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Category Archives: Podcasts

Winecast 21: Dave Falchek, Empty Bottles blog

Dave FalchekIf wine had more writers like Dave Falchek, more people would drink wine. He wants to make wine easier for consumers and he doesn’t suffer foolish wines or their producers – and he does this writing in Pennsylvania, which has some of most restrictive liquor laws in the country and where availability is often a joke.

Dave’s advice for wine drinkers: First, if you don’t like a wine, it doesn’t mean your taste buds are broken. Second, you’re not supposed to like a wine just because someone else does.

We talked about those things, as well as Dave’s work with the American Wine Society, which aims to make wine drinking easier; the state of regional wine, which Dave has supported since he started writing about wine; and whether Pennsylvania will eventually reform its antiquated liquor laws. Click here to download or stream the podcast, which is about 11 minutes long and takes up 10.8 megabytes

Winecast 20: Don Brady, Robert Hall Winery

don-bradyDon Brady, the winemaker at Paso Robles’ Robert Hall Winery, is something of a legend in Texas. He worked for three of the state’s best-known producers before going to California, where he has become one of the best winemakers there.

Brady is also, for some reason, not as well known as he should be. His wines not only offer value – the $10 rose, the $15 sauvignon blanc, and the $15 Rhone de Robles red blend are revelations in a world of over-priced, cute label plonk – but they reflect the terroir of his part of Paso Robles without concern for scores or ratings.  Perhaps the highest compliment I can pay: I once voted to give his 14 1/2 percent, oaked viogner a gold medal, and regular visitors know how I feel about high alcohol, over-oaked wine.

We talked about Don’s start in Texas, his approach to winemaking, and how he manages to make such wonderful wines. Click here to download or stream the podcast, which is about 19 minutes long and takes up 18 1/2 megabytes. One caveat: Skype didn’t cooperate the way it usually does, and there is a hum in certain parts of the recording.

Winecast 19: Tim McNally, The Wine Show

TimMcNally2Tim McNally hosts a wine radio show, writes extensively about wine, and judges some of the most important wine competitions in the world. In other words, he knows more than most of us about the wine business — and is more than happy to share. Or, as Tim says about our tendency to drink specific wines because we're told they're good: "If wine doesn't give you great pleasure, then don't drink it."

Tim and I talked about wine intimidation and how to overcome it, the changes in the wine business and especially in the quality of cheap wine, and he even called me out once or twice. Can't get a better guest than that.

Click here to download or stream the podcast, which is about 14 1/2 minutes long and takes up 13 megabytes.

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