نوشیدنی

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نوشیدنی

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CHAPTER 21

WINE

IN THIS CHAPTER I TALK ABOUT HOW TECH BRINGS NEW VOICES INTO OLD INDUSTRIES, I MAKE SOME WINE RECOMMENDATIONS, AND I TELL YOU WHAT TO DRINK WITH KIMCHI.

You didn’t think I could write this whole book and not mention wine, did you? In this one man’s point of view, what has happened to wine in the last half decade since I stopped being as intimately involved with it is nothing short of transformative. So many fun things have happened. Wine has grown to become a standard in American culture. Rosé has finally established itself in the United States. That makes me smile quite a bit. People are trying lots of different wines. That makes me smile, too. But the thing that really makes me smile is how many new voices have emerged. I have enormous respect for Robert Parker and Wine Spectator, the two powerful voices that dominated the industry long before I entered the field and throughout my early wine career. They were monumental and served a real purpose for their time. Yet what a great evolution to see how many new voices have been able to emerge because of social media and tech. New apps where people can leave reviews, blogs, hundreds of thousands of pieces of content put out by bright new personalities in the wine community, especially on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, and Pinterest. It’s been inspiring and exciting to be able to learn from so many different perspectives in addition to incredible thought leaders like Jancis Robinson, Wine Spectator, and many others. As in all other sectors that provoke passion in so many, we’re living in a time where we have access to better debates and more original stories, which I think allows consumers to enjoy a richer exploration of a beverage and cultural touchstone that’s been around since the beginning of time and will be around when most of us are gone.

imageWhat wine bar or restaurant would you recommend to a first-time visitor to New York City?

Any establishment that has been smart enough to get on my reservations app, Resy. (JK.) Gotham Bar and Grill, Rosemary’s, Minetta Tavern, Toro, Estela, Scarpetta, Carbone, Marea, Charlie Bird, and Balthazar, among others, are all great choices. I’m also a huge fan of a wine bar called Terroir.

imageTea, coffee, or wine?

The answer these days is water, but in my heart it’s wine, then tea, then coffee. And root beer, too.

imageWhat wine goes with kimchi?

We Eastern European immigrants are big on pickled foods, too. High-acid whites would be good, or oily thicker whites. So I’d recommend a Falanghina, which is a white wine from Italy, or from the United States a Santa Barbara Roussanne or Viognier. There is also a wine we produced exclusively for Wine Library called The Neighbor 2013 Sauvignon Blanc, which is super-creamy for a Sauv Blanc, and if it’s still around by the time this book comes out you should find it and try it!

imageOn Fridays we drink wine. What’s a good drinking-home-alone-bottle-to-yourself wine?

I’m a big white wine fan and I’m obsessed with Italian whites, non–Pinot Grigio. Look for things like Fiano, Soave, Greco de Tufo, and other white varietals from Italy that a lot of people don’t know about and don’t recognize the quality of. For 8–22 bucks you can get an enormous array of tremendous high-acid wines that still go great with cheese if you get hungry. Some suggestions: 2012 Bertolani Spergalino Secco Colli Di Scandiano Di Canossa Frizzante

2013 Girotondo Chardonnay Delle Venezi

2012 Mesa Giunco Vermentino

2014 Costa Alessandro Roero Arneis

imageWhen someone gives you a horrible glass of wine, how do you politely get rid of it?

I made a big effort to be the anti-snob of the wine world and my mom raised me right so it’s natural for me to be polite. I guess my way of politely saying your stuff is crap would be to suggest that if you like this (swill) you might consider trying this other wine (that is not swill). Sometimes people don’t know what’s good because they haven’t been exposed to anything better.

Actually, I like trying the occasional glass of bad wine because it makes me appreciate the good stuff so much more. And the same could be said for times when I’m asked to judge someone’s content or social media presence on #AskGaryVee. Often it’s crap, and yet it’s my job to point out how it could be better without tearing an entrepreneur or marketer down so viciously, he or she never wants to try again. And seeing the crap makes me appreciate it that much more when I see others executing their social media strategy and content well. Because producing quality, whether wine or webinars, takes major commitment and effort. And I respect that.

imageIs the high-end wine business a complete hoax?

Wine is as much of a hoax as art, high-end restaurants, stock prices, or movie stars. Are movie stars really worth all those millions? Well, does everyone have their talent? Probably not. And when they draw audiences to the movie theater, they’re supporting an entire creative industry that puts thousands of people to work. Am I worth the money I get paid to do speaking engagements? I used to wonder, but now I know the answer is yes, because my time and expertise is valuable. If people didn’t get anything out of my talks no one would be willing to pay my fee. But people do because from their perspective, I’m worth it. The same goes for wine. I wouldn’t expect someone who is satisfied with a $10 bottle of Cupcake to believe a Château Latour is worth the $800 or even the thousands of dollars it goes for in the right vintage. But for someone who appreciates what goes into the creation of a spectacular vintage, or even the story behind it, and will savor it, that money might be well spent.

The reality is that so long as you haven’t experienced the difference between something high end and low end, it’s hard to see what the big deal is. But in most cases, all it takes is one ride in first class, or one game in the front row of a stadium, or one sip of a Châteauneuf-du-Pape, and you’ll wonder how you ever doubted its value.

imageWhat’s your favorite city in the world to drink wine?

Wherever my friends and family are. I’d be just as happy drinking wine in Newark as in an Austin hotel lobby, or the parking lot outside a Jets game, or inside a cave in a Tuscan winery. My happiness is always about the who, not the where.

imageHow do you tell the difference between all the wines in the store?

Buying wine based on a label crushes my soul, as does buying based on the shelf talkers (although Wine Library puts them up because they sell wine). The best way to buy wine is to form a relationship with your local wine seller and help them get to know your palate. If you can’t do that, try a different varietal every time and see what you like best. When you haven’t tried something you can’t judge it. Once you have, you form an opinion and you can start making better decisions.

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