Winemaker Abe Schoener, instigator of the Scholium Project, sounds crazier than Sean Thackrey. Schoener says he makes wine by accident, through a process of trial and error, and is unapologetic about his less drinkable wines. When Eric Asimov wrote about his dislike of one of the Scholium Project’s wines, Schoener responded thusly:
“I am so sympathetic to your reaction to my wine,” he wrote. “I don’t think that you said anything unfair about it. It is a kind of behemoth.” He suggested that a roast chicken and a minimum of four people would make such a big wine more bearable.
Most winemakers tend to rival politicians in their efforts to stay on message and spin catastrophe into triumph, but Mr. Schoener freely and cheerfully discusses his failures, which made me receptive to his invitation to try some of his other wines. He makes 10 or so different wines each year, and a total of about 1,500 cases.
I had one of his wines at dinner a few months ago; it was really good. The wine shop around the corner from us sells a bunch of his stuff…time to go pick some up, I think.