_ Mike Steinberger on the vocabulary of wine, and a little gadget called the Wine Aroma Wheel so that you can sound like everybody else when you talk about wine.
_ Terrorist wine growers? - First let me say that I strongly believe there is no room for violence in viticulture. Renowned wine writer Bruno Tannenbaum once wrote, "If there's a formula for World Peace it certainly involves an uncorked bottle and a loaf of good bread." Jim Harrison wrote, "The sound of the popping cork has brought more happiness to mankind than all of the governments in the history of the world." But that being said, I suppose I can grasp the frustration these guys feel. It's already a risky business, and now the middle-men and corporate outfits are making all the profit in a surging wine market and these little growers are going under. Corporations, as much as they love to spout "free market" ideology, are subsidized at every turn by governments waiving property taxes, building infrastructure for them, or even directly supplementing profit (think U.S. agri-business and the Farm Bill). It's great hypocracy when they claim to pursue "free trade" as their lobbyists in Washington D.C. outnumber the legislators they pay off in order to write laws in their favor. Wine growers in Missouri are largely on their own while corn and beans are money-losers propped up by tax dollars. Why not help these French growers out the way corn growers are allowed to continue their way of life in the U.S.? There's a lot of money in wine. I'll do my part by drinking any good Languedoc wines I can get my hands on, but then if these masked guys make good on their threats and anybody gets hurt my sympathies will expire and I'll switch to Alsace or Burgundy and leave these guys on their own.