And it’s not because the object of your desire becomes more desirable after you’ve put on the “wine goggles.”
According to a survey jointly sponsored by the Australian Wine Council and on-line dating service Match.com, having a healthy knowledge of the world’s most romantic beverage makes you more attractive, with those people preferring Italian wines being viewed as particularly “sexy” and “stylish.”
There’s still plenty of time for you to order up a copy of Vino Italiano and join us for the first Wine Book Club. Just sayin’…
Wine X Magazine (as reported by autumnilia) backs up the “wine = sexier” conclusion in an interview with sexpert Dr. Ruth, who tells us that wine is an essential element of foreplay (she prefers Beaujolais Nouveau, gewurztraminer, and CA white, so those may be some of the sexiest wine choices, seeing as how she’s a sexpert and whatnot- again, just sayin’).
Finally – If you’re totally desperate on this most Hallmark of holidays, Yahoo! Answers has a thread about what wine choices make a drinking partner appear the most attractive. Chianti and Sake got the nods there. Just sayin’.
Happy Valentine’s Day!
This month’s edition of Wine Blogging Wednesday comes to us courtesy of Spitton.biz, who have tasked the collective talents of the budding wine blogging community by asking us to review an Italian Red, using just seven words.
Tricky, to say the least (get it?); especially for those of us whose prose, how shall I put this… does not value highly the elegance of the concise.
But let’s not sell ourselves short (get it??), or wax too philosophically about the relative merits of our brief (get it?!?) and minute (get it?!??) contribution to the great big blogosphere.
Ok, ok… I’ll stop!
Anyway, for this excellent exercise in enological economy, Dude chose an old stand-by wine: Castello Banfi’s Rosso di Montalcino D.O.C. (2003, Tuscany). Before Dude delves deep into the diminutive depiction of this dapper delicacy, let us first examine some way-cool background information so you can get up close and personal with what Rosso di Montalcino is all about….
Most wine lovers have at least heard about the famed wines of Brunello di Montalcino, from Tuscany in Italy’s Central-west region. These suckers are famed because a) they’re expensive, b) they taste great and can make amazing matches with roast meat dishes and c) need upwards of 20 years of aging to tame their harsh tannins and bracing acidity, developing over long periods of time into a plum-fruit-filled, smoky, and leathery behemoth of a wine (Dude has personally tasted 25+ year old Brunellos that still could’ve used a few more years in the bottle to soften up!).
But what if a) you’re not rich and b) you don’t want to wait around for 20+ years until you’re old and gray in order to enjoy a big, bad Montalcino wine?
You can still get some of that good, down-home Montalcino love by going with a Rosso di Montalcino. Both Rosso and Brunello di Montalcino wines are made from the Brunello grape, which is a clone of Sangiovese, and both undergo similar wine-making techniques. But Rossos have a much lower minimum barrel aging requirement, and usually are made with grapes from younger vines than those that make it into the Brunellos. This makes them a) cheaper (usually under $20), and b) ready to drink without the multi-decade waiting period typically needed for good Brunellos. They’re not as heavy, heady, rich, or complex as Brunellos, but Rossos give you a tasty teaser of what their bigger brothers are like, and are well worth the effort of checking out in their own right.
Got it? Groovy!
Now, let’s get to this typically wordy Dude’s atypically “unwordy” review. My 7 words are meant to tell a story, so I enlisted the help of some pictures (hopefully that doesn’t mean I actually used 7,007 words… oh, drat!):
There are ‘wine shops,’ and then there are shops staffed and owned by people who are seriously passionate about vino, and just happen to also sell some of their favorite wines to the public.
Moore Brothers happens to be one of the latter. I was fortunate enough to make a recent trip to one of their stores (the location to remain a secret, lest the PA wine monopoly authorities gain an interest in how I came about the wine from the shop…), where I was greeted by a friendly staff (including fellow blogger David McDuff) who clearly knew their wine. What a refreshing change from the state-run PA monopoly wine stores…
Those of you living in the greater NY/NJ/DE area should make it a point to check out your nearest Moore Bros. store ASAP. I can’t promise you a discount if you drop my name there, but I can promise they will knock your socks off with their deep knowledge of small estate wines from Germany, France, and Italy. Those of you following Dude’s wine reviews in Twitter and in Chateau Petrogasm will have already seen me review some of the wines on offer from Moore Bros. (see my inset pic for an example – sorry, no wire chicken…).
I told the fine folks at Moore Bros. that I’d help spread the word by blogging up one of their pre-selected sample cases. I selected the Courtier Collection, which at $175 (correction – now $200, see David’s comment) is a bargain cornucopia of boutique and smaller-estate wines from the Old World (see inset pic for an overview of what’s in the box).
Over the course of the next few weeks, I’ll be reviewing these wines in my Twitter wine review feed, and will post the round-up of all the related Twitter reviews here. Those of you following along at home will be able to track the Courtier Collection reviews along the way by checking out http://twitter.com/1WineDudeReview/favorites. Should be a fun ride – hope you’ll jump in the back seat, and enjoy the sips along the way. If anybody out there has had experience with Moore Bros. or their wines, shout ’em out in the comments and we’ll chat!
Welcome to the 2nd edition of the Weekly Wine Web Wrap-up, where Dude highlights the wine news stories of the past week (complete with snide Dude commentary, of course!).
Cover Globally, Vinify Locally
The highest profile wine news coverage of the week is likely this article in U.S.A. Today, which details the growing trend of ‘micro-brew’ wineries in urban areas that source their grapes and/or juice from rural vineyards. A handful of these wineries and their winemakers in NY and the midwest are featured by name (thus ensuring that their websites crash and their ISP demand additional hosting charges for their traffic overages).
“Pardon me, old chap, but can I have my $36,000 back?”
The UK Press Association reported this week of a Zafferano restaurant customer (in London) who returned a bottle of the legendary 1961 Ch. Petrus that cost the bargain price of £18,000 (about $36K USD), under the complaint that it might have been a fake. The restaurant told him that the wine was off-tasting anyway – a case of sour grapes, perhaps…?
Whew-yew! Now you can pay even more for Yellowtail!
ABC news in Australia reports the comforting news that the recent oversupply of cheap Aussie wine is on the decline, which should result in a halting and then reversal of the recent declining price trend for those wines locally. Presumably, they’ll be shipping those more expensive bottles of Yellowtail over to the U.S. since we seem to be drinking it up, even though most of them taste like plonk…
When We Got There, There Was No ‘There’ There
Don’t you just hate it when you fly to Bordeaux to visit the Chateau of your favorite French wine only to find when you get there that the place doesn’t exist? Me too. So do the British, as do the Fédération des Grands Vins de Bordeaux, according to this story in the Times Online. Apparently some Bordeaux wineries are selling wines under multiple labels, with specious references to non-existent Chateaus. The crackdown has begun in earnest against this practice – which has been outlawed in France since 1993. So to be fair we should give them about 20 more years to get things under control…?
Poisoning The Youth of Canada?
The St. Catharine Standard ran a story of a movement in Canada to introduce their younger drinking generation to Canadian wine. Youth that was weaned on Canadian wine? Does that include ice wine? Plus they have free health care, almost no crime, and legalized marijuana. Dammit, why couldn’t I have grown up in Canada!!!
“Does That Come in a Double D?”
Uhm… uhhh…, well, you just can’t make this kind of stuff up, can you?
A bra. That holds wine. You know what? Put Chateau Y’quem in anything and I’ll probably drink out of it…
U.S. Kicks Britain’s Butt Again!
And finally, despite the fact that British Airways has the venerable Jancis Robinson picking their wines for them, Fox reported that American Airlines bested the competition for in-flight wine quality in a recent international face-off (wine-off?). While it’s too bad that you may need several stiff drinks at 30,000 feet just to deal with AA’s notoriously poor service, as least those drinks will be the best that an airline can offer!