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           Sydney Time

  

            

   Copyright © Ric Einstein 2009

 

 

 

 

The following are wine sites I have found useful.

Updated 3rd April 2009

 

Wine Forums  

Auswine Forum - is mainly dedicated to Australian Wine and is the oldest Australian wine forum around. Visitors always welcome and there is a wealth of knowledge so they are very good at answering wine related questions. My favourite forum!

StarForum - very active forum with a hip younger "in crowd" and a small group of very active participants. Tell them TORB sent you.

UK Wine Forum - is a classic case of two nations separated by a common language but they are basically nice people... for Poms. Conversation is mainly around Frog wines but they do get into the new world stuff also. In the last year there has been a mass migration of septics who have either been made persona non grata on the Squires Forum, or have become fed up with the way the joint is run. The UK forum is all the better for Squires loss.    

West Coast Wine Network - is another large US based site and they have a number of different forums. This site is more into new world wines than Wine Lovers. Its heavily “monitored” for rule infringements.

Wine Spectator Forum - this site used to be the wine equivalent of world championship wrestling; no holds barred! Its now lightly moderated and all the better for it. A reasonable combination of experienced and knowledgeable people able to assist a large chunk of those who are either new to wine, or have kicked off their training wheels.  

The Wine Depot - is a now a well established offspring resulting from the disharmony and lack of moderation that occurred on Wine Spectator Forum a couple of years ago. The site is well laid out, attractive and as its moderated, the angst created by the disruptive elements on WS will be avoided.  In November 2005 a thread was started called 'how much wine do you have on order.'  Its still going and how has had over 1,000 responses. Each to their own! 

VinoCellar Forum is another Wine Spectator offshoot that has a good following. Many of the more wine knowledgeable people from the Wine Spec-u-lator Forum migrated to this forum to avoid the school yard squabbles that besieged that site a few years ago. It’s another US based site but From my personal perspective, the concrete nature of its layout and topic regimentation makes it look like its run with all the charm of a military organisation. Its not doing as well as Wine Depot.  

Wine Lovers Discussion Forum- is the oldest of the large US based wine forums. These people are also into old world wines in a big way. It was moved/sold/combined or what ever with the AOL/Netscape Forums and bombed badly. Many of the original contributors didn't like the move and so whilst the new Wine Lovers Community  site is still going, a discussion forum has been resurrected on the old Wine Lovers site.

Mark Squires Wine Bulletin Board - is located on the Robert Parker web and the great man drops in from time to time with pronouncements delivered from upon high. This site is unique in that my bigoted opinions got my “posting privileges suspended” or to put it in simple language I was banned.

Bordeaux Central and the name says it all. If Frog stuff is your thing or you are into wine from the old world, this site has stacks of useful information and a forum to boot.

 

Wine Blogs for Australians and lovers of Australian Wine  

Since the last this page was last updated, many of the recommended blogs have basically either disappeared or updates have ceased. Luckily there are a number of new ones to take their place. Some look like there are there for the long term, but as always, many will fall by the wayside. Keeping a site updated is not light work.      

Chris Shanahan's blog is plain and simple. No unnecessary clutter but it has very good content. Chris is an Australian wine writer, wine show judge, beer writer and beer show judge. Beer yuk! With over 20 years of wine writing experience behind him, as well as being an industry professional, Chris knows which side is up and his writing shows it!

The Wine Nut is an aptly named and run by long time wine internet identity Murray Almond. Muzz, as he is known to his mates has a good palate and has had a serious interest in wine for decades. His pet hobby horse is closures, and Muzz makes no secret of his feelings towards cork (negative) and screwcaps (loves them.)  

Wineoftheweekblog is also known as Sue Courtney’s blog of Vinous Ramblings. Sue has had her own wine website, Wine of the Week for ages. Sue has completed a course in journalism and regularly contributes to real newspapers and magazines. Sue is also a wine educator, so other than the fact she is a Kiwi, she is a well rounded wine person. As well as maintaining her website, Sue has branched out and appended a blog to it and there are loads of tasting notes, commentary, recipes etc. It’s even varietal in the choice of wines, with everything from “American Wine Drinking Day”, through Sparkling Shiraz, to Zealand Cats Pee. It’s a content rich site.

Shiraz – is run by Mike Pollard, and expat Aussie now living in San Diego. Mike has been blogging for four years, which makes him an old timer! I really like this site. It’s clean, uncluttered, easy to read, but above all, incredibly well researched, well written and balanced. Mike must spend a huge amount of time reading and researching the latest wine info all across the web. Its all wine commentary, don't look for current tasting notes. It aims at those who want a high level of detail and knowledge about the industry and about wine tasting.

Appellation Australia is run by an enthusiastic, self-confessed, relative newbie to the world of wine. Cam Wheeler makes no grand promises and the site has been put together as a personal journal, in the hope that by making it simple and fun, readers will enjoy visiting the site.  There is one thing I will say about Cam, he eats at the top spots and drinks buckets of top-shelf Frog bubbles, as well as bath tubs full of other bloody expensive wine, both imported and local. That alone makes the site worth a visiting. If the only thing vinous you are interested in is big Barossa Shiraz, give this site a miss, but if you want to drool, it’s worth spending time here.

DAVIDLOLE.COM is a one man band. David has been into wine for a couple of decades and even did a stint writing for the Canberra Times, has a fine palate, and expensive tastes. Luckily he is a very canny auction buyer and has procured some amazing bargains over the years. The site has no frills, pretensions and doesn’t reek of bovine manure and was set up in June 2006 to record David’s tasting notes, which are diverse with loads of Frog bubbles, c-through and imported European stuff. For a site that has only been going for just over a year, there is a good level of content.

The Winingpro is run by Grant Dodd. who by profession is a Touring Golf Professional. The wine component of this site concentrates on tasting notes. The range of notes is broad; from $8 Sauvignon Blanc right on up the top of the pricing tree. Most notes are on Australian wines, but there is a fair smattering of imports too. The notes are succinct and to the point. The highlights of each wine are covered, and like most wine blogs, it uses the 100 point system. The wine component is “no frills” but it does the job.

Vinodiversity is run by the most eccentric wine character I have ever met, Darby Higgins so it’s no surprise that his interests in wine are esoteric, which is reflected in many aspects of his blog. As the name implies, it’s all about diversity, in this case grape varieties. Forget about Shiraz and Cabernet, but this site covers everything from Aglianico to Zibibbo, and if you have the latter, I understand that if you see a doctor, there may be a cure!

Wino Sapien is listed here because one of the first things I saw when browsing the site was a write up on “Toe nails and wine.” Edward (it doesn’t say Edward who) is a 30 something year old quack (doctor) who is also into photography. The site, besides containing about 300 tasting notes which can be viewed alphabetically, has write ups on cauliflower (yuck) Chanel Number 5, and the authors addiction to sniffing fruit! Esoteric – absolutely!

 

Wine Information Sites  

The Red Bigot Buyers Guide - has been set up by my good mate Brian Handreck. It compares prices on good reds that Brian is interested in purchasing and shows the saving that can be made by shopping around. Considering the amount of research that Brian does, this site could be very useful to wine buyers wanting to get the lowest prices.

Australian Wine Companion - is James Halliday's resurrected/new web site. It contains all his back tasting notes, and a huge array of articles. If you are into Oz wine, this site is mandatory. Subscription cost is a real bargain.  

Jeremy Oliver On Wine - is a new site for those that follow Jeremy Oliver. There is a wealth of information including tasting notes, articles and ratings available with differing subscription level options.

The Wine Front - is published by a wine writer who knows which way is up. Campbell Mattinson has a good palate and is an excellent writer who is just starting to make a splash in the wine world. The publication is worth the price and I gladly pay it. The volume of content has been ramped up over the last couple of years, and now that Gary Walsh has joined the team, the amount of information is tremendous.  The emphasis is on tasting notes.

The Essential Wine Tasting Guide - This little devise which costs less than $10 is a must have for all wine lovers. Want to know how to describe wine, this handy sheet will teach you all you need to know. It certainly helped me a lot and I still refer to it.

Wine of the Week is a very professional wine site run from the island to the south east of Oz where (where they make damn good - oxymoron Sauvignon Blanc) so if you have an interest in New Zealand wine this is a must visit. They also have some nutter by the name of 'Murray OZ' that also contributes from time to time.

Sydney International Top 100 - is a great site with loads of information on a unique wine tasting concept, the wines are judged with food and all the tasting notes from all the judges are published, it makes interesting reading.

Winestate Magazine - is Australia’s oldest and biggest.

Winewise - is another independent publication which does not accept advertising and is respected by its many subscribers.

Wine Lovers Page - is possibly the worlds biggest Internet wine site. It has a huge amount of information from all around the world with new features being added daily.

Wine Anorak - Jamie Goode's informative on line wine magazine with loads of useful information; and its well written too.

The Wine Doctor is a UK based which has just undergone a revamp. Loads of information is available on wine from all around the world, but it does have a European emphasis.

Wine Spectator - is a very popular wine and lifestyle magazine in the USA and has a free as well as subscription based service available.

 

Technical Sites and Others of Interest 

Australian Wine & Brandy Corporation (now incorporating Wine Australia)

Cork Watch

Flaws and Faults in Wine

Brett - all you wanted to know

Search Tasting Notes from all Over the World

Tasting Wheel

University of Adelaide - Technical Wine Links

Wine Dictionary

Wine Faults

Wine Show Calender