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Cul de Cuvée: 03 September 2022
A bluntly-curated selection of absolutely random recent bits from around the wine and drink world served up “mostly fresh” for your enjoyment.
Hello there and welcome back from summer! You know, that thing that's basically not winter as it appears we don't have spring and fall anymore. Those two seasons were so totally boring anyways, great to be rid of them!
Of course you don't need to tell anyone with a vineyard that summer is here as once again, they're out there, since the start of August, in the middle of the night, with the mobile phones and whatever, picking in the dark... again. Surely The North Face will be releasing their official "Picker's Headlamp" any day now or the "Picker's Poncho" for the insane storms that happen in between the insane heat.
From the Department of OMFG, you'll never believe that the "beer-themed amusement park" set to open in Napa Valley and reported upon back in July was... no way, yes... a publicity stunt! This is why beer companies shouldn't be allowed on social media, public spaces, or anywhere with common decency because they're just so totally "edgy" as all their black sheep marketing people claim them to be.
Are you tired of drinking all the wines every night? Well there's great news for you in that it appears smaller glasses will reduce your wine drinking overall. As it would turn out, in a parallel, non-blind, but very fun study by my crack team of in-house booze mice, we managed to discover that larger bottles can in fact stop the wine from running out--official paper pending peer review.
We bring report of that classic situation wherein the police stop you and you tell them, "Why no, that's just Tempranillo back there." We would like to however warn you that the Fuzz is on to you and know damned well that you padded your mad stacks of Rioja with Mary Jane. And just to make matters worse, the Fuzz was on to you before you even woke up. In fact, they've always known, man. It's the chemtrails. Chemtraaaaaails!
If you're now a proud recipient of the gift that keeps on brexiting, do what Daniel Lambert did and move the fuck outta the UK! In order to contend with the headaches of importing wine to the UK, he set up shop in France with basically a duplicate company that just happened to come with the perfect excuse to live in Montpellier.
In the age-old debate of "What did the grapes say to the road?" the answer remains the same, "Splat". This theory of "Unrestrained grapes shall go flying" was yet again proven as now that harvest is in full swing in Petaluma, a pile of grapes from a truck smothered the highway, except very much not in a fun way.
There's little debate that the drought in Western Europe has been tough on the vines with most regions stating there will be a smaller (yet excellent!) crop. But that's just the vines right? They grow in the inhospitable places, no? Sadly, no and the olives are taking a hit as well as other crops. If people were shittin' baguettes about the mustard shortage, just wait...
I've just been handed a very important folder marked, "Well, Holy Shit" and within, it states that International Cabernet Sauvignon Day was on August 30th. This day having passed leaves many questions. Why celebrate this specific variety when it's essentially too hot, too drought-y, and too pool-forward to think about such a bold kind of wine? Also, at the end of August, the grapes are probably 30 months away from being ripe, so what are we actually celebrating? Lastly, being the #1 most planted grape variety in the world, does it really need A Day?
"Est-ce un oiseau? Est-ce Laura Dern? Non, c'est une putain de tornade!" In what is truly one of the most surprising turns of weather events in this time of seriously surprisingly weather events, a goddamned tornado touched down in Châteauneuf-du-Pape and laid waste to the famed La Crau vineyard. The only positive is that while Top Gun and Bennifer can make a comeback, surely disaster movies can't become "a thing" like they were in the 1990s because who wants to watch that shit when there's a freakin' tornado going to town on your vines?
The "Beeb" had a fine account of blacks in Bourbon as in the African-American contributions to the whisky culture in the US. But then it made mention of Ray Walker. Ray... Walker... Why does that name sound familiar? Ah yes, the whole Maison Ilan affair in Bourgogne that left a number of people high and dry. Apparently Walker has now reinvented himself as a Whisky man. If you can't beat 'em, use the EU's "Right to be Forgotten" to rejoin 'em.
In a lighter side of things, a new "Laying Down Champion" has been crowned in Montenegro. Žarko Pejanović stated that his winning move was simply to "not get up" which he continued to do for 60 hours straight. Only in a region like the Adriatic Coast where the fjaka reigns supreme could such a contest be such a commodity. May we wish Žarko the best in his future of being a lazy-ass dude.
Until we meet again in the cul of the cuvée.