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David Kamp writes...

Last fall I taped an interview with Lynne Rossetto Kasper, the delightfully dulcet host of the syndicated radio program The Splendid Table, that somehow didn’t end up airing until Valentine’s Day. You can listen to a podcast of it here. (Mine is the last segment.) I was on with Lynne to promote The Wine Snob’s Dictionary, but I unwittingly provided some consumer service when she asked me about affordable wines and I sang the praises of cheap red Spanish wines from the Jumilla region. (Pronounced who-ME-ah, though some Wine Snobs actually say jew-MILL-a.) In particular, I mentioned a $12 bottle that drinks like a $40 bottle.

I’ve since gotten lots of queries on what wine in particular I was talking about, so here’s the deal. It was an Olivares 2006 Jumilla Altos De La Hoya (Olivares being the producer, Monastrell being the grape varietal). And it indeed cost $12. My local wine merchant, Rob Allen of New York Vintners, goes so far as to say it’s the best wine under $20 he has ever tasted. Rob doesn’t have the 2006 vintage in stock anymore, but he has the equally good 2007, which sells for a little more, $14 a bottle. And it’s still a bargain. Wine, in my opinion, is not one of those things you should give up in these hard times. Order a case of affordable stuff like this and give up your premium cable channels, or declare a one-month iTunes moratorium. I swear it’s a worthwhile trade-off.

February 19, 2009 More Wine Snobbery »


Congratulations are in order for David Lynch, sommelier and co-author of The Wine Snob’s Dictionary. His wine list for the John Dory is singled out for praise in Frank Bruni’s favorable review of the place in the New York Times, and Bruni professes to “admire [Lynch] immensely.” As we all do.

February 11, 2009 More Wine Snobbery »


You have until 3 p.m. EST this Monday, December 1st, to submit “your favorite ridiculous winespeak word or phrase” to Ed Levine’s delightful Serious Eats site. Five lucky submitters will be awarded a free copy of The Wine Snob’s Dictionary. For those who don’t win, hey, the book is still just thirteen bucks a copy–a recession-friendly stocking stuffer.

November 29, 2008 More Wine Snobbery »


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The New Yorker likes us! So do those Canadians at the Globe and Mail!

The Wine Snob’s Dictionary, just barely out, is already getting a lovely reception, meaning that a nasty backlash is just around the corner.

Meanwhile, we wanted to share with you a Snobbish video chat that co-authors David Kamp and David Lynch did with Philippe Newlin of the new online food and wine network Devour TV. There are nine segments in all, each with their share of authentically useful info and utterly pompous drivel. You can find them here. Bear in mind that Devour’s video player takes a while to load; we love Devour and have urged them to compress their files so that this sort of content can be watched more readily.

October 22, 2008 More Wine Snobbery »


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The fourth title of the Snob’s Dictionary series has arrived, and, as you can see above, it concerns wine. It officially comes out on October 14. You can order the new book on Amazon or support your local independent bookseller, whether here, here, here, or somewhere else.

In conjunction with The Wine Snob’s Dictionary’s release, Snobsite has been reconfigured, with easier-to-read posts, a generous helping of sample entries from the new book (as well as samples and intros from the other three books; click on the links in the “Snobbipedia” to the right), and, most fun of all, a random-snobbery generator known as the Snob Spotlight, down at the lower right. Every time you open a Snobsite page or refresh the one you’re currently visiting, the Snob Spotlight will offer up a randomly generated definition from one of the four Snob’s Dictionary books. Which is really useful if you’re dashing off to a dinner party and need a quick fix of trivia to sound knowing and pompous about.

October 01, 2008 More Wine Snobbery »

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