The Wine Gang challenge

How do you buy smarter and drink better wines? That’s the question that was posed to us winebloggers by The Wine Gang and Robert McIntosh from Wine Conversation. It’s all  part of an effort to showcase winebloggers to wine lovers at the upcoming Wine Gang Christmas Fair  at Vinopolis on Nov.7th. 5 lucky bloggers are being invited to join The Wine Gang that day. Here’s my 2 cents on how to buy smarter and drink better…. When I was 20 I came to London for the first time. I was here for the summer, had a student visa to work before my last year of university and I lived in a 2 bedroom flat in Maida Vale with 7 other people. It was a bit of a tight squeeze but it was fun! Most of my memories consist of drunken nights in the pub followed by late nite bull sessions kicking back Mateus and £2.99 Bardelino, Chianti and Valpolicello from the local Indian shop. That was my introduction to wine and for years afterwards, I looked back fondly on that summer and didn’t give much thought to the wine other then that I liked it. Fast forward to Washington, D.C. 2002, made redundant by 9/11, looking for something to keep me going til I could get back on my feet. Ended up working in fine dining and that is when I was re-introduced to wine but not only re-introduced, I was educated. Up until that time, I had only vague notions of food and wine matching. I knew people did it for a living but I had never actually experienced it. Part of my training as a server was a weekly food and wine matching session with the restaurant sommelier. Wow! All of a sudden the fog surrounding the mysteries of wine was lifted. It all started to make sense to me. How a creamy chardonnay would complement that lobster or alternatively how the acidity of a dessert wine could cleanse my palate, readying me for the next bite....

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Time is running out to register for the ’09 European Winebloggers Conf!!!

Last year I had the pleasure to attend the inaugural 2008 European Winebloggers Conference in Rioja. I had a fantastic time,  met some great people and got to drink lots of quality Rioja, among other wines. I mean, that is my kind of conference! The purpose of the conference is to help all us on-liners meet in real life, exchange ideas and hopefully come away with plenty to think about in utilizing social media. It’s great when you get the chance to meet the people you twitter with, blog with or about or just read their posts online. I’m sooo looking forward to this year’s conference in Portugal. The same folks who organized last year’s EWBC, Ryan and Gabriella Opaz (Catavino), and Robert MacIntosh (Wine Conversation) have  teamed up with Viniportugal, the premier sponsor, to bring us winebloggers an event to remember. The weekend kicks off on Thursday,Oct 29th with a pre-conference EWBC gathering at the Cortes de Cima winery, which promises to be a great day out before heading back to Lisbon for the conference proper. Tickets for the event are 95 euros for bloggers and 195 euros for non-bloggers and industry types. What does your ticket include? Discount on a hotel room (which includes breakfast) at the VIP Grand Lisboa – location of the EWBC 2 sponsored lunches 2 sponsored dinners 2 sponsored grand tastings A full day of winery visits in 1 of the 3 Portuguese wine regions: Setabul / Terras do Sado, Ribatejo or Alentejo A full day of sessions on everything from monetizing your blog to videoblogging 101 Enormous amounts of networking opportunities A chance to taste wines from across Portugal An opportunity to attend the Douro Boys Press Junket trip to the Douro after the conference And much much more! Hit up the official website for all the lastest info and watch this space for details on videoblogging 101, as yours truly, The Winesleuth will be participating as a panelist, stay tuned… …And speaking of videos, check out a rerun from...

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