Journalist and wine writer Amanda Barnes' project Around the World in 80 Harvests is taking her to 42 countries and 80 different regions over three years to discover what makes those places unique. On this episode, we talk about her project, why South American wines deserve more attention and, if you follow her alluring British accent to the end, her favorite literature and childhood movies.
This episode of Pig&Vine Radio was made a couple of weeks ago as part of the Florence Wine Fest in Florence, Alabama, and I am incredibly excited to share it with you. It’s the first episode to be made in front of a live audience and features a guest I’ve wanted to have on the show since before the show began, singer-songwriter John Paul White.
"Beulah" is John Paul's most recent solo studio album and the first in nearly a decade. He produced it in his own Sun Drop Studios with friend and business partner Ben Tanner, who's also been a guest on the show. John Paul was half of the Grammy-winning duo The Civil Wars, and is a co-founder of indie label Single Lock Records.
A big Thank You to our sponsors for this episode: the University of North Alabama’s College of Education and Human Sciences for helping us procure The Mane Room where we recorded, designer Billy Reid for sponsoring the venue, and the wine distributor Grassroots Alabama for donating the wine. And a huge thank you to the Florence Wine Fest for providing the platform and audience to make this happen.
We're drinking Domaine Maubet 'Lou Campagno' Côtes de Gascogne Rouge.
Tim Stevenson has been a professional artist for over 40 years, and in that time he's gained tremendous insight into living a creative life. In this episode, Tim and I talk about what that path looks like for him, how he stayed the course and what it all means. If you're thinking about making the creative life a career choice, or are in the throws of it and asking yourself, Why? Tim has some inspiring tidbits to share.
We're drinking the delicious cab franc, grolleau, gamay blend HéHo Rouge from Domaine Hautes Nöelles in the Loire Valley. Importer by Daniel Johnnes.
Sharon Griffitts was the first in her family to attend college and one of only ten women in her graduating medical school class of one hundred-forty in 1975. A year later, she became a single mom of me. Yes, my guest in this episode is also my mom. Her story about why she became a doctor and her experiences as the minority gender have been foundational in the kind of women my two sisters and I have become. Now more than ever we need a reminder of how much American women have accomplished in a generation, and how important it is that we not grow apathetic toward the advances we’ve already made.
Join us as we drink Henry Natter Sancerre Rouge 2012 and chat medical advances, feminism, and wine. Plus a couple of her all time favorite tales from the ER.
John-Michael Early is the percussionist in the New Orleans band Flow Tribe. Self-described as backbone cracking music, the six-member crew blends second line brass tones with soul, R&B, rock, hip-hop and the Caribbean rhythms that form the backdrop for New Orleans culture, to create a fresh new Crescent City vibe. John-Michael and I discuss growing up in Nola, the essence of this city’s personality, playing with Allen Toussaint, and the fratois.
In this episode, we’re drinking Les Capriades Pét-Sec, a sparking wine from the Loire Valley, France. Pét-Sec is short for "naturally sparkling," a style of wine that has recently begun to pop up on the hippest wine lists and retails shelves across the US. This vintage is dry and it’s certainly got bubbles, but unlike Champagne or wines made by the Champagne method, this one is brought to us by the methode ancestral. Also known as old school, where only a single fermentation takes place with the CO2 trapped inside the bottle. These wines are usually lighter in alcohol and sometimes a touch sweet on the finish.
Episode Bonus: Trailing the interview is a Flow Tribe original titled "Gon Gitcha" from the 2014 EP Alligator White. Be forwarned, you will start dancing and movin'.
In Episode 04 of Pig&Vine Radio, I chat with one of New Orleans' own cocktail mavens and sherry aficionados, Abigail Gullo. Abigail runs the cocktail program at Chef Nina Compton's restaurant Compere Lapin where she currently has four sherry-based elixirs. Sherry is one of the most difficult wine categories. They come in many different styles, most of which have some degree of oxidation, an acquired taste for some. Unfortunately, most of us remember that first taste of sherry long ago, a cheap cloying version pilfered from our grandmother's expired stash. But we're all grown up now and so are the finest versions of this special, time-crafted wine. Listen for a brief introduction to the majesty of sherry, and to my conversation with Abigail about drinking, mixing and pairing sherry. We also talk New Orleans treasures, mirlitons and playing bar in a male-dominated industry.
Ben Tanner is a music engineer who once worked for FAME studios in Muscle Shoals, Alabama, is one-third of the founding partners of indie label Single Lock Records in Florence, Alabama and, is the touring keyboardist with the Alabama Shakes. The band traveled through New Orleans in late September and Ben took some time to hang out with me, drink a bottle of Hervé Villemade Cheverny Rouge and make this podcast. We talk about Ben's experience living in France during college, how he first got into wine, touring with the Alabama Shakes, and Robert Parker. We've known each other for a few years and I was thrilled he agreed to be a guest. Then again, drinking and talking is something we've done together many times... We're drinking the very delicious Hervé Villemade Cheverny Rouge 2014.
Michael Knisley is an ER Doc by day, saving lives, sewing up gunshot wounds, writing scripts for Dilaudid just to get the frequent fliers to leave. But in his free time, he’s the guy behind Bubblyothèque, sort of a pop-up roving Champagne party in New Orleans (and beyond) with an anchor in educating thirsty participants about the wine and the smaller producers who often make better wine at better values than the obvious mammoth houses. He’s made many a pilgrimage to the Holy Land of bubbles, considers a handful of producers friends, and has a passion for sharing what he’s learned about one of the world’s most prized wine regions. On this episode we drink a bottle of J.M. Seleque ‘Solessence’ NV which Michael brought to the show. It’s one of his favorites.
Hannah Hayes is a writer and travel editor for Southern Living magazine with a deep love for New Orleans, where we recorded this conversation. She's sharp, witty and a total pro at this public interview stuff. In the very first Pig&Vine Radio episode, we talk rosé shame, ballin' with $100 bottles and Hannah's favorite New Orleans restaurants. I get a little nerdy in the intro on the subject of dry pink wine, including how it's made and why there are so many mediocre batches around.
This is a podcast about wine in conversation. Each episode features a guest for whom I select a wine, about which I share my limited knowledge on where it's from or who made it. Then we drink the wine while I interview my guest in a conversational style that reaches beyond the confines of wine speak into the higher realms of art, music, food, writing and other pockets of human interests. My hope is to share conversations that balance wine facts, life insights, and humor. Some of my guests are going to be in the wine business, but most of them are not. I’ll be inviting writers, photographers, chefs, musicians, entrepreneurs, and others who are doing interesting things, have interesting things to say and is a person I want to drink with.