The Rhone Ranger himself came to Bauer Wine & Spirits on April 13 to promote his book Been Doon So Long: A Randall Grahm Vinthology! A man who has been referred to everything from the Willy Wonka of the wine world to a pure genius, Grahm’s book proved to be insightful and not just a bit mischievious. An iconoclastic send-up of the wine industry and a celebration of unsung grape varieties, the book features, among other things, Grahm’s hilarious literary parodies–Joyce, Kafka, Pynchon, Salinger, and others–together with song lyrics, other snarky satires, poems, lectures, and more.
A small crowd started to amass at 4 pm waiting for Randall Grahm and they weren’t disappointed when they saw Randall run down the stairs in the rain with his “Contra” beret on. Once he shook off the raindrops, he got right to work at our tasting table. Among our noted guests, Rachel Bennet from French Oak TV came with her notepad ready and got things started with an interview with Randall. A man who is serious about wine-making, Randall is anything but serious. He has dedicated his life’s work to the production of wines with a sense of place. But the one thing that stuck out to me was that Randall is not afraid to explore new terroirs. Of course, he loves the Rhone terroir but gave compliments to the Alsace and Loire regions of France as well. Outside of France, Randall also found a great one in Canary Islands that impressed him. Not a place that anyone would expect to find a great terroir, Randall emphasized that there is great terroir around the world that hasn’t been discovered yet.
While some of us shied away with our books in hand, no one wanting to be the first to ask him to sign, Cathy Huyghe from Red White Boston boldly marched up, took her taste of wine and asked him to sign her copy. So thanks Cathy for getting the ball rolling!
Grahm brought along with him not just his cheeky sense of humor and charm, but he also brought his wine. For two hours we swirled, slurped and allowed the flavors of Grahm’s 2009 Albarino, 2008 Muscat, 2009 Vin Gris de Cigare, 2007 Syrah “La Pousseur”, 2009 “Contra” Old Vine Field Blend, and 2006 Le Cigare Volant roll around on our tongues.
Once again, Randall Grahm has proven to us that, baby, we were born to Rhone.
Check out our pictures from the event on Facebook page!!