#92 “Crossing” August 8, 2014

by Grape Stomper Todd on August 8, 2014


GTRTODDCAST EPISODE 92: SHOW NOTES: Outline for this week’s episode:


Greetings Moonstoners, today is August 8th and on this day in 1963, the British woke up to disturbing news.  A large gang of thieves ambushed a Royal Mail train heading to London and made off with over 2.5 million pounds.  This event has been dubbed the Great Train Robbery.   15 robbers were involved, and though almost all were caught and served prison time, most of the money was never recovered.  It was a well-planned heist that involved disabling a railroad crossing at the Bridego Railway Bridge.  Over the years, the robbery has been immortalized in several books, a few British television series, and numerous films.

And that brings us to our Wine Word of the Day:  Crossing

In wine speak, crossing refers to grapes created by breeding two varieties of the same genus.  Crosses are created in an effort to produce a plant with the best traits of its parents, such as disease and pest resistance and better adaptability to environmental conditions.  

These crossings can occur intentionally or naturally. An example is the chance crossing of Cabernet Franc with Sauvignon Blanc to give us one to most enjoyed wines of all time, Cabernet Sauvignon.

If you cross species of grapes like the European vitis vinifera with the American species vitis labrusca, that is known as a “Hybrid” grape.  Chambourcin is a good example of such a popular hybrid grape grown in the United States. That grape was bred to resist fungal infections that are prevalent in humid environments.

In fact, many vines even in Europe can be thought of as hybrids. Especially if you consider most of France’s Bordeaux region is planted on Texas rootstock that is resistant to phylloxera. The growers there graft on their famous Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and other European native grapes on to American rootstock to avoid damage from the hungry nematodes.

Not that the French would care to admit that vines from Texas are one secret to their success. That fact still makes them a little “cross”.

For transcripts, links and more Toddcasts, go to moonstonecellars.com/wwd.  If you have any suggestions for more words, historical facts, or tips on which summer movies to see, because I’m going to recommend “Miller’s Crossing”, a prohibition-era gangster movie about competing mobs trying to control the liquor business on their turf, please send emails to, info@moonstonecellars.com

And until next time, cheers to you!

TASTING ROOMORS (Happenings in the Tasting Room) 

Party cancelled for Aug. 16th
Moonstone Cellars coming to Rhode Island soon! 

Sure, why not.
I’m getting better!
Leo, someone has been trying to tell you something, but maybe you aren’t listening, which is good because what they are trying to tell you might not be true.  Keep an open ear, but afterward, do some research.  When they tell you that they have found a $4 bottle of wine that’s as good as any $100 bottle of wine, don’t take their word for it, try it for yourself.  But trust us, you will probably want to keep the spit bucket handy.
Falling under the category of strange laws… in West Virginia, a bar is able to advertise prices for liquor and mixed drinks, but it is unlawful to advertise a brand name.  So I guess you have to order that beer with the Clydesdales or that  (ahem) water from Colorado.

Voice Over Talent – Ellen Dawson and Emmy-Award Winner,  Andrew Dawson (Andrew’s YouTube Channel)
Utter Nonsense – Jill and Todd


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