I can’t believe I have never done this before, write a blog on my predictions for wine. My narcissism must go on Christmas vacation or something. Anyways here it is and fashionably late and replete with self aggrandizing hubris. I have been inspired by this series of blogger, writer and wine people predictions that appeared on eater.com, and brought to light to me by the Girl On Wine Lesley Trites, who is always fashionable whether or not she is late, early or just on time.
If you don’t have time to read what Eater.com’s panel seems to think, here is an insultingly simplified shorthand version of things to come for wine in 2013: “Natural Wines” are going to lose traction, garage California wineries using freak grapes will get big, A variety of Austrian Reds and Beaujolais Gamay will jump the shark the commenters seem to think the panel considers sommeliers to be morons.
….1: The Wine Advocate will become utterly irrelevant in North America, but yet grow profitability exponentially. It will become a wine world version of those computer buying magazines that only rate computers advertised on their pages.
…2: Magnums will become the next hipster luxury. I think that the eater.com panel was right that Bourgogne is going to be priced at stupid Bordeaux levels, and Beaujolais will pick up the slack. Consumer excess and millennial need-to-be-epic will see a number of 2012 vintage Magnums from Fleurie and Moulin-A-Vent end up being served at restaurants serving food on wooden cutting boards.
…3: Vincemagazine.com will become a website that attracts lots of attention. They specialize in reporting on wine from what they call Central European countries, I would say Eastern European, but that is splitting hair. Consumers may not be ready for labels from Brda, Slovenia but taste influencers are honing in on those countries and Vincemagazine is the best resource around.
…4: Accused of perjury and publicly found guilty by enemies and old friends alike, wine reviewer Natalie MacLean will bounce back. Her spam machine is just too big to fail. I am not a fan of her reviews or an apologist for her actions but that is my gut feeling. Sadly when the next person gets caught doing the same thing as her, the alarm bells will not ring as loud as apathy will set in. Apathy is a bad thing.
…5: The adhesion to ethics in wine writing will get worse before it gets better.
…6: A medium sized wine publication will flirt with not giving scores for wines. Bloggers will rejoice, consumers will balk.
…7: Here in Quebec the SAQ will use local wine writers to promote their wines. These wine journalists will get paid for their work, write glowing reviews and be given the opportunity plug their annual stocking stuffer wine buying guides filled with wines that were given to them by promotional agencies with the budget to play those reindeer games. Nobody will mention anything remotely negative about these wines. Nobody will question the ethics of that cluster-fuck. I guess they just crossed me off the the list. Whoops? Not.
…8: Wine will play an important role in stopping a war. The Argentinians will rattle their sabres, the Brits will stop buying Malbec, the islands will continue to be known as the Falklands until the next Buenos Aires based President reads Roman Styled Governance for Dummies.