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Ten years ago, when the board of Château d'Yquem fired him, president and former owner Count Alexandre de Lur Saluces was expected to fade into the Sauternes sunset.
Instead, Lur Saluces picked himself up off the mat. The 80-year-old aristocrat continues making great Sauternes a few miles away at his Château de Fargues. Here, since 2005, he has produced seven wines in the outstanding range or better by Wine Spectator. The most recently released,2009 (97 points), sold for $170.
Not bad for a man who doesn't even consider himself a winemaker.
"Here, we are farmer-poets," said Lur Saluces, flashing a boyish, gap-toothed smile as he greeted visitors in a tweed jacket and tie.
The 2013 vintage was tough for all of Montalcino, Tuscany's premier wine region. But for Jacopo Biondi Santi, it was a moment of truth.
It was the first harvest at his family's legendary estate following the death of his father, Franco Biondi Santi, this past spring at the age of 91.
"I have been harvesting here since I was eight years old, first with grandfather, then with my father," Jacopo, 63, said in his office over the winery. "This was the first time I did it alone." ...Read more at the Wine Spectator.
"There are lots of reasons to love wine, but for me the most important reason is people..."
if you are familiar with my books and work you know this is who I am. I am thrilled to have the opportunity to roam the continent (mostly Italy and France) and relate the human stories from the wine world. There will be some great ones coming up very soon, so stay tuned. I hope you'll join the conversation.
You can read the first blog on the Wine Spectator site here.
The Palmento US tour ended in Dallas Monday with a fantastic Palmento Sicilian wine dinner at Jimmy's Food Store in Dallas-- an old-timey Italian grocery with a beautiful dining room (in what had once been a beauty salon) tucked in back. Visiting Chef Sharon Hage (beloved in Dallas for her former restaurant York St.) and Matt Balkeproduced a five course Sicilian-inspired meal to pair with a variety of wines. Biggest surprise was a cheese course of gorgonzola stuffed cannoli with carmelized honey and pistachios paired with Arancio Hekate Passito. Owner Paul DiCarlo made it all come together and the event sold out in a day. LIsten to Robert on KERA Dallas's Think program (1 hr. broadcast).
Sipping in Sicily with Robert Camuto
A travel writer pays homage to an ancient island's wines.
By Anneli Rufus
See the Video Trailer for PALMENTO on You Tube....
Robert reads from and discusses Palmento at McNally Jackson books in NY Sept. 2010.
Robert's Presentation of Palmento in Milo Sicily In Italian.
Corkscrewed On location at Dom. Borrelly-Martin (Provence)...
..at McNally-Jackson Books NYC 2009...
...at home in cellar fall 2008....
....on Wine Library TV March 2009...
Robert on radio