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Starbucks tests beer-flavoured latte

Let me perhaps clarify my revulsion . . .

Adjuncts to beer have long been the "norm," whether it is various types of fruit, spices, herbs, and -- yes -- even coffee. But it does not automatically follow that

---> beer + a hint of coffee = coffee + a hint of beer (flavor).

Keep in mind, too, that I still haven't figured out what's wrong with coffee-flavored coffee, and I don't understand "pumpkin spice lattes," either . . . but Guinness????

about 1 hour ago
zin1953 in Beer

Starbucks tests beer-flavoured latte

Good Lord, why???

about 5 hours ago
zin1953 in Beer

South Africa introducing wine holograms

Is fraud THAT big of a concern with South African wines?

about 5 hours ago
zin1953 in Wine

Australia scoops young sommelier prize

Not easy to win -- congrats!

about 5 hours ago
zin1953 in Wine

Top 10 literary-inspired cocktails

For your dining and dancing enjoyment . . .

about 5 hours ago
zin1953 in Spirits

Day: ‘No one wants Coca-Cola wines’

Well, true, but . . .

about 5 hours ago
zin1953 in Wine

Robots to replace wine critics?

Uh . . . no.

about 5 hours ago
zin1953 in Wine

Lafaurie Peyraguey owner on lookout for more vineyards | decanter.com

Long a wonderful (and underpriced) estate.

about 5 hours ago
zin1953 in Wine

Dining in 'private' - the Riserva experience at Carnevino

Interesting thought/question:

>>> The later (Carnevino) absolutely leaving the former (Bazaar Meat) in the dust in terms of the quality of the meats. <<<

With the admission that I've not dined at Carnevino -- and you have on at least three occasions -- is the above sentiment true if one is *not* having the "Riserva" meat? I found the quality of the meat at Bazaar to be first-rate. I am not saying it's the finest I ever had (and I presume you feel the "Riserva" *is* the finest you've had), but what about the "regular" cuts on their menu?

Also, one other thought: I do not consider Bazaar Meat a steakhouse by any stretch of the imagination, regardless of what the SLS marketing department might say. Rather, it's an "homage" to meat of all types. Carnevino, OTOH, most definitely *is* a steakhouse!

about 18 hours ago
zin1953 in Las Vegas

Prosecco out-marketing Champagne

I don't want to say they aren't fighting, but . . .

It certainly isn't a "fair fight." Champagne is (and always has been) expensive, thus opening the doors for Crémants, Cavas, Proseccos, and sparkling wines from the New World. The quality of these other (non-Champagne) sparkling wines -- regardless of whether they are méthode traditionelle or cuve close -- has been steadily on the rise, and dramatically in the past, say, 15-20 years. It's quite common for Champagne to be reserved for "special" occasions, but for alternatives to be chosen for more "regular" (so to speak) occasions.

/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\

Danger! Danger! Warning, Will Robinson! Historical reminiscence approaching . . . (feel free to skip this part)

I remember in the early 1970s, the 1966 Moët & Chandon "Cuvée Dom Pérignon" was $18.10/btl.; Taittinger's 1964 "Comte de Champagne" was $19.10; and the 1969 Louis Roederer "Cristal" was $17.95. Korbel was $5.99 (IIRC), and André was $1.99. Wines like Moët Brut n.v. and Mumm Cordon Rouge were in the $12 range. So for 2x the cost of Korbel, you could have the real thing (and I don't mean Coca-Cola!); 3x the cost would get you Dom Pérignon!

When Domaine Chandon released their first wines in the mid-1970s, they were $8.99, and around that time, I first started seeing Cava sold here in California -- Freixenet Cordon Negro, Cordoníu were $3.99! By the time they increased to $5.99, Paul Cheneau came in at $3.99 . . . .

And by the time Chandon Napa hit the high teens, Gruet from New Mexico came in at $12.

Today, in the FWIW Dept., Korbel is $11.99. Three times that is $36. Yeah, but Dom isn't $36 . . . it's $146.99! Cristal? $199.99. And the Comte de Champagne? It's the least expensive at "only" $124.99!

Freixenet Cordon Negro is now $12.99, though you can often find it on sale for $9.99.

/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\

And now, back to our regular program . . . .

The problem -- for me -- is that I love Champagne, and Cava rarely if ever tastes like Champagne . . . most is made from Spanish varieties (Macabeo, Xarel-lo, and Parellada), and these aren't going to taste like Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier, and Chardonnay! That said, I *do* enjoy Reventós i Blanc De Nit, so there you go -- it's down to specific producers, and it's rarely the large Cava producers that win me over.

Prosecco, too, never tastes like Champagne, but then again it not only doesn't use the same grapes, unlike Cava it *also* uses a completely different technique! I find the quality to be very good, but often the wines are a bit sweet for my taste. Adami Prosecco di Valdobbiadene is an exception, for example.

But if I'm paying in the high teens or low twenties for Cava and/or Prosecco, why not buy a Crémant de Bourgogne or Crémant d'Alsace for the same money? Or buy "American," and drink Domaine Carneros, Roederer Estate, or Chandon Napa . . . or, as Chef June pointed out, save money and buy Gruet!

It's all different strokes for different folks; we each have our own palates, and like what we like. Hopefully. ;^)

about 18 hours ago
zin1953 in Wine

NY Times on craft whiskey aging

As a wise man once said, "If you distill the spirit the way you would for full size 53 gallon barrels and age in a small barrel (5, 10, 15 gallon), the spirit is either fully flavored but not fully aged, or to get it fully aged it is then over wooded."

/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\

We can certainly agree to disagree, but I suspect that the word "enjoyment" is relative. If I enjoy _______________ 12-Year Rye, I'll probably like their 10-year old . . . but I seriously doubt I've going to enjoy their three-month old . . . .

about 23 hours ago
zin1953 in Spirits

NY Times on craft whiskey aging

And I have a bridge I'd like to sell you . . .

1 day ago
zin1953 in Spirits

Drink / liquor prices not advertized at the bar

Gone are the days when dive bars had the price-per-shot written on the label with a Sharpie® . . .

I think it depends upon where you live . . . I know lots of bars and restaurants which have a spirits list here in the greater San Francisco Bay Area (think, say, Monterey up to Napa/Sonoma). Then again, perhaps in Waltham, not so much?

1 day ago
zin1953 in Spirits

Educate me - scotch and whiskey and rye (oh my)

>>> Please check your facts and please post your sources. <<<

I hope you're not holding your breath! ;^)

1 day ago
zin1953 in Spirits

Scotch suffers 11% drop in exports

OK, I may no longer drink Scotch, but this is not my fault!

1 day ago
zin1953 in Spirits

New Louis XIII makes $20k in Singapore sale

The first bottle of Louis XIII I sold was $399 . . .

1 day ago
zin1953 in Spirits

Wet summer dampens Italian harvest

Can't be a complete write-off, but some people seem to think so . . .

1 day ago
zin1953 in Wine

Ancient ‘industrial’ winery unearthed

Gallo had an historical precedent

1 day ago
zin1953 in Wine

Burgundy land offers reach fever pitch

What was once merely expensive has become astronomical . . .

1 day ago
zin1953 in Wine

Dining in 'private' - the Riserva experience at Carnevino

Thanks for the write-up. After being disappointed in B&B Ristorante, we've somehow managed to skip Carnevino . . . an oversight to be rectified on our next visit!

1 day ago
zin1953 in Las Vegas

A romp through the menu at Bazaar Meat - a good meal, at a price.

Menu (with prices) here: http://cdn.slslasvegas.com/db/content...

As I said above, for the six of us -- three bottles of wine, 15 courses, no desserts -- under $1,400 including tax and tip.

1 day ago
zin1953 in Las Vegas

A romp through the menu at Bazaar Meat - a good meal, at a price.

6 people, 15 courses, three bottles of wine, no desserts (went to Ku for dessert) - total tab just under $1400, including tax and tip.

1 day ago
zin1953 in Las Vegas

A romp through the menu at Bazaar Meat - a good meal, at a price.

Glad you went . . . since we opted for a Tasting Menu that was created "on the fly," and since one of our party (of six) was a vegetarian, there were certainly dishes on the menu that Lynn and I would have liked to try but didn't/couldn't. You had at least three of those that we did not -- the "Foieffle," the Morcilla with Uni, and the suckling pig -- and I'm jealous.

We've already agreed to go back at the earliest opportunity, though I doubt that will be on our next trip (this December). But we're already committed to a return visit!

1 day ago
zin1953 in Las Vegas

Favorite websites/forums to find restaurant recommendations in LV (other than Yelp)?

It's not a question of there being no "great people" on Yelp. I never said that, nor meant to imply that at all. Human beings and human beings, and as such there are great people (and not-so-great people) EVERYWHERE, Yelp included. I, too, have met some wonderful people through that site.

But the key to your post is "with selectivity," and after being a participant on Yelp (and having "earned" "Yelp Elite" status) for years, I simply have found the overall quality of reviews on that site to be lacking. That, coupled with certain Yelp's policies regarding malicious posts and "pay-to-play", has simply meant that it's become a site that I no longer participate on.

Does that mean I *never* check it? To be honest, no, it doesn't. On ANY site that includes public participation, there are some great, thoughtful, worthwhile comments, and there are -- well, other comments that are ultimately a waste of bandwidth. I *do* occasionally check reviews on Yelp, but the wheat-to-chaff ratio (or signal-to-noise) is (IMHO) much worse than here on Chowhound, for example.

It's also important to recognize target audiences, and I've also concluded that -- as a contributor -- I'm not in Yelp's target demographic. I only wish their advertising department would stop calling me . . . .

1 day ago
zin1953 in Las Vegas
1

Winery shows faith in synthetic closure

I have never heard of a cork supplier paying a winery for using (or promoting) its product.

2 days ago
zin1953 in Wine

Iconic Pabst Beer Brands Sold To Russian Company

Pabst Brewing owns at least 21 different brands:

-- Pabst Blue Ribbon (Lager)

-- Schlitz (Lager)
-- Schlitz Malt Liquor
-- Old Milwaukee (Lager and Light)
-- Old Style (Lager and Light)
-- Colt .45 (Malt Liquor)
-- Colt .45 Blast (fruit-flavored malt liquors)
-- Lone Star (Lager and Light)
-- Pearl (Lager and Light)
-- Ballentine Ale
-- Rainier (Lager, but not the ale?)
-- Olympia (Lager)
-- Blatz (Lager and Light)
-- Primo (Lager)
-- Stroh's (Lager)
-- Schaefer's (Lager)
-- Schmidt's (Lager)
-- National Bohemian (Lager)
-- Stag (Lager)
-- Heilemann's Special Export (Lager and Light)
-- McSorley's (Black Lager, Irish Pale Ale)
-- St. Ides (Malt Liquor)
-- Champale (Extra Dry, Golden, Pink)

2 days ago
zin1953 in Beer

Winery shows faith in synthetic closure

1 would mitigate 2, don't you think?

Something like 96 percent of all wine purchased within the United States is consumed within seven days. The winery which uses a synthetic cork *rarely* needs to be concerned over shrinking/hardening over time. Further, the longer they remain in the bottle, the more opportunity they have to "lock" in place, and the more apparent any "gassing off" will be.

That said, I cannot understand why a winery would opt to use synthetics (or amalgams) when screwcaps are a far better closure . . . UNLESS it's for the expense of buying new equipment for the bottling line.

Although I believe questions regarding the long term aging capability of screwcaps isn't that much of an issue¹, I remain somewhat self-contradictory in that I prefer corks for long term cellaring (despite the known risks). But short-term (<4-5 years), I am a big proponent of screwcaps.

______________
¹ As I've mentioned on these pages before, while at UC Davis, I tried a 40-year old white wine on screwcap, and it was "old" but fine.

Sep 21, 2014
zin1953 in Wine

Winery shows faith in synthetic closure

and the point of this would be . . . what? To refill the bottle with 2BC when the label says ___________???

Sep 21, 2014
zin1953 in Wine

Iconic Pabst Beer Brands Sold To Russian Company

Will it now become Pabst RED Ribbon???

Sep 21, 2014
zin1953 in Beer

Prosecco out-marketing Champagne

You'll get no argument from me!

Sep 20, 2014
zin1953 in Wine