Author Topic: Wine advice  (Read 3444 times)

Offline euge

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Wine advice
« on: October 22, 2011, 12:55:51 AM »
Once again I'm trying to "educate" myself. Picking reds that are rated 90 and above but less than $13 a bottle. Had some very decent wine. Experienced some bold tobacco, berry and leather combinations from sweet to smooth and dry. California, Chile and Italy.

But I really don't know squat about it (wine) except that in this price range the wine begins to please my palate. Buy under $9 and not so great. So I'm seeking advice on wine. Even considering brewing up a kit from the LHBS.

Particularly, quickly noticing an enhancement in how I taste beer and food after having a couple glasses of red wine. Really wakes up the palate and I'm much more sensitive to flavors and aromas. Ideas? Thoughts?
The first principle is that you must not fool yourself, and you are the easiest person to fool. -Richard P. Feynman

Offline dannyjed

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Re: Wine advice
« Reply #1 on: October 22, 2011, 07:49:18 AM »
I really like the reds, particulary Pinot Noir, from Williamette Valley in Oregon.  Some of these might be in the $16 range, but well worth it.
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Offline denny

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Re: Wine advice
« Reply #2 on: October 22, 2011, 08:59:59 AM »
I really like the reds, particulary Pinot Noir, from Williamette Valley in Oregon.  Some of these might be in the $16 range, but well worth it.

Good taste!  Pinots around here are spectacular.  I've got 5-6 wineries within a few miles of me.  One of them made a pinot that was called the world's best by Wine Spectator in about 98.
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Offline euge

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Re: Wine advice
« Reply #3 on: October 22, 2011, 10:05:49 AM »
Thanks that's a start! http://willamettewines.com/ http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Willamette_Valley_AVA Uh. Only 200 wineries? ;D

IIRC Pinot Noir is lighter bodied and fruitier than a Merlot, Zin or Cab. Any recommendations as to specific Willamette winery?
The first principle is that you must not fool yourself, and you are the easiest person to fool. -Richard P. Feynman

Offline denny

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Re: Wine advice
« Reply #4 on: October 22, 2011, 11:03:45 AM »
Yeah...Broadley. http://www.broadleyvineyards.com/ Their wine is so good that when I drink any other wine I don't really feel like I'm drinking wine.  King Estates is also very good.  http://www.kingestate.com/
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Online morticaixavier

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Re: Wine advice
« Reply #5 on: October 24, 2011, 08:12:08 AM »
oregon pinot is great. also, pinot from the russian river valley in northern california is really amazing. With pinot you are looking for a growing area that is cool during the summer to avoid overly fruity wine.
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Offline kenschramm

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Re: Wine advice
« Reply #6 on: October 26, 2011, 05:26:46 PM »
Well, if you really want to push your learning quickly, here's what I'd recommend: find a very good wine shop, and spend the ~$20 a bottle it will take to get yourself into some really impressive examples.  Find a shop that has a good selection - ask if they have a decent selection of bottles from Kermit Lynch, Louis Dressner or Terry Theisse - if they don't, they are the equivalent of Bud/Miller/Coors pushers. Might not be easy in South Central Texas, but take a shot.  I think Texas allows direct shipping, and if you want a great shop to get started, go to Chambers St Wines in NYC. You can make your own choices, but if you call them at 212.227.1434 and ask them to put you a case together, you may get some of the greatest wines available at that price point. My recommendations for styles (and there a few whites in here):

Bordeaux Red or Loire Cab Franc
Burgundy Red and White
Cotes du Rhone or other Southern French
Alsace white
Sauternes or Quarts de Chaume
Italian Bonarda
Loire White
German Riesling
Cru Beaulolais
Grower Champagne

Some bottles may be less and some more, or they may make other recommendations on styles, but trust them - if you order from Chambers St, you may have the best store in the country. That's six reds and six whites, but they'll pick you out winners if you want to lean more toward the reds - just let them know. Maybe you could lose the Champagne and try something else red from California or Italy.  It's a perfect time to ship right now, too.

It's a great journey, and the variety of styles and the depth of the subject is both a challenge and a pure joy. 
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Offline kenschramm

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Re: Wine advice
« Reply #7 on: October 26, 2011, 05:32:25 PM »
BTW, these guys are not big on the wine critics and point scales, so don't be shocked if they aren't supportive of the concept of "90 pointers." They know their wine very well, in many cases better than the critics.
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Offline euge

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Re: Wine advice
« Reply #8 on: October 26, 2011, 06:32:26 PM »
Thanks Ken. That's right there with what I'm getting at.

Tried some Pinot Noir- Fire Steed from Oregon (their Willamette Valley was too expensive), and a Louis Latour. The Fire Steed blew the Latour out of the water, while both being quite good.

Reverted to Zin and Cabs which since they are so pronounced or bold are easy to fall back upon. They've all tasted different while maintaining an uniqueness. The Ravens Wood Vintners Blend (California 08) I'm savoring right now is very nice while reminding me that it is grape-juice after all. ;D

Yes... I ran out of beer. :-\

The first principle is that you must not fool yourself, and you are the easiest person to fool. -Richard P. Feynman

Offline corkybstewart

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Re: Wine advice
« Reply #9 on: October 26, 2011, 07:27:00 PM »
For a good reasonably priced Cabernet look at HEB for Los Vascos(very good) and Los Vascos Reserve(excellent).  They're Chilean wines produced by the Rothchild family of France.  You're looking at $13-$17 per bottle.
 My wife is a very picky wine drinker, if it's not from her village the likelihood of her enjoying it is slim and she loves these wines.
I'd really just rather be brewing in sunny Carlsbad New Mexico

Offline beerocd

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Re: Wine advice
« Reply #10 on: October 27, 2011, 07:19:08 PM »


For under $10 - pretty darn good.
« Last Edit: October 27, 2011, 07:21:29 PM by beerocd »
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Offline phillamb168

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Re: Wine advice
« Reply #11 on: October 28, 2011, 01:56:08 AM »
My go-to for inexpensive when I was living in NYC was K&D on the UWS - http://www.kdwine.com

I've never been to Chambers St so I can't talk about that.

My go-to is, of course, French, because they're cheaper here - orders of magnitude cheaper - and I go by region instead of grape, as seems to be the wont in the US. For some really interesting things, I'd recommend the following, which are my favorites:

Cote-de-Beaune region:
  Aloxe Corton
  Pommard
  Beaune

Cote-de-Nuits region:
  Gevrey-chambertin
  Nuits-saint-georges

Medoc region: Saint-estephe

Rhone Sud region:
  Chateauneuf-du-pape
  Gigondas

Also, don't forget that millesime is important - the year of the harvest. For example, 2005 Bourgogne is one of the best (and most expensive) young French reds you can buy, but you can barely give away 2007.

For something inexpensive but amazing, try to find a Gigondas from 2005 or 2007. The 2007s should be fairly low priced (especially around here - $10 a bottle). For example, E. Guigal Gigondas Red 2007 on K&D's website is listed at $25, but you can probably find it cheaper.
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Offline bluesman

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Re: Wine advice
« Reply #12 on: October 28, 2011, 04:06:42 AM »
Wine Spectator seems to have some sound advice. I have "Vintage Chart" app from WS on my iphone. It's the year of the wine that seems to make a huge difference in the quality of the wine from region to region. WS magazine is also very informative.
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Offline Joe Sr.

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Re: Wine advice
« Reply #13 on: October 28, 2011, 01:43:32 PM »
The WSJ used to have a wine column, not sure if they still do.  Either way, it had very sound advice and I know the authors wrote some books.  As in brewing, reading about wine should help.

Argentinian and Chilean wines can be some very good values.  You should be able to find cabernet, malbec, merlot and just about any red wine from these regions.

Here in Chicago, I tend to go mostly to the Wine Discount Center which is an awesome place.

One thing to keep in mind is that the same grapes are grown in different regions and countries and can produce very different wines.  From country to country they may also be called something different.  For example, French burgundy is made from pinot noir grapes.  They just call it Burgundy (after the region the grapes are grown) and not pinot noir (after the grapes).  Shiraz and syrah are also the same.

Most wines will also be a blend of grapes.  A good label should tell you what's in it.

I'd say, don't be afraid of trying something you've never heard of, keep in your price range, and go for it.

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Online morticaixavier

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Re: Wine advice
« Reply #14 on: October 28, 2011, 03:51:19 PM »
The WSJ used to have a wine column, not sure if they still do.  Either way, it had very sound advice and I know the authors wrote some books.  As in brewing, reading about wine should help.

Argentinian and Chilean wines can be some very good values.  You should be able to find cabernet, malbec, merlot and just about any red wine from these regions.

Here in Chicago, I tend to go mostly to the Wine Discount Center which is an awesome place.

One thing to keep in mind is that the same grapes are grown in different regions and countries and can produce very different wines.  From country to country they may also be called something different.  For example, French burgundy is made from pinot noir grapes.  They just call it Burgundy (after the region the grapes are grown) and not pinot noir (after the grapes).  Shiraz and syrah are also the same.

Most wines will also be a blend of grapes.  A good label should tell you what's in it.

I'd say, don't be afraid of trying something you've never heard of, keep in your price range, and go for it.



not to be overly pedantic but french burgundy can be grown from any number of grape varieties. as you say it is really only a regional identifier.
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