What's hot this summer

Depending on where you are this week it may not be the weather!


We've had a weird summer, hot then cool, but one thing that you can count on every summer are the events that make the season so special. Events worth traveling around the country for, events worth planning for. Some of these events are annual pilgrimages for their participants, with all the accompanying expectations wrapped up in several pressure packed days. Everything has to come together perfectly for these events to be truly great, and while each of these events brings a lot to the table, you might want to consider adding one more thing to make it truly perfect.

Of course we're talking about wine here, so let's see what kind of wine you might need to be shopping for as you travel the country in search of what's hot this year!


August 10 & August 24, 2013

Providence, Rhode Island

OK, so this is like literally hot. Bonfires throughout Providence Rhode Island, and they're there on purpose, and mostly not set, as far as I know, by out of control Frat boys. This sounds awfully cool, and when you factor in the food, music and support of the arts that are all part of this pedestrian art exhibit it kind of clicks. I might be attracted to this because I love fire and flickering light on old city buildings, not in a pyro kind of way though.

Fortunately this event lasts almost to Thanksgiving so there's plenty of time to see it but I've included it here today because the following events might be drawing some of you to the area. If you do make it to WaterFire soon, keep in mind that popping a bottle of your favorite wine may be frowned upon, by men with badges, throughout much of Providence but if I had my druthers I'd be cracking a great bottle of volcanic white wine with WaterFire, and by that I mean really, really good Soave! It's crisp, refreshing, fascinating and affordable, just like Providence, right?

Boston Pops on Nantucket

August 10, 2013

Nantucket Island, Massachusetts

This is the little reason to travel to New England this summer. The Boston Pops and their annual Nantucket concert that culminates in a famous fireworks presentation. If you're into a lighter shade of orchestra music you're a probably familiar without he Pops, and this is your chance to get intimate with them. This is the 17th annual version of this event, which has been rated as Nantucket's "Best Summer Event" for 16 years in a row by readers of the local papers.

It's summer time so this is going to be a classy event. Now is not the time to skimp on what you're drinking. In fat you really need to bring two wines to the this event, a cool, rich Chardonnay for the Pops, and a dazzlingly bright and juicy Pinot Noir for the fireworks show. While this is old money, something new world is now acceptable, just make sure it's from the Sonoma Coast, the true Sonoma Coast please.

Tanglewood Wine & Food Classic

August 15-18, 2013

Lenox, Massachusetts

The Pops on Nantucket of course is great but it is just an appetizer when it comes to the Boston Symphony Orchestra, which finds their summer home in Tanglewood. The Tanglewood Wine & Food Classic is a sort of Spring Break, for mature people. Now, seeing as I'm one of the old, er mature people now, or soon to be, I fully understand it's appeal. Lots of music, but not too loud, lots of food, but not too much, and lots of great wine shared with fellow lovers of the arts. Ahh, it's paradise!

There'll will be a lovely selection of wines on offer during the event but the cooking demo speaks volumes about the vibe here: Parmesan gnocchi with fricassee of chanterelles, corn, swiss chard, and black truffle with a truffled corn emulsion. No bacon, waffles, or kimchee tacos my friends. Do not bring the Etna Rosso. The Etna Rosso will be a faux pas,. Bring the Duckhorn my friends, bring the Duckhorn or at least the Beringer Bancroft Ranch Merlot! That's what we're talking about!

Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance

August 15-18

Pebble Beach, California

Pebble Beach is the car show. This is why grown men spend millions of dollars restoring million dollar cars. To bring them to Pebble Beach. Now I'm a car guy, and I can spend days at an event like this, marveling at the craftsmanship that went into these cars, and the attention to detail that brought them back to life.  This is a special kind of art and crafts that speaks to a small subset of people, crazy people.

I would definitely make my way down to Pebble Beach if I had the time, and the fact that it's tucked away near Carmel's and Monterey's wineries makes it even more of an appealing destination! It's a great opportunity to take advantage of the local wines, but you'd probably be better off bringing something imported, and expensive to the event itself. Though there is an alternative, the Monterey Car week! Still some beautiful cars to be seen, but you'll probably come away a little less depressed about your crappy wheels and enjoying killer Carmel Pinot Noir and Chardonnay is de rigueur though not while driving. Never while driving.

Washington Square Outdoor Art Exhibit

August 31 - September 2

September 7 -8

New York City, NY

So where might you actually find me this summer, well how about at the Washington Square Outdoor Art Exhibit. I came here when I was younger with my brother and my father and while we missed it's heyday when Pollock and de Kooning were hawking their wares, it was still then and remains today a pretty funky way to spend a day. You never know what, or who you might find, and that of course is part of the grand appeal. For example I have photos of me in bell bottoms attending the event one year.   There are actual artists, struggling artists, and artist wanna bes all mashed together fighting for their piece of the pie.

What wine you should be drinking depends on whether you've made it, are on you way, or are a poseur. In any event the wine would not be too pricy, nor too complicated, it's only a means to an end man, a way to get the creative juices flowing so lets not obsess over it. Make it simple, and make it good, and make it easy to understand. So let's make it something from the Loire valley, Muscadet for the white and a nice little Chinon for the red. Perfect, with a little perspective.

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