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Wine | Newsletters

Want to sound like an insider when you talk about wine? Pickup one of these ultraniche newsletters, which offer an expert's opinion on a specific region, grape or price point.

1. In his monthly Pinot Report, Gregory S. Walter, a former editor at Wine Spectator, concentrates on Pinot Noir from America's West Coast, and that's it. Each month, he provides a companionable mix of news, Pinot Noir-friendly recipes and reliable ratings, written in an upbeat—sometimes too upbeat—tone. Expect commentary like "Wow!" or "Killer Pinot!" ($125 for 12 issues; www.pinotreport.com).

2. Pinot-philes who prefer Old World incarnations should turn to Burghound, a.k.a. Allen Meadows. Meadows outgeeks even the most obsessive wine geeks, covering what seems to be every wine produced by every vigneron in Burgundy. His tone is more scholarly, and he's prone to devoting, say, nine pages to a primer about Chablis before getting to the 112 pages of reviews ($166 for four issues; www.burghound.com).

3. Eric Lilavois' Lilavine recommends just six wines per issue. Lilavois, the wine director at Manhattan's City Hall restaurant, sticks to bottles that cost less than $25, and his descriptions are engaging: "I saved this bottle after tasting it, and drank it with dinner one Sunday after watching The Sopranos," he recently wrote about a favorite new Barbera d'Alba ($19 for 6 issues; www.lilavine.com).

Ray Isle

Published May 2003
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