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Joined: 04 Feb 2011
Posts: 1137
W(h)ine-O's  Reply with quote  

Any wine heads? I'm strictly a cab sav man but I'm looking to expand my tastes. What are you drinking?

What top shelf kinds are worth the money? I normally stick to the 10 buck and lower brands.

(Sorry if this is one too many booze focused threads. Didn't want to impede on the beer thread.)
Post Mon Jan 30, 2012 10:55 pm
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Joined: 04 Aug 2006
Posts: 4545
Location: Switzerland
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I'm a big fan of wine. Slug Gulch Red is always something worth looking out for. They make medium sized batches but it can be found at Trader Joe's (or it used to be there). I don't know where you are located, but living in California made things much easier for me (also managing the wine section in the store I worked at didn't hurt). I will say this, on average the best drinking wines can found between 7 and 30 dollars. Lately, I've been drinking more reds from the Chateauneuf du Pape region. Jerome Quiot 2008, to be more exact.

Look for wines out of California's gold country. It has been a growing region with some decent wines at a drinkable price.
Post Tue Jan 31, 2012 12:00 am
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Joined: 22 May 2008
Posts: 2679
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I normally drink shiraz or cabernet sauvignon. Lately though, pinot noir is tasty. I don't ever buy the same bottle 2x. We saved a bunch of the empty good bottles in our garage to some day buy again, but we haven't tried every single on in our liquorstore yet. Maybe in 20 years or so when our garage shelf is full.

I'll get back to you on an actual name of a good one.
Post Tue Jan 31, 2012 8:57 am
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Joined: 12 Dec 2002
Posts: 11631
Location: MI
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only wine ive found that i actually like
Post Tue Jan 31, 2012 9:04 am
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Joined: 04 Nov 2005
Posts: 1777
Location: Lowell, MA - Chicago - Venice
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Wine is great! My wife and I went to the wine riot last year here in chicago. It tours so if you get a chance, its fun. Not necessarily alot of good wine though. lolol. But good times for sure.

The jump in quality from a bottle below $10 to a bottle over $10 is definitely worth it. Buy a $14 and you can start to get some good stuff. If you find Nebbiolo, get it. It's the best damn grape ever. Also, russian river pinots are good too. I've tried a few organic wines thinking they would be really good. WRONG! Don't do it.
Post Tue Jan 31, 2012 9:51 am
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probably drunk

Joined: 22 Jun 2008
Posts: 2220
Location: NJ
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I also think wine is great. Whites are kinda boring though (I'll sometimes drink sauvigon blancs but that's it, really). There's so much more depth and flavor to reds. I'm primarily a pinot noir guy but I get down with cabs too. For an excellent $20 bottle, you gotta try the Simi noir. It's a bottle I've bought multiple times. There are too many good ones to name and I can't think right now but the other night I had a noir called Sage Road which was very nice.
Post Tue Jan 31, 2012 10:31 am
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Joined: 10 Jan 2004
Posts: 4783
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I like wine, but I don't know much about it. Petite Sirahs are my shit. Also, this wine is a little pricey ($35/bottle), but if you like Pinot, the guys like make this are good friends of mine. It's good stuff but tough to find outside of California.
Post Tue Jan 31, 2012 12:26 pm
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p00ny tang

Joined: 30 Jun 2002
Posts: 6413
Location: Detroit, Michigan
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I fucks with the bladder bag boxes of Franzia, Rossi and Peter Vella.
They're $15, but RiteAid usually has one of the three for $10.
Post Tue Jan 31, 2012 1:42 pm
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Joined: 18 Jul 2003
Posts: 2829
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If you are a fan of reds I highly recommend spending the $ for an aerator, it will make your $10 bottle of wine taste like a $20 bottle.

I picked up the Nicholas VinOair for $15 a year or so back and it was one of the best investments I made.
Post Wed Feb 01, 2012 9:05 am
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Joined: 25 Aug 2006
Posts: 8547
Location: Third Coast
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I can't say I prefer a certain winery over another, though I like to support local wineries over anything else. When it comes to varieties of wine, I prefer white to red. Rieslings are my favorite, followed by chardonnays.
Post Thu Feb 02, 2012 2:49 pm
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Joined: 04 Feb 2011
Posts: 1137
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Scottie wrote:
If you are a fan of reds I highly recommend spending the $ for an aerator, it will make your $10 bottle of wine taste like a $20 bottle.

I picked up the Nicholas VinOair for $15 a year or so back and it was one of the best investments I made.

I will definitely look into this.

I really like Carlos Rossi's jugs of cab sav.
Post Thu Feb 02, 2012 2:59 pm
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Joined: 28 Apr 2005
Posts: 1407
Location: London
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Gave up drinking 3 weeks back....Favourite beer, threads about your favourite wine. God damn internets against me.

Castillo Diablo does some great wines.
Post Thu Feb 02, 2012 3:27 pm
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Joined: 07 Jun 2004
Posts: 1109
Location: maryland
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i'm not a wine drinker at all, but my wife is a fan. i usually go to the store and look for interesting labels then start from there. i then go a bit more technical and do the region and dimple test. it really hasn't steered me wrong very often. my wife actually really likes this one cheap wine for some reason, it's called pinot evil. i originally bought because it had the see no, hear no, speak no evil monkeys on the label. it was a $10 bottle but now it comes in a $14 box.
Post Thu Feb 02, 2012 3:59 pm
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Mark in Minnesota

Joined: 02 Jan 2004
Posts: 2112
Location: Saint Louis Park, MN
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I only really drink Minnesota wines. My collection at home is just under 200 bottles.

Of the cold weather hardy grapes that are commonly used here:

- Frontenac: A red wine grape, which makes some really good dry, earthy wines. Without the skin it makes a curiously dark and very sweet rose wine. It's known for good ports as well. My favorite Frontenac this year is from Warehouse Winery, my favorite rose and port-styles are both from Falconer Vineyards. Crofut Family Winery also has a killer Frontenac if you can find it under $20 a bottle, which is a crapshoot from year to year.

- Marquette: This is a cousin of (well, "complex inter-species hybrid" related to) both Frontenac and pinot noir. I have generally found that the wines currently being made from it are a little flat and boring, but there's one from Northern Vineyards called Downtown Red that I really enjoy.

- Frontenac gris: This is a mutation of Frontenac that makes white wine grapes, often with notes of grapefruit and pineapple. It makes a really good semi-sweet table wine but seems to do really well in blends. I like it in the Northern Vineyards "White", the Alexis Bailly "Golden Gris", and the bottling Falconer Vineyards was selling last autumn.

- La Crescent: Another cold weather hardy white wine grape, this one is a lot sweeter than Frontenac gris. People say it has notes of passion fruit, but I don't really get that out of it. You'll often see it in blends alongside Frontenac gris, such as in both of the blends I mentioned above; when I have a 100% La Crescent wine such as the excellent Falconer Vineyards rendition, I tend to either serve it as a dessert wine or ice-cold alongside something like a rich pork meal.

- Edelweiss: Makes for a good Riesling-style table wine, with a little bit of Concord grape taste to it. Cannon River Winery has a good one that they call "Sogn Blanc".

- LaCrosse: Northern Vineyards does an ice wine style dessert wine called "Gold" out of these grapes. I like to buy 6-10 bottles a year and give them as gifts; they're only 375ml and fairly reasonably priced. Cloying at room temperature but wonderful chilled, particularly alongside a bowl of blackberries or with a scoop of gelato.

- Marechal Foch: This one is going out of style in favor of Frontenac and Marquette plantings, but you can still find it here and there. It's not nearly cold weather hardy, but Alexis Bailly and Falconer Vineyards both like to do dry, lightly oaked wines using this that age pretty well. It's a good $15-$20 bottle to lay down and have taste like a $30-$40 bottle five years later.

- Seyval Blanc: Like Marechal Foch, this one has been going a bit out of style in favor of easier to cultivate varieties, particularly the La Cresent / Frontenac Gris blends, but when you can find it, it can be awesome. Alexis Bailly has done this one for years and it used to be very nice but has gone downhill both in quality and availability. Falconer Vineyards still does some in limited quantities, but it varies widely enough in sweetness from year to year that a tasting is pretty much required.

Mostly the Minnesota wines I like range from about $12 to $18 per bottle, and generally I buy enough at one time to get a case lot discount of 10-15 percent. The Falconer ports run quite a bit more expensive, but they have pretty consistently won top medals over the years.

I don't do much in the way of fruit wines but Crow River Winery has a killer cranberry-honeycrisp that my dad and I bought close to a case of last fall. Crow River also does a smoked garlic wine that you would never want to drink straight but goes really well in salad dressings, marinades, and tapenades.

Falconer Vineyards also imports juices from New York to do a Chambourcin, and I've been serving bottles of that at parties pretty regularly. It's light, sweet, and fruit-forward; the perfect thing to serve when people want to be drinking a red but don't want something dry or overly heavy in tannins. I'd say it's a hit with the ladies but I don't want to have to drop a dollar in the douchebag jar.

I do drink at least a couple of bottles of non-Minnesota wine every month as part of my regular visits to the Campiello restaurant for their Italian regional menus. One of my favorites they've served there is the La Segreta Bianco from Planeta, which is not outrageously expensive and goes really nicely alongside some of the lighter spring/summer menus at that restaurant.

Wine aerators are definitely worth it if you aren't decanting your bottles prior to serving.

Also: I fucks with Carlo Rossi Burgundy from time to time. Not so much to serve to guests, but to drink a glass while I cook and then use another half-cup or so as deglazing liquid if I want to do a red wine reduction after I've pan-broiled a couple of pork chops and sauteed some mushrooms. You know, for lunch on a work-from-home day or something.
Post Thu Feb 02, 2012 5:34 pm
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