Robert Parker Wishes He Could Play Guitar; ‘Petrol’ in Riesling Is Actually a Mistake

"I play a mean skin flute!"

• World-famous wine critic Robert Parker gives an interview with a Lithuanian news outlet in which he acknowledges, several times, just how world famous he is. Also, he's going to offer a free wine-cellar management program on erobertparker.com, and he admits, "I have always wanted to be a great guitarist." [WineFuture]

• Next week, there's an auction of wine from the collection of Bernie Madoff. As the auctioneer puts it, "Some of the bottles are better viewed as conversation pieces rather than valued for their contents." The auction's expect to raise a measly $15,000 to compensate Madoff's Ponzi scheme victims. [Decanter]

• Chinese wine buyers are starting to gain an appreciation for actually drinking the fine wines that they've been using as status symbols. As a manager at a hotel restaurant in Hong Kong puts it, "They [aren't] mixing it with Coca-Cola the way they might have 10 years ago." [Chron]

• Vinho Verde, the lightly carbonated Portuguese wine that is gaining in popularity perhaps owing to Trader Joe's stocking it, means "green wine," but this doesn't refer to the color of the wine so much as its age; it's meant to be consumed young, or "green," as close to the bottling date as possible. [WSJ]

• In case you didn't know, Les Claypool, the bassist from Primus, has a winery called Claypool Cellars in Sebastopol, CA, and he just opened up a tasting room in a converted caboose. [NBC]

• "Petrol" or gasoline aromas are often found on the nose of fine Rieslings, and is a prized characteristic of the wine among Riesling aficionados. But now one wine expert insists that any such scent is a result of a mistake in the wine-making and derives from improper decomposition in the grapes. [Decanter]

• And Eric Asimov loves Austrian Rieslings, generally. But he was unimpressed by a recent blind tasting, and that turns out to be because he doesn't like the 2009 vintage and much prefers the acidity of the '08s. [NYT]

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