WineSocial - The Digital Ecosystem for the Business of Wine

Grace Vineyard organised a 20th anniversary wine dinner at the winery earlier this month in Shanxi province, where the winery is based.

One of China’s leading family-owned wineries, Grace Vineyard, celebrated its 20th anniversary this month, as its CEO Judy Chan says its biggest achievement was, “making something impossible possible”.

Chan said that "the winery had come a long way and what an achievement it had been to build one of the best wineries in China from scratch."

‘The new sommeliers are selectors and tastemakers’. Photo: YakobchukOlena

Sommeliers are not the new rock stars of food and drink – they’re the new DJs

Obsessive about their subject, the talent of the new breed of master sommeliers lies in shaping the mood and lining up seamless food and wine matches.

Not so long ago, the phrase “star sommelier” would have been considered an oxymoron in the English-speaking world. Wine waiting was not seen as a career for the ambitious. It was reserved for the kind of man (and it was almost always a man) who takes pleasure in making sarcastic remarks while quizzing timid customers about the contents of his big, leather-bound book of potential faux pas, or shaming them into spending more money than they want on something they’ve never heard of.

Ruckus Estate in Wrattonbully in South Australia, a relatively new wine region.

South Australia’s wine pioneer

I’m reading a wonderful book at the moment, An Unlikely Vineyard by Deirdre Heekin. Her property is located in the wilds of upstate Vermont, USA, and the resulting wine, La Garagista, is made in tiny quantities. The book tracks Heekin’s journey from sommelier to enthusiastic gardener to fully fledged winemaker.

Hello Vino 5.0 Wine Assistant (for iOS and Android).

A new app acts like an Amazon Echo for wine retail

Maybe one day wine retail shops will offer "Alexa" to provide shoppers with fast and pretty good answers to specific wine questions. Until that day, however, there will be smartphones and the apps that make them brainy, like Vivino and Hello Vino.

Dennis Martin was known for his winemaking skills and his friendly demeanor. Photo: George Rose

Longtime Fetzer winemaker Dennis Martin dies at 69

A laid-back California native with a formidable palate, Martin mentored numerous winemakers and other industry members.

Dennis Martin, whose career at California's Fetzer Vineyards spanned 30 years and whose humble demeanor belied his formidable skills as a taster and winemaker, died Aug. 13 after battling prostate cancer. He was 69.