Bordeaux in trouble

Bordeaux has been a funny financial beast the past decade. With wealthy buyers around the world increasing (looking at you, China), the price per bottle bottle of Bordeaux went through the roof in the ought’s. Even throughout The Great Recession, people called for the bubble to burst, but it seemingly continued to grow. But perhaps it’s not a burst we’ve been waiting for. Maybe it’s more of a slow leak.

CNBC published an article this week stating that Bordeaux market “…is down a full 33 percent from its peak.” It seems the focus has shifted from Bordeaux to Burgundy. I don’t’ hear any young people talking about buying Bordeaux. It’s all about finding new, interesting, off the beaten path bottles. I have no doubt attention will return to Bordeaux in the future, but the market is clearly tired of these wines and their prices. When they come back down to earth, maybe Bordeaux will be a nouveau-hipster wine. A real retro purchase in five to ten years.

Vintner’s entire crop missing from vines

Been a while since I’ve posted, so let’s get back into this with some news, shall we? September and October are big months for harvest in the Northern Hemisphere. It’s normally a splendid time of year, so long as the weather holds in your favor – nobody wants grapes plump with rainwater right at harvest. For once French vintner however, it would have been nice to even have grapes. It seems that another winemaker goofed and picked the wrong vines. There’s a phone call I’d rather not make.

SOMM documentary

A new wine documentary was released this week, called SOMM. Available on iTunes, the film follows four aspiring Master Sommeliers, the highest possible certification for that position. As the documentary shows, the study process for the nearly-impossible exam (pass rate: around 5%) is unbelievably grueling. But no doubt everyone will enjoy the wine descriptors they use (e.g. granny purse, cut garden hose). Whether you like wine or not, the documentary is really well done, and you find yourself really feeling for each of them by the end. Anyone who has ever taken a really serious exam or certification test will feel the tension all over again when it’s on the line at the end of the film. Check out the trailer below. Cheers!

Friday winedown news

Just a few interesting articles I came across today that I thought you might enjoy…

The Drinks Business brings you their “Top 10 weird wine ingredients.” I should note: the egg whites truly isn’t a weird ingredient for wine. At the end of the wine making process, many wines have egg white (I believe it’s in powder form) added to them to further fine out any remaining particles that would make the wine cloudy. This can be done in other ways too, but egg whites are the classic.

The New York Times reports on the Oxford vs. Cambridge wine tasting competition rivalry. This seems like a really cool – and seriously competitive – event that I would love to be in the audience for. I’d rather be on the team, but still. Audience will do.

The Wall Street Journal’s Will Lyons chats you up about “A New Taste for Old World Sauvignon Blanc.”

Another WSJ article on a giant annual burgundy wine party in NYC thrown by Daniel Johnnes, the wine director for Daniel Boulud.

Lastly, one more WSJ article (hey, they had a lot today) on something a little different – the pickleback! I’m ashamed to say I haven’t yet tried one. As a friend pointed out, perhaps the best line of this entire article is, “To best experience the pickleback, he says, it should be made with ‘as rough a whiskey as possible.'” How can you not like that?

Cheers.