It is the best of times for the best of wines

This is a blog about wine but not necessarily devoted to wine. Do not be surprised if you read about golf, healthcare, politics, media or anything else we feel like describing and weighing in on.
We knock off Victor Hugo because we are proudly literate (especially dokkerm), unbound by convention, and declaring a call to action. Molly Pitcher guards the right bank as we take on trophy wines and fashion-driven price-bloated trend-setters. If you agree with our battle cry then you will like this blog. NO WINES OVER $20. We date the beginning of our campaign to the first vintage of the Mondavi-Rothschild Opus project. We recall with a smile the Underground Wine Journal editorial titled Hokus Opus. Stand upon the ramparts of good sense. There are too many wines around priced at or below $20 to let them languish in the floor stacks of retail shops. Our raison d’etre is to approach these wanderers and let you know what they had to say about their terroir.
Given that, here is the first entry about trophy wines from our past. We are purging our cellars of the spoils from earlier collector wars. Here are the goods. Friday June 8 the evening’s selections included in order, (1) 1990 Prince Poniatowski Aigle Blanc Moelleux Vouvray (2) Rochioli 1999 Estate Pinot Noir (not a designated vineyard), (3) Dehlinger Estate 1994 Pinot Noir Reserve, and 1997 Williams Selyem Allen Vineyard. I also opened a Lascaux 2005 from the Languedoc for those moments when we were out of wine and I did not feel like walking back to the cellar. DokkerM evaluates…

“Each was a perfect representation of the winery. For my taste, the Dehlinger was the favorite. Idiosyncratic but rich and balanced. The Rochioli is a classic – I’ll have to rummage around and see if I have any single vineyard ’99’s. The W/S was spectacular, but more fruit forward than I would prefer (not that I would spit any out, mind you).”

Stu (that’s me) says the 1990 Vovuray was outstanding. I tried this in May in a SF restaurant, Pres a Vie. Found it over the Internet in Glendale – ETC Wines. $21/btl. The restaurant offered 16 tasting flights that evening. The flight that included the Vouvray declared

“a dreadfully misunderstood varietal. Filling your glass with pineapple, spiced ginger and lime…”

I got the lime and honey too. At $21 it is a victory for the campaign!!
DokkerM covers most of the rest. The 1999 vintage in Dry Creek was pretty great. The Rochioli bottle was released at $40 or more. The W/S was typical candy fruit in your face. That evening I think the good doctor said you just want to open your gullet and pour it in. Another guest said he would take care of the bottle if we thought it was so unsophisticated. He is so transparent and a W/S swine.
The Dehlinger was the last in my cellar. Bought it on release for ~$35. Five years on it had a repelling barnyard nose and flavor that made me wretch. Thankfully I laid it down for another 7 years and now it is a legend in our backyard. Delicate, cherry fruit, lacey, enchanting. Like a Nawlins madame.
The Lascaux is a great buy at $10. You can get it at Kermit Lynch in Berkeley. Light spice, mild pepper. Easy drinking and perfect with BBQ.
To arms!! (and legs)

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