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Popping The Cork

2011 February 3
by Mike

Welcome to True to my contrarian instincts, I finally decided to launch a blog after seeing a few articles claiming that blogging was becoming passé on account of Facebook and Twitter. The tide goes out, I take the plunge….

As readers of my Slate column know, I am not exactly short on opinions, and having a blog will give me another outlet in which to comment on issues and debates that are roiling the wine world at any given moment (the food world, too). I also intend to use this soapbox to supplement my column—to write follow-up items to articles or to expand on points that I have made in them. In addition, I plan to post tasting notes here. It’s rare that I drink a wine without jotting down my impressions, and I’ve filled up more than a few notebooks over the years. Periodically, my wife has asked what purpose was being served by these notes—a fair question, since most of them went unused. With, I now have a place to publish them, and she no longer has reason to ask that question. The value of tasting notes is a contentious issue, and in a forthcoming entry, I will offer some thoughts on the topic.

You will notice advertisements on the page. Having given the issue much thought, I’ve decided that will carry ads except from wineries or companies that own them. As a full-time journalist, I realistically cannot write just for kicks, and having a source of revenue for the site will hopefully enable me to devote the kind of time and effort to it that I want.  Advertising is a fraught subject in wine journalism. There is no doubt that it can create potential conflicts of interest. But compromising situations can arise in all sorts of ways. The trustworthiness of any journalistic enterprise ultimately hinges on the integrity of the person or people producing the journalism. In the eight years that I have been writing about wine for Slate, I think I have shown myself to be an independent and reliable critic, and those same qualities will be on display here.

The site isn’t entirely complete yet—I still have a few features to add—but the day after Groundhog Day struck me as an auspicious launch date, so here goes. I hope you’ll enjoy, and I welcome any feedback you might wish to offer.

5 Responses leave one →
  1. February 24, 2011


    Thanks for finding me here, and for the very kind words. I am looking forward to having some fun, and to having some great discussions about wine.


  2. Bill permalink
    February 15, 2011


    I was thrilled to see that you’ve started a blog (thanks to Dr. Vino for the heads-up). I’m a fan of your writing on Slate, and I’ve learned much from you over the years and hope to continue to do so through this forum. And no worries on the advertising! Right now, you’re showing a Domino’s promo that my wife and I have used extensively of late. No shame in plugging their newly revamped pizzas, which of course go great with a good bottle of chianti or barbera.

    Anyhow, best of luck with this new endeavor!



  3. February 15, 2011

    Congrats Mike, great to have another outlet for your writing!

  4. Guglielmo permalink
    February 11, 2011

    Off to a fast start, Mr. Steinberger! With all of the garbage wine blogging and wine boarding (it is legal to wine board enemy combatants, by the way, especially if the enemy combatant posted immediately before you on the wine board!) on the Internet these days, it is refreshing to see the launch of the blog of a top-notch, well-respected wine journalist. I much prefer it to the top-of-the-head musings of the clueless. Best of luck!

  5. February 9, 2011

    Mike — Congrats on taking the plunge into blogging! I, for one, am looking forward to your posts.

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