…spontaneously fermenting


I really can’t complain about anything, after all I am a lucky guy. I do what I love and I have time to enjoy life.
Right now I’m sitting in the garden of a great beer pub in Krakow called Strefa Piwa (Beer Zone).
After living in Bergen, where it rains about 300 days a year, I’m loving the weather. It’s 6:30 in the evening and I’m sitting outdoors in shorts. It’s warm and more importantly, it’s dry.
To make things better, I’ve learned to appreciate beer, like the Mikkeller IPA Citra I’m sipping on now. Extremely aromatic. Fresh apricots and peaches fill my nostrils, with hints of licorice and flowers. Structured, fruity and fresh; even at 7+% abv. Too drinkable. Is this the way to describe a beer? I’m not sure, but that’s the way I describe a beer!
I just can’t help myself- I’ve been here three days in a row just to have this beer because once the keg is empty, that’s it – for now.
And I can’t complain about the price either. It’s not uncommon in Bergen to find Mikkeller’s beers for 90-100 NOK, whilst here I’m paying a teeny tiny 25 NOK for a half liter! Like I said, life is good! And of course I would draw these comparisons, it’s only natural since I DO work in Norway and live in Poland.
All this said, at the back of my mind is my upcoming trip back home to California. Seems like only yesterday since my last time, yet it’s been 5 1/2 years since my last trip home. Will I feel like a foreigner? Have things changed? Very likely both and yet I look forward to the trip none the less.
I look forward to introducing my wife to my old home, my childhood, my friends. I look forward to seeing old friends. I look forward to seeing family. I look forward to great food. I look forward to sun, sun, sun.
Happy summer to all my friends and family- see you all in August


Category: Events


Vinosseur's 2011

This video was meant to be posted last night, but thanks to my technological inabilities, it wasn’t.  Well here it is now as my first post of the 2012  along with a fresh new look and layout for Vinosseur. I would love to get your comments what you think about the new look!

Thank you all for this great year! Happy new year and see you in 2012!

Vinosseur’s 2011 from vinosseur on Vimeo.

Category: 1 WINE, Events, natural wine (100% living wine)


Wine, wedding and thank you

I consider myself an extremely lucky guy in many many ways.  But, there are two things especially that make me smile and feel fortunate. The first you know about already if you are reading this blog, that is wine. The other thing that makes me smile and feel fortunate is my new wife.

I met my wife on January 1st, 2010, we were engaged 4 months later on May 8th, and we got married July 9th, 2011.   The ceremony was a beautiful one that took place in Tarnów, Poland amongst  family and close friends. The reception that followed was a blast and thanks to some close friends, fantastic wines were enjoyed (many of which were a surprise).

Thank you for the 12 Magnums of 2010 Munjebel Bianco. Thank you for the 6 magnums of 2010 Felice Nebbiolo.  Thank you for the Asinoi, Lia Vi and  Mosto Parzialmente Fermentato.  Thank you for the Grüner, Blaufrankisch and the Graupert.  Thank you for the Flon Flon and the Anne François Joseph.

Thank you family. Thank you friends. But most of all, thank you Magdalena.

I will be on a brief pause for the coming weeks to celebrate my new life with my new wife.  Don’t worry, I will be back before you know it with more short stories, tasting notes and whatever makes me smile.



Category: Events


Wine & Music Evening

We would like to invite you to experience an evening of beautiful music and to taste some amazing wines, drugs especially selected to fit the music.  You will hear interesting stories from the wine world and you will have the possibility to enjoy Bacchus’ drink accompanied by live flute music.

Sommelier Joseph Di Blasi will introduce you to 3 great wines and Magdalena Kolodziejczyk, treatment flutist from the Philharmonic Orchestra in Krakow, sickness will present pieces from classical music repertoire.

Event place:       Jacob’s Bar & Kjøkken
Date:                     Sunday, August 1st 2010, 20:00 (8pm)
Entrance fee:     100 NOK*

*Wine is not included in the entrance fee

Category: Events


Robert Smith-Hald and Cuvée Raoul 2006

This being my 100th post here on vinosseur, what better topic than the two things I love: music & wine.  And what better day to publish this post – on my birthday!

This video was recorded on the 23rd of April at Café Herman in Leikanger, Norway. It was recorded with my old Nokia, so forgive me,  primarily for the audio quality.  If English is your language, then skip to 1’25” in the video (the first 1’20” is in Norwegian) for the English intro and dedication.

The artistRobert Smith-Hald.  Born in West Chester County, Pennsylvania into a secluded, nearly self-sufficient religious community called Camphill.  Robert’s upbringing, according to him, has definitely shaped his relationship to music quite keenly.  His lyrics and melodies reflect who he is and where he comes from.  Please also visit his MySpace page.

The wine:  2006 Domaine Le Mazel Cuvée Raoul – Gérald & Jocelyne Oustric have been making wine in the Southern Rhône without the use of sulfur since 1998.  The 2006 is a blend of Syrah and Grenache (approx 70/30) spontaneously fermented, macerated for 30 days, stored in cement and then bottled without filtration,   fining or the addition of sulfur.  One of my favorite wines and one of the most stable natural wines I know.  The wine improves for up to 10 days after opening and doesn’t begin to fade until around day 18.  I love it!

A very sponty nose with aromas of dark berries lifted by red fruit, farmyard and just enough volatility to make me want to jump up out of my chair and dance! Fantastic concentration and structure,  gripping tannins and enough freshness to help get the bottle down in minutes.  The 12-12.5% alcohol makes it also quite food friendly.

Enjoy the video!

Robert Smith-Hald & Cuvée Raoul from vinosseur on Vimeo.

Category: 1 WINE, 9 WINE THOUGHTS, Events, natural wine (100% living wine), Robert Smith-Hald and Cuvée Raoul 2006


A Winemakers Dinner – Fulvio Bressan

Event:  Bressan Wine Maker Dinner

Restaurant:  Jacob’s Bar & Kjøkken

Date:  Saturday, March 13th 2010

Host:  Fulvio Bressan, Vinosseur, 213 W Wine Imports

I have done a producer profile on Bressan in past posts, but nothing I have written could have prepared me for such a down to earth warm person such as Fulvio.  Energetic and outgoing, Fulvio entertained everyone at our table and the other tables as we made our rounds to introduce him to our guests.  I thought I was going to have my work cut out for me with the translating from Italian, but it turns out that Fulvio’s grasp of English is very good, making my job a little easier.  The turn out was better than anticipated with a completely full restaurant with even a few tables being turned.. for quaint little Bergen, this is quite a feat! Read the rest of this entry »

Category: 1 WINE, 2 PRODUCER PROFILE, 7 WINE MAKER DINNERS, Bressan, Bressan Mastri Vinai- Friuili-Venezia Giulia, Italy, Events, natural wine (100% living wine)


Natural Wine Makers in France – Part II – Jean-Pierre Robinot


(I am sorry for the quality of the photo’s in this post. Since I am not a photographer, I should really apologize at the beginning of every post, but the photos in this post are especially low quality – blamed on the settings being incorrect on my “wonderful” camera phone. Oh, and although this post seems long, it’s mostly full of pictures to entertain you) Read the rest of this entry »

Category: 1 WINE, 2 PRODUCER PROFILE, 9 WINE THOUGHTS, Events, Jean-Pierre Robinot - Loire Valley, France, natural wine (100% living wine), Natural Wine Makers in France

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Jacob's Bar & Kjøkken Wine List Updated for December – Unsulfured Wines Rule!

New for December – I have added the following symbol next to wines that have been made without the use of any sulfur whats so ever:


Our wine list now boasts 19 titles that are made without the use of any sulfur what so ever.  This is by far the largest selection of wines made without sulfur in Norway.  I am not including in this number, nor am I placing the NO SO2 symbol next to, any wine that has had minimal use of sulfur during the wine making process, but none added at bottling.  Had I included these titles, there would have been an additional 4 or 5 titles.  I feel it’s important to mention that these natural wines don’t merely make it on the wine list for looks. We sell these natural, un-sulfured wines on a daily basis. Read the rest of this entry »

Category: 1 WINE, 9 WINE THOUGHTS, Events, Jacobs Bar & Kjøkken Wine List Updates


Natural Wine Makers in France – Part I – Domaine Griottes

On my recent trip to France, I dove head first into the natural wine world, meeting with some of the greatest wine makers making wine today.  Between tasting the wines of these “hero’s” of natural wine at the various natural wine bars in Paris, to visiting them at their “domains”, I got to better understand their wines and the people behind them. I would like to apologize in advance for the quality of these photos!


The "Wine List" at Racines, Paris

The "Wine List" at Racines natural wine bar & restaurant, Paris

Monday, November 2nd 2009

2009-11-02_120097222009-11-02_12009723After having lunch with Jean-Marc Brignot (Jura) at Racines in Paris, where we consumed a 2002 skin-macerated Riesling from Alsace produced by Gérard Schueller with a gorgeous plate of pork, we headed for the Loire Valley. Our destination was Domaine Griottes, an approximate 5 hour drive south and West of Paris.  Since their wine “P’tite Gâterie” (here’s a tasting note for this wine) had been on my wine list for the past 6 months, this was a visit I was looking forward to.

Domaine des Griottes label detail with logo

Domaine des Griottes label detail with logo

Domaine Griottes is located in the small village of Saint Lambert du Lattay. Located in the Loire Valley (within the Anjou appellation) about 26km south of Angers, 175km from the West Coast. Patrick Desplats & Sébastien Dervieux are growing and making delicious wines from an almost unheard of local variety called Pineau d’Aunis.  A grape that made wines consumed by the nobility between the 13th and 15th centuries, it has almost completely disappeared from the Loire Valley save for some brave & passionate wine makers like Patrick and Sébastien. The grape produces some of the most exciting spicy red wines with aromas of grapefruit and pencil shavings. In my opinion, Domaine Griottes make some of the best examples in the Loire Valley from this grape. (Griottes also produces whites from the Chenin Blanc grape). All work in the vineyards and harvesting is done by hand with the help of Patrick’s ageing horse, Caroline.  Grapes are subsequently fermented in fiberglass. The P’tite Gâterie is then bottled, while the rest of the red cuvée’s and the whites spend some time in oak after fermentation. Although the use of oak is moderate and these wines are great, the oak is detectable and not entirely to my palate.


Patrick Desplats

We arrived around 2100 (9pm) and were quickly greeted by a very outgoing Patrick Desplats, a table full of things to eat

naturally fermenting apple sauce

naturally fermenting apple sauce

and of course wine by the magnum pouring.

We tasted all of the wines from previous vintages. Stunning wines all the way through the gamma, even the oak-influenced wines had stunning fruit qualities that could have only come from extremely healthy grapes that were subsequently spontaneously fermented, aged and bottled without even a milligram of sulfur! My kind of wines.

Drinking wine from a bull's horn!

Drinking wine from a bull's horn!


Tuesday, November 3rd 2009

Homemade herbal and flower teas

After a good night’s rest at Patrick’s house, we came down for a nice breakfast where we got to sample some of his home-dried natural teas made from various flowers and herbs growing in his yard.  Very inspirational!  We then headed over to the vineyards to see where his Pinea d’Aunis and Chenin Blanc was growing. In some of  their vineyards, the two grapes were growing together, side by side.  We shared a glass of wine with Patrick as we looked over the Loire Valley and talked about the nature and how passionate he was about what he was doing and the nature around him.  He and Sébastien had actually purchased a piece of forest separating his vineyards from the vineyards on the other side of the river. He wanted to keep the conventionally farmed vineyards as far away from his as possible.


As the sun began to set, we headed over to his winery and sampled his 2009’s directly from the fiberglass tanks. The fermentation was just finished. At this time, his 2009’s seem to be stunning. Fantastically concentrated wines with incredible amounts of structure while they were still light and fresh.  His P’tite Gâterie (which is a blend of Pinea d’Aunis, Gamay and Grouillot, the amounts, and grapes, varying from vintage to vintage) will be bottled directly from the fiberglass tank it was fermented in. His other cuvées like La Griotte, will spend some time in oak before being bottled. After tasting the current vintage and as we headed towards the door to leave, we noticed a tank of SO2 hanging from the ceiling where Patrick had placed it to express his dislike of sulfur!

Sulfur tank hanging from the ceiling!

Category: 1 WINE, 2 PRODUCER PROFILE, 9 WINE THOUGHTS, Domaine Griottes - Loire Valley, France, Events, natural wine (100% living wine), Natural Wine Makers in France


Jacob’s Bar & Kjøkken Wine List Updated for November

I have uploaded the November updated wine list which can now be viewed here.

New titles on the list:

  • Domaine Moreau-Naudet Chablis “Les Pargues Vieilles Vignes”  2006 – Burgundy, cialis France
  • Pierre Frick Gewurztraminer Steinert Grand Cru 2003 – Alsace, here France
  • Domaine Le Mazel Cuvée Raoul 2007- new vintage! – Rhône, France
  • Erbaluna Rosso VdT (no added sulfur) 2007 – Piemonte, Italy
  • Podere le Boncie “Le Boncie 5” 2007 – Toscana, Italy


Category: 1 WINE, 9 WINE THOUGHTS, Events, Jacobs Bar & Kjøkken Wine List Updates




Vinosseur is the company name of sommelier Joseph R. Di Blasi. is his web page where he writes about wine, food, restaurants and other gastronomic experiences.

Joseph has a special place in his heart for quality wines from the old world, especially France & Italy, with a strong focus on Organic, Biodynamic and Natural wines.

Joseph grew up in Italy and California, but left The States in 2002 and now resides in Poland.

Get in touch

Joseph would love to hear from you! You can contact him by email at