Last week, leading California wine educator Deborah Parker Wong — and the new editor for the Slow Wine Guide to the Wines of North America — talked to me on Zoom about the guide and how she and her team of editors are putting the 2021 edition together even as they face the challenges of the pandemic era.
See the video of our Zoom chat below.
Deborah, above, served as a senior editor for the guide for the 2020 and 2019 editions (you can download a free e-book version of the 2020 guide here). And this year, as the new coordinating editor, she’s also overseeing an expansion of the book to include Washington and New York states.
It seems like a lifetime ago that my friend Giancarlo Gariglio, the guide’s editor-in-chief, asked me to help him launch a U.S. version. It was one of the most rewarding experiences in my career as a wine writer and I couldn’t be more happy that Deborah, one of the best technical tasters I’ve ever worked with and a true California wine insider, has stepped up to lead the team of contributors in these challenging times. Slow Wine USA couldn’t be in better hands.
Of course, Deborah and I weren’t going to waste an opportunity to taste some great wine together. Thanks to the generosity of the folks at Scarpa in Monferrato (for whom I do media consulting), we each had a bottle of Scarpa 2013 to taste. It was a thrill to get to open that bottle — however virtually — with one of my favorite people in the wine world.
What a wonderful wine, from a fantastic vintage!
Tracie and I paired it with her homemade focaccia (a Parzen family favorite) that night for dinner. Deborah checked in later in the day and said she poured with a salmon and spinach frittata. The wine, a current release, is showing beautifully right now.