I'll Drink to That! Wine Talk

I'll Drink to That! Wine Talk

A former sommelier interviews incredibly famous and knowledgeable wine personalities in his tiny apartment. He gets them to talk candidly about their lives and work, and then shares the conversations with you. To see new episodes sooner and to see all of the hundreds of back episodes in your feed, it is important to FOLLOW or SUBSCRIBE the show. It is free to do either, the show is free. Contact info- Email leviopenswine@gmail.com Instagram @leviopenswine Twitter @drinktothatpod Website illdrinktothatpod.com

Episodes

April 11, 2021

George Skouras is the owner and winemaker at Domaine Skouras, located in the Peloponnese of Greece.


George explains how his interest in wine first developed, and discusses his time as a student, working and living in France. He then talks about the early period of his career, making wine on the Greek island of Cephalonia. He describes a key meeting with Spyros Kosmetatos, which would lead to the founding of the Gentilini Winery on C...

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Robert Vifian is the chef and co-owner of Tan Dinh Restaurant, located in Paris, France.


Robert was born in Vietnam in 1948, and lived in Saigon (now Ho Chi Minh City) as a child, experiencing the effects of the Tet Offensive firsthand. He and his family are French, and he moved to Paris, eventually joining his parents there. Robert's mother founded Tan Dinh Restaurant in 1968, and later Robert joined her in the kitchen there. R...

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Erin Scala explores the long history and many recent changes in the area around Lake Garda and in the Bardolino wine zone, in the northeastern Italy.


Erin speaks with a number of different winemakers and specialists to clarify the situation around the evolution of winemaking in the Bardolino zone, from Roman times to the present day. She addresses the shift in the area in recent years towards rosé production, and explores both why t...

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Françoise Vannier is a geologist who has studied and mapped the vineyards of Burgundy for multiple decades. She is based in France.


Françoise discusses how she began her study of the vineyards of the Côte d'Or, and the surprising results that emerged from her research. She touches on both broad themes and specific, individual instances in her analysis of the rock types and rock weathering in the Côte. For example, she explains h...

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Lorenzo Accomasso is a vintner in the La Morra area of Italy's Piemonte region. He has been releasing Barolo and other wines under the Accomasso label for several decades.


Lorenzo discusses the increased interest in Barolo and in the wines of the Piemonte that has occurred over the last couple of decades, as well as the increased planting of vineyards in La Morra. Lorenzo talks about helping his parents at the winery in the post...

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Zorik Gharibian is the founder of the Zorah winery, in the Vayots Dzor region of southern Armenia.

Zorik discusses the long history of wine production in Armenia, referencing evidence that wine was made in Armenia in the Copper Age (about 6,000 years ago). He talks about the grape remnants and clay storage jars that have been found from that time. And he discusses other wine related finds in Armenia, in both the pre-Christian era an...

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Kevin Zraly is the author of "Kevin Zraly's Windows on the World Complete Wine Course". He is also the co-author (with Mike DeSimone and Jeff Jenssen) of the book "Red Wine: The Comprehensive Guide to the 50 Essential Varieties and Styles". Kevin was for decades the Cellar Master of Windows on the World restaurant, located on the top floors of the North Tower of New York City's original World Trade Center.

Ke...

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Christopher Howell is the winemaker and General Manager of the Cain Vineyard and Winery in the Napa Valley of California.

Christopher discusses his early wine tastings and home winemaking in the 1970s, and talks about some key relationships that helped form his interest in wine. He explains how he ended up pursuing an oenological and viticultural education in Montpellier, France, highlighting some notable people that he studied with...

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Jason Lett is the co-owner of The Eyrie Vineyards, in the Willamette Valley of Oregon.

Jason discusses how his father, David Lett, helped transform the Willamette Valley into a growing region for Pinot Noir, acheiving worldwide acclaim for his efforts. Jason, who was born shortly after his father arrived in Oregon, retraces in this conversation the path that led his father there. He also talks about the character of his father, what...

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Mary Ewing-Mulligan is the President of International Wine Center, located in New York City, and a co-author of the "Wine For Dummies" books.

Mary discusses her introduction to working with wine, employed by an Italian government agency responsible for promoting Italian wine. She explains the situation for Italian wines in the United States at the time, the 1970s, and how the Italian wines in the market went about competing ...

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Christophe Roumier and his family run Domaine Georges Roumier, located in the Burgundy village of Chambolle-Musigny in France.

Christophe discusses the arrival of his grandfather in Chambolle-Musigny, and the beginning of the Roumier family history with wine. He talks about his family's work for the Comtes Georges de Vogüé domaine, also in Chambolle-Musigny, and then explains the timeline for estate wines at Domaine Georges Roum...

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Giacomo Oddero and his family operate Poderi e Cantine Oddero, in the La Morra area of the Barolo appellation in Piemonte, Italy.

Giacomo, who was born in the mid-1920s, remembers the difficulties encountered in the Barolo region in the aftermath of World War II, as well as the specific changes that helped set the Barolo area on a path to prosperity. He recalls the challenges posed by families leaving the area in lean times, and the...

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Rod Berglund and his family own Joseph Swan Vineyards in Sonoma County, California, where Rod is also the winemaker.

Rod explains how he first became interested in wine, and what led him to found his own winery in the late 1970s. He also discusses how he met winemaker Joe Swan, who would eventually become his father-in-law. Rod conveys how Joe in many ways stood apart from his California winermaking contemporaries of the 1970s and 1...

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Tomoko Kuriyama is a partner in Chanterêves, a micro-négociant based in Burgundy, which she runs with her husband Guillaume Bott.

Tomoko spent over a decade working in wineries in Germany, then moved to Burgundy in France and started Chanterêves. She explains in this interview the differences between Germany and Burgundy in terms of the winemaking and vineyard work. She also discusses the outlook of the growers in each place, and ho...

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Anthony Hanson wrote the book "Burgundy," which was originally published in 1982, and then subsequently revised by him for another edition published in 1995. He is today a consultant for Haynes Hanson & Clark, as well as The Fine Wine Experience in Hong Kong.

Anthony describes his entry into Beaune (via bulldozer) in the 1960s, and his first tasting at the Hospices de Beaune in Burgundy. He discusses his growing awarenes...

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Jeff Kellogg is the co-founder of Kellogg Selections, a wine distributor in North Carolina. Jeff is a former sommelier, who previously appeared in I'll Drink to That! episode 230.

Jeff discusses his decision to start a wine distribution business, and the financial and personal realities around launching such a business. He also describes a changing demographic in North Carolina, and what that means for the wine market of that st...

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Jacques Seysses is the founder of Domaine Dujac, based in the Burgundy village of Morey-Saint-Denis in France.

Jacques recounts how he became interested in wine, and what led him to purchase a domaine in Burgundy in the late 1960s. He describes working with Gérard Potel at Domaine de la Pousse d'Or, as well as some of his visits to other Burgundy vigneron, like Henri Gouges, Charles Rousseau, and Pierre Ramonet. Jacques talks ab...

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Mimi Casteel is the owner of the Hope Well Vineyard, in the Willamette Valley of Oregon.

Her family owns the Bethel Heights Vineyard, also in Oregon. Mimi takes on issues like land use, agricultural practice, and vineyard work in this interview, stressing the importance of a connection with nature. She argues against reductionist approaches in the vineyard, and against a goal of species elimination. She also explains how she has wor...

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David Ramey is the founder and co-owner of Ramey Wine Cellars and Sidebar Cellars, both based in Sonoma County, California.

David shares his career path in California wineries from Simi, to Matanzas Creek, Chalk Hill, Dominus Estate, Rudd Estate, and starting wine labels of his own. While discussing those various work experiences, David also shares what he learned at each point, and how this would evolve into his winemaking approach...

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Benjamin Leroux is the proprietor of the Benjamin Leroux winery located in the town of Beaune, in the Burgundy region of France.

Benjamin explains how although his family was not in the wine business, he found himself working in a winery at a young age. He discusses his internships outside of Burgundy, at wineries in Oregon and Bordeaux, before talking about his start as the head winemaker at Comte Armand in the 1990s. Benjamin desc...

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