• 12 Oct 2016

    Ampelography: The Art of Vine Identification

    By Tina Caputo Thanks to DNA testing, anyone can identify a mysterious vine simply by sending a sample off to the lab. But for Virginia-based vineyard consultant Lucie Morton, a world-renowned ampelographer, it’s still crucial to know how to distinguish vines the old-fashioned way: by sight and touch. It took Morton years to learn ampelography, a skill that few viticulturists in today’s high-tech world...
    • 21 May 2015

    The Wines of Central Friuli

    An in-depth report by Daniel Bjugstad of Pizzeria Locale in Boulder, CO. Friuli Venezia Giulia, the border region between Italy’s Veneto and the neighboring countries of Slovenia and Austria, has been divided amongst empires for nearly two thou...
    • 2 Apr 2015

    Winetasting Terminology - The Poetry and the Prose

    Just over seven years ago I passed the Master Sommelier exam. Many people helped me in that endeavor, and after passing I made a conscious effort to contribute to others’ pursuits to become better wine professionals—whether through certif...
    • 6 Feb 2015

    Organic, Biodynamic, and Natural Wines Explained

    By Ronan Sayburn MS A version of this article originally appeared in print in the pages of Imbibe UK. While judging at a recent Sommelier competition I saw a lot a varied answers to the question "Explain the differences between Organic, Biod...
    • 9 Dec 2014

    Somm Camp 2014

    Top 13 Things We Learned at Somm Camp This past November the Guild of Sommeliers hosted our second annual Somm Camp, bringing 12 American and Canadian CMS-certified sommeliers to Napa Valley and Sonoma County for a three-day immersion in winemaking ...
    • 5 Dec 2014

    Transitioning from the Floor

    Moving from the sommelier world to the supply side. When Matt (Stamp) asked me to write this article, my gut reaction was: “Sure, no problem.” Why? Because that’s my general response to things in my life in the distribu...
    • 10 Sep 2014

    Languedoc: GoS Report 2014

    In July 2014, the Guild of Sommeliers sent six members— Amanda McCrossin , Nadia Pavleska , John Freitas , William Moss , Daniel Bjugstad , and Eric Entrikin MS —to Languedoc in Southern France to experience this rapidly evolving wine regio...
    • 8 Aug 2014

    Cariñena: Guild of Sommeliers Report 2014

    The Guild of Sommeliers sent six members to Cariñena DO/DOP in the spring of 2014 to discover this unexplored region in northeastern Spain, and report back on its wines, culture, and potential. Following is their story. Andrew Rastello Comin...
    • 16 Jul 2014

    Savoie & Switzerland: Guild of Sommeliers Report 2014

    In June 2014, Liz Dowty (New Orleans), Ryan Totman (Corkbuzz, NYC), Victoria James (Marea, NYC) and Master Sommeliers Laura Maniec and Geoff Kruth traveled to Switzerland and the Savoie. Following is a report on the region from Victoria James. &ldqu...
    • 10 Mar 2014

    Italy Video Series

    We have posted these individually in the forums, but here are our recent documentaries on three regions of Italy. Keep an eye out for a French series around the end of the year. (Please visit the site to view this video) (Please visit the site to view this video) (Please visit the site to view this video)
    • 24 Jan 2014

    Guild of Sommeliers Chile Report 2013

    In the fall of 2013, several Guild sommeliers accompanied Fred Dexheimer MS on a trip to Chile, sponsored by Wines of Chile. Following are their observations about Chilean wines and wine culture today. Overall Impressions By Julie Dalton When I firs...
    • 8 Dec 2013

    Guild of Sommeliers "Spire Sommelier Summit" 2013 Report

    In early November, the Guild of Sommeliers invited ten candidates for the Court of Master Sommeliers' 2014 Advanced Exam to spend three days in Napa and Sonoma counties. The event's primary sponsor was Jackson Family Estates' Spire Colle...
    • 21 Oct 2013

    Alto Adige: Guild of Sommeliers Report 2013

    In September 2013, the Guild of Sommeliers sent several of our members to the region of Alto Adige for an immersion in its culture and wines. Following is their collective report on the region. Versoaln: “The Oldest Vine in the World”By M...
    • 25 Sep 2013

    "The Beautiful South" London 2013 Trade Tasting: Chile and Argentina

    Tasting Notes: Eric Entrikin MS Old Vines in Chile and Argentina: Of the themed tables for tasting the most interesting to me were the Old Vine wines. The Old Vines provided a glimpse into what these regions can do with lower yields. Unless the wines...
    • 21 Sep 2013

    "The Beautiful South" London 2013 Trade Tasting: Overall Impressions / Top South African Producers

    "The Beautiful South" trade tasting was held this past week in London, featuring hundreds of producers from three countries of the Southern Hemisphere: South Africa, Chile, and Argentina. Wines of South Africa (WOSA) generously paid for thr...
    • 5 Oct 2012

    ConfEUsion: A Quick Summary of the EU Wine Reforms

    We’ve all had that customer. The one who wants to know wine, but is still hung up by the “Is Burgundy a grape or a region?” question. It’s easy to get frustrated at the simplicity of questions like these, but the central idea remains the same. The sheer memorization required to make sense of the modern wine world proves to be something of a Sisyphean task. Within the United States, this problem...
    • 12 Jan 2012

    An Interview with Dr. Carole Meredith

    In November 2011, Geoff Kruth and Matt Stamp had the opportunity to interview Dr. Carole Meredith, Professor Emerita in the Department of Viticulture and Enology at the University of California at Davis. We had the opportunity to discuss her wo...
    • 28 Dec 2011

    Favorite New Releases of 2011 from the TOP|SOMM Finalists

    With the year drawing to a close, we asked our 2011 TOP|SOMM and Top New Somm finalists to highlight five favorite, impactful new releases from the past year, regardless of price. Selections from each finalist are not listed in any particular order. Price is approximate retail, with importers in parenthesis where appropriate. Ian Cauble (The Ritz Carlton at Half Moon Bay, CA) TOP|SOMM 2011 Jean Paul Brune, Terres...
    • 8 Oct 2011

    "Global Warming: What are the Winemakers Doing About it?" by Clive Coates

    Out there in the real world beyond the damask, the Riedel and the head chefs' egos there may still be a few who believe that the world is flat. There are certainly those who, astonishingly enough in view of the contrary scientific evidence, persi...
    • 27 Aug 2011

    "I like to break all of the structures": An Interview with Susana Balbo

    I had the opportunity to sit down with one of Argentina's best-known winemakers, Susana Balbo, for a great lunch and flight of wines in Mendoza this past January. Opinionated, headstrong, and bold: Susana epitomizes the Argentinean spirit a...
    • 8 Jul 2011

    La renaissance de la vallée du Rhône Nord

    La renaissance de la vallée du Rhône Nord: A Fresh Look at Vineyards of Crozes-Hermitage and St. Josephby Eric Railsback Things have changed in the Northern Rhône. It used to be all about the “Big Dogg” wines of &...
    • 23 Jun 2011

    Interview with Stefano Campatelli, director of the Consorzio del Vino Brunello di Montalcino

    The Guild had the chance to conduct a short interview with Stefano Campatelli, current director of the Consorzio del Vino Brunello di Montalcino. He weighs in on proposed changes to Rosso DOC legislation, the recent Brunello scandal, and other ...
    • 13 May 2011

    Gerard Basset, MS MW: An Interview with 2010's Best Sommelier in the World

    The Guild of Sommeliers is kicking off our new series of sommelier interviews with one of the best, Gerard Basset, MS MW, winner of the 2010 World Sommelier Championship. Gerard is the President of the European Court of Master Sommeliers, and he owns Hotel TerraVina in the UK with his wife Nina. Gerard's full bio, along with his complete list of accomplishments in the wine world, can be found on his website, http...
    • 27 Apr 2011

    An Interview with Mike Officer: Old Vines, Zinfandel and California's Viticultural Heritage

    Mike Officer, Owner and Winemaker of Carlisle Winery & Vineyards, is one of California's premier producers of Old Vine Zinfandel, Syrah, and more. Mike is passionately committed to the preservation of old vine sources in Sonoma County, ...
    • 18 Apr 2011

    Reflections on Alcohol and Balance in California Pinot by John Haeger

    Reflections on Alcohol and Balance in California Pinot – A Short Q&A with Myself Plaints about very ripe-picked, extracted and high-alcohol wines -- from somms, retailers, members of the wine press and yes, even some consumers -- may...