Sangre Naranjada Kirkland Booze Appreciation Thread

Discussion in 'Rusty's Grill' started by horninchicago, Jul 1, 2022.

  1. horninchicago

    horninchicago 10,000+ Posts

    We can't all be wine and booze snobs like you. I get it, I hate Spring Creek barbecue but somehow it thrives. I'm like the idoits who go there.

    But, I haven't opened the wine yet, and for the price, the Fake Baileys is better than the real stuff.

    IMG_0667.JPG
     
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  2. Dionysus

    Dionysus Admin Admin

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  3. Sangre Naranjada

    Sangre Naranjada 10,000+ Posts

    If you like Pinot Noir but are willing to expand your horizons, try a nice Barbera d'Asti sometime.
     
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  4. Sangre Naranjada

    Sangre Naranjada 10,000+ Posts

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  5. horninchicago

    horninchicago 10,000+ Posts

    Did you not read the title?

    I'ma smack you!
     
  6. Sangre Naranjada

    Sangre Naranjada 10,000+ Posts

    Lots of fake Bailey's are better than the original. No surprise there
     
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  7. Sangre Naranjada

    Sangre Naranjada 10,000+ Posts

    I'm not joking. Bailey's takes dairy they purchase, dehydrates it before shipping to the distillery, reconstitutes it, then does the blending. Also, look at the label. It says (or used to say) made with "the finest spirits and Irish Whisky". Well, "the finest spirits" translates to cheap vodka.

    Many smaller producers of Irish Cream Liqueurs do not dehydrate and reconstitute. Many use Irish Whisky exclusively. Many take both steps to improve quality, and it often shows up in the final product in a really obvious way (to anybody with a palate and who is willing to get away from the big brand name prejudice). Side by side taste tests can be quite revealing.
     
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  8. Sangre Naranjada

    Sangre Naranjada 10,000+ Posts

    Reverse Wine Snob is a good site for a baller on a budget. Problem is many items reviewed may not be available for retail here in Texas.

    At your local Spec's ask for Versant Pinot Noir. A buck more than Kirkland but offers a nice, balanced version of the grape from southern France. Looks like 13% abv instead of 14% abv for the Kirkland, and I happen to like a lower alcohol red especially during the summer months.
     
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  9. horninchicago

    horninchicago 10,000+ Posts

    I'm drinking the Cabernet now. I think it's pretty good. It is $7.99 for a 50 gallon bottle of Cabernet good. I can't explain why. I like 14 Hands, too, but I can't explain why.

    Now, I can explain good barbecue, karate, airline piloting, and internet buffoonery, but I cannot explain why I like a wine other than to say it is pretty smooth and goes down easy.

    That's what she said...hi-yo!
     
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  10. Vino Bevo

    Vino Bevo Wine - how classy people get drunk

    Late to the party here, but agree with Sangre on every point. Wine is like anything else, there are those really into it that research, collect, spend years developing their preferences, etc., and there are those who simply pull a cork or unscrew a cap and pour. I always say both are wine lovers if they love wine and the wine they like is good if they like it.

    Wine happens to be one of my passions so I spend an inordinate amount of time, and money, on it but that doesn’t mean my opinion should direct yours. I’m always happy to share that opinion and experience if you ask for it, but I defer to Sangre as he’s much more knowledgeable than I. All that said, I think for the price what Kirkland puts out is nice, and there are innumerable options out there at that price point that are better. My $0.02…
    :beertoast:
     
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  11. horninchicago

    horninchicago 10,000+ Posts

    I started this thread sort of tongue in cheek from a discussion that ensued on another thread. Not sure how often I will find myself buying the Kirkland wine, but like you said, to me, for the price, it was good.

    We usually buy J. Loher, 14 Hands, Chateau St. Michelle, and Chateau Montelena. But not all at the same time lol.
     
  12. Sangre Naranjada

    Sangre Naranjada 10,000+ Posts

    One of those things is NOT like the others.
     
  13. horninchicago

    horninchicago 10,000+ Posts

    Go on...
     
  14. horninchicago

    horninchicago 10,000+ Posts

    Price wise you mean?
     
  15. Sangre Naranjada

    Sangre Naranjada 10,000+ Posts

    Price and quality.
     
  16. Dionysus

    Dionysus Admin Admin

    We’ve settled recently on the Vennstone pinot noir from Total Wine. It's smooth and the Mrs and I like it.

    vennstone.png
     
  17. Sangre Naranjada

    Sangre Naranjada 10,000+ Posts

    So I googled and found these descriptions of Vennstone.

    "The creator of Belle Glos brings together the best fruit from Monterey, Sonoma, and Santa Barbara counties for a full-bodied fruit-bomb that's stunning with grilled salmon, pork ribs or mushroom pizza."

    "The color of this wine is a deep red, suggesting a highly extracted Pinot Noir. The nose is fruity & a little jammy, with cherry, black fruits, like blackberry, with whiffs of cassis. The palate is again dark fruits like black berry."

    And this review from a critic (Wine Enthusiast) 83/100
    "This wine would be good as a red blend, but it's out of place as a Pinot Noir, showing an excessively dark color, blatant oak flavors and a stiff, oaky mouthfeel."
    Having never tasted Vennstone, I am inclined to believe I would agree with the Wine enthusiast critic, based on my personal wine preferences.
    _________________________________

    Now, nothing I am about to say is to suggest that you shouldn't like the wine, or that you are somehow wrong for liking it, so please do not take it that way. I'm simply going to offer a modest education on the bolded red words and tie them to winemaking philosophies so that you might more easily find other wines in the style you prefer.

    First, "full-bodied fruit bomb" would immediately be a danger signal to me personally that this bottle is not my style. Confirmation of this phrase comes by looking at the abv of 14.9%. The words "highly extracted" and "jammy" reinforce the notion also. (Recall I said in an earlier post I prefer a lower abv red wine, especially in the summer.) A winemaker gets full bodied fruit bombs by vinifying only VERY ripe grapes.

    Lets use a banana for an thought-model. Even though the flavor of a banana is nothing like a grape we can learn about physiological ripeness and what it does to fruit from the example of a banana, and practically everybody will have personal experience with what I am about to describe. I like bananas that are a little green and firm. Some like bananas better when they are all yellow, and still others won't eat them unless there are at least a few brown spots on the skin. These skin color stages represent slightly underripe, ripe, and slightly (or very) overripe. Taste bananas at each stage side by side to get a really good demonstration of what I am going to describe.

    The underripe banana has a firm texture, less sweetness, and a tannic quality to it. Tannins will dry out your palate somewhat (like a tannic wine will make you feel as if your cheeks are sticking to your teeth). The yellow, just-ripe banana will be physically softer, fruitier and sweeter both to the sense of smell and taste and may still have a slight tannic quality to it, but not nearly as much as the underripe one. The brown-spotted banana will be very soft and much sweeter than the others with essentially no tannins remaining at all.

    The same holds for grapes. The longer they hang on the vine before harvest, the riper they get. As with all fruits, grapes convert acidic compounds within the berries into sugars as they ripen. (Ever eaten a really small Thompson seedless grape on a cluster of large grapes? It's a LOT more sour because you're tasting the unripened acids.) Grape seeds also ripen physiologically along with the berry. Grape seeds and the skins are the primary source of the tannins (the drying, bittering compounds making your cheeks stick to your teeth). An unripe grape seed will look green and will be a LOT more bitterly tannic than a ripe, brown grape seed will. A ripe brown grape seed is actually crunchy and tannic/sweet instead of tannic/bitter and astringent. What fascinates me is what quality grape growers attempt to achieve, and how they attempt to do it, and that is ripeness of both seed and fruit at the same time. They are looking for balance between the acids, sugars, tannins, and other organic components (esters, etc) that make grapes taste like grapes, with an eye towards the ultimate product, the wine, and what this balance will mean for its flavor, as well as its longevity and how it may evolve with age inside the bottle. Temperature, rainfall, the timing of rain, all of these and more factor in to the final chemical balance of a given year's harvest, leading to proclamations of "a great vintage in Bordeaux" and the like.

    So, to take this over to winemaking and to the language used to describe Vennstone. Whoever makes it is buying only very ripe grapes packed with a lot of sugar and not much in the way of remaining acids. Chances are high the seeds will also be completely ripened. The term "highly extracted" means lots of contact time during fermentation between the juice and the skins, seeds and other solids. The skins give a red wine its color as well as adding a tannic component. (The flesh and juice of a red grape is the same color as that of a white grape.) The "deep red" color of Pinot Noir is only achieved by extended contact with the juice, since a typical Pinot extraction produces a wine of a much paler red color. Then, lots of sugar becomes lots of alcohol via full fermentation. 14.9 is quite high for Pinot Noir. I'm willing to bet there is a small amount of unfermented sugar left to hide whatever tannins might still exist. Ageing is probably achieved in stainless steel tanks with oak chips (this is just a guess based on the critic's words "blatant oak flavors").

    Without a lot of tannin or acidity because of the fruit ripeness, you get a wine that tastes "jammy" meaning very fruit forward and on the edge of being sweet. A "fruit bomb" implies the same thing. The balance of the wine is shifted to promote fruit and alcohol well above the other components in the bottle. This wine will taste best upon release, as a higher acidity and tannin structure (which Vennstone doesn't have a lot of) help a wine age in the bottle. Vennstone is absolutely not meant to be held and aged more than a year or two, and if you find an older vintage sitting on the shelf at Total, I don't suggest you buy it.

    When I suggested Versant Pinot Noir to you earlier, I was unaware you liked Vennstone's style. I will still suggest it, but for the following reason: try it alongside the Vennstone (taste Versant first) to compare and contrast both the color, the flavors, and the overall impressions of the two. You will get a very, very different expression of Pinot Noir out of the bottle of Versant than you do from Vennstone. Versant will have higher acidity, will be moderately more tannic (dryer), and display much more restrained fruitiness. Its color will be paler and far more translucent. All of these characteristics come from a philosophy of harvesting the grapes a little earlier, growing them in a cooler climate, and spending less time on skin extraction in the winery.

    I know my preference. Side by side tasting, comparing, and contrasting will offer insights that can help you understand yours and help you find other similar bottles that fit your preferred style.
     
    Last edited: Jul 4, 2022
  18. Dionysus

    Dionysus Admin Admin

    I got took to wine school, thanks for that. I'll try the Versant.
     
  19. Sangre Naranjada

    Sangre Naranjada 10,000+ Posts

    Just tasting 101...

    And seriously, you will learn an awful lot more by doing side by side assessments. By and large, humans do not have enough of a "scent memory" or a "taste memory" to accurately compare glass A sampled on Monday to glass B sampled on Wednesday.

    I got taken to wine school by Spec's very early on. We would have seminars for the wine guys with various producers and/or our buyers every few months. Typically we would taste (and spit) 20 to 50 wines in a given seminar over the course of 2 to 3 hours, while being told about the vineyards, the winemaking techniques, and all that fun stuff. At first I was wildly intimidated by the details the more senior guys could pick out. And slowly but surely, I got to where I could do the same, and then I learned not only what I preferred, but why. I also got to where I could talk with a customer, discern what he/she liked, and offer proper recommendations for alternates that would suit his/her palate and budget.

    For example, I suspect you'd find Meiomi and LaCrema to be stylistically similar to Vennstone, at a lower price point. You may like one of the three a lot better than the others due to purely personal preferences, but they play in the same ballpark.
     
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  20. Vino Bevo

    Vino Bevo Wine - how classy people get drunk

    Well stated Sangre! I’ve actually used the banana comparison before - great minds.

    As I recall we PMd about this but my preferences fall pretty much in line with yours. We need to have a Central Texas HornFans wine tasting event and invite the Tolbert's crowd down this way!
     
  21. Sangre Naranjada

    Sangre Naranjada 10,000+ Posts

    I could go for that.
     
  22. horninchicago

    horninchicago 10,000+ Posts

    I've lined up the Keynote Speaker.

    HOOK-EM-MACKOVIC.jpg
     
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  23. nashhorn

    nashhorn 5,000+ Posts

    I like La crema pino. Prob my fav but I’m easy to please, unlike my daughter.
     
  24. Dionysus

    Dionysus Admin Admin

    Mrs D just left on a shopping trip and this is on her list:

    That’s the one?

    le-versant-pinot-noir.jpg
     
  25. Sangre Naranjada

    Sangre Naranjada 10,000+ Posts

    That's the one. I opened one Friday night.
     
  26. Dionysus

    Dionysus Admin Admin

    We got one to try out tonight. I’m looking forward to it.
     
  27. Sangre Naranjada

    Sangre Naranjada 10,000+ Posts

    I hope you like it as I do!
     
  28. caryhorn

    caryhorn 5,000+ Posts

    I shop Costco occasionally and have been happy with my purchases: from tires to wines and everything in between.
     
  29. nashhorn

    nashhorn 5,000+ Posts

    My son who’s into the whole wine thingy does like that Pino, but that’s irrelevant.
     
  30. Crockett

    Crockett 5,000+ Posts

    You'd have to be as strong as horninchicago to pour from a 50 gallon bottle. Honestly we may be in Larry Allen territory on that one.
     
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