Archive | The inside scoop

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Judging wines at the Minnesota State Fair

The day begins early, which is almost always a glorious summer morning with birds singing and an absence of mosquitoes.  The yellow jackets have not yet found the trash cans, the animal barns smell of animals rather than their manure, the deep fried food vendor’s clothes are still tidy, and most noticeably attitudes are always […]

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Getting into the wine business

It’s the question I field more often than most. “How do I get into the wine business?” There is no simple answer, but let’s talk about this for just a bit. The wine business is not unlike other industries: more often than not, it’s who you know. This can be a daunting thing if you’re […]

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Drink Oregon Pinot for a good cause

OK, let’s see. Seriously worthy cause? Check. A bunch of awesome wines? Major check. Sublime setting? Check. Bocce ball? But of course. The Stars of Oregon breast-cancer benefit almost looks like a too-good-to-be true deal, especially since it costs a pittance. But it’s for real, and a real deal. For $20, you can sample 85 […]

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Marquette Grapes, a Coming of Age Story

Minnesota vintners have had a tough row to hoe over the years, especially if the row contained red grapes. Some of the hybrids crafted decades ago by Elmer Swenson made some passable wine. But the same U of M outfit that created the Honeycrisp apple has not had as much success with red grapes. Frontenac, […]

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