Brunello vote, a different perspective, and some blogs I’ve been reading

Above: this photo of me and Gianfranco Soldera of Casse Basse appears in this month’s issue of The Tasting Panel Click the image to read my piece, “The Sun Also Rises, a dispatch from Montalcino” (photo by Ben Shapiro). The sun also rises in Montalcino…

My relief to read that Brunello producers had voted to “let Brunello be Brunello” last week was tempered when I read an editorial post authored by my friend and colleague Franco Ziliani, who pointed out — rightly — that among the “overwhelming majority” who voted not to change the appellation, there were also the same producers who, just days earlier, were calling for a more flexible appellation and “tolerance” for grapes other than Sangiovese.

“With this hypocritical vote,” wrote Franco, “I truly fear that Brunello di Montalcino will continue to have problems. A battle has been won, no doubt, but I fear that the war — even if it is an underground guerrilla war — will continue. Good luck, dear Brunello, I believe you will continue to need it desperately!”

Read my translation of his post at VinoWire.

Some other blogs I’ve been reading…

I’ve always been a fan of Eric’s blog and I really admire how he weaves literature and music into his posts. He and I are both fans of the Camilleri novels and our musical tastes are pretty much in tune, as well. I really liked this recent post on novelist Hillerman and Montepulciano d’Abruzzo (I also liked Eric’s excellent notes in the paper of record on his Montepulciano d’Abruzzo tasting).

Susannah is relatively new to the world of Italian wine blogging and I’m glad to see another Italocentric wine blogger jump into the mix. I really like her “Women in Wine” posts. Not enough attention is given to women winemakers in Italy, a country still plagued by chauvinism.

People often ask me why I blog and a lot of folks are curious as to why I do it when it doesn’t pay. Blogging has been one of the most rewarding experiences in my entire life, professionally and personally. As obsessively as I may check my blog stats (although probably considerably less than Strappo), the blog has enriched my life far beyond the immediate narcissistic reward. It is a medium for seeing the world that has transformed my life in truly wondrous ways that I never could have imagined. I really liked this post on wine blogging by Alder, a blogger whom I admire immensely for his work ethic, integrity, and palate. His sound advice should be required reading for any budding wine blogger.

Lastly but not least, proceed with caution: “Priming Stemware = Foreplay” by Benoit over at Anti Yelp.

7 thoughts on “Brunello vote, a different perspective, and some blogs I’ve been reading

  1. Thanks for the plug buddy. Look forward to this weekend when y’all gonna be at the JG. That “B” is two syllables by the way.

  2. Ciao, Jeremy:
    that’s a terrific translation of Franco Zilliani’s post… Understanding the difficulty of seeing the depth of emotion in something this personal, I feel as though Zilliani himself were reading it to me..
    It’s a difficult conundrum the Brunellese find themselves in.
    Perhaps Strappo was right.. there will be some who continue to blend in other varietals, and for them there should be another DOC (although that’s why Super-Tuscans were invented).
    Also a fine reference to Alder’s thoughtful post.
    come al solito, i migliori auguri.
    dave..

  3. Benoit, I will see you tomorrow night and we will discuss vintages for Barolo and Brunello. There’s two Bs in Barolo and Brunello, btw… what music are you going to cue up for Tracie B’s first visit to the JG???!!!

    Dave, thanks for the kind words. Franco is hard to translate but I think it’s important for his voice to be heard among English-speaking lovers of Italian wine. I have to confess to some poetic license in my translation, however. I translated “voto bulgaro” as “landslide vote.” A “voto bulgaro” or “Bulgarian vote” refers (I believe) to a pre-Soviet-era practice of holding “yay/nay” voting whereby a chorus of yays would drown out any naysayers. If anybody has any information on this expression, please share it…

  4. Nice to be invoked. A pleasure, I’m sure.

    FYI, I check my stats less obsessively than I used to. They’re shitty now anyway. I need to write more political screeds, I guess. But I have other things to worry about.

    Give my regards to Tejas.

  5. hey dr j, nice to see you the other evening. just wanted to mention that at the last of the wine club meetings we had (verticals of Oddero Barolo 78, 67, 64, Marchesi di Barolo 64, 61, 55, Prunotto 85 Barolo Bussia 1.5L, hey! what could i do!? it was my turn to host!). as a surprise one guest brought a Soldera 85. It was simply spectacular! It was a wine I was unfamiliar with, what a pleasant surprise. Keep your butt moving, and your glass full.

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