“Sod the wine, I want to suck on the writing. This man White is an instinctive writer, bloody rare to find one who actually pulls it off, as in still gets a meaning across with concision. Sharp arbitrage of speed and risk, closest thing I can think of to Cicero’s ‘motus continuum animi.’

Probably takes a drink or two to connect like that: he literally paints his senses on the page.”

DBC Pierre (Vernon God Little, Ludmila’s Broken English, Lights Out In Wonderland ... Winner: Booker prize; Whitbread prize; Bollinger Wodehouse Everyman prize; James Joyce Award from the Literary & Historical Society of University College Dublin)





08 January 2009



Tool Man Is Wine's Cool Man


This Christmas, one of the Tuscon, Arizona newspapers ran a disbelieving piece about getting an e-mail from Maynard, the mysterious reclusive rockstar winemaker from up in the hills smack dab there in the middle of northern Arizona.

The editors were incredulous. Maynard was warning them about his visits to a few wine stores, where he’d be autographing his newly-released wines.

After years out in the web-free badlands, I now live near the internet, so I squashed Tool’s ode to Maynard’s lovely departed Mum, 10,000 Days, into the CD spinner, wound it up to eight, and got onto CADUCEUS.

Stick by stick, Maynard’s put a very serious, individual vineyard-based premium winery together. With his mates, and saints and angels. CADUCEUS is now the best wine website I’ve seen: every step of the long pioneering process described in a reverential, astonished whisper; every contributor carefully acknowledged; every insect, ridge and stone painstakingly recorded.

Along with his account of that tasting at Magill.

It contains nothing about broadacre monocultural petrochem Nazi grapeyards that strobe as you drive past and make your friggin' brain strobe as you try to kidney filter their fruit.

It is all about painstaking, wholesome goodness.

I turned Tool off, and vaporised into the mystic mountain whoosh of the music on CADUCEUS.

The texts begin with a prayer of awe to Max Schubert.

Everybody in this madhouse can learn from Maynard James Keenan.

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