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Sep 27, 2007 05:30 PM

Who is Daniel Duane?

I would imagine that if someone is blogging and doing videos on your site, there is a good reason, but I am unable to find out any background on this individual.

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  1. There is a good reason CHOW has Dan Duane writing and making videos about wine: he's a wine lover and a writer. More information is available if you plug his name into Google or

    8 Replies
    1. re: davina

      Sorry. Nothing helpful. Amazon returns a lot of books on surfing written by a Daniel Duane. Google doesn't mention anything about Daniel Duane and wine except on

      Davina, care to provide more details? How do you -- does Chowhound -- decide upon these people???

      1. re: zin1953


        This article from LATimes might help. It reads at the bottom:
        "Daniel Duane is the wine columnist for Men's Journal."

        1. re: RicRios

          Thanks. but I guess I was hoping for some background, some credentias, etc., etc.

          Ah, well . . . c'est la vie.

          1. re: zin1953

            You too old fashioned, Jason.
            Background? Credentials?
            Welcome to cybertimes. All you need now is a blog.

          2. re: RicRios

            Men's Journal is owned by Jann Wenner (Rolling Stone) who is now trying to hire the third editor this year.
            It is a general interest men's lifestyle magazine focused on outdoor recreation. Duane is the wine columnist. The publication has a circulation of about 700,000. I have no information whether that is paid/unpaid, audited or not.

            1. re: MakingSense

              I was thinking more about his credentials, not the magazine's.

              1. re: zin1953

                No credentials are being provided. Davina, who works for CHOW, simply said that he's a "wine lover" (lots of those) and a "writer" (lots of those too) but nothing further. She suggested that you check him out yourself on Google or Amazon.
                Those are pretty shallow research tools which are circular, as the references refer back to each other. Consequently, you must look into the types of publications that carry his work to see if they are serious and relate to wine or if they are not serious.
                In this case, the magazine focuses on outdoor recreation. It is up to you to judge if the readership of that publication might be interested in fine wines or are casual consumers, reading a wine columnist only to find quick advice for their purchases while or after enjoying outdoor sports.
                It's possible that Duane may be a excellent judge of fine wine and a great writer who is just picking up a few bucks at Men's Journal. It would be helpful to know more, but considering the paucity of information available, you're on your own.

                1. re: MakingSense

                  It's also possible that he's not . . .

      2. Zin, since you started this thread, I've read some of Duane's pieces. I can understand from reading your posts on CH, that as a serious wine student/lover/etc., you might have expected his work to center on wine details. It's not going to serve that purpose for you. Guess you aren't his target audience.
        As I looked at what we could discover about Duane from what little there is about him on publicly available sources, he's a lifestyle writer and that's what he's writing about - the lifestyle of young people who include food and wine in that life. He's married with kids and has old friends from college and new friends. Probably like a lot of the people who check out CH - but not everybody.
        Maybe he doesn't know much about wine but not everybody does or wants to. Maybe you didn't once upon a time. I think he's asking some provocative questions and, while there are times that I personally don't agree with him or wish that he would substantiate his claims, I enjoy the window on his world that he opens for me.
        CH attracts a wide range of participants. Not everything is for everybody. Enjoy what you do and ignore the rest. But skim some of Duane's pieces from time to time. He's got some interesting thoughts.

        13 Replies
        1. re: MakingSense

          I agree that I am not his target audience. That said, I would expect someone who is writing about wine to actually write about wine, to fact check, and not to make the sort of gross (and inaccurate) generalizations that Mr. Duane does.

          There is nothing wrong with being a "lifestyle writer." Perhaps my expectations are not aimed properly. Perhaps I shouldn't expect more from Mr. Duane, but rather from Chowhound. <shrug>

          1. re: zin1953

            "Perhaps I shouldn't expect more from Mr. Duane, but rather from Chowhound."

            Please don't confuse's editorial content with

            Edited to add: Wanted to add that bringing Jordan Mackay into CHOW has encouraged me to click on a wine story from time to time. As you can see from my earlier rant, I had little respect for the early wine writers and stopped looking at the articles because I would have felt compelled to fire off a letter to the editor for each one with a list of factual errors. While I don't always agree with Mackay, he doesn't littter his pieces with major bloopers that make me fume.

            1. re: zin1953

              I asked Dan Duane to write a wine blog for us. I love the stories of his life and how they intertwine with his enjoyment of and passion for wine. Unlike (our beloved) Jordan Mackay, who is reporting about wine, Dan is writing about the experience of wine. An accomplished and talented writer, he is a self-described wine amateur – a tremendously educated amateur, but an amateur nonetheless. (I’d hate to have lost the writing of M.F.K. Fisher, David Foster Wallace or Jay McInerney because they lack formal training in their subject matter.) It’s Dan’s remarkable talent for observing, contemplating and expressing his experience that I asked him to share with us. Personal as his writing may be, however, we are not complacent about any misinformation on CHOW. If you find any errors or inaccuracies anywhere on the site, please do let us know.

              1. re: jane

                There is nothing wrong with "personal writing" -- each and every GREAT writer has a personal style, that can, that should, that MUST come through in his or her writing.

                Jane, I have no desire to be "overly negagative," shall we say. But let me ask you a question. Read between the lines: why do you think I felt compelled to write the original post?

                Each and every video contains observations (and weak ones at that) in lieu of facts, or downright innacurate information. You want point-by-point? Give me an email address when I can communicate privately with you -- unless you really want me to do this in public.

                In the meantime, let me just point to the feedback that appears below Duane's videos . . .

       and are -- regardless of any pretense -- the same site. There is no warning, no pop-up window to alert the individual that he/she is now leaving the site and transitioning into the "sister" site of Graphics, layout, everything is identical. The only ways of knowing are: a) you actually bother to look at the URL line at the top of your browser and actually notice that "hound" has disappeared from the dot-com line; b) you actually notice that "CHOWHOUND for those who live to eat" has been replaced by "CHOW food drink fun"; or c) you helped design the site and know which is which. Clearly the attempt to "blur" the line is intentional -- you can seamlessly navigate between and betwixt the two (click on "boards" from a page; click on "blogs" from a page).

                P.S. I just noticed: even though this "board" is a URL, the title/name of this board is "Chow Feedback," not "Chowhound Feedback." It really IS one site . . .

                1. re: jane

                  Jane, I don't think your analogy that likens Daniel Duane's lack of formal training to that of MFK Fisher, et al., to be at all apt or serving your argument.

                  Daniel Duane is a self-admitted novice to wine, and the enjoyment of it. There are times I enjoy his waxing, lyrical innocence. I understand how this might be appealing to other wine novices.

                  His content, though, often lacks substance, and sadly lacks the very thing you purport he is covering -- the enjoyment of wine.

                  Chow cannot hope for the likes or wine genius of Jason (zin1953) or Melanie Wong to grace its pages (except in their posts). But it appears Duane's amateur status goes too far in the other direction -- not enough wine knowledge, or oddly, not enough of his wine knowledge, wine experiences or wine discoveries make it into his writing. Meandering, personal experiences are more the norm.

                  Inaccuracies are a much bigger issue. Chow's blogs and articles are riddled with them. While most blogs in the blogosphere are notoriously inaccurate, blogs and articles published under the Chow umbrella need to be held to a higher standard. Chow's mission, after all, is to inform and educate, not mislead.

                  It appears that Chow does not employ editors (to guide writers as to content, or lack thereof) or fact-checkers (to ascertain accuracy). If the budget does not allow for editorial staff, then please insist that the writers themselves self-edit and fact-check (providing source/pub, date, author, etc. with their submissions).

                  When Chow does neither, it neglects a basic responsibility of publishing, even online publishing.

                  Perhaps it would be wiser to publish fewer, but more accurate, articles.

                  1. re: maria lorraine

                    I hope you'll point out the inaccuracies as you find them. Thanks.

                    1. re: jane

                      Do you want the inaccuracies pointed out in public, Jane, or privately?

                      1. re: zin1953

                        Hi, zin1953 - I actually emailed you a while ago to take you up on your offer above. Public, private - as you wish.

                      2. re: maria lorraine

                        In case Chowhound wine lovers missed it, there's another CHOW contributing writer posting on wine.

                        Kara Zuaro had an offering in Grinder on California's Roshambo winery titled "Hipster Wino TV." Something about a reality TV series that never quite got off the ground.

                        She's the editor of an cookbook on the favorite recipes of indie band rockstars.

                    2. re: zin1953

                      I'm gonna log in with zin1953 here. I don't yet find anything relevant, interesting, or pithy about Mr. Duane's pieces, not even from the perspective of a lifestyle writer, but I certainly don't see why he needs to do it under the auspices of a "wine blog".

                      So far I have found "chow" to be in nearly every way that interests me to be much inferior to "chowhound", even though it appears the people who run both are planning on making chowhound the poor sister to the big commercial ad-driven site.

                      From the perspective of this average user however, no protestations of "oh we want you to think of them as two separate sites" will override seeing myself typing into chowhound posts while a list of intermingled chow and chowhound topics float over to my right. That makes you one group of people heading in two different directions with plenty of attendent "huh?" from those of us who access you. You would be much better off to separate them completely except for a "related-links" page that the rest of us can ignore when we please.

                      1. re: fussycouple

                        Chowhound ran nearly a decade on love alone, and that just isn't enough for long term sustenance. CNET has kept us alive, while (per Tatum's postings, which Melanie linked to above) being careful to respect the intelligence of this community, and taking steps to protect it. The flavor of CHOW was never intended to match the flavor of Chowhound. It's a different thing (for one thing, we're a community, whereas CHOW does editorial).

                        It's been nearly two years since the CNET acquisition, and when I surf these boards, I still see lots of smart, generous, interesting, chowhoundish postings. I'm extremely happy about this. And I hope CHOW does very well indeed, because CNET, unlike me, is unwilling to slog this along as a labor of love for years and years. If you value Chowhound, you ought to be rooting for CHOW, as well (though, per Jane's posting - and per this very board's scope - negative feedback is invited).

                        The Chowhound tone and spirit are amply alive in these message boards (which, though run under supervision of the CHOW people, are day-to-day managed by the same awesome staff of hounds that's run this operation all along). Everything else is CHOW. And may the entire ball of wax survive for decades, so we hounds needn't ever revert to (shudder) Za.....zaaaa....zaaaaaaaaaaa....(I can't choke out the word).

                        1. re: Jim Leff

                          PS-- Woops, I forgot..."Digest" is an's editorial by and about this community (it's what used to be named "ChowNews"). You can find it under "blogs" in the header.

                          Also I'll throw in a plug for my Chow Tour (8000 miles of driving, eating, reporting):

                  2. ummm, i'm relatively new to this site. but, what is the difference between "chow" and chowhound? aren't they the same?

                    3 Replies
                    1. re: alkapal

                      I'm sure others can explain it better than I, but and CHOW were two separate entities that were both acquired by CNET. The message boards are "chowhound" and I think the editorial stuff - everything you see under "Stories" and "Blogs", as well as the recipes - are "CHOW". CHOW used to be a magazine.


                        1. re: alkapal

                          To my mind, one of the main differences is that the content of chowhound is created by the users, while the content of chow is "editorial" - i.e., written by people paid by chow.