October was a shear mess – sorry I haven’t spewed my wine struggles and involvements…
But listen, now is the time to buy your expensive stuff. At least that is what I am telling my key accounts when I see them. Yes, there are many rolls of the eyes, and pushes out the door, but I’m not giving up!
The question is; are these wines really worth it. I’m here to tell you – no, they aren’t. I mean, sure, you get what you pay for; this is true for just about anything. There are small production wines that will blow your mind, European gems that are superb and luscious (best word ever), and top scoring stuff that is worth it. However, wine people take this tooooooo far. Sometimes a Napa Cab is just a Napa Cab, and there is NO reason it should cost as much. This price gouging has been getting obnoxious for a while now. Just when you, our audience, starts to get turned on by wine as a beverage we knock you over the head with a pretty price tag. Not fair, and I’m here to say it.
Don’t get me wrong; I’m not bitter, but annoyed. And I also know a few of you out there actually want to spend your pennies on some pricey things, and good for you. I’m just here to tell you don’t need to, but if you do want to…
So, how do you win? Well, you are close by reading this blog. Seriously (but I was), information is key. Find a retailer you TRUST and that you actually like to talk to. I try to name as many as I can in this blog because I feel that is important. Ask questions that are pertinent to what YOU like to drink. Who cares what you think may be good – I’m not there with you at your dinner table to judge. (or, am I…)
Stay away from:
- Bargin Bins: Isn’t this always a trap? If bottles are stacked up in a shopping cart do not touch the stuff. (plus, why…this is not a smart marketing ploy)
- Dirty Stores: If they can’t wash the floor, and there is an inch of dust on the shelves, how do you think they store their wine? It is just a gross shopping experience, and I’m to pretty for that.
- Very old vintages and off colored wines: 2006 sauvignon blanc from Napa California is NOT A DEAL. You do not need to be an expert to know when something does not look good (dirty label, poorly colored liquid, back of the store goods) it probably doesn’t taste good.
- Top scoring wines: Eh, sometimes this is a good sign. Just remember; a score is someone else’s opinion, not yours. Ask yourself: Does Robert Parker deserve the dollars you are about to spend?
So, how do you spend around $50 or more in a wine shop?
- Ask the buyer what just came in: At this price, the buyer may have purchased a wine that is special to him/her, and that is a hot gem. These people taste tons of wines EVERY DAY, and know what is out there.
- South America is key: This viticulture area produces some powerful wines that will drink at a higher level than what you are paying.
- Consistent Viticultural Areas: If you like Australian Shiraz on a daily basis, there is probably a reason; there are areas in the world that have the best growing season for grapes that produce wine. Why not stick with those areas? Napa, Bordeaux, New Zealand (can you say Sauvignon Blanc), Burgundy, Italy…
- Text me: Kind of kidding here…
The featured image in this blog is me with a bottle of 2008 Grange from Penfolds Winery. I have totally poop pooed wines of this nature; 100 POINTS, yes, 100 POINTs, and around $700 retail – if you can find it. I’m not going to say this was good, I’m going to say it was life changing. Not kidding. Grange has been noted as one of the top 20 wines of the century, and gets top scoring every vintage; I did expect it to be good, and it delivered. All of this, even this blog, is an opinion. I love giving road maps and advice, but those are my ideas. What I hope I bring to you is a plan on how to venture into wine, but it is up to you to continue the journey.
Here are a few pictures of wines over $25…