Wednesday, January 30, 2008

The Week in Alcohol

But it was when she called him "sugar tits" that he got really pissed off Actress Sean Young entered rehab this week after heckling director Julian Schnabel during a drunken episode at the DGA awards, yelling "hey, get on with it" when the director of The Diving Bell and the Butterfly rambled on aimlessly during his acceptance speech

Those French
Moet and Chandon were fined 30,000 Euros this week, essentially for making their champagne look too attractive in a poster advertisement

Let the pissing match begin Bottle Shock, the first of two movies about the infamous 'Judgment of Paris' winetasting of 1976, was premiered at the Sundance Film Festival. Steven Spurrier, who organized the original tasting and is a backer of Judgment of Paris (a competing movie whose production is currently held up by the screenwriter's strike) has gone on the record as being unimpressed with Alan Rickman's portrayal of him

Alcohol doesn't kill people, bad American comedies aimed at teenagers kill people David Reid, 22, died of alcohol poisoning when he and a friend attempted to recreate a 'last man standing' drinking game they had seen in the teen comedy American Pie. (In a related story, Rehab wannabees copycat celebrity screwups )

Gay customers didn't much like it either In Britain, Marks and Spencer has launched 'Pink Port'; a variation on the renowned Portuguese sweet wine, only lightened in color and aimed at the female consumer. Initial expert reaction has not been favorable

It's from bowing down before all those monster Cabernets
Robert Parker is undergoing back surgery and will likely miss this winter's Bordeaux tastings, thus throwing their futures prices into chaos

Thursday, January 17, 2008

RSVP Tasting: When the boss takes home what he wants

Wine Golan Heights Yarden Cabernet Sauvignon 2003
From Israel
Price 39.64 (BC Liquor Stores)
Alcohol Content 14.5%
The first of the Parker 90’s from his Israeli tasting to make it to our table; wine exhibits a new-world style leaning more towards Chile than, say, Australia. No particular nose on opening; tannic finish. The philosophical taster is impressed by everything but the price: “this is nice and balanced… nothing out of place.” The Boss is less impressed: “there’s a reedyness up front… I’m going to have to think about it…” Which means he’s seen the price too, and isn’t going to think about it much past the next wine.

Wine Estampa Malbec-Syrah 2006
From Chile
Price $13.90 (BC Liquor Stores)
Alcohol Content 14.4%
Emphatic nose draws ohhs and ahhs around the table, with people finding everything from licorice to tobacco in it. The wine shows a palate that’s fairly typical of the blend if not the country of origin; tannins are still a bit green. Much enthusiasm; lead taster is even a little over-the-top: “Incredible---this is delicious.” He puts the cork in the bottle and quietly puts it aside to take home---either the most telling complement of all, or a snapshot of the poor state of his mutual funds.

Wine Quinta da Espiga 2005
From Portugal
Price 12.99 (Spinnakers, BC)
Alcohol Content 12.5%
A peppery nose and black cherry on the palate raises eyebrows all around; lots of enthusiasm---mostly for the price. One taster finds the tannins a bit green on the finish: “there’s a sort of under-ripe banana aftertaste to this.” But for the most part, never is heard a discouraging word; and Fearless Leader puts this one aside to take home as well.

Wine Glorioso Rioja Crianza 2004
From Spain
Price 16.95 (BC Liquor Stores)
Alcohol Content 13.5%
Not your mother’s Rioja, this: sweet fruit and a mild nature lead to shrugs from some tasters; enthusiasm from others. Context says a lot; coming on the heels of the Espiga above, it’s a relative letdown---although not for the boss: “I taste strawberries; there’s good acid and good structure to this.” One more reason to favor Spain in the great scheme of things; one more bottle for him to take home.

Wine Bogle Chenin Blanc 2006
From California
Price $17.99 (BC Liquor Stores)
Alcohol Content 12.5%
A sniff, a sip, and the lead taster draws himself up to his full height: “You can quote me on this,” he says, “this is a fruity little bastard: crisp, tart… I like it a lot”. Noted, dude. Plenty of positive comment from the peanut gallery as well: sweet fruit but a tart, apple finish and decent balance even at room temperature. Pricey, perhaps, considering what you can get in BC already.

Wine Golan Heights Yarden Muscat 2005
From Israel
Price $24.77 (BC Liquor Stores)
Alcohol Content 13.9%
Sweet, aromatic, and terrific: a nose of candied pears; a complex palate with good, sweet Muscat notes; universal acclaim. The philosophical taster tries to sneak this one home and fails, settling for the Yarden Cab as a sort of consolation prize.

Friday, January 11, 2008

The Week in Alcohol

Handing out speeding tickets can drive a man to drink for sure
Northern Ireland Deputy Chief Constable Paul Leighton was criticized for envisioning extenuating circumstances for police officers caught drinking and driving

I guess it was the drunk driving through the carwash with the triple whopper that proved to be too much for them Fulvio Brunetta, president of the wine growers association of the Italian city of Treviso (where Prosecco is made) condemned ads for Rich Prosecco, featuring Paris Hilton

Warning: pregnant French women should not read this newspaper article A Paris county court ruled that an editorial piece in the Le Parisien newspaper entitled 'the triumph of Champagne' could be constituted as advertising, and thus must carry the same health warning that a liquor ad does.

Hey, Adam---you've got company Celebrated California winemaker Adam Tolmach of the Ojai Vinyard admitted that by chasing favorable reviews by Robert Parker, he now makes wines with so much alcohol that he doesn't like to drink them any more

All the a-list celebs were released from the show after serving 10% of their sentence VH1's reality series Celebrity Rehab continues to draw horselaughs and terrible press. In other news, DUI jailbird Michelle Rodriguez is now available if needed

Thursday, January 3, 2008

Happy New Year: The Week in Alcohol

Guess those cork closures are permeable after all The Sovereign General Insurance Company was successfully sued by a Vancouver couple after their $5-10 million wine collection was partly destroyed by a 2003 sewer backup in their cellar. Sovereign General had refused to pay off, claiming that they didn't know of the existence of the wine.

It seems she looked better with her clothes on than he did with his off Former OC star Mischa Barton was charged with possession of drugs, driving under the influence and driving without a valid license in West Hollywood. To add insult to injury, musician ex-boyfriend Cisco Adler was quoted as saying she looked "so hot" in her mugshot.

I guess the judge didn't like her performance in Girlfight Hispanic actress and Lost star Michelle Rodriguez began serving a 180-day sentence after violating terms of probation for a drunken driving conviction. For racial and class conspiracy theorists, that's 108 days, 21 hours and 16 minutes longer than Kiefer Sutherland, Lindsay Lohan, Nicole Ritchie and Paris Hilton's DUI jail time combined. Update: Rodriguez was released after serving 18 days, or 10% of her sentence. So she's luckier than Paris, at least.

Now, if they can just get rid of those brass bands and short pants as well On January 1st, the state of Bavaria passed Germany's most stringent anti-smoking legislation, which will likely make Munich's famed Oktoberfest a non-smoking event.

What did we ever do to deserve this? Robert Parker's The Wine Advocate, in its "first-ever generic tasting of Israeli wines," awarded 14 scores of 90 points or higher, 11 to Kosher wines.