Thursday, March 18, 2010

An interview with Jeremy Parzen of Do Bianchi

This week I had the pleasure to interview Jeremy Parzen of Do Bianchi. Do Bianchi is not just my favourite american wine blog but also one of the most important wine blog in the world.
Here you can take a look at the interview I've done to this eclectic character.

When did you realize that wine would have been your big passion?
One night in Bagno Vignoni, just south of Montalcino, more than 15 years ago, I tasted some traditional-style Sangiovese paired with fried wild boar liver. Something just clicked in my mind and on my palate: the balance of acidity, tannin, and fruit in the wine was a perfect match for the dark, chewy, fatty liver. It was in that moment that I realized that acidity and fruit (and not concentration and alcohol) were the secrets to food-friendliness in wine.

Which is the first wine you have tasted (that you remember) and the first bottle of wine you bought?
The earliest wines I remember tasting as a youngster was Manishevitz kosher wines at the synagogue my family attended, made from American Concord grapes in a sweet style (most conservative American Jews will tell you the same thing). The first bottle I remember purchasing myself was a Louis Martini Cabernet.

Which bottle of wine would you bring with you in unhabited island
Lambrusco Sorbara.

We know you are a great fan of Piemonte and its wines, how did you get in touch with it and which winery do you think best represent the Piemonte philosophy?
I began tasting a lot of Nebbiolo in the 1990s when I was writing about wines for the magazine La Cucina Italiana in New York City. The Piedmont philosophy of winemaking is highly diverse but, personally, I like wineries that practice traditional vinification: extended maceration, traditional fermentation, and large-cask aging.

Which is your favourite US wine? the one that you always pick from a wine menu?
My favorite US winery is Natural Process Alliance (Sonoma) and I order their wines whenever I visit San Francisco (since you can only get the wines the Bay Area). Terroir is the best place to drink the wines, in my opinion, because the staff knows the wine intimately.

Do you have your own method in tasting or do you follow any particular rule?
I try to approach every wine I taste with an open mind. However impossible it may be, I try to not let myself be influenced by prejudices regarding the provenance or supposed style of the wine.

How do you see the future of the wine and the new borders opening with emergent countries like Cina and the other eastern countries?
Growth of the market for wine is inevitable. My fear is that winemakers will abandon terroir-driven wines, opting for a more "international" style. But as we've seen with Europe, the "international" style (i.e., concentrated, highly alcoholic wines, with jammy flavors) is beginning to run its course, so to speak. At the same rate, expanding markets will offer winemakers new opportunities and so hopefully this will translate into lower prices for everyone.

When did you start with dobianchi?
Summer of 2007.

What is the purpose of dobianchi?
I try to give readers a humanist perspective into the world of Italian wine and food. In other words, I try to write about Italian wine and food in a historiographic context, including references to language, literature, figurative art, and history.

Which is the distinguishing mark of dobianchi compared to the other blogs?
The fact that I read and follow Italian wine writing and the news media carefully and the fact that my experiences living, working, and studying in Italy give me a significantly different insight than most Italophiles have. Not many Italian wine bloggers pair Piedirosso and Pasolini, for example.

I guess you read also other blogs, which one/s you visit most or you read daily? And does it happen that you take some ideas from them for your future posts?
I read as much as I can and I literally have hundreds of feeds in my Google Reader... I get a lot of ideas from reading others' blogs and I love the way that the enoblogosphere is a de facto hypertext.

How do you see web and new technology linked to a wine culture that is changing?
The enoblogsphere is reshaping wine marketing the same way blogging and Myspace reshaped music. If you make great wine, if you have a story to tell, there is now a democratic medium in which everyone can participate freely.

What do you think about Tuscan Wines?
I love Tuscan wines.

What do you think about biodynamic wines?
I think the biodynamic wine movement, especially in its most radical expressions, has inspired a lot of mainstream winemakers to look more carefully at farming practices and this is a great thing for all wine lovers.

Let's make a game, why don't you put together your two passions, wine and music and you pick a song for these wines:

While My Guitar Gently Weeps, Beatles

Aja, Steely Dan

Goodbye Pork Pie Hat, Jeff Beck

Australian Shyraz
Living After Midnight, Judas Priest

Biodynamic Californian
Green, Joni Mitchell

German Riesling
Rocky Mountain High, John Denver

Something about Jeremy Parzen.
Thanks a lot to Jeremy, it has been a pleasure to get to know him.

Scusate per l'inglese ma è dovuto, prossimamente il post italiano ;)


  1. grazie a te, Jury! Grazie per l'attenzione prestatami e che bella trovata questa dell'abbinamento musicale! :-)

    blog on...

  2. Sei stato molto gentile invece a prestarti per questa intervista :), mi dispiace per i miei lettori italiani ma che non si preoccupino, ho pronta la traduzione ;)

  3. Conoscevo Dobianchi ma non il suo autore, gran personaggio!! :) e poi ottimo italiano nel commento,

  4. Mi è piaciuta la foto ... la materia ...
    Questo è meraviglioso...
    Grazie Jury...


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