October 03, 2011

Fine Wines

We celebrated Cindy's birthday Saturday night so naturally we drank some nice wine. Michael brought over his last bottle of 1998 Gigondas les Hauts de Montmirail. At one time, I had six bottles of this wine in my cellar. All gone. Wish I had bought more. It is drinking marvelously right now.

Not to be outdone (which I usually am) I opened a 2000 Pavillon Rouge. I paid about $30 a bottle for this wine. It is now selling for anywhere from $99 to $200 a bottle. My little Eurocave wine cellar is paying for itself. I've been buying wine young and cheap and drinking it old and expensive. Michael told me that one of my 2003 Bordeaux is now selling for 300 Euros. I have six bottles of that and it isn't even ready to drink yet. I've got a lot of 2003 and 2005 Bordeaux that aren't ready. I hope that my wines do not outlive me. For that reason, I have quit buying Bordeaux futures.

We look forward to Cindy's birthday every year. It's not because we want her to get any older. It's because it is the start of Cognac season. From Easter to Cindy's birthday, Michael and I drink grappa as our after dinner drink. Cindy doesn't like grappa. Too bad. Good grappa (Yes, there is such a thing.) at a reasonable price is hard to find. Greens where Michael is the wine buyer, used to stock the grappa that he and I like to drink, but they quit stocking it a few years back. Michael has no input on that. He's only wine. Thanks to the internet (I sure am happy that Pope Albert I of the Church of AGW invented it.) I found a source.

I can no longer find locally the Cognac that we like to drink. Once again, the internet is my friend. I found a source for Delamain Vesper. Ordered and received some a few weeks ago so we opened a bottle Saturday night. Cindy does like Cognac, especially Delamain Vesper.

Good wine. Good Cognac. It was a very enjoyable evening especially, since Cindy cooked up some short ribs. I was gonna cook but she wanted to bring dinner so it was fine with me.

Posted by denny at October 3, 2011 01:37 PM  

Dear Denny;
When your time is near, please contact me. I'll drive to Atlanta, visit with you and help you "get rid of" all that "old" wine. Just think, a fellow diver to dive to the bottom of a lot of wine bottles and keeping you company too. :-^

Stay well

Posted by: Roger on October 3, 2011 04:36 PM


Forget he Grappa (I got a bottle in Northern Italy about 7-years ago CHEAP and good) and Cognac.

Go for some nice Slivovitz. It slides down the old esophageus real nice and it only burns for a few minutes.

Posted by: Toejam on October 4, 2011 12:17 AM

If you can find it, I recommend Armenian Ararat Koniak. Remarkably smooth, and with just the faintest touch of sweetness in the aftertaste. Georgian and Bulgarian brandies are aslo worthy, if not up to the level of Ararat.
And if by chance you can find Ron Barilito ... among professional tasters, it has been able to pass for cognac ... sadly at about the same price.

Posted by: Rurik on October 4, 2011 12:43 AM

I'm curious how you know when the wine is ready to drink. Is it an amount of time you have previously set, or visual indicators based on how it looks in the bottle, or something else?

Posted by: CAshane on October 4, 2011 11:35 AM

CAshane - There are a variety of ways.

1. Wine reviews, most notably, Robert Parker.

2. Recommendations by the vintners who produce the wines.

3. Other wine experts. e.g. Michael, who tastes every single Bordeaux (and other wines) he sells. He goes to France every year and tastes all the Bordeaux he sells as futures.

4. I buy my Bordeaux futures by the half case (six bottles) so, I can pull a bottle out after a few years and decide if the other five bottles are ready yet.

I usually rely on Michael to tell me if a wine is ready or not since he's a pro and knows this shit and, in most cases, he will be drinking it with me. Even the cheap table wine I buy from him is good since he'll prolly help me drink that and he doesn't like to drink crap.

Posted by: denny on October 4, 2011 01:30 PM

Drinking french products doesn't make you puke?

Posted by: Prosper on October 4, 2011 11:07 PM

Prosper - Nope. You French make good wines and good sailboats. You also make good white flags. Don't really like your cheeses. Fortunately, I'll be dead when you surrender to the Moo-slimes and your wine industry will die. BTW, did you know it was some dude from Missouri who saved your wine industry? After the Phylloxera threatened to wipe out French vineyards Missouri root stock was imported and French vines were grafted on to them. There is a statue of the guy who did this in Montpellier. You're welcome.

Posted by: denny on October 5, 2011 01:05 PM

Daughter was born in 1993, which unfortunately was a crap year for just about everything. I bought a half case of Beaucastel Chateaunuef du Pape. We'll open one this weekend for her 18th birthday.

Posted by: Mr. Bingley on October 5, 2011 02:36 PM

Mr. Bingly - I hope it's good. Beaucastel usually is. Too bad she wasn't born in 1995. 1995 was a great year everywhere in France.

Posted by: denny on October 5, 2011 05:30 PM

Can one disinherit children born in non-vintage years?

Posted by: Mr. Bingley on October 5, 2011 06:53 PM

I'm hoping it is, denny. At the time I bought it it seemed to me that CdP was the highest rated region for 1993, and it was a non-vintage year for port, so that was out. I figured Beaucastel would be the longest-lived of the CdPs that I could afford.

Posted by: Mr. Bingley on October 5, 2011 06:55 PM
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