape. Both are big, powerful wines that need several years of aging to achieve their potential. In contrast, Dolcetto is a fruit-forward, low acidity wine that is very food-friendly and is meant to be enjoyed young. Produced within several areas in Piedmont, the best originate in D’Alba.

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Merlot Finally Gets Its Due

August 24, 2011

Jameson Irish Whiskey

A review of the Herzog Special Reserve Merlot 2006and the Jameson 12 year old, the Bushmill’s Original and the Kilbeggan Irish Whiskies.

Merlot is no longer the unwanted stepchild of the wine world. The previous lack of respect did not stem from anything inherent to the varietal. Rather, it was an offshoot of overplanting in response to increasing demand, resulting in a multitude of characterless wines. Thankfully, the grape has been rescued by conscientious winemakers who have resisted over-commercialization, and instead carefully crafted some delicious merlots.

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