“Of all the importers I know, Theise is the only one whose id is directly connected to his mouth” -Eric Asimov, New York Times Wine Critic
Terry Theise has been a wine importer and writer for thirty years. His first love is German Riesling which was once a staple at the finest tables in America but had been largely forgotten when Terry began working with a group of small German growers in 1985. Twenty years ago he discovered vastly underappreciated and underrepresented Grüner Veltliner, Riesling, St. Laurent, Blaufränkisch (and even more obscure varieties) from top growers in Austria. Due in no small part to Terry’s work, the landscape of Austrian wine in the United States has shifted from nonexistent to classic, noble, and necessary. A decade and a half ago his love of honest and compelling wines from small growers brought him to Champagne. Terry assembled a portfolio of Grower Champagnes – a category that then hardly existed – and it remains today without equal.
Terry’s approach is vastly divergent from that of many of his colleagues. The growers he works with and the wines he selects must speak to something genuine and real beyond their basic flavor. His wines have in common a distinct character, a point of view, vitality, and a voice. They express the land, the grower, and the time in which they were made. These wines convey to the drinker a sense of beauty, harmony, meaning, and above all pleasure.
Terry’s viewpoint opens a door to a different world of wine, one that does not disconnect this agricultural ‘product’ from its human and emotional element. He speaks his mind openly and without hesitation, connecting his ideas about wine, life, sex, philosophy – even mysticism. While his writing is vivid, colorful, and wildly entertaining (think Monty Python meets George Carlin), the message is clear and essential.
Terry Theise’s philosophy is displayed on the first page of his annual catalogs: Beauty is more important than impact. Harmony is more important than intensity. The whole of any wine must always be more than the sum of its parts. Distinctiveness is more important than conventional prettiness. Soul is more important than anything, and soul is expressed as a trinity of family, soil, and artisanality. Lots of wines, many of them good wines, let you taste the noise. But only the best let you taste the silence.
The Man, the Myth, the Legend! If it is true that the road of excess leads to the palace of wisdom, Terry Theise has been there and back. A brief perusal of his writing makes it quickly apparent that the man has no reservations about conveying his thoughts and feelings on wine, life, sex, philosophy and general cosmology. In Terry’s world, it’s all inter-related. So, without further ado, we encourage you to jump headlong into the wonderful world of Terry Theise German, Austrian and Champagne Estate Selections. Prepare yourself for a psychotropic experience.
The Theise Manifesto
- Beauty is more important than impact.
- Harmony is more important than intensity.
- The whole of any wine must always be more than the sum of its parts.
- Distinctiveness is more important than conventional prettiness.
- Soul is more important than anything, and soul is expressed as a trinity of family, soil, and artisanality.
Terry Theise Press
-seriouseats.com, July 11, 2011
-winereviewonline.com, August 14, 2007
-The New York Times, August 8, 2007
-Seattle Weekly, July 2007
-Seattle Weekly, February 2007
-New York Sun, February 2007
-Boston Spirit Magazine, January 2007
-Wall Street Journal, December 8, 2006
-Bloomberg, November 2006
-Las Vegas Food & Beverage Magazine, August 2006
-winereviewonline.com, September 19, 2006
-Wine & Spirits Magazine, Fall 2006
-New York Times, July 19, 2006
-Forbes.com, May 2006
-New York Times, April 12, 2006
- Wine & Spirits Magazine: Hirsch Grüner Veltliner “Lamm” Wine of the Month
-Wine & Spirits Magazine, March 2006
- New York Times Style Magazine: Eiswein Gets Press
-New York Times Style Magazine, Spring 2006
- Wall Street Journal: The Return of Reisling
-Wall Street Journal, March 2006
- Wine & Spirits: Theise Selection is One of the Wines of the Month
-Wine & Spirits, December 2005
- Gourmet Magazine: Top Grower Champagnes
-Gourmet Magazine, December 2005
- New York Times Style Magazine : Theise Grower Champagnes
-New York Times, December 4, 2005
- Saveur: More Press for Theise Grower Champagnes
-Saveur, December 2005
- Food & Wine: ‘Triumph of Small Grower Champagnes’
-Food & Wine December 2005
- Food & Wine Selects Terry as the 2005 Importer of the Year
-Food & Wine, October 2005
- Generation Next: 3 of Terry’s Winemakers Highlighted
-Food & Wine, October 2005
- New York Times LOVES Terry’s Austrian Rieslings
New York Times, May 2005
- Why Terry Theise is our 2001 Man of the Year
-Wine & Spirits Buying Guide 2001
- The Most Influential Wine Personalities of the Last 20 Years
-The Wine Advocate, Issue 120
- Buying Wine Backwards
-Richard Nalley, Forbes.Com 03.04.02