25.10.08

Wine Bloggers Conference, Day One

I'm walking a (metaphorical) tightrope I might be tempted to literalize at some point: high above the dizzying chasm in attitude between knowing my limits & testing my stamina.
Happy to be in the company of des vrai amateurs du vin: true lovers of wine, quite a few of whom are talented, tenacious, & astute enough to earn their living as some type of oenological industry professional or another. Of course, I'm also still nursing the familiar 'out-of-my-depth' feeling.

The proceedings got under way with an event fairly close to tradition: a lunchtime tasting at Kick Ranch Vineyard, under the gracious hosting of owner couple, Dick Keenan & Kathy McNamara.
Insufficiently caffeinated, my tendency to thoughtful, meditative & conversational tasting limited the number of wines I sampled. Fifteen different wineries source from this farm, where only 40 or so acres from the property's total 100 are cultivated. Out of the top-flight wineries presenting their work, I focused mostly on two small, intensely personal projects: Enkidu Wines, where Phillip Staehle is winemaker-owner, & Renard, Bayard Fox's Rhone-focused winery.

Making our way back to the Flamingo from this setting meant diving headfirst into Wine 2.0 ...tropes? --with winemakers making six minute presentations, table to table, while bloggers shared tasting impresions 'live to the Web'. I posted, somewhat disjointedly, on Twitter. Mike Wangbickler has published a succint & organized write-up on his blog, Caveman Wines.

There was a somewhat tongue-in-cheek blind tasting after this, & I missed my chance to rest & freshen up as soon as I was eliminated. Couldn't quite catch up with the massive selection of wines from New Zealand. Enjoyed dinner. Gary Vaynerchuk's keynote address was fun & awesomely inspiring. From now on, I want-- no, I demand!-- a couple of tablets of multi-Gary washed down with a glass of Vaynerchuk every day. Missed a ride out to 'Pinotblogger' Josh Hermsmeyer's, where an 'afterhours' event featuring wines from New York, both Long Island & the Finger Lakes, was taking place. Yes, I'm a wimp: a wimp, a wallflower, &, as we say in Puerto Rico, a Wally Schneider. Over'n'out.

1 comentari:

artpredator ha dit...

I was drawn to Enkidu as well, the following day when they were part of taste of Sonoma.

Hope to taste and hang out with you again before you head off into the wild blue yonder