Who are The Stupids?

Well-known bon-vivant Jim Daugherty and man-about-town Stuart Yaniger.

Formal Stupids by Cynthia Wenslow

How did this whole mess get started?

Back in the Stone Ages of cyber-wine-geek history, Prodigy had a proprietary bulletin board system that was quite the place to hang out on. Writers like Robert Parker, Harvey Steinman, Dan Berger, wine intellects like Art Caputi, future cyber-personalities like Robert Callahan and Mark Squires… it was a pretty fun time. JD and SY were always happy to throw a little gas on the fire and, after some time, found that their basic food and wine philosophies (if not tastes) were pretty well-aligned. A few particularly well-lubricated weekends provided some sick entertainment, and the concept of The Stupids was fertilized.

What were the defining moments of Stupidity?

Oh, there have been so many! JD covering every square inch of Steve Ein’s newly-decorated bathroom with red puke (recycled Grange and La Mouline), then mooning a 10-year-old little girl. The boys getting into a street fight at midnight near Lulu’s during Gay Pride Weekend in San Francisco. Being totally toasted at a convention of midgets and dwarves. Teaching Stephane Ogier the meaning of “cheese-eating surrender monkey.” But mostly, things like four-course meals with top wines to accompany ’49ers games.

Why does The Stupids website exist?

To stroke our tiny little egos, to provide a still, small voice in the vast wasteland of wine criticism and cooking geeks. Some people have even told us that we had something useful to say.

Two guys who cook together. Ummm…?

While we do get “knowing” looks from the people at farmers markets and frou-frou grocery stores when we shop, and we lived in the Bay Area, we are Hetero He-Men. You don’t have to be gay to be a male who’s fussy about tomatoes. Not that there’s anything wrong with it.

Some biographical information, please?

Jim Daugherty grew up in Napa drinking the legendary wines of the ’70s. He’s a retired adult film star. Three kids, four times married, and lives in a van down by the river. JD is most famous for walking away with a blind tasting put on by Robert Parker a few years back. As he never tires of reminding everyone in earshot, he scored 24 out of 27 correct identifications in that tasting.

Stuart Yaniger is a Baltimore native and long-time California resident, now living in Chicagoland. By profession, he’s a product development specialist. He’s most famous for being the first American judge at the Concours Aux Vins de Côte-Rôtie. Thrice married (OK, he and JD are difficult to live with), with a 14 year old son. He has a supremely talented wife, elegant, sophisticated, and intelligent beyond belief, who coincidentally is the Webmaster of this site…

How can I become a Stupid?

This is one of those “questions we doubt anyone has ever asked.”