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Sep 24, 2017

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Letter From Publisher Vol 6.2
by Darryl Roberts
Magazine Issue: U.S. Vol. 6.2
Progress? No. We stumble and if the direction happens to be forward, well that’s just swell. Mostly, we just drink a lot of booze, crank the stereo and hope no one calls 911. - S. Duda

Let’s just cut to the chase. The reasoning behind the next 70-plus pages is this: the vast majority of our readers has joined us within the past two years. We still have a good number of loyal “hangers-on” from the beginning (nine years ago), but through viral marketing efforts, special subscription programs and just plain down-and-dirty grassroots tactics, we’ve increased our readership 800 percent in the past two years. Not a brag. Just reality.

So it dawned on us that a lot of you might not know who we really are and where we’ve come from. So rather than write about it (as I did last issue), we decided to offer you a look back at some of the highlights that’ve helped define and shape Wine X Magazine.

For instance, on page 10 you’ll find Bob Blumer’s (The Surreal Gourmet) most requested recipe - how to poach salmon in your dishwasher. Yes, you read correctly. Cook dinner, clean your dishes and entertain your guests all at the same time. Kinda like speed dating but without the mess. On page 14, we’ve reprinted Tina Caputo’s infamous mock wine-tasting article, Toothpaste: The Misunderstood Epicurean Delight, in which she acquaints you with the sensual pleasures of brushing your teeth. Toothpaste, it seems, deserves the same ritualistic attention as shown a fine bottle of wine. Okay.

Our music editor, S. Duda, takes a look back at his somewhat erratic list of recommendations and reviews...and reviews of reviews that should never have been reviewed (page 34). In his own words, he’s offering up “...a humble list of regrets, screw-ups and general incompetencies with the promise that I’ll try to do better next time.” Next time? Gee, thanks.

The big spread in this issue (page 40) provides our look back at celebs who’ve graced our covers. As the intro to The Insider explains, covers can make or break a magazine. Fortunately we’ve had our share of successful images. We’ve also had a few “What the fuck were we thinking?!” moments. Regardless, each cover has its own little story behind it, which we openly share with you. Fluff? Of course. But at least we’re honest.

Speaking of hot covers, Anthony Azizi graciously accepted our invitation to appear in this issue. Wine X photog extraordinaire Tony Donaldson captures Anthony’s spirit on the surface, while Diane Anderson-Minshall digs deeper into Anthony’s battle with balance, tolerance and being an Iranian today in the U.S. See it all, beginning on page 58.

Speaking of Tony Donaldson, since we really don’t pay him a whole lot (do we pay him at all?), we decided it was time to showcase some of his “non-Wine X” work. In Goin’ Big (pages 64-75), you’ll find some incredible images Tony’s taken over the years in his various other gigs. The man has a talent shooting action sports...and cover celebs naked in the hot tub, but that’s another story.

Now, it wouldn’t be like us to just dwell in the past. It’d be a lot easier. But not right. So we asked Rage columnist Lora Lewis to uncover the next big craze to sweep the country. Her prediction: Iron Composer (page 18). Take Iron Chef, substitute musicians for chefs, throw in some alcohol and prosthetic wear, and you’ve got reality TV by the...you know. Okay, for those of you shaking your heads, noodle this: five years ago we predicted poker would be the next big thing. Anyone laughing now?

Last, but certainly not least, Chris Sawyer wraps up his Nudist Camp series (page 28) with a look at biodynamic farming. It’s kinda creepy - burying bull horns in the vineyard, farming by rhythms of the sun and planets, harvesting by the proximity of the moon... (Wasn’t that a Buffy episode?) Anyway. It’s a great educational piece that removes the mystery (and chemicals) from your wine.

Well, that’s it. Have fun reading. ‘Til next time...

Darryl

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