What the closing of La Belle Vie means to MSP wine lovers
  • October 9, 2015

What the closing of La Belle Vie means to MSP wine lovers

Sad day. Very sad. The closing of La Belle Vie came out to the blue. Maybe people on the insider track knew it was coming,…

Finally, a west-coast style wine bar for MSP: Troubadour on Hennepin Avenue
  • August 23, 2015

Finally, a west-coast style wine bar for MSP: Troubadour on Hennepin Avenue

Wine lovers rejoice! After the elimination of the stupid 70/30 law in Minneapolis, the doors have now been opened to having a wine scene more…

The Blind Burgundy Battle results (and some thoughts on blind tasting)
  • March 27, 2015

The Blind Burgundy Battle results (and some thoughts on blind tasting)

Sometimes the unexpected occurs at blind wine tastings, in which the results and commentary you assume will happen are tossed off to the wind and jaws…

Gratitude for a great 2014
  • December 21, 2014

Gratitude for a great 2014

This is always a reflective time of year for me, for getting the books closed on another year with my little wine education business involves…

Spoon and Stable: The Prog Rock of Wine Lists
  • November 22, 2014

Spoon and Stable: The Prog Rock of Wine Lists

Let’s start with Steve Hackett. Who? I doubt if many of you know who he is (and if you do, we should be friends). Steve…

Ordering wine at a restaurant: a modern cheat sheet
  • October 11, 2014

Ordering wine at a restaurant: a modern cheat sheet

It used to be so easy. White wine with fish, red wine with meat. Yes, I’ll have a glass of Merlot and she’ll have a…

The Perfect Getaway: Dining and Wine Deals in Duluth
  • September 22, 2014

The Perfect Getaway: Dining and Wine Deals in Duluth

Here’s the thing: I love eating out. I love supporting honest and true restaurants with chefs that give a damn. But I don’t like how…

An open letter to Minnesota wine retailers
  • January 23, 2012

An open letter to Minnesota wine retailers

Hello my retailer friends. You are the ones that find great wines for me, and the ones that enthusiastically greet me when I walk in…

Judging wines at the Minnesota State Fair
  • August 30, 2011

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…

Sen Yai Sen Lek: pairing good Thai with wine
  • June 21, 2011

Sen Yai Sen Lek: pairing good Thai with wine

Last evening I sat down with the wine buyer and manager of Sen Yai Sen Lek, Nicole Pappas-Stanoch, to taste through a variety of lighter…

Local wine lists: Madeira at W.A. Frost
  • May 22, 2011

Local wine lists: Madeira at W.A. Frost

It’s fascinating to me, when asking people what their favorite wine lists are, how little W.A. Frost comes up. I don’t know if this is…