The $500 Wine Question

Vinted on December 21, 2009 binned in commentary, wine buying

What wine would you buy right now if you had $500 to spend on it?

I mean, let’s say you were given $500 cash, right now, and told the only condition upon receiving it was that you had to spend that money on wine, and you had to buy it right now.

What would you buy?

I’ve been thinking about this question for days and days, and it’s made me curious as to how the intelligent, witty, and better-than-average-looking 1WineDude.com readership would answer it.

Do you blow the whole wad on one wine, like a very-good-but-not-great vintage of Chateau Petrus, just to say t hat you did it at least once? Or go for two bottles of a classified Right Bank Bordeaux?  How about dabbling in a little high-end Burgundy?  Or take a dessert wine tour of the world, through Porto, Madeira, Hungary, Sauternes, Niagara, Jerez…?  Or a bargain-end binge shopping spree, stocking up on fairly-priced wines

It’s a compelling proposition, isn’t it?

Here’s the part that will start to bake your noodle:

Once you’ve decided on an answer… ask yourself Why haven’t I bought myself that wine already?  Is it because $500 isn’t exactly small change in today’s crappy economy?  Catholic guilt preventing you from spending that kind of money on yourself?

I think reading each others’ responses to these questions would be fascinating.

I’ll kick things off – I’d blow the whole wad on one wine, the kind of cultish wine like Petrus that is supposed to blow your mind, just to see if it can really live up to the stratospheric hype factor.

How about YOU?

Cheers!

Weekly Twitter Wine Mini-Reviews Round-up for 2009-12-19

Vinted on December 19, 2009 binned in wine mini-reviews
  • 07 Paul Jaboulet Aine "Parallele 45" (Cotes Du Rhone): Buoyantly fruity red. The light & playful (aka "food friendly") side of Grenache. #
  • 07 Trapiche Broquel Chardonnay (Mendoza): Reinvented producer goes all International style on us, & it works beautifully (& inexpensively). #
  • 06 Swanson "Alexis" Cabernet Sauvignon (Oakville): Intense & blackcurrant-heavy flagship ($$$) that screams CA. Reticent about its future. #
  • 07 Smith-Madrone Chardonnay (Napa): At $30, a bargain of a broad tropical & stony fruit spectrum. Minerals are the real show-stealers here. #
  • 06 Mulderbosch Noble Late Harvest Sauvignon Blanc (Stellenbosch): So sticky good, structured & focused, u won't mind a hint of burnt tire. #
  • 07 Stepping Stone Cabernet Franc (Carneros): For those that like their CF Californicated (luscious & dark), this is 1 of the best available. #
  • 07 Stepping Stone Grenache (Red HIlls-Lake County): Too much sweet plum on the nose for ya? Don't worry, it goes all pepper before it's done #
  • 07 Channing Daughters Vino Bianco (LI): Apparently N. Italy can be quite comfortably – and very, very tastily – at home in the Hamptons. #
  • 08 Los Vascos Sauvignon Blanc (Casablanca Valley): One-dimensional, & that one dimension is lovely, lively lime & lemongrass. But that's it. #
  • 06 Smith & Hook Cabernet Sauvignon (Central Coast): Blackberries & currants have attacked under cover of smoke, & I surrender (for 1 glass)! #

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GoodGrape.com’s 2009 Best of Wine Online Awards

Vinted on December 18, 2009 binned in about 1winedude blog

Earlier this week, the talented writer Jeff Lefevere (I’ll stop short of calling him “stunningly handsome”) – mastermind behind the excellent blog GoodGrape.com and contributor to other wine writing fare such as Mutineer Magazine – published his 2009 Best of Wine Online Awards Pt. I.

Jeff named 1WineDude.com Best Wine Blog in the Consumer category for 2009, here’s what he had to say about our little virtual space in the wine blog-o-world:

Joe Roberts at 1WineDude (http://www.1winedude.com).  I pay close attention to traffic for top wine blogs and Joe has ascended into the very upper echelon in 2009.  Traffic is one thing, but the really impressive thing about Joe’s blog is he has grown his site free of agenda and with an engagement-oriented, populace-style approach that isn’t replicated by other top bloggers. Plus, he does frequently laugh out loud funny posts. Named top wine blog by FoodBuzz and mentioned in Forbes this year, Joe is one to watch.

Thanks, bro!  I’ve got no idea what he’s on about regarding the mention by Forbes (I can confirm that I am not yet among the 500 richest men in the world).

I’m touched and humbled to be part of the lineup that Jeff has mentioned for his 2009 nods, the list is chock full of awesome online wine writing and all of his mentions are well worth your time (if you’re not already a frequent reader of the bloggers he mentions).  The nodto 1WineDude.com is particularly fulfilling for me, because Jeff possesses a keen mind and an even keener pen, and his award-winning blog writing has been an inspiration for me for the last few years.  I just hope that I can continue to fool smart people like Jeff… live up to the high expectations that folks like Jeff have for little blogs like mine!

Jeff has added a Part II as well, in which he goes beyond the wine blog-o-world to highlight his take on other bests in the wine industry at large for 2009.  It’s an even more compelling list than Part I, and includes Jeff’s best wine / winery of the year – check it out.

Cheers!

The 1WineDude.com Top 10 Most Interesting Wines of 2009

Vinted on December 17, 2009 binned in best of, commentary, Most Interesting Wines of the Year, wine review

Here we go again. It is… that time.

That time when I present the 1WineDude.com Top 10 Most Interesting Wines of the Year.  Although I tried last year to set proper expectations around this year end recap of tasty vino, that didn’t stop my Top 10 Most Interesting Wines of 2008 list from being used as a bit of media-fodder “best of” list – which it wasn’t.

For those of you new to this annual list, here’s how it works: it’s NOT a list of the best wines released in 2009. It is a list of wines that I tasted in 2009 (that’s the only qualification for inclusion, by the way), and that I personally found to be the most interesting of those wines. The list is presented with my twitter mini-review, and reflections on why each wine was included.

I just want to caution everyone not to take this list too seriously.  Because, well, it’s not meant to be taken too seriously.  Which doesn’t mean that a lot of serious thought didn’t go into the compilation of this list.  It did.  As I mentioned in preface to the 2008 list:

“…there was nothing easy about compiling the list that I’m about to give to you, and I’m sure the inclusions and omissions will piss some people off somewhere. That isn’t my intention, and this is not a best-of list by any stretch of the imagination.”

That was even more true for this year’s list.  For one, the ‘competition’ (if it can be called that) was stiffer – I tasted more wines, and more wines of higher quality, than I ever have before.  I had access – through the kind generosity of many, many people in the wine industry – to more wines than I had in 2008, much of them of high quality.  Trying to nail this down to 10 wines was, at times, downright agonizing.  Many wines, made by people who in some cases I now count among my friends, that just didn’t make it but were ohhhh sooooo clooooose.

The list is not based on any numerical rating. The wines were chosen based on my tasting notes from all of the wines that I tasted this year. Since I am not employed as a wine critic, I do not taste thousands of wines per year. I do, however, taste well over an amount of wine than (I think) is normally accessible to the average wine lover.

The differences between the 2008 and 2009 lists are exciting for me:

As much as I consider myself a ‘red’ wine drinker at heart, the majority of the wines that made the cut are whites, with at least one of them being a grape that you probably haven’t had before (let alone heard of… or can likely pronounce).  The top 3 on the list are very, very exciting wines and I’m particularly stoked to hear (read) what you all think of those.

Sadly, I’m not sure that any of my picks are budget-priced wines – there’s something we can discuss in the comments! As with the 2008 list, and despite the high(ish) price tags, my aim is to expose you to something unique, different, and of (what I feel is) exceptional quality for the price – you can comment and let me know if I succeeded.

Enough of my yakin’ – let’s boogie! I give you –

The 1WineDude.com Top 10 Most Interesting Wines of 2009…

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