Wednesday, February 20, 2008

The Week in Alcohol

He declined to discuss how little he settled for Massachusetts wine collector Russell H Frye, a litigant at the center of the notorious "Jefferson Bottles" lawsuit, has settled his suit against California's The Wine Library out of court. In related news, two movies about the case are currently in development; while the man at the center of the storm, Hardy Rodenstock, hangs out at his castle and giggles

That's kind of shameless for a start Wine commentator Jancis Robinson has started a "name and shame" campaign on her website, devoted to exposing wine producers who for arcane delusions of prestige, irresponsibly sell their wines in overly heavy (and environmentally insulting) bottles. Unfortunately, to either name a bottle or shame a winemaker, you have to be a subscriber to the pay portion (the so-called 'purple pages') of her site, at a cost of 99 Euros per annum. In related news, Southern France is suffering a glass bottle shortage

Miller found out that Britney was adding alcohol to hers after she'd opened it
Several US Attourneys-General are demanding an inquiry into SABMiller Plc's Miller Brewing, whose "Sparks" alcoholic energy drinks contain double the amount of caffeine allowed under Federal regulations, and 17% more alcohol than stated on the label

Wait 'till they find out what they were fried in The food standards committee of the Muslim Council of Britain has called for an investigation of several snack-food manufacturers for using trace amounts of alcohol as a flavoring agent in their potato chips

Another reason to use screw caps A Surrey, BC man has been sentenced to 9 years in prison in Australia for smuggling two kilos of cocaine into the country. The drug was found dissolved in three 1.5 liter bottles of wine in the convicted man's luggage. Customs agents were possibly tipped off by the fact that the bottles were all a bargain BC brand, but were being brought in from Hong Kong. (Or the idea that nobody brings crummy Chardonnay to Australia and gets away with it)

Thursday, February 14, 2008

The Week in Alcohol

Good bloodlines Paris Hilton's weedy little brother, the ominously named 18 year-old Barron Hilton, was arrested this week for DUI. He registered almost double the legal limit on the breathalyser test, was found to be carrying a fake California drivers license, and was carrying a female passenger who had sideswiped a Ford Ranger earlier in the evening. The Hilton family declined to post bail.

But they have not yet banned the Fois Gras dispensers from the washrooms
France has banned sales of wine, beer and spirits at gas stations. In a related story, a French court has upheld a lower court's ban on alcohol advertising on the internet in France.

Of course, he was only 7 1/2 times over the limit for Manitobans In Bosnia, a driver pulled over for zig-zagging blew 0.6 on a shocked police officer's breathalyser, which is both 20 times the Bosnian legal limit of .03, and well past the point where he should have slipped into a coma.

That's 'subtropical' as in backwoods Louisiana, right? According to Russia's National Alcohol Association president Pavel Shapkin, sales of bootleg alcohol in Russia last year dropped 14% from almost half of total consumption to a mere 28%. "Our country is shifting from a temperate pattern of beverage consumption to that of a subtropical way of life."

Taking them out of the gas stations forced them to raise prices Alain-Dominique Perrin, CEO of the Richemont Group (which owns Cartier, Van Cleef & Arpels, Montblanc, Piaget and Dunhill, among other concerns), described high en primeur prices anticipated for the 2007 Bordeaux first growths as "immoral". Perrin noted that prices for top Bordeaux are generally 8000% above what it cost to produce them, whereas the standard markup in the luxury trade is closer to 1700%.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

A shameless plug for the Bill James of B.C. wine gurus, Larry Arnold---whose Blog for Spinnaker's Spirit Merchants has finally gone more-or-less live. We look forward to regular abuse and sermonizing from the ol' sage, and wish him the best of luck---or if he can't find that, a good ghostwriter. Good luck Larry!