Originally created 12/05/01

New columnist offers the latest on the wine line



Today The Augusta Chronicle introduces Wine Talk, a weekly wine column by Lain Bradford.

"My approach to wine is simple: Get rid of the snobbiness and make wine approachable," he said. "Wine is meant to be fun, and the only true great wine is one that you love and remember."

Each Wednesday, Mr. Bradford will discuss a different wine. He'll say when and where it was produced, describe its characteristics and discuss the foods it complements.

Today's column on Page 2D addresses what wines to serve with traditional holiday entrees: roast beef, turkey, ham, lamb and venison.

Mr. Bradford has written a wine column for The State newspaper in Columbia for two years. He'll review different wines in his Chronicle column.

Most of wines in Wine Talk will cost about $15. All are available at liquor, wine or grocery stores in Georgia and South Carolina.

Mr. Bradford, a member of Tasters Guild International, is a wine promoter who travels to Georgia and South Carolina speaking at wine tastings, dinners and other trade events.

His interest in wine has taken him across America and to the great wine regions of Europe and California.

"I have been interested in wine since the age of 16. I attended a wine-appreciation class with my parents and was hooked," he said. "From there I would attend various tastings in the community to continue to learn more about all the different aspects of wine."

He worked at several restaurants in Aiken and Augusta that offered fine dining and broad wine selections before going to Atlanta to be head catering chef for Coca-Cola Olympic City.

"It was in this venue that I was able to pair and try different wine and food combinations," he said.

After the Olympics, he moved to New York to manage the private bars and dining rooms of Giants Stadium. After a year, he went to Santa Fe, N.M., where he oversaw catering at Los Alamos National Labs.

He returned to Aiken a few years ago to manage Up Your Alley and Olive Oils restaurants, where his specialty was stocking the cellars.

For the past three years, he has worked for a South Carolina wine distributor in Columbia. To avoid a conflict of interest, the wines he reviews in Wine Talk will be recommended by Georgia wine distributors.

He works part time at Wine World in North Augusta and maintains a Web site, winetalk.org.

If you have trouble finding a wine discussed in Mr. Bradford's column, have a question, or would like to request a review of a wine, you may reach him by e-mail at lainb@bellsouth.net or write him in care of The Augusta Chronicle Newsroom, PO Box 1928, Augusta, GA 30903. He also invites readers to submit feedback on his column.

Reach Elizabeth Adams at (706) 823-3348 or eadams@augustachronicle.com.