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Wine Spectator

Wine Spectator December 15, 2020

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Wine Spectator rates over 15,000 wines per year, in every price range, to fit every occasion. Read about the world's great wineries and winemakers and visit restaurants with outstanding wine lists. Plus, each issue features delicious recipes and pairs them with the perfect wines.

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Country:
United States
Language:
English
Publisher:
M Shanken Communications
Frequency:
Monthly
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$39.95
15 Issues

in this issue

2 min.
soft cheeses & sparkling wines

This issue is an epicure’s delight, featuring mouth-watering coverage of two delicious pleasures: soft cheeses and sparkling wines. Soft cheeses are made in many styles. Some are subtle and fresh; think mozzarella or goat cheese. Others are rich, oozing and funky, like Époisses or Munster. Or they can fall in between, creamy and sweet, such as Camembert and Brie. Our cover package highlights six different types of soft cheeses, comparing classic examples from Europe with rising stars from the U.S. Three experts serve as guides: David Gibbons, who contributes the Cheese column to our Grapevine section; Robert Taylor, assistant managing editor of WineSpectator.com and co-author of our recent cover story “Cheese Across America”; and Owen Dugan, Wine Spectator features editor. In these pages, Gibbons, Taylor and Dugan explain how these cheeses are…

3 min.
wine sales grow despite tough times

What are Americans drinking? The U.S. wine market continues to grow, defying predictions of decline. But not all wines are enjoying better times, and this year’s pandemic and economic upheaval are only making things more challenging. The latest report from Impact Databank, a sibling publication of Wine Spectator, shows a complex market, with strong growth from sparkling wines and rosé offsetting slowing table wine sales, particularly for value-priced brands. The U.S. wine market grew again last year, but by a mere 0.1% to 328.9 million cases. According to Impact’s report “The U.S. Wine Market: 2020 Edition,”wine consumption is projected to inch forward 0.2% in 2020 to 329.5 million cases. But the report forecasts consumption will decrease 0.3% by 2025. A variety of long-term factors are at play. Wine has enjoyed strong growth…

3 min.
police uncover fake sassicaia ring

Tenuta San Guido’s Sassicaia is one of the world’s most acclaimed wines, a Bordeaux-style blend that spawned the super Tuscan category. In 2018, Wine Spectator named the 2015 Sassicaia Wine of the Year, the pinnacle of a classic vintage in its native Bolgheri. Which made it odd when Italian police found a case of the wine lying on the side of a road last year. According to the Guardia di Finanza—the enforcement wing of Italy’s Ministry of Economy and Finance—the discovery sparked a lengthy investigation. Prosecutors and police announced on Oct. 14 that they had arrested two suspects in a warehouse near Milan for allegedly forging thousands of bottles of Sassicaia, labeled as vintages from 2010 through 2015 and prepped to be shipped to customers overseas. Several other suspects are being…

2 min.
in memoriam

Ken Evenstad Ken Evenstad, who made his fortune in the pharmaceutical business before building one of Oregon’s most prominent wineries, Domaine Serene, died at his home Oct. 21 after a history of chronic pulmonary issues. He was 77. Oregon’s wine industry was young when Ken and his wife, Grace, arrived 31 years ago, looking for land to plant a vineyard. They settled on a 42-acre property on the southernmost peak of the Dundee Hills. The Evenstads grew the business over the years and today own 1,000 acres, with 300 planted to Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. The couple has been instrumental in promoting Oregon wines outside the Pacific Northwest. They also sparked wine tourism in the region and helped create the Center for Wine Education at nearby Linfield College. “[Ken] dared to trust his…

3 min.
fish & chips with champagne

“I like things that are as difficult as possible,”says Bob Broskey, executive chef of RPM Seafood in Chicago. “I don’t like to be bored.” When the fine seafood restaurant opened in January of this year, he had no idea just how difficult things were about to become—but the same principles that first attracted him to the rigors of upscale dining, and to the delicacy of seafood cooking, have applied to the pandemic too. In a fine-dining kitchen, he explains, there’s really no “normal”to settle into; one can never get too comfortable. “You can’t really rely on what you did yesterday,”he reflects. “Every day, you’ve got to keep pushing forward.” This summer and fall, the restaurant focused on its sprawling 86-seat patio, with sweeping views of the Chicago River and the downtown cityscape,…

4 min.
california merlot’s starring role

The current crop of California Merlot on the market continues an encouraging trend of improved quality and rising respect for this noble Bordeaux variety. The center of the action is Napa Valley, where the warm, dry growing season and variety of terroirs, from the cool Carneros district to steep mountainside vineyards, produce wines in a wide range of styles. “I continue to believe Merlot has a bright future. Given the dynamics of the current economy, I think Merlot offers a great value with a lot of versatility. It can be a serious wine that will lay down for 20 years or one that will pair beautifully now with your favorite food,”says winemaker Renée Ary of Merlot powerhouse Duckhorn Vineyards. Merlot typically features gentler tannins and more opentextured flavors than its viticultural cousin,…