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To Thomas Matthews or whomever on the editorial staff can answer these questions:

1. When will Bruce Sanderson's reviews of Italian wines be published in the magazine and/or be made available online? What will these reviews cover? I saw a few reviews on 2006 Barolo in the most recent Insider, but that was a very small number of wines (five, if I recall).

2. How many more reviews from James Suckling are "in the pipeline" as they haven't been published yet? What, if any, will these reviews be on?

3. Will Bruce Sanderson contribute to the forums to interact with readers? Some editors do a great job at that - James Molesworth in particular, as well as James Suckling when he was still with the magazine.

Thanks.
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Every transition takes time. The review process, which begins when a bottle arrives at our office and ends with a printed tasting note in the magazine, typically takes several months.

James Suckling resigned in July, and his final reviews for Wine Spectator ran in our Oct. 31 issue.

His tasting beats -- Italy, Bordeaux and Port-- have now been transferred to our New York office, an exercise of considerable logistical difficulty, but one that will give us better oversight and more control, to ensure that the wines reviewed are actually available to our U.S. readers.

The new reviewers for these regions have been tasting the wines since mid-August. Magazine readers will find reviews of wines from Bordeaux and Piedmont in the Nov. 15th issue, and in Nov. 30, more Piedmont, plus northeastern Italy and Port.

Our goal is to keep a continuous flow of reviews coming from these regions, unlike the periodic floods of previous years. The new tasters have long experience with Wine Spectator and we believe they will do just fine with their new responsibilities. We hope our readers will agree.

Thomas Matthews
Executive editor
quote:
Originally posted by Thomas Matthews:
His tasting beats -- Italy, Bordeaux and Port-- have now been transferred to our New York office, an exercise of considerable logistical difficulty, but one that will give us better oversight and more control, to ensure that the wines reviewed are actually available to our U.S. readers.


Interesting comment. So to hell with your readers in the rest of the world? We frequently get Italian wines up here which are not available in the US, so those reviews were useful.
Dear Steve8 and Estimator:

Many more thousands of wines are produced each year than we can taste and review. Since 80 percent of our readers live in the U.S., we concentrate on wines that are available in the U.S. Of course, many of those wines are also available in other markets around the world. We hope our reviews are useful to readers everywhere, but there will be inevitable gaps in coverage. Whether they live in the urban northeast or the rural south, wine lovers will encounter reviews without wines, and wines without reviews. That's the way wine is.
quote:
Originally posted by Thomas Matthews:
Every transition takes time. The review process, which begins when a bottle arrives at our office and ends with a printed tasting note in the magazine, typically takes several months.

James Suckling resigned in July, and his final reviews for Wine Spectator ran in our Oct. 31 issue.

His tasting beats -- Italy, Bordeaux and Port-- have now been transferred to our New York office, an exercise of considerable logistical difficulty, but one that will give us better oversight and more control, to ensure that the wines reviewed are actually available to our U.S. readers.

The new reviewers for these regions have been tasting the wines since mid-August. Magazine readers will find reviews of wines from Bordeaux and Piedmont in the Nov. 15th issue, and in Nov. 30, more Piedmont, plus northeastern Italy and Port.

Our goal is to keep a continuous flow of reviews coming from these regions, unlike the periodic floods of previous years. The new tasters have long experience with Wine Spectator and we believe they will do just fine with their new responsibilities. We hope our readers will agree.

Thomas Matthews
Executive editor


Ah... You should rename the magazine to American Wine Spectator and have a cool bald eagle on the cover swooping down with a bottle of Opus One clutched in its talons - that would be pretty awesome. You could distribute it at Wal Mart and probably significantly increase your distribution.

But, in all seriousness: who gives a $hit? First off, I'm sure that the majority of the wines reviewed in the mag are available in the U.S. anyway. Second, I'm sure the people purchasing your mag may also be interested in other wines which aren't necessarily available in their local market.
Thanks for the response, Thomas. I understand it's not realistic to taste every single wine produced.

What about my third question? Will Bruce start posting more regularly on the forum? Despite having an account registered in Nov. 2005, he only has seventeen posts - the most recent being in Sept. 2008. Somewhat regular involvement by the editors is a valuable addition to the board and is something that I look forward to.
Big Grin awesome! Big Grin

quote:
Originally posted by The Economist:
Ah... You should rename the magazine to American Wine Spectator and have a cool bald eagle on the cover swooping down with a bottle of Opus One clutched in its talons - that would be pretty awesome. You could distribute it at Wal Mart and probably significantly increase your distribution.
quote:
Originally posted by futronic:
Thanks for the response, Thomas. I understand it's not realistic to taste every single wine produced.

What about my third question? Will Bruce start posting more regularly on the forum? Despite having an account registered in Nov. 2005, he only has seventeen posts - the most recent being in Sept. 2008. Somewhat regular involvement by the editors is a valuable addition to the board and is something that I look forward to.

Maybe you should blame me. I kidded him one time about all of his reviews ending with "B.S." and I think he was offended. Frown
quote:
Originally posted by Thomas Matthews:
Dear Steve8 and Estimator:

Many more thousands of wines are produced each year than we can taste and review. Since 80 percent of our readers live in the U.S., we concentrate on wines that are available in the U.S. Of course, many of those wines are also available in other markets around the world. We hope our reviews are useful to readers everywhere, but there will be inevitable gaps in coverage. Whether they live in the urban northeast or the rural south, wine lovers will encounter reviews without wines, and wines without reviews. That's the way wine is.


Perhaps, Mr. Matthews, you could explain to your international subscribers how it was ever detrimental to your magazine to print the occasional review of a wine that was not available in the US? Were there really enough irate US customers complaining to warrant the crack down?

There's a thread elsewhere on the Cave Spring riesling from Niagara that received a favourable score in WS. Is this one of the last reviews of Canadian wine to squeak through the new restrictions? What about those mouth-watering reviews of rare German dessert wines with a total production of 3 cases? I always enjoy those even though I could never buy a bottle. I guess those are gone too.

I've already let my print subscription lapse and I'm not regretting it. Congratulations on your publication being solid enough financially to withstand losing 20% of your readership.
Last edited by mitpradikat
quote:
Originally posted by Red guy in a blue state:
quote:
Originally posted by spo:
For the life of me, I cannot figure out why more of the WS staff do not post here.


The two James and Thomas have pretty thick skin. I am not sure about the others. It can be pretty tough around here sometimes.

LoL
Also, this thread is thread is a living proof why the staffs avoid this forum like plague. He replied the question within 24 hrs. What else do you want him to say, "Yeah. Now that James had left WS, our magazine sucks" ?
I've read some of the first TNs from Bruce Sanderson on Italy. He covers the '06 vintage of some of the Chiarlo releases. I must say this one is spot-on compared to my own tasting of this wine:
TN

I will just follow the results of Bruce his labour. And evaluate in half a year time. I think any new staff deserves some time to prove himself. In particular if you have the difficult job of replacing an icon like JS.
I read many more threads than I post on; much of the time, I feel I don't have anything relevant to add. But I don't mind the give and take. That's just the usual thunder and fog of an anonymous forum.

I would point out that the editors are much more engaged in their blogs. Yes, you have to pay for access. But if civil conversation is what you're looking for, you might give them a try. You can sample for a month for only eight bucks (not sure what that is in Canadian dollars, sorry).
Bumping while waiting for new reviews?

I must say that I'm not impressed that there has been almost two months between Bruce's blog posts (new one today). The sentence, "About three years ago, I stayed in La Morra during my "Nine Days of Nebbiolo" vacation to the region to learn more about its wines." doesn't instill a lot of confidence on his understanding of the wines of Piedmont, let alone the rest of Italy.

Maybe I'm being overly skeptical, but until I read a bunch of his reviews and can compare them to my views on the sames wines, I will not place much faith in them.
quote:
Originally posted by Gundam:
The Advance lists 2 2006 Barolos reviewed by Bruce Sanderson, while I don't have the knowledge in Barolo to make an opinion, his reviews does seem to stray from others.

Grimaldi Giacomo Le Coste Barolo
WS 95 vs WA 92, ST 91,WineReviewsOnline 92.

Giuseppe Rinaldi Barolo Cannubi San Lorenzo Ravera
WS 97 vs ST 90-92, WRO 92


This is a problem. Suckling NEVER strayed from others on ratings of Barolos.
quote:
Originally posted by aphilla:
This is a problem. Suckling NEVER strayed from others on ratings of Barolos.


That's not true. One example. 2005 Pecchenino Barolo San Giuseppe. WS93, WA87. Another example? 2005 Poderi Colla Barolo Bussia Dardi Le Rose. WS88, WA93. Don't say never if it's not true.

Regardless of the fact that there are discrepancies, I'm more interested in consistency and the reviewers understanding the wines and the regions.
quote:
Originally posted by futronic:
quote:
Originally posted by aphilla:
This is a problem. Suckling NEVER strayed from others on ratings of Barolos.


That's not true. One example. 2005 Pecchenino Barolo San Giuseppe. WS93, WA87. Another example? 2005 Poderi Colla Barolo Bussia Dardi Le Rose. WS88, WA93. Don't say never if it's not true.

Regardless of the fact that there are discrepancies, I'm more interested in consistency and the reviewers understanding the wines and the regions.


I was being sarcastic....

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