How do you keep up to date?

How do you keep up to date with the wine world these days? I’ve found out what works for me although I still suffer from information overload some times. My interests are as follows –google-reader.jpg

  • current hot topics such as closures, global warming, harvest expectations and so on
  • recommendations on wines to try and buy
  • educational material especially anything that helps me towards my WSET Diploma

I’ve found the following sources really help me

  1. Harpers magazine. I wish I could afford their annual subscription but it’s just too much. However I subscribe to their daily bulletins via Google’s reader and this really works for me. I see a couple of lines summarising news items when I’m on the computer at home or work and I can always click the link to go their web site if i wish to read more
  2. an unusual source of news items is South African Wines. They send out regular emails which summarise the key stories from around the world by directing you towards the various publications, web sites, blogs etc which have something interesting and relevant
  3. there is no substitute for a monthly magazine which is good for those train journeys commuting to work. Decanter and Wine and Spirit are my favourites. I was working in the US last summer and enjoyed Wine Spectator and thought about taking out a subscription but the cost including mailing back to the UK was prohibitive
  4. I love reading other people’s blogs. People like Jamie Goode and Andrew Jefford talk about people they have met, wines they have drunk and places they have visited. The problem with blogs is that there are so many (and yes I have one also) that it’s possible to subscribe to too many of them using Google’s reader that information overload soon takes over.
  5. Podcasts are great for car journeys if you put them on a CD or train journeys if you play them on your phone. I’ve learned a lot from some of the podcasts from Grape Radiowine-books.jpg
  6. For bedtime reading or sitting in a chair (with a glass of something nice of course) there is no substitute for the hard stuff ie: books. You can’t go wrong with a copy of the Oxford Companion to Wine by your side. I also try to look up every wine I try in at least one reference book such as the World Atlas of Wine, Wine by the Label or Oz Clark’s pocket wine book. These often give the context for the wine leaving the label to give the detail (unless of course it’s French!).

I may occasionally suffer from information overload but I do learn a whole lot of interesting stuff about wine which vastly increases my enjoyment of the stuff.

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Decanter Magazine - March 2008

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