Wine Writers: Livin’ the dream?

By Ross MacDonald for WSJ

Even before I was old enough to drink, I was reading the editorials about wine — primarily in the New York Times.  Maybe I thought I was a step ahead of the gang, and that somehow — having never really tasted more than a sip or two of whatever was in Mom or Dad’s glass — I’d nonetheless get a leg up on becoming a connoisseur.  Yeah right.  Anyone who has ever felt the flush in her cheeks or the skip in her step that comes with good wine might have told me that it takes more than book-smarts to be a Vino.  (No one ever did because I was always too shy to own up to reading about wine when I couldn’t even drink it.)

But one thing I never considered while reading those editorials is something I just realized about a week ago when I came across Lettie Teague’s article in the Wall Street Journal.  Attracted by the patriotic — if stereotypical — banner advertising the two-village region of Pouilly-Fuissé, I dove in. (I have a vested interest in everything from Burgundy, after all.)

Teague’s  main point probably didn’t need too much explanation: among the hit or miss bottles of Pouilly-Fuissé, there are some winners, making this Burgundy White a very affordable luxury (“easily superior to many Burgundies I’d tasted that cost twice as much”) for those who are in-the-know. My realization took more reading between the lines, let’s say.

I’ll put it bluntly: from my perspective, Lettie Teague lives a charmed life.

Now I’ll explain: The whole premise of her article was investigative: “No one seems to care about Pouilly-Fuissé these days…this didn’t seem fair to me…I decided to investigate.”  That’s when I sighed out loud and thought to myself, “I could be paid to investigate whether a certain wine deserves a “second chance!”

Ms. Teague describes overcoming the “obstacle” of finding the wine (since most retailers do not carry it).   After a little research, she still managed to “amass…one bottle at a time” from New York and New Jersey to Washington D.C. and Los Angeles.  (She ended up with two dozen.)  Next was the taste test — but she didn’t have to go that alone.  She had a soiree for the occasion, with a “veritable gang of volunteer tasters” [read friends]. Would you really have to pay wine tasters anyway?   Then she took good notes during the tasting and wrote the article and voila!

Okay, okay, there’s a lot more to it than that.  But I suggest you read the article. If you’re a young aspiring writer, as I am, it might make you dream…and of more than just a bottle or two of Pouilly-Fuissé.

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6 Comments

Filed under Wine, Writing

6 responses to “Wine Writers: Livin’ the dream?

  1. maryanita

    How interesting, you were drawn to learn about vino long before your desire to live in France. Sounds like it was meant to be. Keep writing. Love your blog. Thank you!

  2. smilesinky

    Dearest EITG,

    After reading your post, I propose that you recreate Ms. Teague’s slavish devotion to “investigative intoxication” (dibs on copyright) with a soiree of your own. And, if you are very very persuasive, I may possibly volunteer myself as one of the volunteer tasters. If I must ; )

    Loved your post and will continue to love your blog, I’m sure…so proud of you!

  3. Love your site–and you are living the dream too!

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