SDMB Wine Club -- Week Nine

It’s that time again, winos! Actually, it’s a week past that time . . . whoopsie. A coupla things this week:

First, I’m reposting the existing sommelier list. I have been adding to the bottom of it as new people have expressed interest. BUT a few people in the queue to be sommelier in the coming weeks haven’t participated in the wine threads since we got this whole informal rolling party started. Now, I know that some people may still be following along but not posting because: (a) they’re not interested in whatever is the Wine O’Th’Week or (b) they don’t really have anything to say about it. But it seems just as likely, if not more so, that they’ve wandered off. So if you have not been posting to the threads but still want to be sommelier when your turn comes, please let me know. Otherwise you’ll be dropped from the sommelier list in favor of participating Dopers. Strangers on a Train, WhyNot, smackfu, legalsnugs, SiouxChief, Canby, threnodyangelfire, I’m lookin’ at you.

Second, if you have joined recently, are now participating, and are not on the sommelier list but would like to be, please let me know and I’ll add you.

Here’s the current list, with past sommeliers in red:

Stranger on a Train
Swallowed My Cellphone

Third, our zsommelier this week is Zsofia who last week requested a pinch-hit from psycat90. Zsofia, if you’d rather pass for this week let me know. Otherwise, bring on the wine.

Fourth, usual provisos: The sommelier has until next Thursday to pick the wine; we have a week to buy and taste; then we talk about it the following Thurdsay. Anyone and everyone is welcome to participate. Never drink more than you can lift.

Zsofia you’re up!

ETA: Week Eight thread here.

I’m still here. I’ve just had no luck finding some of the wines recently (and there were one or two that people specifically said I wouldn’t like–thanks for getting my back, guys!)

I am indeed picking this week! I’ll let you guys know. A white, I think.

I’m late to the party but still want to participate. They’ve just opened up a new wine shop here in Orlando called Total wines and Spirits. It’s HUGE! I’ve never seen so much wine in the same place at once and a really massive assortment of French wines about which I have very little experience.

I can’t wait for this week’s selecction. Bring it on!

I’d like to be on the sommelier list, please.

Add me please??

Since I’m a late comer to this wine club I’d just like to ask if there is a guideline as to the price of the wine selected by each week’s sommelier. I’ve looked back at the previous weeks and they all seem to be in the $10-15 range. Do we have a price ceiling? Just checking.

I went ahead and made myself a list of previous picks so I know what not to select when my turn comes correct me if I’m wrong:

Week 1 Folie a Deaux Menage a Troix Red 2003 or 2004
Week 2 Any of the various Rancho Zabaco Zinfandels (or any CA Zin)
Week 3 Falesco Vitiano 2004 blended red
Week 4 2004 Liberty School Paso Robles Cabernet Sauvignon
Week 5 Toad Hollow Risque Sparkling White Asti
Week 6 Michele Chiarlo Barbera 2003
Week 7 2002 Crianza Marques de Caceres Rioja
Week 8 2006 Kim Crawford Savignon Blanc

velvetjones, you were already on the list. :slight_smile: amarinth and buttonjockey, I will add you.

vj, the ceiling for a wine is 30 bucks. I don’t think anyone’s got anywhere near that high yet, though personally I wouldn’t mind if anyone did. I think in setting that ceiling we were all pretty comfortable being able to pay that, and for any one week, if anyone doesn’t want to participate they don’t have to.

We also ask that the sommelier tell us why they picked the wine. It can be a wine that you really enjoy and want to share, or it can be a wine that you’ve never tried before and want to give a whirl.

Thanks for re-posting the wines to date; it’s a handy list to have. :slight_smile:

Thanks for the information. That’s excellent. I’m really excited since I have this new wine store in town.
My husband and I rarely spend that much on wine and have had many discussions as to flavor/quality vs. price. Is a $100 bottle 10 times better than a $10 bottle? I suspect not. I’ve purchased wines in the $30 price range and been disappointed.

I’m looking forward to this week’s pick.

Well, last time I was at my little local wine store I picked up three new things and thought we could try one together - well, I opened door number 1 last night and it was really boring, so I’ll try the second tonight and let you guys know if it’s worthy. :slight_smile:

Well, I didn’t get a chance to try it, so let’s all embark on the adventure together, shall we? I like Smoking Loon’s Chardonnay, and I like a Viognier, and my wine guy said I’d probably like the two great tastes together and that it ought to be widely available.

This week’s pick is the Smoking Loon Viognier, which ought to be widely available and a bargain at under ten bucks. If you can’t find it, try another California Viognier, I don’t care what year. I’m hoping to find it a nice friendly summery wine - I wanted to pick something to serve with all the things I like to cook this time of year - lots of fresh veggies and Asian spices.

“This Viognier is perfect as an aperitif, as an after-dinner palate cleanser, or try with Thai; spicy red pepper beef or chicken in peanut sauce.”

I hope it’s good, and if it isn’t I hope you guys forgive me for making you taste gross wine! I tried to pick something everybody can get that’s inexpensive and yet tasty, so if you don’t like it blame my wine guy, not me! :slight_smile: I’ll tell you tonight or tomorrow what I think about it.

Great!!! Something I have yet to try, which is exactly what I was hoping for when I signed on. I’ll pick up a bottle this afternoon.

Was just on my way to the wine store this afternoon and Zsofia’s pick came just in time.

My local Spec’s did not have the Smoking Loon so I went with Oak Grove Viognier ($7.00) instead, because we are fond of their Sauvignon Blanc.

Chilled and we paired it up with a hearty home style dinner of chicken & biscuit. It held up very well to the heartiness and spiciness of the chicken. Fruity and bright but with a good long finish. At $7, a good value.

Well done, Zsofia.

I went to the grocery store yesterday they had Smoking Loon everything, Cabernet, Merlot, Syrah, Chardonnay, Sav. Blanc…but no Viognier.

I’m going to try the World Market and maybe that new wine shop if I can get over there this weekend.

Verdict - a nice wine for the price, definitely. I’ll be buying this again! I drank it alone but it would, I think, pair very well with the suggested foods, particularly the kind of red curry that I most enjoy down at the Thai Lotus. (Hello, leftovers! Too bad you can’t BYOB there - the food is awesome but the wine kind of sucks.) It’s soft without being cloying or overly sweet and has a nice full taste to it. I tasted pear and peach, I think, maybe melon. I can see this as a good alternative to Chardonnay when I have a bunch of people over, especially. Thumbs up.

I drew a blank looking for the Smoking Loon also. I did find a California Viognier (2005) from the Pepperwood Grove Winery for about eight bucks. It is chilling now, and i will try it tomorrow evening.

I will continue to watch for the Smoking Loon

Depends. Some $10 dollar wine is very good, and some $100 dollar wine is very not good. But often the answer is yes. There are some $100 wines that are just in a whole 'nother league.

Once you get above $100 though, you’re looking at some seriously diminishing returns.

I’m going to have to have a talk with my wine guy about “commonly available”, it seems. Grr.

Spec’s in Houston does carry the Smoking Loon, just not at my local store. I’ll be driving in to a different part of the city tomorrow and will keep an eye out for it as well.

I had a Melville Viognier with dinner a couple of nights ago.

I thought it was OK, maybe a bit too high in alcohol.

I didn’t find the Smoking Loon either, but also opted for the Pepperwood Grove as they’re made by the same winery (Sebastiani) and are most likely very similar.

I’ll have it with dinner tomorrow.