Humbleness seems an unknown phenomenon for this guy you might think, so let’s sort this out right away. I’ve gathered a lot of vinous knowledge during the last 20 years. But more important; I’ve learned that the more I dig into the world of wine the more I unfold – and that has resulted in the insight of knowing just how little I actually do know. So me, a wine virtuoso? Ha, don’t think so, but it doesn’t stop me from having the ambition to discover new regions, grapes, producers and wines. I’m simply a wine virtuoso apprentice.
And oh yes, I kinda like the name, Wine Virtuosity.
My name is Niklas Jorgensen. Wine has been a passion of mine for more or less 20 years now. Stockholm and Sweden is my base where I live and work. Two kids. One wife. I haven’t quit my day job yet, to fully enjoy the huge piles of money this writing thingie generates, but I’m considering it. My day job’s in the internet sector, in the top level domain business, but a substantial part of my working career has also been within the wine trade. Over the years I’ve also conducted more than a 100+ tastings, for all kinds of customers (well not all kinds, but you get the idea).
Swede but born Dane. European. World citizen. Wine is global and that is why I write in English. To reach as many wine interested and passionate as possible. Until now it has been very rewarding and has given me many new contacts, especially in my beloved Portugal and new-found passion, Tokaj.
Prejudice, what’s it good for? I strive for open-mindedness when it comes to wine. A wine should be judged by its quality only, not origin. What I enjoy the most, besides tasting the wine at the producer, is to sit down at home and give the wine the time it deserves. Follow it for a couple of days. A quick tasting note at a fair is nothing but a quick tasting note. That kind of reports I don’t think gives anything particularly useful back. He who tastes the most doesn’t win in my world.
Wine is passion. Let’s keep it that way! Besides, someone has struggled to make the wine you’re having and that is worth more than a quick 87 points – it is worth some respect. When visiting fairs and similar events, I rarely taste more than around 25 wines to give me, and the wines I choose to taste, more time.
If you want to send samples, then please contact me ahead. Most offers I turn down simply because they are not wines correlating with my preferences or focus areas. I don’t write about Champage. Hence I’m not interested in Champagne samples. If I do accept a sample I can’t guarantee I will publish a post or a comment about the wine. Not on my site, nor on the Facebook page or on Twitter.
Sending samples are not cheap, especially if you’re a small-scaled winery on a tight budget. But if you feel I’m the guy to taste your wines, then talk with me. Maybe we can work out a solution where costs are split? Furthermore, if a wine, a tasting or a promotion trip are paid for, that is, not by myself, then I will state that. For the record though; so far I’ve paid a majority of my wine trips on my own and that goes for the hotels as well. In 2013 I have attended the Decouvertes en Vallé du Rhône by invitation from Inter Rhône and also Franken by invitation from the German Wine Academy (most of the flight ticket paid on my own though).
Do I hesitate to make any money on my writing? See the drawing above? Does that guy look like an ascetic to you? Did not think so. Of course I’m honored if someone wants to consult me, have me conducting a tasting or write an article about one of my preferences. I have a Sole Proprietorship business for the purpose of this. However, my side business (which is pretty tiny) don’t affect what I am writing about since I would never do any paid promotional posts on my site. It’s also important to point out that I don’t sell wine or work for any importer or retailer.
For the record it also needs to be said that my expenses way exceeds the income in this passion of mine. Putting it money wise my calculation for 2013 says around 3,500 euros in writing/tastings/consultancy/sample values (not in that order necessarily) – and expenses for wine trips and wine purchases at around 7,000 euros.
I used to score (Hi hi). Wine is bottled poetry as Robert Louis Stevenson once wrote. I agree. Hence I’m describing the wine with words and not numerical ratings anymore. I know numbers makes life easier for especially retailers and producers, to sell the stuff, but it can also have the exact opposite effect if the score isn’t “good enough”. Besides, scoring would make too a many readers quit reading the text and scroll directly to the score. You see, numbers has a scary effect on us. Makes us loose all common sense and just activate the ‘must have’ signal in our brain. Use my word scale going from divine to undrinkable as a fun feature, to spice up tasting notes. If you want to quote me, I would love it if you’d link to my site or state where the text originates from. I would also appreciate if you ask me ahead, if you’d like to use any of my photos. Hate to send my musclemen after you.
Yes, I do accept banners on my site. Those currently on my sites are all retailers I use myself or fully trust. I like their assortment and they offer a selection I feel good about recommending. Consider it a consumer control. I do the hard work for you.
Bibliography. When writing you always rely on others work. No need to deny that. A lot of the information though is retrieved directly from the producers. I don’t have any intention to credit myself for all smart things said or written by others, so my ambition is always to link or correctly state where I found a quote or information. This of course, goes to all sources on internet as well. My ambition though, is to produce something that is mine, someting that adds either new information or looks at things from another perspective. No need to write off a back-label or tell you stuff others already has. However, there are some literature I couldn’t survive without and that I feel deserves an extra mention. The Oxford Companion to Wine (Editor Jancis Robinson), Bordeaux (Robert M. Parker Jr.), World Atlas of Wine (Hugh Johnson/Jancis Robinson) or Madeira, the Island Vineyard (Mannie Berk/Noël Cossart).
Contact? Should you wish to contact me then click on the contact form and send me an email. Besides Wine Virtuosity I run Mad about Madeira – a site entirely dedicated to the most breathtaking wine in the world. I also tweet, in English and sometimes in my mother tongue. Follow me here: NiklasJorgensen. Wine Virtuosity also has its own Facebook page. It saves me when life and work load simply don’t allow writing posts here. Facebook links: Niklas Jörgensen, Wine Virtuosity and Mad about Madeira.