Big Green Egg - EGGhead Forum - The Ultimate Cooking Experience...
We hope everyone enjoyed their Fourth of July weekend and is excited for more warm weather grilling! This week, we’ll be making these two burgers: Stuffed Portobello Mushroom and Caribbean Chicken, and also eating lots of these Ice Cream Sandwiches in honor of National Ice Cream Month! It's time to think about getting out to one of the many #EGGfests around the country - see a list here

Off Topic: Wine Snobbery

2

Comments

  • RRPRRP Posts: 12,848
    Botch said:
    I hit as many local winetastings as I can, but as many have said I think the camaraderie and the cheeses/meats are just as much fun.  I mostly won't buy a bottle that's over $20 (I use that rule for Bluray disks, too), but have been extremely fortunate in attending some really high-end affairs, including a vertical tasting of Caymus cabs (hosted by a retired Navy Captain, whose winecellar was bigger than my living room) and a neat tasting by Chateau St. Jean at the International Food and Wine Festival at Epcot, FL; of the first five wines, some were single grape varietals not for sale, others were for sale; the sixth/final glass was their award winner, which was a meritage of the previous five.  It was phenomenal, and while I could afford a bottle now, it would be an extravagant purchase.  
    I rebuilt my back porch/patio this last spring, and had to pull up all the Reisling grapevines that draped my old porch.  The previous owners actually made wine from the grapes, guess they got two or three bottles every year!  I miss those vines, but it was their weight (along with last year's snow) that flattened my old porch, not sure I want to plant some new ones... 

    Cool story...please tell us that you saved the woody parts of all those old vines...those were smokin "gold" by weight!

  • I love great wine but as everyone else said in one way or another....great wine is relative. i've been lucky enough to have some pricey (and mostly showy) wines. Since I'm not wealthy, any liquid that is more than $20 for a few paltry ounces is considered a luxury for me. I can say that I've rarely been blown away by $300 bottles of wine (I mean they are supposed to be freaking awesome and melt panties right?). So very little upside for most people's expectations. 

    I get way more fired up about a kick ass $7-$15 bottle because it's actually special. I mean when you buy a Mercedes, you expect to pimp-roll in that bad boy. Anything less you feel cheated. I'm sure that same formula goes up and down the socioeconomic ladder. Some rich dude is sitting somewhere right now saying "I mean, I just LOVE to find a good wine under $100, I just wish there were more room in the cellar (insert Thurston Howell III laugh here)". 

    I am totally in to varietals and even appellation though. that is fun for me. I love knowing that there is a reason that a Pinot from Napa is inferior at any price to a Pinot from Willamette or Russian River valleys and that a Cab from napa is superior to the others just the same. I love knowing what wines are good with what foods (and that does make a difference once you get in to it). That being said- If I'm eating fish and am in the mood for a tooth-stainer cab instead of a snappy Sauv-Blanc as prescribed by the foodie elite, I drink what I damn well please. 

    I think the most telling thing I can say about it is this: I was in an awesome winery in Healdsburg CA (Russian River Valley) all week last week. We had a corporate event there and it was unreal. The owners were there all week and walked us through the vineyards, the winery, the organic gardens that they fed us from all week. They are winning in a big way. As we all sat around and drank boutique wine by the camp fire with Mt. St. Helena in the distance he said "we are all really just farmers. yeah we make great wine but you have to sell the sizzle with the steak or you are nothing more than anyone else". The fun part about knowing a little (and i know very little) is starting to know how to separate the sizzle from the steak.

    Sorry for the ramble- I'm 2 bottles in to a boutique Pinot that I bought from the guy who made it ($38 each and hand carried back) bender.......sell that sizzle indeed :)




  • FoghornFoghorn Posts: 1,485
    I was in Healdsburg on Saturday.  We got a private tour of MacMurray Ranch (vineyard not open to the public and formerly owned by actor Fred MacMurray) and visited J Vineyard (great Pinotage and two great Pinots) and Twomey (similarly great Pinots).   It's a great area.  Can you share the name of the vineyard that hosted you?

    XL BGE, Klose BYC, ProQ Excel, Weber Kettle, Firepit, Grand Turbo gasser, and a portable Outdoor Gourmet gasser for tailgating

    San Antonio, TX

  • I was right there. I was at Arista which is 37 acres and shares the fence line with Mac Murray (yes- the dad in my 3 sons- got the same story- sell that sizzle). I've been all those wineries. That's my favorite part of all CA wine country.

  • calikingcaliking Posts: 5,226
    Thought I would post this after seeing this thread: http://houston.eater.com/archives/2012/05/14/a-memorable-evening-at-killens-steakhouse.php

    [Just happened to come across this some time ago. I've been to Killen's and had a mediocre experience].

    #1 LBGE December 2012 • #2 SBGE February  2013 • #3 Mini May 2013
    A happy BGE family in Houston, TX.
  • FoghornFoghorn Posts: 1,485

    Arista? Or Amista? 

    Either way, the view from the top of MacMurray Ranch is spectacular.  And the wine was pretty good, too, including the prosecco we drank at the lookout point to commemorate the fact that we were up there with another couple and that both couples were celebratiing a 20th anniversary.

    XL BGE, Klose BYC, ProQ Excel, Weber Kettle, Firepit, Grand Turbo gasser, and a portable Outdoor Gourmet gasser for tailgating

    San Antonio, TX

  • Foghorn said:

    Arista? Or Amista? 

    Either way, the view from the top of MacMurray Ranch is spectacular.  And the wine was pretty good, too, including the prosecco we drank at the lookout point to commemorate the fact that we were up there with another couple and that both couples were celebratiing a 20th anniversary.


    Super cool!!!!! it is Arista.

  • BotchBotch Posts: 2,362
    RRP said:   ...please tell us that you saved the woody parts of all those old vines...those were smokin "gold" by weight!
    ooooh....  :(
     

    :((
    _____________________________________________
     
    I Know Why The Egged Bird Sings.
     
    Ogden, Utard.  
  • I love wine, especially red wine. I think everyone who likes wine goes through a trajectory for both palate and price until finding his comfort range. One of the best ways to sort things out is to host wine tastings. We have hosted tastings for specific wines like chardonnay or cabernet, or sometimes just red or white. Grilling on the egg can be a great way to complement the wine from cold smoking nuts/cheese to grilling a 10 pound prime rib. 

    It is fun to do blind tastings. Just use brown paper bags from the liquor store and seal the tops with masking tape or buy fancy black felt tasting bags to obscure the bottles. Give people scoring pads and a pen to write their score, notes, etc. We do very small pours to get through the wines, then score them to see what people liked, then "unmask" them and let each chose his own. We use a big bowl for the lightweights to dump wine while we move through the flights.

    Try a zinfandel tasting with ribs to get started. An inexpensive option is white wine with salmon. An expensive option is a cabernet tasting with a tenderloin or prime rib.
  • I love wine.  I have made it, studied it, been to over a 100 wineries.  I try not to be a snob.  It doesn't make my wine taste any better and scares people away from one of life's best things.

    We like trying wines by varietal and AVA.  For multiple reasons, our favorite areas are Sonoma and Lodi in California.  Hit me up for recommendations.

    On a normal night, me and the SWMBO enjoy something in the $7 to $12 range.  For nicer dinners, a little more.  Personally, I think the Law of Diminishing Returns kicks in around $50.  I have had lots of great wines, but the best are from 40 to 60.  That being said, there are a couple around 30 I would rate in the high 90's.

    I recommend finding a style or varietal you love, then going to small wineries in that area that specialize in that.  That is what we did in Healdsburg.  We became members of a winery that was just starting and have been spoiled ever since with superior service and wines!
  • If I may, I would encourage anyone who hasn't to try some Washington state wines.  Cabs from Washington are wonderful but it's their Merlot and especially Syrah (killer with Lamb or any strongly flavored meat) that really shine.  Some of the best U.S. reds (again, in my opinion) come from Washington.  Washington Rieslings are also pretty well thought of but they're not for me...I much prefer German Rieslings.

  • ringkingpinringkingpin Posts: 235
    edited October 2013
    I love wine.  I probably have around 3,500 bottles, a small cellar in my house of 250 bottles and the rest in an offsite wine storage facility.
    The wines that I buy and store off site, I buy early and then move to my house cellar as they start to enter the drinking range dates.  If i have a case of 12 bottles of whatever, I like to move them, three or four times throughout the drinking range so that I experience the development of the wine.  A lot of these wines become more valuable as they age and there is less on the market.  There were some wines that we had that became so valuable that we wound up auctioning them off.  We never intended to sell them but they were worth too much money to drink with a clear conscience.  lol
    I also buy a lot of wine for daily drinking and sharing.  I love it when you find something that tastes great and is affordable.  I sometimes buy things from www.winetilsoldout.com although there is some real oddball stuff and I also use wine searcher a lot to find the best deals on something.  With wine I'm buying to put down in my cellar, it's usually at auction.
    Most of my friends don't have a problem drinking anything I pour them but very few of them fully appreciate it and almost none reciprocate.  Because of this, I joined two very old wine groups in Chicago, a Bordeaux group and a burgundy group.  As you can imagine, I'm partial to French wines.  Most of the time when I'm drinking wine with something cooked on the egg, it's a Rhone wine, they tend to do battle with the strong flavors the eggs produce best although last night I did open a 2006 Lafon Mersault with the salmon I did on the small.
    Man, all this talk about wine is making me thirsty!
    "Tell me what you eat, and I will tell you who you are."
     Brillat-Savarin
  • Foghorn said:

    "Now next topic: Pairing of wines with meats (BGE style) and cheese. Any takers …"

    I learned/confirmed this weekend that I don't really like cabernet when I am just drinking.  It ONLY tastes good to me if I am having it with beef.

    A good pinot noir goes with anything.

    A pinotage is the best wine for BBQ.

    As stated, I am partial to Rhone wines when cooking on the egg, they're strong and robust enough to stand up to the flavors that the eggs impart on the foods.  A nice chateauneuf de pape for example.  IMO, a nice Burgundy or Bordeux will get killed by a lot of food that comes off the egg.  Not always but often.
    I don't like really spicey food but I do add an itsy bitsy bit of spice to my wok dishes and in that case, I like a chilled vouvray.  
    "Tell me what you eat, and I will tell you who you are."
     Brillat-Savarin
  • oh yeah, like someone else said, some of the most fun you can have with wine is blind taste testings.  I wish I did them more often but do it probably 6 times a year or so.  It's fun to level the playing feel and it immediately removes any pretense from what can be a very snobby subject, lol.  
    "Tell me what you eat, and I will tell you who you are."
     Brillat-Savarin
  • A good wine is a good wine regardless of price.  
    Simi Valley, California
  • henapplehenapple Posts: 10,470
    Botch said:

    u
    RRP said:   ...please tell us that you saved the woody parts of all those old vines...those were smokin "gold" by weight!

    ooooh....  :(
     

    :((
    What would you smoke either through vines? My neighbor is tearing out his line of grapes and offered the wood or vines to me.
    Green egg, dead animal and alcohol. The "Boro".. TN 
  • jadjad Posts: 25
    for those that do blind tastings how do you do them?
    example: cabs $15-20 do people bring there own already covered, does the host supply the wine?
     for guest not knowing a lot about wine how do you let them rate the wines? 0-10 where 0 is I hate it and 10 I love it?

    It is something I always wanted to try and do but never did.
  • Does tasting until you go blind count as blind tasting?  If so, I am an expert.
    __________________________________________

    Dripping Springs, Texas.
    Gateway to the Hill Country

  • Little StevenLittle Steven Posts: 26,080
    henapple said:
    u
    RRP said:   ...please tell us that you saved the woody parts of all those old vines...those were smokin "gold" by weight!
    ooooh....  :(
     

    :((
    What would you smoke either through vines? My neighbor is tearing out his line of grapes and offered the wood or vines to me.
    Anything Mediterranean, any lamb, any French, Spanish or poultry.

    Steve 

    Caledon, ON

     

  • A_Smalltown_EggA_Smalltown_Egg Posts: 18
    edited October 2013
    @jad you can do blind tastings just about any way you like.  Sometimes the host supplies all the wine, sometimes everyone brings a bottle.  Price ranges are used a lot.  Often times it is done by varietal or region.  Anything that you and your friends think would work and be fun.  Some serious tasters will judge the wine by sight, smell, feel and flavor and will try to make a determination of what the wine is.  For a group of people who may not know as much I'd give a reasonable price range and say either everyone bring any wine they like or everyone bring the same varietal.
  • henapplehenapple Posts: 10,470


    Worth a watch... Hilarious.
    Green egg, dead animal and alcohol. The "Boro".. TN 
  • Foghorn said:

    "To me, the most important thing is to make sure the wine is allowed to breath, temp is right etc.."

    OK.  So that brings up another issue.  My brother-in-law and his wife bought us Vinturi aerators a few years ago as they will not drink a glass of wine that has not been aerated or allowed to breathe for a while.  My wife and I did blind taste tests with and without aeration and we preferred the unaerated wine every time.  My sister-in-law was aghast....

    Funny Foghorn. I have the same Venturi and to me the difference is dramatic. Now, Cooks Illustrated said that if you decant completely into a pitcher and pour the entire contents into another pitcher four times, you would get the same effect of aerating for 1 hour. I tried it and agree somewhat but I don't want to dirty up two pitchers in the process.  Who the hell knows, maybe the bourbons had earlier clouded my judgement...
    In the  Hinterlands between Cumming and Gainesville, GA
    Med BGE, Weber Kettle, Weber Smokey Joe, Brinkman Dual Zone, Weber Genesis Gas Grill and portable gasser for boating
  • BotchBotch Posts: 2,362
    @RingKingPin:
    I have to ask, have you been able to develop an ability to taste an immature wine and realize it's going to be a good one, or do you go by others' recommendations, or do you go by labels that have been good in the past?  
    Most 'murican wines these days are blended to be drank within a couple years, but there have been a few wines that I've bought up to try a few years down the road, although they're usually french, spanish or chilean/argentinian.  The selection/availability here in mormonville isn't exactly stellar, either... 
    _____________________________________________
     
    I Know Why The Egged Bird Sings.
     
    Ogden, Utard.  
  • FoghornFoghorn Posts: 1,485
    @Cymbaline65, my wife and I always taste a difference between the aerated and nonaerated glasses. We just have always preferred the nonaerated wine.... Until about 4 hours after I posted that comment.
    Because of this discussion I broke out the aerator and had my wife do a blind test and she definitively (and correctly) picked the aerated wine and said that she preferred it. I could taste the difference and liked them both about equally - but they were definitely different so I drank the nonaerated glass.

    XL BGE, Klose BYC, ProQ Excel, Weber Kettle, Firepit, Grand Turbo gasser, and a portable Outdoor Gourmet gasser for tailgating

    San Antonio, TX

  • @Botch: To me, wine is to be drunk soon after purchase so for me, I could not tell you if it improves with aging. Speaking from just me, of course.

    @Foghorn: I have found that the "cheaper" the wine, the greater the benefit of aeration using the device.

    Regardless, I am not ashamed to serve up a good cask wine (Australian preferably), properly aerated, to a crowd. Pour it via a carafe and nobody knows the difference. Small dinner parties, up the ante a bit. As a single income household with a gaggle of women to take care of, I have to spend my discretionary monies wisely.

    In the  Hinterlands between Cumming and Gainesville, GA
    Med BGE, Weber Kettle, Weber Smokey Joe, Brinkman Dual Zone, Weber Genesis Gas Grill and portable gasser for boating
  • gdenbygdenby Posts: 4,171
    I guess I might be close to a "beer snob." Never been much of a wine drinker. A few years ago, I read various comments from people involved in craft beer, and the prediction was that within a few years, the price of a higher alcohol content craft beer could be comparable to wine. Well, its more than true. So I'm looking more at wine.

    Here's what i can offer.

    There have been at least one recent study that shows that people's appreciation of wine is strongly influenced by expectations. A well publicized name, a fancy setting, and price all tend to make the wine taste better. Perhaps this is why there have been a few somewhat scandalous reports that high end restaurants often slip a bottle of $5 wine into the mix, and get away w. charging $50.

    Modernist Cuisine recommends a few moments in a blender to aerate wines, particularly young reds.

    I've come across a couple of columns that mention that for some varietals, price does make a noticeable difference. Unfortunately, I never paid enough attention to recall which. For most wines, there is little difference between a modestly priced bottle and those several times more expensive.

    There was an interview on "The Splendid Table" w. a fellow that had just published a book on wine. I recall that he said the original Chablis, from France, put those from other regions to shame. Evidently terrior is really important. Likewise pinot grigio from a region in Italy is really special.

    And I've read that many European wines from long established wineries are often an excellent choice, while being fairly low priced. Probably an advantage of perhaps several hundred years of experience, and lots of competition.

    I can say that mostly Port improves w. age/price. Haven't had anything more than $50, but the tastes have been a real temptation to go even higher.


    I have always liked Port, and find that price and age make a difference. But my wallet keeps me in the $40 range.


  • A_Smalltown_EggA_Smalltown_Egg Posts: 18
    edited October 2013

    @qdenby brought up the word terroir which can get really wine geeky and I think it is fascinating.  Terroir is hard to define but it is basically the unique combination of everything in where the grapes are planted (soil, varietal, climate and weather, aspect of vineyard etc.).  European countries have been making wine for many hundreds of years and have really figured out where to grow what and that place is at least as important as the grape.  In Burgundy as an example, you will find the very best vineyards (Grand Cru) at the base of the hills.  Higher up is too steep and over years the best soils move towards the base of the hills.  Lower down is too flat so it doesn't get the same sunshine and the best soils settle just above.  Surrounding the Grand Cru vineyards will be the next best vineyards (Premier Cru) and further out the village quality vineyards.  Price of wines made from vineyards litterally just a few feet apart can vary greatly

    New world wine makers are starting to figure out their terroir now.  In the U.S. Napa was thought of as the end all be all of all domestic wines until they started figuring out what works best and where.  There has even been speculation that at some point the U.S. may move onto a quality grading system similar to what is found in Europe.

  • Botch, there are pre release tasting and tastings for futures at vineyards.  I don't do that at all.  Once a vintage is established, it's usually a sure bet and often times good wines / great makers from off years can be great deals.  
    I can always tell if a wine is young or old and if I'm playing with French wines, I can get halfway decent at recognizing region, maker and sometimes vintage.
    Some wines are meant to age, some are not.

    Aerating the wine is simply a way to oxidize or age the wine immediately.  There are really two reasons to decant a wine.  The first it to aerate, oxidize and "open up" the wine if it's too young.  IMO, if you have to do this, you're drinking it too young.  The other reason is to try let get the sediment out of the wine.  As a rule of thumb, I find the dredges in Burgundy wine to be fine to drink but the dredges from a Bordeaux is kinda disgusting.  Preferably, I like to pull a bottle from the cellar a couple days before serving and stand it on end to allow all the crude to settle at the bottom and then I carefully decant.  Or I'll pull from the cellar and put in a bottle holder and treat it like nitro glycerin and decant it. 
    I've had very nice wines that are a little long in the tooth change from awesome and full of fruit and flavor to brick water in a matter of 30 minutes simply because it's been exposed to air and oxidizes quickly.  
    "Tell me what you eat, and I will tell you who you are."
     Brillat-Savarin
  • EggcelsiorEggcelsior Posts: 8,265

    @Botch: To me, wine is to be drunk soon after purchase so for me, I could not tell you if it improves with aging. Speaking from just me, of course.

    @Foghorn: I have found that the "cheaper" the wine, the greater the benefit of aeration using the device.

    Regardless, I am not ashamed to serve up a good cask wine (Australian preferably), properly aerated, to a crowd. Pour it via a carafe and nobody knows the difference. Small dinner parties, up the ante a bit. As a single income household with a gaggle of women to take care of, I have to spend my discretionary monies wisely.

    Gaggle of women?

    image
  • lol
    "Tell me what you eat, and I will tell you who you are."
     Brillat-Savarin
Sign In or Register to comment.