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Serious Question for those who "belong" to various retail wine "clubs"

Since we are on the subject of bottling under different name I recently purchased from K&L Wines a rather inexpensive 2012 Kalinda Chardonnay. For the price I am impressed! Apparently this is an example of something that comes from some "top" but unnamed producer. Based on your experience and knowledge could you shed light what it could be or is it an impenetrable secret?

Nov 22, 2014
olasek in Wine

Serious Question for those who "belong" to various retail wine "clubs"

Yes, it could be that. It may also be a good "feeling" of belonging to some "exclusive" club and the notion that you are getting perks not available to others.

Nov 22, 2014
olasek in Wine

Nominate your favorite restaurants in Las Vegas for "Best of 2014."

Mon Ami Gabi.

Nov 20, 2014
olasek in Las Vegas

Charlie Palmer Steak Cut of the Week--A Simply Superb Steal

Just returned from Vegas and went to Charlie Palmer to try their cut-of-the-week. It was a flank steak for the main course. Overall I was very disappointed, the salad was tiny and very crudely put together, the flank steak was OK but with no sauce it was hardly worthy of such place, the dessert was a blob of chocolate. The wine was plentiful but was of rather mediocre quality. Even on a strip this $48 per person wasn't such a good deal.

Nov 10, 2014
olasek in Las Vegas

Best romantic bar and best romantic restaurant in Vegas?

>> Have you considered Mon Ami Gabi? The food is not bad, but not great

Actually a steak-frite dinner at Mon Ami Gabi was one of the better dining experiences I had in Vegas, just returned from there yesterday. I thought that value-wise it was an excellent meal. We went to Mon Ami primarily to watch Bellagio's fountain show and did not count on a great food (remarked to my wife this must the most notorious tourist trap because of their location) but were very pleasantly surprised. The quality of food (au-poivre sauce!!), the portion sizes, the service, nothing was amiss.

Nov 10, 2014
olasek in Las Vegas

Former King of Spain opens new tasting rooms at Marques de Murrieta

I got plenty of sympathy for Juan Carlos, he was instrumental in keeping Spain out of extreme politics. Wine is always good for royal image, which can't be true about hunting, my wife was pissed when she found out Juan Carlos killed an elephant during a recent trip to Africa.

Nov 07, 2014
olasek in Wine
1

Russia to invest €250m in Crimean wine industry | decanter.com

>> could be a beautiful place to visit and tour once it gets going.

I wouldn't hold my breath concerning this promised Russian investment in Crimea. I wouldn't be planning any winery tours in Crimea yet. Russia is suddenly fighting economic problems on multiple fronts all results of their nationalistic policies: inflation spiked to 8.4%, flight of capital from Russia, lower crude price, plunging currency, looming recession, etc.

Oct 31, 2014
olasek in Wine

Collector’s 2,447 bottles headed for the sink (aka Pennsylvania strikes again!)

by the way, one more reason not to live in Pennsylvania.

Oct 22, 2014
olasek in Wine
1

Wine tastes bad once I start eating

>> But what the heck is that?

I doubt mankind has answers for this and other similar puzzles, for example why my wife has allergy to silver, can't wear any silver, etc. It may be part of your DNA, I doubt there are any cures or work-arounds, enjoy your wine the way you can. I have had many outstanding wines that were so good I would have lost little by having them outside a meal.

Oct 19, 2014
olasek in Wine

Wine tastes bad once I start eating

Yeah, specific examples would help. For example how does your red wine taste with some blue cheese? Or some other cheese? For me these are pairings made in heaven, if it is still bad for you - perhaps something is amiss with your mouth's chemistry.

Oct 18, 2014
olasek in Wine
1

wines

>> I was just wondering if maybe red wine was better

"better" is highly subjective, what is "better" for me may be "worse" for you. Also there is a lot variation just within red wine, you may dislike this red wine but like some other red wine. Prices also vary widely depending on perceived 'quality'. You write you aren't big wine drinker - that can mean anything from you know nothing about wines to you just don't consume much but otherwise are familiar with wines and could articulate the stuff you like or dislike in wines.
There could be some wine shops in your area that offer wine tastings, say for $5 or $10 you can taste a few different wines. I have such wine shop nearby. This is a good way to explore wines.

Oct 11, 2014
olasek in Wine

Depardieu: ‘I drink 14 bottles of wine a day’

May I ask related question.

What is the current view of medical research on the following question - could it be detrimental to my long term health - wine consumption of roughly half bottle a day??

Sometimes I feel I am coming close to this rate of consumption though it could be 3-4 days I maintain that rate but then I may have a few days of pause with no consumption at all.

Oct 04, 2014
olasek in Wine

Suggestions for wine for an Israeli-style dinner

>> Wrong. I actually tasted the food. It wouldn't work.

When they gave the advice they probably meant "will work for most people". It is impossible to predict one's personal palate.

Oct 01, 2014
olasek in Wine

Suggestions for wine for an Israeli-style dinner

An american orthodox Jew told me once that kosher wines weren't very good. He wasn't a wine drinker so he didn't care but told me that there was something in the kosher wine production that has to be "boiled" and may very well kill any taste. I am just repeating what he said. But I also heard from an Israeli Jew that there was abundance of non-kosher food in Israel so I reckon non-kosher wine too (he actually sounded like kosher food was in minority).

Sep 27, 2014
olasek in Wine

Depardieu: ‘I drink 14 bottles of wine a day’

good point...

Sep 18, 2014
olasek in Wine

red wine

In the dry red Zin I mentioned above the sweetness goes well beyond any flavor nuances and Jason explained why it is the case.

Sep 18, 2014
olasek in Wine

red wine

This isn't Merlot but I recently had 2011 Rombauer's Zinfandel and was surprised how 'sweet' it tasted, even my wife noticed and she hardly ever comments about wines. Actually it was probably a bit too sweet for my palate. Your customer in blind tasting probably wouldn't even tell it wasn't a Merlot ;)

Sep 16, 2014
olasek in Wine

Depardieu: ‘I drink 14 bottles of wine a day’

I can understand 14 bottles of wine ...... but living in Russia, ouch!

Sep 16, 2014
olasek in Wine

2012 Napa Cabs

IMHO 'a few years' is easy - practically any decent red (unless designed from start to be drunk right away) will benefit from a few years of storage.

Sep 13, 2014
olasek in Wine

How to get started?

>> NA wines taste and feel different than "regular" wines (i.e.: with alcohol), and are extremely poor representatives of what a wine tastes like.

And the same carries over to beer. If they aren't afraid of alcohol level in a beer they should try two beers side by side one regular another non-alcoholic and see for themselves how similar (or dissimilar) they are in taste.

Sep 13, 2014
olasek in Wine

How to get started?

>> my impression was that alcohol was one of the flavors of wine that many people easily find too strong.

I am not sure if this is correct impression at all. Are you describing here yourself or you just heard it? But assuming someone really finds this alcohol flavor too offensive (in some wines) there are many wines that are fairly low in alcohol content, so called easy drinkers, wines for beginners. Yes, someone may reject any alcohol (often for religious reasons) but assuming no religion involved, if you never tried any regular wine how do you know you will reject it outright because there is a hint of alcohol? I simply question the logic of entering the 'world of wines' through their non-alcoholic version, if you do that you aren't really entering any world since these are not even wines in strict sense of the word.

Sep 12, 2014
olasek in Wine

How to get started?

I would rather have a bottle of some sparkling water (say San Pellegrino) than a non-alcoholic wine. Someone would have to put a gun to my head to drink a non-alcoholic wine.

Sep 12, 2014
olasek in Wine

2012 vintage in Paso Robles?

Was this a good year?
I have opportunity to buy some reds from the allocation list and wonder about this particular vintage. For example how does it fare comparing to 2009/2010 with which I am more familiar? I think 2011 wasn't as good as 2009/2010.

Sep 10, 2014
olasek in Wine

Looking for wine to lay down 20-25 years

You can keep any (red) bottle of wine for 20-25 years, assuming of course you will store it well in right environment but the wine may not benefit, it could actually become worse after this 20 year period, it will be past it's prime. Ask someone really knowledgeable when buying or read reviews because often it will say what is the expected longevity of the given wine. "Big Cab" or "Big Syrah" are types of wines that "could" be age-worthy. I have some very nice "big" red wines but I knew when buying they shouldn't be stored for more than 10 years. Obviously a Port will last very well for 20+ years.

Sep 08, 2014
olasek in Wine

how often do we drink?

>> have a clearly marked exit (for avoiding the checkpoint).

there was no way for me to avoid it (like go around-it or make an escape turn) once I made right turn from Bay street on Embarcadero (at waterfront).
I can see that there are DUI checkpoints warnings on Facebook but I go back to Aug.29 and can't see my particular checkpoint also next to some I see simply "undisclosed location". However one thing I do see - it is always either Friday or Saturday (apart from major holidays) which is good to know because I can avoid those two days of the week when I plan to have more than a single glass of wine.

Sep 07, 2014
olasek in Wine

how often do we drink?

I don't want to start a new thread but I am curious anybody got ever stopped by a police roadblock for a DUI check? I did, first time in my life, on Friday before the Labor Day weekend in San Francisco, returning from a dinner in a restaurant. Fortunately the wine was mediocre (nor I brought my own bottle) and I did not order more than a glass (but had a glass of port with desert) so I easily passed. I was in a red convertible, some cars before me were allowed to pass undisturbed but they pulled me, probably my flashy car didn't help.

Sep 06, 2014
olasek in Wine
1

Another restaurant wine pricing rant!

>> most restaurants permit bringing wine for corkage,

Some even waive corkage fee under some circumstances, I tend to look for such restaurants and patronize them, often they are the same places that have reasonable wine prices to begin with.

Sep 02, 2014
olasek in Wine

Another restaurant wine pricing rant!

I agree. 4X markup would be obscene. My local high-end restaurant probably marks up closer to 2x-2.5x. For example Rombauer's Chardonnay which I can have in retail for around $33 they offer at $68.

Sep 02, 2014
olasek in Wine

Another restaurant wine pricing rant!

I wouldn't get upset about it. My favourite higher end restaurant that I love has $40 as their least expensive bottle. Is $40 OK but $50 too high? I don't think so. If you want to spend less why don't you buy wine by a glass, I am sure some is available this way. I recently visited 2 single-star Michelin restaurants in my area and what made me 'upset' how overrated the food was, now when they tell me it is a Michelin rated restaurant I run in the opposite direction.

Sep 02, 2014
olasek in Wine

wine pairings for cigars

Great!

Aug 27, 2014
olasek in Wine