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Overwined
Sep 22, 2008

Wine can of their wits the wise beguile,
Make the sage frolic, and the serious smile.


Kasumeat posted:

It's definitely illegal for us to do corkage on an open bottle here. It really sucks too because having a wine you bring in be corked is a huge bummer. I feel for you but this sort of law is common because there's theoretically potential liability if you bring in your moonshine or whatever.

It is a widespread law and I wouldn't be surprised if it's in most, if not all, of the 50 states. It really has less to do with liability, though, and more to do with states keeping tabs on their sweet sweet excise tax income.

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PT6A
Jan 5, 2006



The more pressing issue, in my experience, is that restaurants without a good wine program (i.e. the restaurants where corkage is most valuable) will often gently caress up basic parts of wine service, including opening the bottle if it has a cork closure. This is doubly true if the wine has a bit of age and the cork requires any level of finesse to remove.

got off on a technicality
Feb 7, 2007

oh dear


PT6A posted:

This is doubly true if the wine has a bit of age and the cork requires any level of finesse to remove.

I do wonder why people still use corkscrews when a butler's friend is just as fast and doesn't break corks off in the bottle

Overwined
Sep 22, 2008

Wine can of their wits the wise beguile,
Make the sage frolic, and the serious smile.


Admirable Gusto posted:

I do wonder why people still use corkscrews when a butler's friend is just as fast and doesn't break corks off in the bottle

I doubt it's as fast, even if well trained. One thing I do know, however is that it's much more skill-reliant than a normal double-hinged waiters key. That being said, as you say, it's great for not ruining your corks.

Kasumeat
Nov 18, 2004


I just wanna say that the whole wine storage issue is obsessed over a little too much. I've worked in a lot of restaurants and many of them had less-than-stellar storage: bottles at room temperature and upright for many years. And they never showed poorly unless they were very clearly past their expected drink-by date. Don't lay down your 2010 Borgogno Reserva in your closet hoping to open it in 2050, but as long as your room is consistently under 75 I wouldn't worry about storing something for 3-5 years. It'll definitely age faster and less elegantly than in ideal conditions, but if it's a wine meant to age, it'll still be improving.

PT6A posted:

The more pressing issue, in my experience, is that restaurants without a good wine program (i.e. the restaurants where corkage is most valuable) will often gently caress up basic parts of wine service, including opening the bottle if it has a cork closure. This is doubly true if the wine has a bit of age and the cork requires any level of finesse to remove.

Yeah this is definitely annoying, as is the lack of decent glassware at many of those same restaurants. I'm a big fan of Champagne and dim sum, and most Chinese restaurants have ridiculously cheap corkage, but there is a preeetty good chance their glassware is garbage.

PT6A
Jan 5, 2006



Admirable Gusto posted:

I do wonder why people still use corkscrews when a butler's friend is just as fast and doesn't break corks off in the bottle

So that's what that device is called! I've heard of it before, but I've never actually seen one for sale, and I never knew what it was called to actually search for it.

Thanks, I think I'll pick one up soon.

Can we agree that the stupid lever-action "rabbit" corkscrew is the worst? Everyone tells me it's "so easy" but I've hosed up more openings with that than I ever have with a classic double-jointed wine key.


Kasumeat posted:

Yeah this is definitely annoying, as is the lack of decent glassware at many of those same restaurants. I'm a big fan of Champagne and dim sum, and most Chinese restaurants have ridiculously cheap corkage, but there is a preeetty good chance their glassware is garbage.

See also: "why a little bit of knowledge is a dangerous thing." Yes, Chardonnay is a white wine; no, you probably shouldn't bring narrow glasses meant for aromatic whites to serve it in.

Kasumeat
Nov 18, 2004


PT6A posted:

See also: "why a little bit of knowledge is a dangerous thing." Yes, Chardonnay is a white wine; no, you probably shouldn't bring narrow glasses meant for aromatic whites to serve it in.

I'm loving ecstatic if I get anything other than something that looks like this, but that doesn't happen too often.

PT6A
Jan 5, 2006



Kasumeat posted:

I'm loving ecstatic if I get anything other than something that looks like this, but that doesn't happen too often.

In Chinese restaurants specifically? Because the average pub even in Calgary (not that they do corkage, typically) has better glassware than that.

In other news, I haven't had a good red wine in three weeks (Air Canada's "premium selection" falling short, by my standards) so I decided to treat myself a little bit tonight: Travaglini Gattinara Riserva 2009. Probably still a bit young, but I'm willing to take a gamble and decant for a little while first.

Kasumeat
Nov 18, 2004


Yeah, at Chinese restaurants.

PT6A
Jan 5, 2006



Kasumeat posted:

Yeah, at Chinese restaurants.

Should be changing soon, I hear the Chinese wine trade is coming along (both in terms of production and consumption)

Subjunctive
Sep 12, 2006

careful now


Cybernetic Crumb

PT6A posted:

Should be changing soon, I hear the Chinese wine trade is coming along (both in terms of production and consumption)

Are Chinese wines similar to Western wines, in fruit and technique and such? I'd always thought them to be quite different.

Stringent
Dec 22, 2004

The internet is the universal sewer.


Japanese wines, with the exception of one dry white variety called Koshu, are an abomination and should be struck from the earth.

Muscat Bailey A is particularly vile.

PT6A
Jan 5, 2006



Subjunctive posted:

Are Chinese wines similar to Western wines, in fruit and technique and such? I'd always thought them to be quite different.

I imagine it varies, but I believe what might be termed "international varietals" are being grown and produced using the same techniques which exist in the rest of the world. I don't believe many of them are exported at this point so I don't have any personal experience, though.

I'm not sure if they have a tradition of making wine from grapes, independent of influences from the rest of the world.

Edit: After some reading, it would seem they are mostly focused on attempting to make Bordeaux-style reds with extremely variable success rates.

PT6A fucked around with this message at Sep 6, 2016 around 02:52

Overwined
Sep 22, 2008

Wine can of their wits the wise beguile,
Make the sage frolic, and the serious smile.


I had a Chinese Viognier probably about 10 years ago. It must have been among the first imported in the US. It wasn't off or flawed or anything, but it was flat and boring as hell. I should really give them another shot if I can find one. From what I read, they are mostly enamored of the European winemaking model and strive for structured wines. The country is so large and its people so ambitious that it's only a matter of time until they lock onto the techniques and the terroir to make good wine.

Crimson
Nov 6, 2002


Admirable Gusto posted:

I do wonder why people still use corkscrews when a butler's friend is just as fast and doesn't break corks off in the bottle

Interesting, I've only ever referred to that style cork puller as an "ah-so", never heard that term. Those definitely require some skill to use, particularly on older bottles where you might shove the cork in if you're not careful. I try to teach my wait staff how to use them, to varying levels of success.

Kasumeat
Nov 18, 2004


Yeah I think ah-so is more common in the restaurant industry and butler's friend elsewhere. The Durand is an excellent update to the traditional design that makes it pretty foolproof, I highly recommend one if you open old bottles regularly.

Speaking of corks, despite my anti-cork stance, I gotta give credit where it's due: the industry is cleaning up their act. There is a marked difference between the TCA rates for recent vintages compared older ones. The nineties and noughties are still a minefield, but I've opened hundreds of 2013-and-2014s in a row without a single corked bottle. A premoxed 2008 Grand Cru Chablis in a row to make up for it, but hey, it's a start.

Ola
Jul 19, 2004



Kasumeat posted:



Speaking of corks, despite my anti-cork stance, I gotta give credit where it's due: the industry is cleaning up their act. There is a marked difference between the TCA rates for recent vintages compared older ones. The nineties and noughties are still a minefield, but I've opened hundreds of 2013-and-2014s in a row without a single corked bottle. A premoxed 2008 Grand Cru Chablis in a row to make up for it, but hey, it's a start.

Premox isn't TCA though. And also selection bias. Where did the can of worms emoticon go?

Subjunctive
Sep 12, 2006

careful now


Cybernetic Crumb

I got the monopol ah-so to play with and managed to stick the tines in the cork, push the cork halfway down the neck, and then spurt wine everywhere when I did get it out.

Happily, practice is tasty.

got off on a technicality
Feb 7, 2007

oh dear


Ola posted:

Premox isn't TCA though. And also selection bias. Where did the can of worms emoticon go?

I don't drink white Burgundy much but isn't it infamous for premox, even very nice bottles? As if compensating for that history, the 2014 Aubert chardonnay I had recently was hilariously reductive

Ola
Jul 19, 2004



Admirable Gusto posted:

I don't drink white Burgundy much but isn't it infamous for premox, even very nice bottles? As if compensating for that history, the 2014 Aubert chardonnay I had recently was hilariously reductive

There was certainly a period in the early 00s when it was worse than average. It still happens, I came across one at a Chablis tasting the other day. But "corked", as in tainted by TCA, is a different fault.

Overwined
Sep 22, 2008

Wine can of their wits the wise beguile,
Make the sage frolic, and the serious smile.


I used one of those weird hybrid ah-sos earlier this year. You sink the tines in like normal , then through a hole in the top you sing a worm mounted on a small sqaurish base. This base locks into the top of the ah-so tines and that way you get some pulling authority from the middle along with the sides. We used it to open some early 80's Burgs out of the Guild's megabank for a charity thing I was helping with. It worked pretty well. My only complaint is that driving the tines down the side AND sinking a worm can be hell on a soft cork.

Comb Your Beard
Sep 28, 2007

Chillin' like a villian.

Brought the super cheap Beaujolais Villages Trader Joes sells on a camping trip. Best thing I've drank in the ~$5 range maybe ever. Room temp out of a small plastic cup with campfire hotdogs. A+, would do again.

Furious Lobster
Jun 17, 2006



Grimey Drawer

Has anyone had the Ultramarine series of california sparkling wines? They're doing their 2012 release and I've heard some good things about them but am still on the fence currently.

himajinga
Mar 19, 2003

Und wenn du lange in einen Schuh blickst, blickt der Schuh auch in dich hinein.


Furious Lobster posted:

Has anyone had the Ultramarine series of california sparkling wines? They're doing their 2012 release and I've heard some good things about them but am still on the fence currently.

Never had it but it's really well reviewed on CT and people that I've talked to seem to like it a great deal. Apparently shipping is exorbitant, though, like $10/btl

Azhais
Feb 5, 2007


Cybernetic Crumb

himajinga posted:

Apparently shipping is exorbitant, though, like $10/btl

Exactis Extremis

Crimson
Nov 6, 2002


Furious Lobster posted:

Has anyone had the Ultramarine series of california sparkling wines? They're doing their 2012 release and I've heard some good things about them but am still on the fence currently.

Are you in the industry? I'd be curious how you heard of it. It's extremely small production and hard to get. It's also amazing, best sparkling in CA hands down. Only thing that comes close in my opinion is Caraccioli, which is nice because you can actually buy Caraccioli.

Furious Lobster
Jun 17, 2006



Grimey Drawer

Crimson posted:

Are you in the industry? I'd be curious how you heard of it. It's extremely small production and hard to get. It's also amazing, best sparkling in CA hands down. Only thing that comes close in my opinion is Caraccioli, which is nice because you can actually buy Caraccioli.

I'm not in the the business and heard of it when someone brought it to a tasting; I definitely enjoyed it so I signed up and received an allocation. I think there are a lot of good things being said so I got both the BDB and the Noirs.

teacup
Dec 20, 2006


Great thread, loved reading it. I see the OP has some book suggestions, anything recent or any app/website/blog suggestions for people who want to read up more on wine in general or anything niche and specific?

I just got back from my honeymoon and we flew from our home in Melbourne, Australia to Italy, the UK and France, but the main wine areas being obviously Italy and France, with us spending half a week in Tuscany and a week and a bit in Bordeaux. I always considered myself a fan of wine but to see the level of passion these people have towards EVERYTHING that goes towards wine was inspiring. I will never call them pretentious wankers again (Or I will, but I'll be drat proud of trying to be one myself)

Anyway we brought back as much wine as we were allowed to take so looking forward to having some and remembering the trip.

Cheers


EDIT- Also anyone from Melbourne or from Australia in general know of any good retail shops OR online shops to get any non local wine. I know the local market is quite good, but just for something a little different. I've just fallen in love with the area of Bordeaux and would love to be able to get some bottles occasionally

PT6A
Jan 5, 2006



teacup posted:

Great thread, loved reading it. I see the OP has some book suggestions, anything recent or any app/website/blog suggestions for people who want to read up more on wine in general or anything niche and specific?

I just got back from my honeymoon and we flew from our home in Melbourne, Australia to Italy, the UK and France, but the main wine areas being obviously Italy and France, with us spending half a week in Tuscany and a week and a bit in Bordeaux. I always considered myself a fan of wine but to see the level of passion these people have towards EVERYTHING that goes towards wine was inspiring. I will never call them pretentious wankers again (Or I will, but I'll be drat proud of trying to be one myself)

Anyway we brought back as much wine as we were allowed to take so looking forward to having some and remembering the trip.

Cheers


EDIT- Also anyone from Melbourne or from Australia in general know of any good retail shops OR online shops to get any non local wine. I know the local market is quite good, but just for something a little different. I've just fallen in love with the area of Bordeaux and would love to be able to get some bottles occasionally

I finally broke down and bought a membership to Jancis Robinson's website. It's pricey, but it's got a fairly good catalogue of reviews, interesting articles, access to a bunch of maps and information regarding grape varieties and growing regions, etc. If you don't mind paying for it, I think it's worth the price.

himajinga
Mar 19, 2003

Und wenn du lange in einen Schuh blickst, blickt der Schuh auch in dich hinein.


teacup posted:

Great thread, loved reading it. I see the OP has some book suggestions, anything recent or any app/website/blog suggestions for people who want to read up more on wine in general or anything niche and specific?

Wine Folly is a website and now a really great book that has tons of accessible wine info for the beginner and beyond with great infographics, maps, etc. and is written for the layperson but isn't boringly remedial. The main person behind it is, like me, in her early 30s so her style is a little less stuffy than some of the more established wine writers which I've found refreshing.

himajinga
Mar 19, 2003

Und wenn du lange in einen Schuh blickst, blickt der Schuh auch in dich hinein.


Goddamn it I always baby kill pinots next time I have an inkling to drink Oregon Pinot I need to take a deep breath, put it back and open a Syrah or something

Overwined
Sep 22, 2008

Wine can of their wits the wise beguile,
Make the sage frolic, and the serious smile.


Or you could put them back into your wine cooler and do what all the cool kids are doing these days -- drink gallons or pet-nat while wearing flip flops and gaudy-colored Ray Bans.

Secret Spoon
Mar 22, 2009



I have been drinking the dog poo poo out of callet and syrah blends. I stumbled upon them when one of my buddies called me and said he needed to unload some bottles of 2010 AN/2 at cost, so I got 12 bottles for 120$. drat, what a buy. This stuff is fun, its got rad floral notes and some smoke standing on the shoulder of soft matured red fruit. I ordered some of the rose bottles they are famous for, from the island of mallorca, some place I literally know nothing about. The tannins at almost 6 years of aging make it really smooth and easy, while still remaining noticeably present. almost like a velvet lined gauntlet. Im saving 6 of those bottles for this duck season, when me and a few friends and family come together with the rabbits we have raised and ducks we have hunted and make a rad feast. I think this stuff will start us off nicely.

Anyone else have some cool low key varietals for me to explore? I love finding new ones and seeing how small or large the difference is between them and the popular varietals. I want to do some whites, I drink too much alsatian gewürztraminer. I need to branch out.

PT6A
Jan 5, 2006



Secret Spoon posted:

Anyone else have some cool low key varietals for me to explore? I love finding new ones and seeing how small or large the difference is between them and the popular varietals. I want to do some whites, I drink too much alsatian gewürztraminer. I need to branch out.

Spanish (particularly Galician) and Italian whites. Granted, you don't always get a feel for the varietal as there's a fair amount of blending involved, but there's a treasure trove of grapes and regions that fly way under the radar. D.O. Ribeiro in Spain is one that I'm particularly fond of. Rioja is hardly low-key, but if you've never tried the whites (some people haven't), I'd recommend that as well -- there's a wide variety of styles being produced currently, too.

For reds, I recently had a wine made from Ruchè, which is a grape I'd never heard of and certainly never tried. Very nice -- reminded me of a high-quality Gamay, almost like a good Cru Beaujolais.

Kasumeat
Nov 18, 2004


Secret Spoon posted:

I have been drinking the dog poo poo out of callet and syrah blends. I stumbled upon them when one of my buddies called me and said he needed to unload some bottles of 2010 AN/2 at cost, so I got 12 bottles for 120$. drat, what a buy. This stuff is fun, its got rad floral notes and some smoke standing on the shoulder of soft matured red fruit. I ordered some of the rose bottles they are famous for, from the island of mallorca, some place I literally know nothing about. The tannins at almost 6 years of aging make it really smooth and easy, while still remaining noticeably present. almost like a velvet lined gauntlet. Im saving 6 of those bottles for this duck season, when me and a few friends and family come together with the rabbits we have raised and ducks we have hunted and make a rad feast. I think this stuff will start us off nicely.

Anyone else have some cool low key varietals for me to explore? I love finding new ones and seeing how small or large the difference is between them and the popular varietals. I want to do some whites, I drink too much alsatian gewürztraminer. I need to branch out.

The wines of Jurançon (Petit Manseng-based) are the world's most underrated table wines, no question. Other grapes worth seeking out are:
Falanghina (fruity with distinctive banana aromatics, this one is tricky as there are probably three different grapes with the same name growing nearby but the Taburno region is the most reliable for me)
Godello (Chardonnay-like, you'll have to spend a bit of money to get anything other than a pleasant neutral white)
Assyrtiko (Chablis-like aromatics with more body and salinity. Make sure you get something from Santorini, the mainland ones are less interesting)
Malagouzia (Viognier-like aromatics but on a lean and mineral frame instead of alcoholic and flabby. Gerovassiliou is the top producer and $25 will get you a wine comparable to the world's best Condrieu)
and Scheurebe (Riesling-like minerality with Sauvignon Blanc-like aromatics.)

Rurutia
Jun 11, 2009


Secret Spoon posted:

I have been drinking the dog poo poo out of callet and syrah blends. I stumbled upon them when one of my buddies called me and said he needed to unload some bottles of 2010 AN/2 at cost, so I got 12 bottles for 120$. drat, what a buy. This stuff is fun, its got rad floral notes and some smoke standing on the shoulder of soft matured red fruit. I ordered some of the rose bottles they are famous for, from the island of mallorca, some place I literally know nothing about. The tannins at almost 6 years of aging make it really smooth and easy, while still remaining noticeably present. almost like a velvet lined gauntlet. Im saving 6 of those bottles for this duck season, when me and a few friends and family come together with the rabbits we have raised and ducks we have hunted and make a rad feast. I think this stuff will start us off nicely.

Anyone else have some cool low key varietals for me to explore? I love finding new ones and seeing how small or large the difference is between them and the popular varietals. I want to do some whites, I drink too much alsatian gewürztraminer. I need to branch out.

Ah, a fellow Alsatian Gerwurztraminer fan. Have you tried Albariño wines? It has a lot of the same characteristics.

Secret Spoon
Mar 22, 2009



Rurutia posted:

Ah, a fellow Alsatian Gerwurztraminer fan. Have you tried Albariño wines? It has a lot of the same characteristics.

Sure do! During crawfish season I drink an unreasonable amount of blue slate Riesling. But on average, I drink a decent mix of wines I guess, but it's about to be the time of year I move into cava.

Secret Spoon
Mar 22, 2009



Kasumeat posted:

The wines of Jurançon (Petit Manseng-based) are the world's most underrated table wines, no question. Other grapes worth seeking out are:
Falanghina (fruity with distinctive banana aromatics, this one is tricky as there are probably three different grapes with the same name growing nearby but the Taburno region is the most reliable for me)
Godello (Chardonnay-like, you'll have to spend a bit of money to get anything other than a pleasant neutral white)
Assyrtiko (Chablis-like aromatics with more body and salinity. Make sure you get something from Santorini, the mainland ones are less interesting)
Malagouzia (Viognier-like aromatics but on a lean and mineral frame instead of alcoholic and flabby. Gerovassiliou is the top producer and $25 will get you a wine comparable to the world's best Condrieu)
and Scheurebe (Riesling-like minerality with Sauvignon Blanc-like aromatics.)

Got some of these on order now! thanks homie!

PT6A; thanks for for the info, definitely starting to look for that red because it sounds like my taste!

Mr. Wiggles
Dec 1, 2003

I would never shop at Costco. The paper towels won't fit into my sports car!

On account of the brewing thread giving no fucks about wine, I thought I'd share with you all my recent adventures.

The concord rose from last year's harvest is finally ready and it turned out absolutely lovely. Since I moved I probably won't get any more concords until I buy another house someday and plant new vines, so I'm going to cherish these couple of cases, since this is the first time I've made or had a truly good concord wine.

The 2 acre experimental vineyard at my work as gone great guns, but with no help to make our wine this year, it's been left to myself and one other guy to try to make wine at home from our fruit. I have a Gewürztraminer, a malbec, and a lembergur rose currently fermenting, and hopefully by spring some of them will be ready. Next year, we're working with a different winery which will be more reliable hopefully, especially since we plan on putting in more acreage.

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idiotsavant
Jun 4, 2000


Overwined posted:

Or you could put them back into your wine cooler and do what all the cool kids are doing these days -- drink gallons or pet-nat while wearing flip flops and gaudy-colored Ray Bans.
Don't forget to saber anything you can, whenever possible or not possible!

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