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Old 01-09-2019, 07:03 AM
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Shades of Blue Shades of Blue is offline
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Default Let's talk about cork sniffing....no, seriously!

I just recently really got into wine. I'm 33, and have never been a fan of wine. I don't like that "pucker" sensation, and never found wine to be enjoyable. I've stuck to mainly beer, bourbon/whiskey, and mixed drinks.

I got a new job last year and my boss is very much a wine connoisseur. I mean, he is GOOD, or at least appears to be. He bought me a bottle of "The Prisoner" wine for Christmas and it was fantastic. Loved it. It totally changed my opinion of wine and now I have been buying a different bottle each week to try and get into this whole wine thing!

What I've learned so far:

1) I'm definitely a fan of red blends. I tend to like Zinfandel and Syrah blends

2) I like fruity, but not tart and more sweet. But, not ridiculously sweet lol.

3) Just because a bottle is expensive, doesn't make it something I'll like.

4) White wine ain't half bad!

5) If not a blend, I like Pino Noir and Zinfandel. Not too keen on Merlot and Cabernet.

6) I have got a LOT to learn!!!!


Share your experiences!
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Old 01-09-2019, 07:24 AM
buddyhu buddyhu is offline
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My wife and I don't drink a lot of wine, but we appreciate a good bottle from time to time. Some reds, but mostly whites.

Over the years, we have found that wines from Europe are easier for us to metabolize. Don't know if that is because of the soils, or because of specifics of their vinification process ( I have read that US makers are more likely to introduce things to manipulate the finished taste of the wine). We haven't explored Australian wines very much, nor South American wines...though we have enjoyed some that have been recommended at restaurants (my wife is really warming up Argentinian Malbecs).

At this point, we mostly drink Italian white wines (Grechetto, Arneis, Gavi dei gavi, some Pinot Grigio), some French wines (pricey!), and a smattering of Spanish, Greek, Austrian, and German wines.
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Old 01-09-2019, 07:41 AM
DCCougar DCCougar is offline
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Originally Posted by buddyhu View Post
...Pinot Grigio...
That's a good one, and you don't have to spend a lot for a good bottle. Whites should be chilled; reds not so much.
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Old 01-09-2019, 08:00 AM
GHS GHS is offline
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If wine costs more than 7 dollars a bottle I feel guilty drinking it.
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Old 01-09-2019, 08:41 AM
Wadcutter Wadcutter is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shades of Blue View Post
I just recently really got into wine. I'm 33, and have never been a fan of wine. I don't like that "pucker" sensation, and never found wine to be enjoyable. I've stuck to mainly beer, bourbon/whiskey, and mixed drinks.

I got a new job last year and my boss is very much a wine connoisseur. I mean, he is GOOD, or at least appears to be. He bought me a bottle of "The Prisoner" wine for Christmas and it was fantastic. Loved it. It totally changed my opinion of wine and now I have been buying a different bottle each week to try and get into this whole wine thing!

What I've learned so far:

1) I'm definitely a fan of red blends. I tend to like Zinfandel and Syrah blends

2) I like fruity, but not tart and more sweet. But, not ridiculously sweet lol.

3) Just because a bottle is expensive, doesn't make it something I'll like.

4) White wine ain't half bad!

5) If not a blend, I like Pino Noir and Zinfandel. Not too keen on Merlot and Cabernet.

6) I have got a LOT to learn!!!!


Share your experiences!
“I’m not drinking any stinking Merlot!”
- Mile’s famous exclamation in the great 2005 movie “Sideways” about two middle age bachelors, one engaged, who go on a week long trip through California’s wine country before the one guy gets married. It’s freaking hilarious and I learned a lot about wine.....but I still don’t like it. Pass the Bid Lite please. 😂
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Old 01-09-2019, 08:59 AM
Otterhound Otterhound is offline
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Langmiel Shiraz " The Freedom " An Australian wine from the Barossa valley . Try it if you can get it if you like reds .
Aside of that , I make Melomel . Red Raspberry Melomel to be exact . I use my own berries , local true spring water and Sourwood honey . Yeast will vary as I try different things .
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Old 01-09-2019, 09:01 AM
Otterhound Otterhound is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by buddyhu View Post
My wife and I don't drink a lot of wine, but we appreciate a good bottle from time to time. Some reds, but mostly whites.

Over the years, we have found that wines from Europe are easier for us to metabolize. Don't know if that is because of the soils, or because of specifics of their vinification process ( I have read that US makers are more likely to introduce things to manipulate the finished taste of the wine). We haven't explored Australian wines very much, nor South American wines...though we have enjoyed some that have been recommended at restaurants (my wife is really warming up Argentinian Malbecs).

At this point, we mostly drink Italian white wines (Grechetto, Arneis, Gavi dei gavi, some Pinot Grigio), some French wines (pricey!), and a smattering of Spanish, Greek, Austrian, and German wines.
I know people in the business . What things are being introduced by American Vinters to manipulate the finished taste ? I will ask about specifics .
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Old 01-09-2019, 09:41 AM
buddyhu buddyhu is offline
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Originally Posted by Otterhound View Post
I know people in the business . What things are being introduced by American Vinters to manipulate the finished taste ? I will ask about specifics .
Here is a very old article that mentions a few of the alterations that can be made to wine (adding sugar, adding oxygen, adding yeasts, de-alcoholization) as it ferments. And I have read about others (but cannot easily locate an article that mentions specifics). And, I have heard (to do not claim that this is a fact) that such alterations and interventions are more common in the US.

And, there is the issue (again, I don't know the facts) of the use of chemical pesticides and weedkillers.

My primary assertion is that my wife and I find most European wines more agreeable to our systems: much of the time, the consumption of a California wine (and other wines made in the States) leaves a trace of discomfort for us that is not nearly as common when we drink European wines. YMMV.


https://dinersjournal.blogs.nytimes....is-worthwhile/
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Old 01-09-2019, 10:36 AM
Otterhound Otterhound is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by buddyhu View Post
Here is a very old article that mentions a few of the alterations that can be made to wine (adding sugar, adding oxygen, adding yeasts, de-alcoholization) as it ferments. And I have read about others (but cannot easily locate an article that mentions specifics). And, I have heard (to do not claim that this is a fact) that such alterations and interventions are more common in the US.

And, there is the issue (again, I don't know the facts) of the use of chemical pesticides and weedkillers.

My primary assertion is that my wife and I find most European wines more agreeable to our systems: much of the time, the consumption of a California wine (and other wines made in the States) leaves a trace of discomfort for us that is not nearly as common when we drink European wines. YMMV.

https://dinersjournal.blogs.nytimes....is-worthwhile/
This what I know .
Every winery and grower uses herbicides and pesticides .
Sulfites are nearly universally used to stop fermentation when the product reaches it's desired level/specific gravity . They are monitored on a regular basis so as to know when .
Wine is aged in oak barrels for a specific amount of time in order to introduce tannins and flavor . Typically American or European White Oak is used and the interior of the barrel is charred/flamed as desired for flavoring purposes . The barrels are kept wetted on their exterior in order to help prevent them from drying out and leaking .
The wine will often be racked more than once after being removed from the oak barrels in order to eliminate the lees from the wine and is then bottled . If necessary , certain chemicals may be added in order to clarify the wine before bottling .
These are standard practices across the globe .
Many wines are blends .
This year , where I have been picking grapes , roughly 30% of the grape production rotted on the vines because of how much rain we got and how often it rained and none of the reds fully matured . None of this vineyards grapes made it to oak barrels . All of the reds were used for Rose . A very tough year , but that is agriculture . May next year be a vintage year .
I was picking grapes at the Waltz Winery which is just outside of Manheim .
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Old 01-09-2019, 10:50 AM
Ozzy the dog Ozzy the dog is offline
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As you get more interested in wine you might find you taste drift more towards a dry wine. A good South African Chenin Blanc is one of my favourites.

Friends of mine are very keen on the wine they serve in their restaurant. In 2006 they asked me to make a 300+ bottle wine tower for their refurbishment. Whilst I only enjoy an occasional glass wine these days I did research the stuff with respect to storage etc and came across some interesting facts: -

To prevent a sparkling wine from bubbling up and out of the glass, pour a small amount in first and allow to settle, then add the remainder and it will not bubble as much.

All wines are essentially white. Red wines are fermented with the grape skins which extracts the colour from the skins. White wines are fermented without the skins so no colour is exchanged. If the wine is fermented partially with the skins you get a nice Rose wine which still contains the goodness associated with a red wine but without the weight.

A young wine has an aroma while a more mature wine has a ‘bouquet.’
‘Drinking to one’s health’ originates from ancient Greece where the host would take the first sip of wine to assure his guests the wine was not poisoned.

The Romans would float toasted bread in a glass of wine to absorb an undesirable taste or to neutralise acidity.

Women tend to make better wine tasters as they have a better sense of smell than men. You could say they are better at it because they smell better.

Allegedly, moderate, regular wine drinking can reduce the risk of heart disease, Alzheimer’s disease, stroke, and gum disease.

To taste a wine, hold it in the mouth for a moment or two and then either swallow it or, spit it out (into a suitable receptacle), the better the wine, the longer the aftertaste.

Wine grapes account for more acres planted in the world than any other fruit crop.

The Romans used to mix lead with wine to preserve it and to give it a sweet taste. It’s no wonder lead poisoning aided their decline.

A simple guide to choosing wine with your meal: -
• Heavy food, heavy wine – light food, light wine.
• Red meat, red wine – white meat or fish, white wine.
• Sweet food, sweet wine – savoury food, dry wine,
So (depending upon your choice of food) : –
• Start with a light wine and increase in weight with the different courses,
• Start light (in colour) and get darker,
• Start with young wine and get older,
• Start dry and get sweeter.

Vintage or Non-vintage? – Vintage wine tends to be of grapes that are sourced from a single year’s harvest whilst non-vintage wines are a blend of wines from two or more years. The vintage year is the year the wine was bottled and not necessarily the year the grapes were harvested.

If the Sommelier hands you the cork don’t smell it – it won’t reveal any secrets from the bottle. Look instead at the cork – the cork from a quality wine will usually have information such as the date on it. Also inspect it for drying, cracking or breaks.

A natural corked bottle should be stored lying on its side to keep the cork wet and so prevent it from drying, shrinking and letting in air. If an artificial cork is used or a screw cap it can be stored upright.

Red wine represents 55% of restaurant wine sales.

But the most important fact about wine is that you don’t have to understand it to enjoy it.
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Old 01-09-2019, 02:56 PM
JCook1 JCook1 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shades of Blue View Post
3) Just because a bottle is expensive, doesn't make it something I'll like.

4) White wine ain't half bad!
I have had bottles or wine costing $20 or more and they were not very good. On the other hand I've found many wines for less than $8 that were very good, so it's true that the price doesn't indicate the quality necessarily.

If you are liking white wine try Portuguese green wine - Vinho Verde. Very nice when chilled, very drinkable, and sometimes they can be a little sprizzly, though not a bubbly wine like Proseco. Wonderful chilled on a summer's evening. Also try Proseco - a little dryer.

Portuguese reds are nice also.

Jack
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Old 01-09-2019, 03:34 PM
buddyhu buddyhu is offline
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Originally Posted by Otterhound View Post
This what I know .
Every winery and grower uses herbicides and pesticides .
Sulfites are nearly universally used to stop fermentation when the product reaches it's desired level/specific gravity . They are monitored on a regular basis so as to know when .
Wine is aged in oak barrels for a specific amount of time in order to introduce tannins and flavor . Typically American or European White Oak is used and the interior of the barrel is charred/flamed as desired for flavoring purposes . The barrels are kept wetted on their exterior in order to help prevent them from drying out and leaking .
The wine will often be racked more than once after being removed from the oak barrels in order to eliminate the lees from the wine and is then bottled . If necessary , certain chemicals may be added in order to clarify the wine before bottling .
These are standard practices across the globe .
Many wines are blends .
This year , where I have been picking grapes , roughly 30% of the grape production rotted on the vines because of how much rain we got and how often it rained and none of the reds fully matured . None of this vineyards grapes made it to oak barrels . All of the reds were used for Rose . A very tough year , but that is agriculture . May next year be a vintage year .
I was picking grapes at the Waltz Winery which is just outside of Manheim .
As always, the devil is in the details. Which pesticide is used, which herbicide is used, what strain of yeast is used, details on sulfite use, sur lees aging or not, etc., etc.

Increasingly, biodynamic wines provide an option. And some of the wines my wife and I most enjoy come from biodynamic operations in Europe.

But, again, just meant to share a generalization about the way my wife and I respond to most European wines, and how that differs from US wines...with a bit of speculation about possible causes.
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Last edited by buddyhu; 01-09-2019 at 03:40 PM.
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Old 01-09-2019, 03:53 PM
Otterhound Otterhound is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by buddyhu View Post
As always, the devil is in the details. Which pesticide is used, which herbicide is used, what strain of yeast is used, details on sulfite use, sur lees aging or not, etc., etc.

Increasingly, biodynamic wines provide an option. And some of the wines my wife and I most enjoy come from biodynamic operations in Europe.

But, again, just meant to share a generalization about the way my wife and I respond to most European wines, and how that differs from US wines...with a bit of speculation about possible causes.
I am not worthy . Bye .
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Old 01-09-2019, 04:30 PM
Silly Moustache Silly Moustache is offline
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I used to really enjoy wine.

Different wines at different times of the year of course, but since my throat cancer treatment, it doesn't taste the same and it dries out my mouth too much.

Same with real ale - just not the same. I'm almost t-total now.

I will have a glass occasionally, like when we have avocado and taramasalata.
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Old 01-09-2019, 07:52 PM
Larpy Larpy is offline
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I love wine so much that I tend to make travel plans mostly to places where wine is grown. Have been to various regions in France (Bordeaux and Bourgogne were the standouts); northern Spain; Mendoza, Argentina, and northern California (Sonoma County).

There's an excellent interactive wine museum in Bordeaux, France, should anyone be interested in wine and find themselves in southwestern France.

The more I learn the more I want to try new wines. I can't think of a varietal of wine I don't like, as long as it's well made. But unless I'm splurging, I prefer French and Spanish wines to California wine because they seem truer to the soil they're grown in and less futzed with. Google (or Duck Duck Go) "mega purple" to see one of the more insidious technological tricks that's common in California wine. As I understand it, the use of mega purple and its ilk is less common in European wine. Whatever the case, my experience is that a $10-15 bottle of California red wine usually tastes more "manufactured" and "hyped" than a $10-15 bottle of European wine.

Not that there isn't lots of great California wine. But it tends to be pricey. Biale Zinfandel, for instance, is fantastic but $50 a bottle. Hendry makes an excellent Zin as well. Also $50 a bottle. I like the wines Dave Phinney makes.

I've learned to drink wine I like and not worry what others think. Ultimately, it's a subjective experience: if it tastes good to you, that's all that matters.

The problem is that after a few years you start picking up on nuances you didn't notice before and before you know it, $50 doesn't seem like such an outlandish amount of money to pay for a bottle of wine.

If only I were rich and could drink amazing wine every night!
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