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Goodbye Jesus

Questions about wine . . .


Guest aexapo

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Guest aexapo

My partner and I, after 10 years of being together, decided to celebrate - in part - by trying something new we had both irrationally avoided our time together: drinking wine. I don't drink because I was raised to believe it was sinful (except during communion), and since then, it's just something I never got around to developing a taste for. My partner never touched it due to living with a father that died of substance abuse.

 

Well, we've accepted that we're both adults, rational and without any compulsive tendencies, and we've decided to start drinking wine since it's suddenly "hot" again, and partly because we watched "Sideways" and thought, "Hell, why not?"

 

We tried a recommended Cabernet Sauvingon tonight -- I was able to "work through it," while my S.O. nearly spewed it back out. It was rather strong and quite bitter -- I can't imagine finishing it. Blu-aaack!!! Bought a Merlot, too -- but, now I'm worried about trying another "red."

 

Before this, we had been "trying out" cheap crap like "Arbor Mist," but that's probably not even really wine . . . but it was light and fruity (kind of like us -- well, we're both fruity, but not as light anymore), and we kinda liked it -- but, we'd like to graduate to something real, without the training wheels.

 

Any suggestions? What's your spirits?

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Goodbye Jesus

I started with Merlot, of the same reasons that Cab was too strong.

 

With time, Merlot is to mild now, and Cab is the way for me.

 

Most wines are good in (depends on where you live, taxes etc) the $10-20 range.

Sometimes you find good ones below $10.

 

If you have Costco, go there, they have good wine for less money.

 

It's important to let the wine breath a little bit before you drink it.

Especially some newer french wines.

 

California wines are good, some Australians too.

 

If red is to tart for you, go for some white ones or zinfalden or something.

Rose' are sweeter too.

 

Don't bother about the year for now.

 

Buy of different brands and test what you like. If you like a brand name buy a bottle now and then of the same, and over time you'll find that different years of same brand can give different flavor.

 

I like the red to be fruity and have nice grape flavor to it. Some are nutty and "dark" in tast, which can be good depending on mood. It's all about mood and settings too. When, where, how... with food etc.

 

Ah, with food, I usually go lighter or milder wine, so it won't take away the flavor of the food. A too strong wine can destroy the food. But that's my opinion.

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I just opened a Turning Leaf, Reserve 2003, Merlot.

 

Nice, mild and fruity. Try that one Aexapo.

 

 

If you like a wine, go back to the store and buy two-three more bottles, and save for next month or so.

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Guest aexapo
I just opened a Turning Leaf, Reserve 2003, Merlot.

 

Nice, mild and fruity. Try that one Aexapo.

If you like a wine, go back to the store and buy two-three more bottles, and save for next month or so.

 

Thanks for the recommendation . . . I'll keep those in mind. It was quite funny tonight, though -- it seemed that although neither one of us liked it, and that he hated it more than I, he seemed less upset about it -- suggesting we try some others. I was soooo pissed!

 

I'll keep that in the back of my mind about Cabs -- won't try another until the other ones are too boring!! LOL! Gonna try my Merlot tomorrow -- Columbia-Crest Grand Estates 2001. Hopefully that's better than the Cab I bought (Ch. Ste. Michelle 2001). Yes, it was kinda like you described it, too -- a bit nutty, bitter and veeeery strong. It did smell good, though.

 

Thanks again.

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Then there is always Mad Dog 20/20 or Wild Irish Rose (red or white). :shrug:

 

:ugh:

 

:woopsie:

 

 

 

 

:HaHa:

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Thanks for the recommendation . . . I'll keep those in mind.  It was quite funny tonight, though -- it seemed that although neither one of us liked it, and that he hated it more than I, he seemed less upset about it -- suggesting we try some others.  I was soooo pissed!

 

I'll keep that in the back of my mind about Cabs -- won't try another until the other ones are too boring!! LOL!  Gonna try my Merlot tomorrow -- Columbia-Crest Grand Estates 2001.  Hopefully that's better than the Cab I bought (Ch. Ste. Michelle 2001).  Yes, it was kinda like you described it, too -- a bit nutty, bitter and veeeery strong.  It did smell good, though.

 

Thanks again.

Oh, I like St Michelle, but the 2001 wasn't that good. The 1999 was better.

 

Unfortunately 2001 wasn't that great for any Cal wines. But I think you'll like the Merlot better.

 

2002, 2003 is better than 2001

1999 IMO was best so far.

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A general rule of thumb if you're just starting out is to start on sweet wines - Zinfandel (white and red), Reisling, Burgandy, sweet Sherry, and Gawurtz are all good wines for the beginning pallate.

 

Another thing to do is to drink the wine *with* something. A good peasant bread, a granny smith apple and some sharp cheese, etc. prime your palate for the tarts and sweet blend of the wine. It's about a coming together of flavors.

 

Thirdly, be patient. Alcohol of any kind is an acquired taste and you have to condition your pallate to it. At first the tannins and alcohol can be almost overpowering, because they're unlike anything that your pallate has ever encountered before.

 

-Lokmer

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Perhaps it is because I grew up in family that didn’t drink, but I too had a very hard time developing a taste for alcohol.

 

I have never understood how anyone can drink beer. Every time I try it I just keep thinking to myself, “How can something that tastes so dreadful, also be fattening?”

 

Just the smell of white wine makes me gag, but I have learned that a Merlot goes fairly well with beef stew, or any other strong beef dish. I don’t particularly like the taste, and it does burn my throat, but I must admit that consuming a couple of glasses of wine with a table full of guests really loosens the tongue and make for an enjoyable time.

 

When I was in my 30’s I discovered cocktails. Finally! I discovered something I could drink and not gag on. Now I have a Manhattan about three or four times a month when I want to unwind from a particularly bad day.

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When I was in my 30’s I discovered cocktails. Finally! I discovered something I could drink and not gag on. Now I have a Manhattan about three or four times a month when I want to unwind from a particularly bad day.

Yes, cocktails are a good alternative, except if there's to much sweetness you can easily get hangover. Like if you use orange juice or cranberry juice.

 

If you want to experiment a little bit, you should look into infusion jars, and make a lemon/mandarine, or strawberry vodka.

 

The only danger is that sometimes it can taste like juice, but it's pure alchohol.

 

***edit

 

With the infusion vodka, if the result is really good, it's easy to drink WAY to much.

People that don't drink alcohol can mistake it for juice.

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Guest WhatIsTruth9

Personally I love Rose', Burgandy, and Cabernet Sauvignon..

 

But if red wines are a bit to tart or dry for you I'd personally recommend Riesling...

 

If you are trying to not spend to much I would recommend Blue Nun as its only about $8.00 a bottle. :)

 

Cheers!

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You probably need to stay away from wine under $7 - $8. It doesn't mean you need to get really expensive wine to enjoy it, but anything lower than this price is going to be a real gamble as the vast majority of it is, uh, not good.

 

I'm a reds person myself and don't even touch the whites, so I can't be much help there. For the reds, if you are doing American, there are some good Washington State wines, California is good, but can be expensive and you need to be selective, and finally I like some Virginia wines.

 

The better bet is to stick with the experts. France, Spain and Italy. I know there are good wines from around the world, South Africa, Chile, Argentina, Australia, etc., but you need to know which to buy and which to avoid. The three countries I mention have good government wine control and you will have less problems ending up with duds.

 

French table wine is always a sure bet as is Spanish Riolja and Italian Bardolino. Once you start to get a bit more sophisticated in your tasting abilities, I suggest trying Italian Nebbioso. It's a bit expensive (over $20), but fantastic. If you can find it, Italian Grignolino is a really great light red. Even if you can't find it, you will impress the store owner just by asking for it. Make sure that you stick to the Asti region on the Nebbioso and Grinolino as anything else will be an export and probably second rate.

 

Man, I must have been gay in my former life :lmao: (no offense to those who are, I don't mean to offend)

 

Funny wine story. I used to live in Northern Italy with a group of Italian roommates. One evening we had a dinner party and I invited another American over. He, keeping with Italian tradition, brought along a bottle of wine as a gift for the house. Problem was, the wine was FRENCH! Uh, uh!!!! not in an Italian house hold you don't! My roommate Anna made him leave it outside the front door to take with him on his way home. :lmao:

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I prefer a White Merlot myself, you might like it, also blush wines are good to start also. White Zinfandel is nice tasting wine that isn't bitter or sour. my $0.02 :)

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I have never understood how anyone can drink beer. Every time I try it I just keep thinking to myself, “How can something that tastes so dreadful, also be fattening?”

 

 

 

:lmao: That is so True.

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I have never understood how anyone can drink beer. Every time I try it I just keep thinking to myself, “How can something that tastes so dreadful, also be fattening?”

 

 

Ahhh, IBF, you just haven't had the right beer. I agree, Bud tastes like you need to be smoking some bud to enjoy, but Belgian beer... As the Russians would say Whha! (in other words, heaven). There are some really great German beers as well and some British beer is among the best in the world.

 

Ok, yes, perhaps I need AA counseling. :lmao: At least I'm not blathering over the uniqueness tastes of Russian vodka. Though Russian Standard is pretty good. :Doh:

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Okay, my 2cents:

 

I find any sort of alcoholic beverage tastes better with food. An above average French or Italian cookbook usually has a chapter on marrying wines with food. I have found this invaluable.

 

Personally (and this entire post is totally subjective) I found white wines more palatable when I started drinking. An Orvieto from Italy is light and crisp, just great with angelhair pasta and sauteed prawns (yummo). I think whites are best drunk young (one to two years old). On the red front, the merlots from Oregon are very good with beef and pork. Start with reds with a minimum of tanin content, thus avoiding Chiantis from Italy or Cabernet Sauvignon. A flinty dry Champange goes great with turkey, and sweet champagne is very good with sweet desserts or fruits like strawberries. Any wine clerk worth his/her salt in a reputable wine store can help with these sort of questions about tanin and relative tastes. If he or she has an unusually red and deformed nose, find someone else. :)

 

"Man, I must have been gay in my former life (no offense to those who are, I don't mean to offend)" - don't worry Vigile, I certainly wasn't offended. I guess you were just lucky in your former life... :rolleyes:

 

Good points to you folks who advise against sweet, syrupy cocktails...the clearer the spirit, the hangover is waaaaay less. I like icy cold martinis (with at least 1/4 dry vermouth). But this is not for beginners, and one a day will take you down the road to AA. Careful, careful.

 

On the subject of wine guilt and the ex-christian experience, this is soooo common, not so much for you ex-catholics, but for ex-billygrahamites, we were brought up that "devil drink" would send us to Skid Row immediately. Times have changed, and most of my bible-thumpin' nephews and nieces in their twenties drink wine w/ no guilt. But most of the older family members have a lot of fear surrounding the entire subject. My partner and I cooked a traditional French meal for my still-fundy family several years ago, and we used wine in the dish (the husband is from Provence). They all just couldn't believe how good it was! I served wine with the meal and most of them actually had a bit and enjoyed it.

 

So I guess if the food is really good, you can get 'em to sin! HA!

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Guest aexapo

Thanks for the info, folks . . . we tried a California white zinfandel this afternoon, with cheese and crackers . . . it was much better. We'll definitely finish this bottle -- and we hope to browse through a wine shop I found in the city tomorrow (owned by a former sommelier).

 

I never have understood the fundy-protestant hatred of wine -- I mean, if Christ couldn't wait for seconds at the wedding party, why was it ever such a sin?

 

I'm also aware that it is changing, except in strict Baptist and Pentecostal churches. One church where I live now was once strictly Pentecostal (UPCI), and has now "liberalized" into a more "charismatic" church, and two of my co-workers attend there, and drink like fish . . . sometimes until they're hammered. Praise Christ!!!

 

Of course, me -- the athiest queer who just started drinking -- I'm the one that's going to bust hell wide open. Go figure.

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"Man, I must have been gay in my former life  (no offense to those who are, I don't mean to offend)" - don't worry Vigile, I certainly wasn't offended.  I guess you were just lucky in your former life...  :rolleyes:

 

 

Yeah, I know you guys have some comparative advantages in areas. And the French meals you two are putting together for your dinner parties sound pretty sweet :yum:

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Yeah, I know you guys have some comparative advantages in areas.  And the French meals you two are putting together for your dinner parties sound pretty sweet  :yum:

 

My sister put it well: "You are spoiled rotten!" ;)

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Champagne all the way baby!

 

And if you have orange juice you can make mimosas. :grin:

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Champagne all the way baby!

 

And if you have orange juice you can make mimosas. :grin:

 

Hi Cerise!

 

I'll be serving them Sunday morning before the pride parade here in SF; I'll raise a glass for you.

 

:beer:

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Guest WhatIsTruth9

YAY!...there's a new bar(slash coffee house) that serves wine of all kinds for $1.00 all day on Mondays...

 

*drools*

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I agree with Curtdude. It can be easier to begin enjoying wine if you start with something like a smooth Chardonnay - something white. It was two or three years after I began drinking white wine before I developed much of a taste for reds. Now, I drink reds - usually cab-savs - almost exclusively.

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Guest aexapo

The wine shop I went to today was a bust -- it was fine imports only, and the help seemed more interested in getting us right back out the door.

 

Wow! $1.00 per glass of wine? I'm gonna have to find a bar like that here in Houston. Did go buy a Mediterranian cook-book today, though -- need to start eating with a greater concern about my heart -- my cholesterol is like 240 or some kinda shit.

 

Really liked the white zin, but there's not a lot of variety that I can find of that -- a lot more chardonnay's, etc. Will pick up one next week. Did see some Reislings, though, at one of the nicer supermarkets -- will have to try that soon, too.

 

If I pick up a redder zin, will I have the same problem that I had with the cab?

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Did go buy a Mediterranian cook-book today, though -- need to start eating with a greater concern about my heart -- my cholesterol is like 240 or some kinda shit. 

 

 

Maybe some of the medical people here can add more input, but I believe a glass of red wine per day has been proven to lower cholesterol significantly.

 

If I pick up a redder zin, will I have the same problem that I had with the cab?

 

You might have the same problem, but not all reds are created equal either. It may have been the brand, the year, and the region that disagreed with you.

 

One thing you might try is making some sangria. Take that bottle of merlot you bought, chop up some apples, pineapple, and oranges, then pour the 2 parts merlot and 1 part fruit punch. It should make for a refreshing drink in that hot country you live in.

 

As for finding the right wines, you might mention to some of your friends. I'm sure some of them have wine tasting parties, or know someone who does. You and your partner can go and get other's oppinions and discuss the different aspects of several different wines. Sometimes they have public parties at the local wineries or put on by the distributers.

 

Just an idea.

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