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What's new in 2013 for wines and spirits

by Bill Belkin, wine and spirits category manager
Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Many new trends (something long term) this year versus fads (here and gone) are actually not quite so new as we peek ahead in the adult beverage world.

Here’s what my crystal wine bottle tells me:

That ubiquitous grape Syrah is back and this time it actually may become the next Merlot – or at least a variety that you’ll reach for when tossing the steak or burgers on the grill.

Everything old is new again

by Bill Belkin, wine and spirits category manager
Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Sitting by a roaring fire, clutching my stem of red wine, I am reminded of that old adage: “everything old is new again.”

All the new-fangled, techie equipment is advertised using songs from the 60’s and 70’s. Fashionistas are designing clothing with a distinctive “retro” look and we all talk about how so and so is a “throwback” to the golden age. So is it surprising that some of the “forgotten wines” are once again the most popular? Not really.

One of my favorite “throwbacks” is a Napa Syrah! Syrah was once going to supplant Merlot as the next “go to” grape for the casual drinker. But just like New Coke, that never happened. The trouble is folks became fixated on 7 words: “Syrah and Shiraz are the same grape.” True? Sure, but for the discerning palate, over-sugared Shiraz wines fall short on complexity and long on an oaky sweetness compared to small batch, hand-harvested Syrah wines.

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