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Wine on the Wei

March 15, 2011 5:23 pm - Posted by Zachary in Travel

At the Cadillac Championship last week Wine Portfolio had the opportunity to meet a large variety of people who love wine and golf. One of the nicest we met was Stephanie Wei. Stephanie is the creator of the highly respected golf blog weiunderpar where she describes herself as “growing up in Seattle.. now living in Manhattan.. played competitive golf for ten years in the junior and college ranks.. went to Yale, played on the women’s golf team and graduated in ’05 with a B.A. in History.. and Btw still enjoys hacking a small, white ball around the golf course.. loves her driver. Oh, and I’m feisty and I like to smile a lot.”

Stephanie is representative of the post alpha-Tiger generation of PGA Tour golf. Young, hip, twittering Merlot drinkers versus the beer drinking, pot bellied and periscope wielding old school golf types. The field of players at the Doral event was the youngest ever so clearly the future of golf has arrived. While the casual fan was watching Tiger implode, Stephanie was focusing on the new breed of golfer. Players like Ryan Moore, Rory McIlroy and Dustin Johnson who all under the age of 30 and with tour titles under their belts all have their eyes on the Major Championships. I learned that Ryan Moore is not yet a fan of wine but the buzz around the tour predicts that with a few more titles, Ryan’s taste will change as he celebrates his wins with something a little more bubbly.

On the tour there aren’t a lot of young women like Stephanie covering the players, it’s a business that is still dominated by men and it makes her work even harder. This is her second year writing about the tour and the relevant, current and honest stories she provides has earned her the respect of  the players. Enough in fact to earn a nickname. The story goes that before the Sony Open in Hawaii there was a pre-tournament dinner party hosted by a player representative. What Stephanie didn’t know was that the rep, a few caddies and a player or two had bribed the bartender to make sure Stephanie’s glass was always filled to the rim. All Stephanie could do was stare and shake her head at how time and again she was getting these ridiculous pours. By the end of the night (and a tremendous amount of spillage) the players had nicknamed her “Red Wine Wei”. And so everyone at Wine Portfolio wants to thank “Red Wine Wei” for being a good sport and helping Wine Portfolio to navigate our first PGA Tournament.

Btw Stephanie has yet to settle upon a “favorite” red wine and we would love to hear from everyone out there what they think she should try. Send us your best red wine suggestion for “Red Wine Wei” in the comments and we will be sure to pass along all of your ideas along to her!

Jody’s best drive at the Cadillac Championship

March 13, 2011 7:09 pm - Posted by Zachary in Travel

Wine Portfolio’s week at the Cadillac Championship was a great one. We really enjoyed our interviews with PGA Tour players Ryan Palmer and Robert Karlsson. And we think the players were also happy to sit down with some media people who weren’t fixated on their backswing, their driving accuracy or whether Tiger’s new coach would help or hinder his chances of winning on the Tour. Jody and the Wine Portfolio team offered an oasis from golf and let the PGA Tour pros share their thoughts on their favorite wines and food pairings while out on the Tour, on vacation with their families, or in their own homes with friends.

Then we were off to the driving range where Wine Portfolio was “inside the ropes” to get some up close and personal footage of all the PGA Tour players warming up. It’s only when you are standing ten feet away from the current roster of the best 69 golfers in the world and watching them consistently strike 300 yard drives straight down the fairway that you realize just how good these guys really are.

But since we didn’t have the skills to drive the ball as consistently as the PGA Tour players on the driving range the next logical place for the Wine Portfolio team was the Cadillac hospitality suite. Hey everybody has their skills, and we know ours. As the title sponsor of the Cadillac Championship there were over 150 various vehicles on site at Doral but finding a Cadillac that wasn’t spoken for seemed as tough as making a “greenside lob over a bunker”. However the dogged efforts of Nick Twork and Bill Bentson saw us through. Check out the clip below for the results of Jody’s best drive at the Cadillac Championship. Yep it drives as good as it looks


Jody is behind the wheel of the just released 2011 Cadillac CTS Coupe.

Tales from the sand trap | Part 2

March 12, 2011 2:33 pm - Posted by Zachary in Eat

The official wine of the PGA Tour is Beringer Vineyards and this week at the Cadillac Championship Beringer’s iconic Winemaker Laurie Hook flew out from Napa to join Jody and Wine Portfolio in Florida. She was on hand to let us in on some of Beringer’s latest vintages and to tour Wine Portfolio around the facilities Beringer has set up for golf fans. Like our own Jody Ness, Laurie and Beringer like to help spread the love of wine and as the Official Wine of the PGA Tour they’re doing a great job of connecting with new wine drinkers.

Later in the day Laurie and Executive Chef Timothy Hughes of 5300 Chop House, the well known restaurant at Hyatt Miami at The Blue sat down with Jody over some food and wine to talk about the always hotly debated subject of food and wine pairing. Wine Portfolio fans can look forward to a great discussion on the theories of how to approach food and wine pairings from the perspective of a respected Winemaker and a Chef who takes his ingredients and flavors very seriously. Jody tried to stay neutral during this great discussion but since he is both a restaurateur and a wine lover, he also brought his own perspective.

In the end the debate was not settled as the passion for what food goes with what wine and how to best enjoy and complement the flavor of each is as timeless and ultimately as unanswerable as whether the chicken or the egg came first! However some great food and delicious wine was enjoyed overlooking the 12th fairway of the TPC Blue Monster at Doral. There are better jobs in the world, but at the moment I can’t think of them. If you would like to learn more about  Laurie Hooks’ thoughts on wine and food pairings go to Beringer and for more on current menus visit 5300 Chop House.

Tales from the sand trap | Part 1

March 9, 2011 10:31 pm - Posted by Zachary in Travel

This week Wine Portfolio is in Doral, Florida at the site of the iconic Doral Resort for the 2011 World Golf Championships Cadillac Championship at the TPC Blue Monster, say that three times quick, I dare ya! For simplicity sake, let’s stick with the WGC at Doral. So far we have had an amazing whirlwind experience of wine and golf in just the first 24 hours.  Jody has already posted a couple of pics from today with Charley Hoffman, Tiger Woods and Ben Crane and trust me, those pics are just a hint of the total experience of a jam packed day. I don’t want to toss any spoilers out there but let’s just say that when the first thing we film is Tiger Woods teeing off from the balcony of our 2,200 square foot luxury villa, fans of Wine Portfolio should know they are in for a real treat. Ben Crane has an absolute must see video on YouTube that you can see here , one viewing will not be enough to really enjoy this epic piece of deadpan comic gold. That’s all the time I have for today, we are off to another amazing wine event this evening. Stay tuned for more on the world of wine and golf from the sun drenched links at the TPC Blue Monster.

BTW everyone at Wine Portfolio wants to wish Kate Rose a very Happy Birthday and thanks both her and her husband Justin for their time today! Thanks guys! Stay tuned in the days ahead for more posts from the PGA Tour.