Wine for Normal People

After last episode's overview, we left you hanging! From Super Tuscans to Brunello di Montalcino to Chianti and Vino Nobile and a bunch in between, this week we cover the main wines of Tuscany and give our 2 cents on what's worth seeking out!

Direct download: 84_Ep_084__Tuscany_Wine_Regions.mp3
Category:Italian Wine -- posted at: 2:06pm EDT

We tackle one of the most important and diverse regions in Italy, Tuscany. This is the first part of a two part series and lays the groundwork for the next episode, in which we detail the wines and the sub regions. In this episode -- the long, rich history of wine in Tuscany and the geography and climate of the place. Hopefully you find the background as complex and relevant to the wine scene today as we do!

Thanks for listening! Enjoy!

Direct download: 83_Ep_083__Tuscany_Italy_Overview.mp3
Category:Italian Wine -- posted at: 12:02am EDT

By request from normal wine people who have ordered wines from Vinport/WFNP, we did a podcast on the six wines offered in September through our partnership (full disclosure: I get a small cut of the profit).

Even if you can't get these wines shipped to you, you'll still learn a ton about grapes, regions, and flavors since we talk both generally and specifically about the wines offered. Each are classic examples from their regions. Here is the lineup that we talk about:

NV Serre Colsenta Prosecco Superiore di Valdobbiadene DOCG, Italy $18

2012 Domaine Masson-Blondelet, Pouilly-Fumé, $25

2009 Bodega de Los Clop Reserva, Malbec, $18

2008 Leone d'Oro Vino Nobile di Montepulciano DOCG, Italy, $20

2009 Chateau Haut Beyzac, Haut-Medoc, Bordeaux, France, $38

2009 Domaine de Nalys, Châteauneuf-du-Pape Le Châtaignier, $55

Direct download: Wine_Reviews__September_2013_Vinport_Selections.mp3
Category:wine -- posted at: 12:18am EDT

A big thanks to Tony H for this topic. Here was his question:

  • Could you one day explore the issue of wine lists?
  • Where do restaurant wine lists come from?  I would like to think that someone sits down with the menu and thinks through what wines might go well with the dishes, but that’s probably naïve.  I suspect most restaurants buy a package deal from a distributor to supply a standardized list and the wines?
  • If you were going to design a wine list, how would you go about doing it?
  • What is it about a wine list that tips you off as to whether it has been put together by people who know what they’re doing?
  • Where do wine list prices come from?

I use my experience as a restaurant marketer for the big hulking winery to shed some light on the inside industry dirt. We talk about what to look for in a list and in a good restaurant (via wine) and then I give you some great tips from the book (almost done!). 

Hope you enjoy this one! Look forward to the feedback (and other great service stories if you have them).

And from the Shameless Commerce Division: If you are a restaurateur and need some help with your wine list, email me at to see how we can work together to get you a balanced list! 

Direct download: 82_Ep_082__Evaluating_Restaurant_Wine_Lists.mp3
Category:Restaurants -- posted at: 11:42am EDT