I’m Bill Ward.
Like many wine scribes, I am a reformed sportswriter who got tired of not being able to boo, cheer or make fun of the officials at games. Conversely, now I can spit out wines I don’t like and make Homer Simpson yummy sounds with the really good stuff.
A Nashville native who still misses country ham and hot-water cornbread, I spent three decades-plus as a journalist in Murfreesboro, Tenn., Atlanta and Minneapolis. For the better part of a century (the 21st), I have focused on lifestyle writing, particularly food and wine. I won a James Beard Award in 2004 for a series on Italian regional cuisine, and after a lifetime of combining editing and writing duties, I became the world’s oldest cub reporter the next year.
Since 2007, I have been the Star Tribune’s wine columnist and have blogged for the newspaper and then this website. A major focus of my writing has been to help people feel comfortable in tasting, talking about, buying and ordering wine. Wine can be a social lubricant and a way to get a good buzz, or it can be much, much more than that — but it never should be a source of apprehension or anxiety. It is, after all, just fermented grape juice.
For many of us, this liquid elixir is part and parcel of “the good life.” Wine enthusiasts tend to also love food, and travel, and history, and reading; they might “geek out” a bit over a great bottle, but they would rather discuss myriad topics than talk wine to death.
In July 2014, I retired from the Star Tribune to devote my time to freelance wine and food enterprises, from blogs and books to hosting wine dinners and providing customized Wine County itineraries. My work has appeared in Wine Enthusiast, Sommelier Journal, Tasting Panel, the Grape Collective and Spanish Wine Lover websites and in hundreds of newspapers around the country.
I travel to wine regions regularly, judge several competitions annually and sample thousands of wines a year so you don’t have to (yes, it is work, involving a lot of frog-kissing).
This website is a portal into the people and places, the grapes and experiences, that bring us such everlasting and ever-evolving pleasure.
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Any questions about the blog or wine in general? Send me a note.