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Top Wine Trends for 2014

http://www.wine-searcher.com
Top Wine Trends for 2014

© Fotolia

Tyler Colman polishes his crystal ball and looks ahead to the next 12 months in wine.

 

 

Counterfeiting:

After the excitement of the Rudy Kurniawan trial, will wine counterfeiting diminish in 2014? Michael Egan, a fine-wine expert based in Bordeaux who testified at the trial, notes shifts. “All the recent activity has made the top domaines redouble their efforts to prevent counterfeiting and bolster record keeping.”

He says that the recent activity of the Department of Justice will have a chilling effect, making the U.S. a less likely place of fabrication. China, however, continues as a locus. Thus, to keep the American market as clean as possible, Egan suggests inspections by U.S. Customs on imported wines.

Rising consumption:

Late in 2013, a report from Morgan Stanley analysts in Australia made a bold claim: the world is running short on wine. Although wine industry experts and insiders around the world disputed the claim, the meme gathered steam in the media, and, for a few weeks at least, lots of people who wouldn’t normally talk about wine were discussing the shortage and picking up bottles.

That may have played a part in pushing wine sales higher in the U.S., the world’s largest wine market. If figures show that wine sales increased in 2013, it would be the twentieth consecutive year of increasing per-capita consumption. Indeed, interest in wine remains high, and growing – even economic downturns haven’t derailed the wine train in America.

But threats loom, foremost among them craft beer and cocktails. The rising quality of craft beer, often at a lower price than wine, and the rising interest in mixology and flavored vodkas (cinnabon flavor, anyone?) could peel off marginal wine drinkers. Younger drinkers, though, are ecumenical and often like to sample a variety of drinks.

Super-somms:

A decade ago, critics bestrode the wine world, swirling wines, spitting out points, and moving markets. Today, a placement on a top wine list can be a bigger boost for sales. Sommeliers, particularly in America, are the new influencers. But, with social media, room remains for many voices.

L-R: Patrick Cappiello, sans saber, conducts a wine tasting; La Grange Tiphaine's Damien Delecheneau is on Cappiello's list of up-and-coming producers

© Melissa Hom/La Grange Tiphaine | L-R: Patrick Cappiello, sans saber, conducts a wine tasting; La Grange Tiphaine’s Damien Delecheneau is on Cappiello’s list of up-and-coming producersWider view:

One trend, particularly for restaurants, is a shift away from Champagne toward other bubbles, according to Patrick Cappiello, who presides over New York restaurant Pearl & Ash aka “Sabertown USA.” Frequently found astride the bar, saber in hand, Cappiello decapitates more bottles in a week than most of us will do in a lifetime. He cites such strong interest in “grower Champagne” over the past few years that the wines have become hard to find in the market. “As a result,” he says, “importers and wine buyers will have to look to new or forgotten areas.” Top on his list of such places are the Loire Valley and Northern Italy, including producers La Grange Tiphaine and Ca’ dei Zago.

As with bubblies, rising prices for domaine and estate wines from many established regions will continue the push by consumers and sommeliers to explore new or emerging regions. Beneficiaries of this trend will continue to be New York State riesling, Greek wines, indigenous varieties of Spain and Italy, and wines from central Europe (including, perhaps, Moldova, benefiting from Secretary of State John Kerry’s brief winery visit there in December).

Auctions:

Collectors will continue to broaden their interest in Burgundy, pushing beyond Domaine de la Romanée Conti in 2014. Jamie Pollack, managing director of Zachys Wine Auctions for North America, reports that Domaines Dujac, G. Roumier, Rousseau, and Leroy saw more bidding last year. The auctioneer says that provenance matters because bidders have become “more and more educated in understanding the importance of how the wine has been stored and where it was purchased.” Lots with pristine provenance – particularly those wines sold straight from the producer’s cellar – have fetched impressive premiums this year.

Meet the author, also the publisher:

As the Great Recession wreaked havoc on traditional media and publishing, newspapers and publishers have closed or been sold as journalism seeks a new business model. With its relatively small but educated and affluent readership, self-publishing has proven viable and accepted with books from the likes of Allen Meadows, Neal Martin and Peter Liem in recent years. This trend will continue in 2014. Blogs, newsletters and social media can also be forms of self-publication, needless to say.

Clever use of Twitter boosts everything from books to Beyoncé

© Houghton Mifflin Harcourt/ Especial/Notimex | Clever use of Twitter boosts everything from books to BeyoncéGet Beyonc’d?

Wineries have, on the whole, been reluctant and late adoptors of social media. But 2013 has demonstrated that Twitter sells. Take, for example, Richard Betts’ “scratch and sniff” wine book, which skyrocketed to number 10 on the New York Times bestseller list thanks to promotion on Twitter. Or Beyoncé’s surprise year-end album. The album’s launch was announced via social media on the day it was released and shot to the top of the charts within hours.

Many producers have been all thumbs when it comes to social media but will start putting their digits to better use on their smartphones. Some of that will involve better tracking and engagement on social media; others could implement geolocation such as “geofencing” from VinTank, which helps wineries track the locations of mailing list customers visiting wineries nearby (with their consent).

Red wine, not red tape:

There’s hope that consumers will achieve more unfettered access to wine. In November, a group of representatives of 21 Pacific Rim countries met with an eye to reducing what Robert Koch of California’s Wine Institute called “burdensome and duplicative” regulations; between 1990 and 2012, wine has tripled to $23 billion in the region.

In the U.S., the formation of a group representing wine consumers’ rights, the American Wine Consumer Coalition, augurs well for more voices in the discussion on America’s own complex, burdensome and duplicative regulatory structure.

 

World Music Central Announces Its Best World Music Albums of 2013

 

World Music Central’s music critics and special guests announced today their lists of best world music albums of 2013.

Yvon Ambrosi – akhaba.com (Paris, France)

 

First, we begin with our special guests and colleague Yvon Ambrosi, who lives in Paris. For twelve years, he ran the only retail store in France specializing in World Music. In 2011, he created akhaba.com, the first French World Music online record shop and magazine.

 

This is akhaba.com’s Top Ten for 2013:

 

Omar Sosa – Eggun The Afri-Lectric Experience (Jazz Village, 2013)
Stefano Bollani & Hamilton De Holanda – O Que Sera (ECM, 2013)
Ibrahim MaaloufIllusions (Mi’Ster Prod, 2013)
Kan – Sleeper (Kan Music, 2013)
Yasmine Hamdan – Ya Nass (Crammed, 2013)
Bomba Estéreo – Elegancia Tropical (Soundway, 2012)
Canzoniere Grecanico Salentino – Pizzica Indiavolata (Ponderosa, 2013)
Erik Aliana – Just My Land (Buda Musique, 2013)
The Khoury Project – The Adventures of Prince Ahmed (Institut du Monde Arabe, 2013)
VA – Diablos del Ritmo The Colombian Melting Pot 1960-1985 (Analog Africa, 2013)

 

Tony Hillier – Weekend Australian, Rhythms magazine and World Music Central (Cairns in North Queensland, Australia)

 

Tony Hillier writes for national publications such as the Weekend Australian and Rhythms magazine. He is a regular contributor to World Music Central.

 

Top Ten Albums of The Year

 

1. Joseph Tawadros – Chameleons Of The White Shadow (Universal)

Egyptian-Australian oud master Tawadros and American banjo maestro Bela Flek constitutes a match made in stringed-instrument heaven. Add jazz players of the calibre of Joey DeFrancesco, Roy Ayers, Howard Johnson and Richard Bona, and some great compositions and you have an exceptional album.

 

2. Ry Cooder & Corridos Famosos – Live In San Francisco (Warner)

 

Roots guru Ry Cooder takes a timely trawl through a back catalogue replete with treasures, in a concert recorded in his home city.

 

3. Lau – Race The Loser (Reveal)

 

Superb folk soundscapes from a Scottish trio, whose music map has expanded to encompass judicious electronic elements.

 

Debashish Bhattacharya - Beyond The Ragasphere

Debashish Bhattacharya – Beyond The Ragasphere

4. Debashish Bhattacharya & friends – Beyond The Ragasphere (Riverboat)
5. Richard Thompson – Electric (Proper)
6. Esko Järvelä Epic Male Band (Sibelius Academy Folk Music Recordings)
7. Bassekou Kouyate – Jama Ko (Out Here)
8. Fabian Holland – Fabian Holland (Rooksmere)
9. Guy Clark – My Favorite Picture Of You (Dualtone)
10. Kobo Town – Jumbie In The Jukebox (Cumbancha)

Best Compilation

 

Various Artists – Way To Blue: The Songs Of Nick Drake (Navigator)

 

Best Reissue

 

Eliza Carthy – Wayward Daughter (Topic)

 

Tom Orr – World Music Central (California, USA)

 

Tom Orr has been writing album reviews for World Music Central for many years.

 

Lala Njava - Malagasy Blues Song

Lala Njava – Malagasy Blues Song

The Oldians – Downtown Rock
Vieux Farka Toure – Mon Pays
Lala Njava – Malagasy Blues Song
Salaam – Train to Basra and Other Stories
Carmen Sousa – Kachupada
Kobo Town – Jumbie in the Jukebox
Etran Finatawa – The Sahara Sessions
Tito Puente – Quatro: The Definitive Collection
R. Carlos Nakai and Will Clipman – Awakening the Fire
Ted Sirota’s Heavyweight Dub – The Scientist Meets Ted Sirota’s Heavyweight Dub

Rafael Mieses – Músicas del Mundo.com (Tampa, Florida, USA)
Rafael Mieses is a regular album reviewer at our Spanish language world music site Músicas del Mundo.com

 

Roberto Fonseca - Yo

Roberto Fonseca – Yo

1 – Bassekou Kouyate & Ngoni Ba – Jama Ko (Out Here Records)
2 – The Garifuna Collective – Ayó (Cumbancha)
3 – Stefano Bollani & Hamilton de Holanda – O que sera (ECM)
4 – Bombino – Nomad (Nonesuch)
5 – Roberto Fonseca – Yo (Concord)
6 – Africando – Viva Africando (Sterns Africa)
7 – Eliane Elias – I thought about you: A tribute to Chet Baker (Concord)
8 – Maria Marquez – Tonada (Adventure Music)
9 – Bobby McFerrin – Spirityouall (Sony Masterworks)
10 – Preservation Hall Jazz Band – That’s it (Sony Legacy)

Angel Romero – World Music Central (Durham, North Carolina, USA)

 

Angel is the managing editor for World Music Central. His list is in alphabetical order.

 

Africando – Viva Africando (Sterns)
Antonio Loureiro – (Borandá)
Anoushka Shankar – Traces Of You (Deutsche Grammophon)
Bassekou Kouyate & Ngoni Ba – Jama Ko (Outhere Records)
Bombino – Nomad (Nonesuch Records)
Budiño – Sotaque (Fol Música)
Clannad – Clannad at Christ Church Cathedral (ARC Music EUCD2441, 2013)

Esko Jarvela Epic Male Band - Esko Jarvela Epic Male Band

Esko Jarvela Epic Male Band – Esko Jarvela Epic Male Band

Debashish Bhattacharya – Beyond The Ragasphere (World Music Network)
Esko Jarvela – Epic Male Band (Sibelius Academy Folk Music Recordings)
Roberto Fonseca – Yo (Montuno Producciones/Concord Jazz)

Best upcoming artist

 

Mor Karbasi – La Tsadika (Gibraltar Production)

 

Guide to Zinfandel Wine


wine folly


 

 

Let’s take a closer look at both red and white Zinfandel wine and learn the secrets to picking out your favorite styles.
white-zinfandel-in-a-glass

Why is White Zinfandel so popular?

 

White Zinfandel is often the very first wine someone tries. Today, close to 85% of the total Zinfandel production is White Zin! As much as wine snobs bash it, White Zinfandel offers everything a beginner might want:

 

 

At $5 a bottle White Zinfandels taste fine, but most lack the complexity to be compared to the red version of the same grape. Red Zinfandel wine can offer serious presence and sophistication.

 


 

Guide to Zinfandel Wine

 

How Red Zinfandel Tastes

 

The primary flavors of Zinfandel are jam, blueberry, black pepper, cherry, plum, boysenberry, cranberry, and licorice. When you taste Zinfandel it often explodes with candied fruitiness followed by spice and often a tobacco-like smoky finish.

 

How Red Zinfandel compares to other red wines

 

How Bold? Zinfandel is lighter in color than both Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. However, although a light-bodied red wine like Pinot Noir, Zin’s moderate tannin and high acidity make it taste bold. Generally speaking, most Zinfandel wines have higher alcohol levels ranging from about 14 – 17% ABV. Higher alcohol adds an oily texture and bigger, bolder body.

 

Did you know? Zinfandel is the only grape in the world with a festival dedicated to it? Find out more about the ZAP Zinfandel Festival

 
Guide to Zinfandel Wine
 

Zinfandel Food Pairing

 

Think curry spice. Since Zinfandel leans on the sweeter side of red wine, it’s a great pairing partner with spiced barbecue dishes and curry. Pro tip: Pick out the spices you taste in the wine and add them to your sauce.

 

Perfect Zinfandel Food Pairing
Pork tonkatsu is a Japanese dish served with a richly spiced curry sauce. The spicing and savory-sweet quality of this dish make it a perfect wine pairing partner with Zinfandel.

 

Katsu Curry Dish is perfect for Zinfandel

Pork Katsu Curry. A Japanese curry spiced dish perfect with Zinfandel. credit

Chicken Icon

 

Meat Pairings

 

Try pairing with lighter meats including Quail, Turkey, Pork, Bacon, Ham and Veal. Zinfandel works well with Barbecue red meats and lamb.

 

Herbs Icon

 

Spices and Herbs

 

Ginger, Garlic, Rosemary, Curry, Turmeric, Cayenne, Clove, Nutmeg, Cinnamon, Vanilla, Cocoa, Black Pepper, Coriander, Fennel, and Saffron.

 

Soft Cheese Icon

 

Cheese Pairings

 

Look for hard and richly flavored cow’s and sheep’s milk cheeses such as Manchego, Bandage-wrapped Cheddar and Trentingrana.

 

Mushroom Icon

 

Vegetables & Vegetarian Fare

 

Use highly flavored vegetables to bring out the fruitiness in Zinfandel such as roasted tomato, red peppers, carmelized onion, roasted squash, apricot, peach, cranberry, spiced apple, and beets.

 


 

3 Tips to Buying Zinfandel Wine

 

Pay attention to ABV
Best trick when buying Zinfandel is to check the Alcohol by Volume (ABV). A lighter Zinfandel will have about 13.5% ABV whereas a bold and spicy Zinfandel will have around 16% ABV.
Who makes the best Zinfandel?
There are several sub-regions in California that make great Zinfandel. Currently, the most popular are Napa Valley, Dry Creek Valley (in Sonoma), Russian River Valley (in Sonoma) and Lodi.
Hot Tip! High Elevation
Look for Zinfandels from high elevation areas (such as Howell Mountain or El Dorado County). High elevation Zinfandels tend to have more savory intensity and richness.

 

Red Zinfandel (Primitivo) Wine Characteristics

 

FRUIT FLAVORS (berries, fruit, citrus)
Raspberry, Black Cherry, Blackberry, Blueberry, Black Currant, Black Plum, Raisin, Fig, Apricot, Cranberry Jam, Jammy/Brambly Fruit
OTHER AROMAS (herb, spice, flower, mineral, earth, other)
Licorice, Star Anise, Smoke, Black Pepper, Black Cardamom

 

Do you like Wine Folly?
OAK FLAVORS (flavors added with oak aging)
Vanilla, Coconut, Nutmeg, Peach Yogurt, Mocha, Burnt Sugar, Coffee, Cinnamon, Clove, Tobacco, Fresh Sawdust
ACIDITY
Medium – Medium High
TANNIN
Medium – Medium High
SERVING TEMPERATURE
“Room Temperature” 62 ºF (17 ºC)
SIMILAR VARIETIES
Grenache, Plavic Mali, Negroamaro, Blaufrankish (aka Lemberger), Sangiovese, Barbera, Counoise
SYNONYMS
Primitivo (Puglia, Italy), Crljenak Kaštelanski (Croatia) and Tribidrag (Croatia), Morellone (Puglia, Italy)
BLENDING
Zinfandel is sometimes blended to make a California red wine with Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Syrah. In Italy, it’s not uncommon to find Primitivo blended with another local Puglia grape called Negroamaro.

 

Zinfandel Regions

 

Only 71,000+ acres of Zinfandel planted worldwide.

 

USA 50,300 acres
Paso Robles, Sonoma (Including Dry Creek and Russian River Valley), Napa Valley, Lodi (Central Valley, Modesto), Amador County (Sierra Foothills, El Dorado County)
Italy 20,000 acres
Puglia

 

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