Not so long ago I railed against The Wine Enthusiast for being a boring copy of The Wine Spectator. Not that the writing was exactly the same, but because the format was a duplicate - down to the embarrassing black tie wine orgies of those with more bucks than knowledge, palate or taste, but possessed with a perfect memory for points. So I ignored The Wine Enthusiast for years, after all, what was the point of reading a bad copy of The Wine Spectator.
Recently several things have made me reexamine my prejudice against The Wine Enthusiast, some of which were driven by self-interest, but most were inspired by my admiration for their efforts. Mainly there is the bravado and talent of the Wine Enthusiast’s West Coast Editor Steve Heimhoff, who has argued his positions with intelligence, passion and consideration for the opinions of others, on his own blog, on Twitter and on other social network outlets. While there are many print journalists who try, Heimhoff has engaged the online community with energy, honesty and mutual respect and is now reaping the rewards of his integrity with mainstream exposure and expanded respect.
For whatever reason, The Wine Enthusiast has discovered its reason for being. I don’t know when or why it happened, but I’m very happy that it did.