Category Archives: Andrew Chalk

That’s The Spirit! Dallas Vodka Distiller Wins Bronze Medal With Very First Release

duckworth
by Andrew Chalk

Local wine, cheese, beer and now spirits are winning medals in tough national competitions. Duckworth Distillery of Dallas (right behind the Home Depot on Lemmon) just won Bronze with their Texas Vodka at the 2015 San Francisco World Spirits Competition. This is a doubly good achievement since this is Duckworth’s first product and this is their first competition.  Continue reading

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‘In Pursuit of Balance’ Is a Must-Attend Pinot Noir-Chardonnay Wine Event In Houston

chalk1by Andrew Chalk

I am very unbalanced this morning at the news that ‘In Pursuit of Balance’ (IPOB) is going to Houston, and not Dallas, on its Texas tour. The organizers have tried to rebalance the situation by vaguely promising that Dallas is on the circuit next year, but it doesn’t quite make up for the sleight. I am especially galled by the fact that I was the one who told them they needed to change their silly name.  Continue reading

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Three Interesting New Texas Wines

chalk1by Andrew Chalk

Texas is a rapidly improving but young wine region. Just about everything is an experiment. One of the outcomes is an ever-rotating supply of interesting wines. This week two wineries, both of whom use only Texas grapes, sent me some interesting examples of their recent work.

Wedding Oak Winery is located in the pecan capital of Texas, San Saba. The location, in the northern Hill Country, provides grapes for the Texas Sangiovese shown on the left, above. The nose on this wine is redolent of cherries, strawberries and black pepper.  In the mouth there is forward, ripe fruit of cherries balancing the medium plus acid levels. The firm tannins would make this wine a good match with your first attempt at cooking a Tuscan Bistecca alla Fiorentina, albeit from Texan grass-fed cattle.   Continue reading

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Andrew’s Wine Round-Up

wine4by Andrew Chalk

A round-up of noteworthy wines recently tasted. All were sent by vendors or their representatives.  Continue reading

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FSITO Wine Fools Costco

chalk1by Andrew Chalk

Take a look at the wine bottle above. Where does the wine come from? If you said “Texas” you and Costco (the largest wine retailer in the country) are in the same boat. Below is the shelf label which reproduces the text on the back of the bottle. If gushes “Selected from our finest lots. Careful maturation with French Oak brings deep flavors of dark fruit and cocoa”. Costco is usually meticulous with product descriptions, but was likely fooled by this patter in also labeling the wine’s origin as ‘Texas’.   Continue reading

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Blankenship Named New Exec at CBD Provisions

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by Andrew Chalk

Richard Blankenship is now execuchef at CBD Provisions at The Joule, one of the best restaurants in Dallas. Former execuchef Michael Sidoni gets an internal promotion in the Headington hierarchy (which owns and runs the restaurant) to oversee “new projects”.

Blankenship comes with a deep breadth of experience. He was executive sous chef at the old Charlie Palmer at The Joule, he chef Continue reading

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FSITO Wine Label Fools Master of Wine

chalk1by Andrew Chalk

Take a look at the label wine label above. Where does the wine come from? If you said “Texas” you and Master of Wine James Cluer are in the same boat. In an article on wine label design in San Antonio Magazine he criticized the label for causing “potential confusion created by emphasizing the wine’s Texas origins—with two mentions of it on the label — given that it is a French Colombard”. He was doubtless fooled partly by the cheerful “Texas Style” logo on the front label and the references to the Texas palate on the back. Yet the key to this wine’s undisclosed origins are in the smallest typeface on the label, on the bottom right on the back where the eye is least likely to read it: “For Sale In Texas Only” (FSITO) allows the origin of the grapes to be concealed.  Continue reading

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