wine terroir

As Emphasis on Wine Terroir Increases, Winemakers in Napa Turn to Larger Barrels

Since the introduction of cement vats in the 19th century, wine critics have fiercely debated whether wine is best aged in cement or wood. Since cement does not appear to affect a wine’s flavor, many experts believe that a wine’s natural, terroir-based qualities can only be expressed through cement aging. However, proponents of oak barreling…

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California grenache

Despite Low Yields, California Grenache Is Ready for a Renaissance

Today, California Grenache is among the most sought-after varietals in the region, but this was not always the case. California winegrowers turned away from this traditional Rhone crop in the mid-1900s, believing that Grenache would never attract premium collectors who wanted the rarest wines. As Napa Valley developed its premium reputation, commercialized Grenache lost favor;…

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liv-ex

What Can Collectors Learn from the Liv-ex? Interpreting the Liv-ex Classification of 2015

The London International Vintners Exchange (Liv-ex) can teach collectors a great deal about the 1855 Classification, including what these old classifications mean in the modern wine market. As Liv-ex released its latest update in September, we find patterns in the organization’s findings that tell us more about the market value of top Bordeaux blends, and…

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new zealand wines

New Zealand Wines: Searching for the Next Great New Zealand Terroir

  More than 20 years ago, serious wine collectors never spoke about New Zealand wines. Despite an ideal climate and rocky terrain, the country’s producers only began cultivating grapevines in earnest in the late 1980s. Today, wine is New Zealand’s largest export, earning more than $1.3 billion annually. The popularity of New Zealand wines has…

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minerality in wine

Earthiness and Minerality in Wine: How Does Terroir Affect Mineral Flavors?

In my experience tasting Chablis wines, one tasting note consistently shines through: flint. The limestone-rich soil in this terroir is sprinkled with fossilized oyster shells that allegedly add minerality to its flavors. While scientists have found that mineral flavors certainly exist in wines, they are still unsure why this minerality is present. In multiple studies,…

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wine lockers

The Myth of Self-Storage Wine Lockers: Why Self-Service Storage Isn’t the Best Choice for Cellaring Wine

Many wine collectors are turning to “do-it-yourself” self-service wine locker facilities as a supposedly cheap way to invest in wine. These are often viewed as the most cost effective way to store your wine collection. What collectors fail to take into consideration are three often-ignored reasons that self-service facilities typically end up costing far more…

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Napa Valley terroir

Napa Wines Move toward Classification: Is the Area Creating a Napa Valley Terroir-Specific Cru Classé of Its Own?

The 1939 Treasure Island World’s Fair marked the birth of Napa Valley wine tours as we know them. Under Beringer’s direction, my great uncle enticed movie stars like Clark Gable to visit the then-unknown Napa Valley wine scene for the first time shortly after Prohibition ended. Hollywood soon became enamored with the tiny, premium wineries…

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