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Underground Wine Line

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THE UNDERGROUND IS BACK!

John Tilson • 11/5/13        Print This Post Print This PostComment Bookmark and Share

 im back uwl

Just when some thought that I had disappeared into the big Underground wine cellar in the sky, I am back to earth! You see, when I last communicated I thought I would be gone for a few weeks. But, I underestimated. I had something far more serious, a staph infection in my spine that required emergency surgery and a one month hospital stay as well as several months of rehabilitation at home. So I am just now coming back and tasting and drinking a little wine with articles soon to follow.

the great wine celler in the clouds

Not to bore you with the details, but there is one thing I will share with you. At some point in my drugged state, I really did feel I was ascending into the great Underground wine cellar in the sky. Surrounding me in the blurred distance were glasses full of wine and many open bottles. They included the great old Inglenook Cabs, 1934, 1941, 1944, 1949 and many others, great old Burgundies such as 1945 DRC Richebourg and Romanée-Conti, 1949 La Tache, the great Norm Mini Eisele Vineyard Cabernets from the 1970s and the great Diamond Creek Cabernets from the 1970s including the phenomenal 1978 Lake, many great Champagnes to numerous to mention, fabulous White Burgundies from the 60s and 70s including those from Ramonet and DRC, as well an endless line-up of others from my past tasting experience that disappeared into the haze.

But, now that I am back, it’s time to come back to earth and re-focus on the Underground. An article on charity auctions will soon be posted. Later, we will have a long delayed article on the greatest wines ever tasted by our contributing editors and I will include my list at the end. In the near future I will also have a brief synopsis of the wines I had tasted before my time out, including the great new wines from Mount Eden and Ridge Vineyards, as well as notes on a few other terrific wines. I missed the Burgundy trip this year (one of only a very few I have missed since my first trip in 1981), but my long time friends and contributing editors, John Brincko and Geoffrey Troy, are there now and will carry on. John has been on many trips over the years and Geoffrey has not missed a trip since 1981 (he’s the youngest!). They will continue the Underground tradition and I will post brief notes on their findings as I receive them.

All in all, there is lot’s to come. Thanks for your kind words, thoughts and prayers in my absence. I look forward to hearing from all of you as we forge ahead into the future with honest, no nonsense, and understandable wine commentary. And, once again, please pass on the Underground to your friends!

 

In Vino Veritas,Sig

John Tilson

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28 comments for “THE UNDERGROUND IS BACK!”

  1. Hi John,
    It sounds as if you died, went to Wine Heaven, and then returned again judging by the lineup you described! I am at once saddened by the seriousness of your illness and gladdened by your recovery.
    Cheers,
    Dan

    Posted by Dan Collins | November 6, 2013, 6:55 am
  2. Welcome back John!

    What a frightening experience. I’m so glad you’re back.

    Posted by Fred Gerber | November 6, 2013, 9:14 am
  3. You were greatly missed. So amazing how positive your remain through it all, winding up with your Wine Cellar Heaven musings. Looks like you’re headed in the right direction after all, sometime after your last bottle is gone. Godspeed on your full recovery.

    Bill

    Posted by Bill Tisch | November 6, 2013, 10:05 am
  4. John:

    This had to be a terrifying ordeal, but delighted to hear you have stayed so positive, and are coming back.

    Cheers,

    -Keith

    Posted by Keith Wollenberg | November 6, 2013, 10:27 am
  5. God Bless you and Laurie. Great news that you are back and tasting again.

    Posted by Barbara Gantz | November 6, 2013, 10:33 am
  6. John, what a great way to start my day – seeing the UWL in my inbox ! Great progress buddy – keep pressing brick.
    Charlie

    Posted by Charlie Davison | November 6, 2013, 4:22 pm
  7. Welcome back John!

    Posted by Martin D Redmond | November 6, 2013, 9:56 pm
  8. Glad to see you’re posting again! Those infections can be terrible – I had one in my elbow and was out of commission for five days. The spine must have been terrible!

    Hope you’re feeling better and enjoying all the wine you’re drinking these days.

    Posted by Chris | November 7, 2013, 8:36 am
  9. John,

    I’m so glad to know that you are recuperating and back in action.

    Sounds like you had an out-of-bottle experience! It shows that you live a righteous life….Otherwise you might have been given a glimpse of that other place, where there are cauldrons of Thunderbird and White Zinfandel bubbling for all eternity.

    All the Best

    Mort

    Posted by Mort Maizlish | November 12, 2013, 10:29 am
  10. So glad you are well. I have tried to keep up with you over the years. Very proud of you old friend. Judy

    Posted by Judy Hon | December 4, 2013, 1:20 am
  11. Thanks Judy. It took me a bit to recognize the name. When I knew you your name was different! That was a long time ago and there has been a lot that has transpired in the last 50+ years!! It is nice to hear from you.
    You can read about my history with wine on the website and please stay in touch. I’m sure that I do not have another 50 years!
    In vino veritas,
    John

    Posted by John Tilson | December 5, 2013, 1:21 am
  12. I can write about illness like you write about wine. I am very sorry you are catching up in that category. I have to say that you could have gotten much more mileage out of a MRSA staph infection in your spine, but you’d have lost all your normal readers and kept a few co-miserators like me. Experiences like this really do move the special bottles up front.

    Posted by frank parker | December 31, 2013, 5:20 pm
  13. I wondered why the stream of GREAT wine info was interrupted, but I am delighted that you
    are back on the mend !! Wish you both a GREAT
    NEW YEAR. Hope we get together for some fine
    wine tasting in the coming year. RON & SHEILA

    Posted by RON LIGHT | January 1, 2014, 12:38 am
  14. John, sorry to hear of your health problems, but happy you are recuperating. My 92 birthday is coming up and I am still vertical and am writng a wine column for publication every other week for publicatio in the Napa Valley Register.

    Posted by George Starke | January 3, 2014, 1:21 pm
  15. Thanks Fred,
    It is great to be back and vertical again. And, it’s great to be enjoying wine again too!
    In Vino Veritas,
    John

    Posted by John Tilson | January 25, 2014, 4:00 pm
  16. Thanks Dan,
    It was quite experience, but I am well on my way to being back in top form. Stay tuned. There will be more from the Underground soon.
    In Vino Veritas,
    John

    Posted by John Tilson | January 25, 2014, 4:01 pm
  17. Hi George,
    Thanks for your kind note. I am feeling much better and also now vertical! What are you planning for your 92nd?
    Allen Balik sends me his column from the Register and is a contributing editor to the Underground. Would you like to do the same?
    What do you think of the extracted, high alcohol, super ripe Napa Cabs that have taken over?
    In Vino Veritas,
    John

    Posted by John Tilson | February 11, 2014, 10:57 am
  18. Hi Ron,
    Thanks so much. I am planning to do the events that I had hoped to do last year before I fell apart. One of those is the dinner featuring Mount Eden Cabs. We had talked about this a year or so ago. I will keep you posted.
    In Vino Veritas,
    John

    Posted by John Tilson | February 11, 2014, 11:00 am
  19. Thanks Frank. I’m glad there are those that know all about illness. I owe my life to them. But, it’s a lot more fun enjoying and writing about wine. I am glad to be here!
    In Vino Veritas,
    John

    Posted by John Tilson | February 11, 2014, 11:05 am
  20. Thanks Mort. It’s good to be back and enjoying life again. Yes it was an out-of-bottle experience. I do everything I can to avoid the wines you describe as well as the big numbers fruit bombs. Life is really too short to drink such really bad wine!
    In Vino Veritas,
    John

    Posted by John Tilson | February 11, 2014, 11:09 am
  21. Thanks Martin! It’s good to be back!!
    In Vino Veritas,
    John

    Posted by John Tilson | February 11, 2014, 11:10 am
  22. Thanks Charlie. So far so good. Looking forward to good times in 2014.
    In Vino Veritas,
    John

    Posted by John Tilson | February 11, 2014, 11:10 am
  23. Thanks Chris. Yes infections are no fun! We both know. It’s good to be active again and getting back to my old form!
    In Vino Veritas,
    John

    Posted by John Tilson | February 11, 2014, 11:12 am
  24. Thanks Barbara. It’s be a journey, but I am much better and looking forward to 2014. Please stay in touch.
    In Vino Veritas,
    John

    Posted by John Tilson | February 11, 2014, 11:13 am
  25. Thanks Keith. I am much better and looking forward to 2014. I have already made plans for my Burgundy trip this fall!
    In Vino Veritas,
    John

    Posted by John Tilson | February 11, 2014, 11:15 am
  26. Thanks so much Bill. I am really much better now and looking forward to seeing you in 2014. There are still many great bottles of wine out there and some one has to drink them!
    In Vino Veritas,
    John

    Posted by John Tilson | February 11, 2014, 11:16 am
  27. I just did a google search about your wine letter as my father was a long time subscriber as I wonder about you and the letter. After spending 2 hours reading the articles on the website I am so happy you are healthy and drinking. Looking forward to many more articles. Drink well.

    Posted by Jamie Garard | January 6, 2015, 11:21 am
  28. Thanks Jamie. Glad you found us and happy to hear that your dad was a long time subscriber. I’ll keep at it so long as there is a story to tell. Welcome aboard!
    In Vino Veritas,
    John

    Posted by John Tilson | January 6, 2015, 2:11 pm

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