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Archive for the ‘Mr. Grumpy’ Category


Picklepuss Wines for Valentine’s Day Cynics

February 13th, 2012 by Tom Johnson

Last year, a poll by Glamour magazine showed that 65% of Glamour readers hate Valentine’s Day. Stop by any V-Day-themed comment thread and you are likely to read a lot of this: Valentine’s Day is like herpes: just when you think its gone for good, it rears its ugly head once more. Every other day of [...]

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Wine Scores and Seasonal Affective Disorder

January 9th, 2012 by Tom Johnson

The invaluable Dr. Vino rounds-up evidence that score inflation is causing wine drinkers to become jaded, making 90-point wines as unattractive in the market as 88-point wines used to be. He cites this bit of marvelous sarcasm from wine merchant Daniel Posner: Every time I turn around, another 2007 Barolo is getting 96 points or [...]

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I’m Thinking About Starting a Movement to Take Things Less Seriously

January 4th, 2012 by Tom Johnson

New York Times wine critic Eric Asimov takes time out of his busy schedule seriously regarding the world’s wines to take a crack at something he calls “analytical eating.” Can’t you just feel the joy?

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Me Me Me Me Me

October 14th, 2011 by Tom Johnson

Every year, I donate a few in-home wine tastings to local charity auctions. I think up themes or build stories around the wines being tasted or something. The people who buy the tastings are generally really nice, really rich, and don’t know a whole lot about wine, so its fun. I prepare some background information [...]

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Bad Precedent: Winemakers in Their Underwear

August 10th, 2011 by Tom Johnson

I like women in lingerie as much as the next guy — actually, I like them way, way more than the next guy, and it’s sometimes kind of a problem. Anyway, I like women in lingerie as much as anyone not currently serving time in a penitentiary or halfway house, but I cringe a little at this, [...]

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Kids Today…

June 2nd, 2011 by Tom Johnson

As further evidence of the rampant immaturity of today’s young people, two separate marketing companies have found it necessary to turn wine tasting into a game. You will note that both of these are the direct descendants of an educational culture that rewarded every tiny accomplishment with some kind of star or laser-printed certificate. Online wine outlet [...]

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You Think I’m Crabby About Millennials?

May 28th, 2011 by Tom Johnson

Simon Doonan over at Slate is really bitter. What is it about all these emerging lifestyle gurus, teen real-estate machers, tween fashion entrepreneurs, and prepubescent bloggers that compels me to get all biblical on their asses? Simply put, the young folks of today are a bunch of insanely overachieving, materialistic, poorly educated, distraction-prone, conformist, mentally turgid [...]

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You Kids Get Offa My Lawn

May 24th, 2011 by Tom Johnson

In a Fabulous World is ”a lifestyle manual for Millennial women developing their taste for fabulous living.” If the content of the blog is any indication, the target audience has a lot of taste development to look forward to. Among the things In a Fabulous World feels the need to introduce to its audience of passionate [...]

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Wine Made Simple: A Modest Proposal

April 26th, 2011 by Tom Johnson

When market researchers ask what people don’t like about buying wine, the response indicates a general consumer aversion to feeling stupid. Confronted by aisle upon aisle of unfamiliar wines, it is no surprise that people turn, instead, to the relatively uncomplicated world of beer. Depending on who you talk to, there are between 40,000 and [...]

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The Utter Predictability of Wine Writing

April 22nd, 2011 by Tom Johnson

Maybe I’m just noticing something that has been going on forever, but it seems to me there are a lot more web postings this year about Easter Wine. What we are witnessing, I think, is the birth of another gotta-write-about-it milestone in the wine writing calendar. Easter is not the best candidate for fully automated [...]

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