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We Raise a Glass to Dave Pickerell. RIP

We Raise a Glass to Dave Pickerell. RIP
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We were shocked and saddened to learn of the sudden passing of Master Distiller Dave Pickerell on November 1. A West Point graduate, Dave was one of the most knowledgeable individuals in the spirits industry and an ardent voice for American Whiskey. Dave was the master distiller at Maker’s Mark for 14 years before leaving in 2008 to become a sought-after consultant. Following his tenure at Marker’s Mark, Dave helped launch Whistle Pig in Vermont and consulted for other brands including Hillrock in upstate New York and George Washington’s Mount Vernon Distillery in Virginia. Dave was touring to promote Blackened, […]

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Sipping with Matías Cruzat, Winemaker, Viña San Pedro

Sipping with Matías Cruzat, Winemaker, Viña San Pedro
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We recently had the pleasure of sitting down with Matías Cruzat, the young winemaker turning heads and impressing palates at Viña San Pedro, which was founded in 1985 by the Correa Albano brothers who brought grape varieties from Chile to Spain. One of the largest and oldest exporters of Chilean wines, Viña San Pedro’s main winery is in Molina in the Curicó Valley south of Santiago where it has one of the largest stretches of vineyards in that country at 1,200 hectares.  Viña San Pedro also has vineyards throughout Chile including: Elqui, Casablanca. San Antonio-Leyda, Maipo, Cachapoal, Maule and Bio-Bio. […]

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Michel Rolland Embraces Malbec in Argentina

Michel Rolland Embraces Malbec in Argentina
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Michel Rolland has been called “The Flying Winemaker.” The Bordeaux-based oenologist consults for more than 80 estates and in 13 countries around the world. When he’s not boarding planes to another far-flung wine region, you may find him riding a horse surveying his vineyards in Argentina. Rolland is a partner with four Bordeaux familiars in Clos de los Siete, seven estates located on 2000 acres in Argentina’s Uco Valley  Mendoza at the foothills of the Andes. Here, temperatures vary widely from day to night which helps produce wines with high tannins and concentrated color. The pebble and clay soils help […]

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Celebrating a 30-Year Collaboration and Friendship

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September 27: Alain Dominique Perrin, owner of Chateau Lagrézette hosted a dinner at Le Bernardin to celebrate his 30-year collaboration with oenologist, Michel Rolland. It was an evening of  toasts between friends. Recalls Michel, “In 1988, after a brief telephone conversation with Alain Dominique Perrin, then President of Cartier, I went to Château Lagrézette in Cahors. We drove through the vineyards in a convertible car – one that had belonged to Brigitte Bardot. That was classy! The vineyards were less so… the vigor of the vines suggested an over abundant harvest. Alain told me then: “I do not have a cellar; my […]

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Everything is Coming Up Vermentino in Sardegna

Everything is Coming Up Vermentino in Sardegna
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The wisp of a fresh sea breeze and the soft scent of wildflowers and Mediterranean brush remind me of a recent trip to Sardegna just before summer crowds of tourists flooded the island and just in time to taste some newly released wines. My trip was an immersion experience to learn about Vermentino, a light-skinned white grape that produces vibrant citrusy high-acid wines that make you salivate for a plate of fresh shellfish or just-caught, lightly grilled branzino with fresh herbs. Vermentino is also cultivated in Corsica, where it’s called Vermentinu and in parts of Languedoc-Roussillon, where it’s called Rolle. […]

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What Would Julia Say?

What Would Julia Say?
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I’m a bit clumsy in the kitchen and have a habit of making a big mess. David just shrugs his shoulders and grabs my knife to save my fingers. But when I’m really inspired, I put my hands together, look upward and ask, “What would Julia say?” Will I ever be a good cook or just better at making reservations?” “This is my invariable advice to people: Learn how to cook – try new recipes, learn from your mistakes, be fearless, and above all have fun!” ― Julia Child, My Life in France “The only real stumbling block is fear of failure. In […]

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Playing with Fire!

Playing with Fire!
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We Came. We Saw. We Ate & Drank. A damp day and mud on our shoes didn’t stop us from heading to Fish & Game Farm in Hudson, NY Zak Pelaccio’s “Play with Fire” outdoor feast and music fest. Presented with Resy and Ketel One Vodka, this event combined open-fire cooking from visiting chefs, live music from an amazing band called Club d’Elf, badass Ketel One cocktails by Elad Zvi (Broken Shaker) and Yana Volfson (ATLA and Cosme) and some terrific natural wines from  Critical Mass Selections, Goatboy Selections, Zev Rovine Selection, Fifi Imports and Rosenthal Wines. This event benefited […]

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America’s Top 100 Wine Restaurants

America's Top 100 Wine Restaurants
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Wine Enthusiast magazine has revealed its “100 Best Wine Restaurants.” Susan Kostrzewa, Executive Editor, joins us on The Connected Table Live! to discuss what goes into selecting the list and her approach to driving content for both the online and print editions of the magazine. Meanwhile, in the same issue (August) we enjoyed the profiles of four “pioneers” who are making wines in areas where most people have no idea wine is even being made, and it is time to take notice! They include Chris Brundrett, William Chris Vineyards (Hye Texas); Charlie Edson, Bel Lago Vineyards & Winery (Cedar, MI); […]

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Meet Neal Bodenheimer and Meaghan Frank- The Connected Table Live!

Meet Neal Bodenheimer and Meaghan Frank- The Connected Table Live!
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Temperance at Tales of the Cocktail Stress management, yoga and wellness activities are all on the menu for this year’s Tales of the Cocktail, July 17- 22 in New Orleans. As the collective consciousness about mental and physical health,  responsibility to each other and to the community and the #MeToo movement continue to drive the conversation, Tales of the Cocktail has introduced some significant initiatives. They include: Beyond the Bar: free interactive programming designed to address mental health and physical wellness and its impact on the spirits community. Activities include: Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) meetings; yoga and movement classes; health screenings; and discussions surrounding healthy lifestyles, nutrition, addiction, […]

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A Little Joie de Vivre with Jean-Charles Boisset

A Little Joie de Vivre with Jean-Charles Boisset
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Does Jean-Charles Boisset have a James Bond complex? Perhaps. He definitely blends dapper and debonair in his style and businessman-meets-bon vivant. The descendent of Burgundy wine producers, Jean-Charles oversees the family business on two continents. In France this encompasses: Jean-Claude Boisset Winery, Domaine de la Vougeraie, Bouchard Aîné & Fils, Ropiteau Frères, J. Moreau & Fils, Château de Pierreux, Mommessin (all Burgundy), Bonpas (Rhône Valley) and Fortant (Languedoc).   In the U.S.A., Jean-Charles acquired Buena Vista Winery (Carneros) the first bonded winery in California, Raymond Vineyards and De Loach Vineyards. And he’s created the lifestyle “brand,” JCB by Jean-Charles Boisset.  The Boisset Collection also includes […]

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