MarkDaSpark


quality posts: 181 Private Messages MarkDaSpark
Moondragon wrote:I've heard there are some nice zins that come from Amador. Any suggestions?

Could be fun to grab a few and compare to Lodi zins (like LangeTwins, hint hint...)



Scott Harvey has some very excellent Zins from Amador, with others (Syrah, Barbera).


Someone has to put WD's kids thru college, but why does it have to be me!
*This post is for purposes of enabling only, and does not constitute any promise of helping pay for said enabling. It does indicate willingness to assist in drinking said wine.

SonomaBouliste


quality posts: 234 Private Messages SonomaBouliste
gcdyersb wrote:I'm still perplexed by this whole "Merlot has no mid-palate" thing. Cab S allegedly has a weak mid-palate, but attacks and finishes strong. Now, Cab S and Merlot are classic Bordelais blending buddies.

Whoever is perpetuating these "donut palate" myths needs to fess up: either Cab S is hollow, Merlot is hollow, or Bordeaux is overrated because their blends are hollow. I suspect there's slightly more to blending Merlot and Cab S than adding something soft to something austere.

Edit: How much of this mid-palate hollow/round thing is the difference between liking a fruit-bomb Syrah or a more classically styled wine? A balanced wine would be hollow in comparison to a fruit bomb, but I'd interpret many fruit bombs as being over the top (too thick, too hot, too sweet, etc.) despite an overwhelming roundness.



Merlot is the original fruit bomb wine. Right bank Bordeaux (Pomerol and St. Emilion) have been described as feminine in contrast to the masculine left bank, Cabernet dominant wines. Merlot is used to make wines more attractive when young, but I think "softening" is not the right term - what Merlot does is add body, richness, "fat". Chateau Petrus (often 100% Merlot) is not any less tannic than, say, Ch. Margaux, it's just fuller and fleshier, more the fruit bomb.
Cabernet more commonly lacks mid-palate richness, a situation addressed by both oak and Merlot.

JoeLange


quality posts: 21 Private Messages JoeLange
Moondragon wrote:I've heard there are some nice zins that come from Amador. Any suggestions?

Could be fun to grab a few and compare to Lodi zins (like LangeTwins, hint hint...)



I haven't had a ton of Zins from Amador, but some of my favorite wineries in the Sierra Foothills are Twisted Oak, Newsome-Harlow, Frog's Tooth...

We're releasing our Zin to the public on May 17th - but Wine Club Members get to try it this weekend. It'll be the first Zin for us, so it's exciting!

I'm all for a Sierra Foothills/Lodi tasting!

JoeLange


quality posts: 21 Private Messages JoeLange
kurtswa wrote:Joe-
What would you say is LangeTwins "flagship" wine?
Also- is Lodi know for any one particular varietal that thrives in this area?



Our flagship wine? Our Midnight Reserve. It's a Bordeaux Blend (Cab Sauv, Malbec, Petit Verdot, Merlot) that could be called our Sock Knocker - it's killer.

Our winemaking team, David Akiyoshi and Karen Birmingham, does an amazing job coming up with the final blend - but they'll argue that the spotlight should be put on the winegrape quality from the vineyard...

Thriving varietal in Lodi? No hesitation: ZIN! It's the Zin Capital of the World!

kurtswa


quality posts: 14 Private Messages kurtswa
JoeLange wrote:Our flagship wine? Our Midnight Reserve. It's a Bordeaux Blend (Cab Sauv, Malbec, Petit Verdot, Merlot) that could be called our Sock Knocker - it's killer.

Our winemaking team, David Akiyoshi and Karen Birmingham, does an amazing job coming up with the final blend - but they'll argue that the spotlight should be put on the winegrape quality from the vineyard...

Thriving varietal in Lodi? No hesitation: ZIN! It's the Zin Capital of the World!



Cool. Great link too.
Those pics of "old vines" are crazy!
Thanks again for the info Joe.
Would have been nice if this was a Zin offering (being Zin rules this AVA) but still happy with trying the Cab and Merlot.

bjorkand


quality posts: 1 Private Messages bjorkand

Other wines from Amador that I like (in addition to those already mentioned):
- Cedarville (zin, syrah, PS, cab)
- Young's (zin, syrah, barbera, cab, sangiovese)
- Domaine de la Terre Rouge/Easton
- Vino Noceto
- Karly
- C.G. di Arie

JoeLange


quality posts: 21 Private Messages JoeLange
kurtswa wrote:Cool. Great link too.
Those pics of "old vines" are crazy!
Thanks again for the info Joe.
Would have been nice if this was a Zin offering (being Zin rules this AVA) but still happy with trying the Cab and Merlot.



We'll work on WD for another

kylemittskus


quality posts: 229 Private Messages kylemittskus
JoeLange wrote:I haven't had a ton of Zins from Amador, but some of my favorite wineries in the Sierra Foothills are Twisted Oak, Newsome-Harlow, Frog's Tooth...

We're releasing our Zin to the public on May 17th - but Wine Club Members get to try it this weekend. It'll be the first Zin for us, so it's exciting!

I'm all for a Sierra Foothills/Lodi tasting!



We need El Jefe back!!!

"If drinking is bitter, change yourself to wine." -Rainer Maria Rilke

"Champagne is a very kind and friendly thing on a rainy night." -Isak Dinesen

lodiwino


quality posts: 0 Private Messages lodiwino

Check out Lodi's ZinFest this May - you'll get the best of the best for Zins in and around our area...

M2 has two great Zins, Harney Lane is good, Akin Estates all great Lodi Zins...Spanish varietals grow great here also. Lodi AVA does a great job on the Rhone varietals as well.

lodiwino

LoonBoarder


quality posts: 6 Private Messages LoonBoarder

Oh, for Pete's sake.

I've been following all the discussion here today, deciding whether to pull the trigger and incur SWMBO's wrath, only to have the decision made for me in that shipping to NH disappeared from the list some time in the middle of my reading.

Dude... wait, what?

INTLGerard


quality posts: 58 Private Messages INTLGerard

Guest Blogger

One to one varietal comparison doesn’t hold much significance for me other than helping to determine what that varietal brings to the end product. The efforts of the Right Bank’s St-Emilion and Pomerol Chateaus have certainly proven to me how amazing Merlot can be as a primary varietal. That said with the proper focus on site selection, viticulture and winemaking technique there has been very good new world Merlot's that have shown its potential outside of Bordeaux albeit different in style to say California, Washington or Chile. However, I do find many varietals including Merlot are best complimented with the right blending partner(s).

I also do not agree with shutting down a varietal or region based on some up or down trend du jour. To further my palate education, I find it essential to explore and broaden my exposure to all varietals and styles of wine and not form a closed opinion that may keep me from discovering that next ah-ha moment possibly awaiting in the next glass of wine...like a '61 Cheval Blanc. IMO

KaleHavoc


quality posts: 0 Private Messages KaleHavoc

What happened to nebraska? I've haven't bought wine from Woot yet. But I was hoping something would catch my eye one day. Suddenly Nebraska drops off the list of states? Sonofa...

Wreaking havoc on the wooting world.

Moondragon


quality posts: 8 Private Messages Moondragon
INTLGerard wrote:To further my palate education, I find it essential to explore and broaden my exposure to all varietals and styles of wine and not form a closed opinion that may keep me from discovering that next ah-ha moment possibly awaiting in the next glass of wine...like a '61 Cheval Blanc. IMO



So basically you are open to trying anything, in terms of wine? Does this exploration have general boundaries as far as what you are looking for initially? Minimum bottle price or winery info, for example.

JoeLange


quality posts: 21 Private Messages JoeLange
lodiwino wrote:Check out Lodi's ZinFest this May - you'll get the best of the best for Zins in and around our area...

M2 has two great Zins, Harney Lane is good, Akin Estates all great Lodi Zins...Spanish varietals grow great here also. Lodi AVA does a great job on the Rhone varietals as well.



Here's the ZinFest link It's a great event.

For Spanish varietals, check out Lodi's Bokisch Vineyards. Markus and Liz are fantastic people that are making some killer wines.

Moondragon


quality posts: 8 Private Messages Moondragon
JoeLange wrote:For Spanish varietals, check out Lodi's Bokisch Vineyards. Markus and Liz are fantastic people that are making some killer wines.



This Bokisch?

JoeLange


quality posts: 21 Private Messages JoeLange

gcdyersb


quality posts: 141 Private Messages gcdyersb
SonomaBouliste wrote:Merlot is the original fruit bomb wine. Right bank Bordeaux (Pomerol and St. Emilion) have been described as feminine in contrast to the masculine left bank, Cabernet dominant wines. Merlot is used to make wines more attractive when young, but I think "softening" is not the right term - what Merlot does is add body, richness, "fat". Chateau Petrus (often 100% Merlot) is not any less tannic than, say, Ch. Margaux, it's just fuller and fleshier, more the fruit bomb.
Cabernet more commonly lacks mid-palate richness, a situation addressed by both oak and Merlot.



Thanks SB. Very informative as usual.

Cabernet Franc: it's not just for blending! It's also for blogging.

kylemittskus


quality posts: 229 Private Messages kylemittskus
INTLGerard wrote: I also do not agree with shutting down a varietal or region based on some up or down trend du jour. To further my palate education, I find it essential to explore and broaden my exposure to all varietals and styles of wine and not form a closed opinion that may keep me from discovering that next ah-ha moment possibly awaiting in the next glass of wine...like a '61 Cheval Blanc. IMO



THIS.

"If drinking is bitter, change yourself to wine." -Rainer Maria Rilke

"Champagne is a very kind and friendly thing on a rainy night." -Isak Dinesen

Moondragon


quality posts: 8 Private Messages Moondragon

I need to make more money so I can join all these wonderful wine clubs... Although, I thought the moped was an Italian thing.

Nope, that was scooters. ;)

JoeLange


quality posts: 21 Private Messages JoeLange
Moondragon wrote:I need to make more money so I can join all these wonderful wine clubs... Although, I thought the moped was an Italian thing.

Nope, that was scooters. ;)



Haha - hilarious!

Ciao...

cheron98


quality posts: 123 Private Messages cheron98

*** Minor hijack ***

Today is Jeff Stai's (aka eljefetwisted of Twisted Oak) birthday! Stop by and wish him a happy!

*** End hijack ***

I saw HitAnyKey42 on wine.woot! and clicked "I want one!"

MarkDaSpark


quality posts: 181 Private Messages MarkDaSpark
MarkDaSpark wrote:I got a PM from our Capo di tutti capi (WD) of our Cosa Nostra to expect a "package" to "do a piece of work" on and to "get a place ready".

One goomba (Java) has checked in to assist in "icing" the package. Still waiting on my other goomba (zTimBz) and associate (Nostrom0) if they will be available to "pop a cap". Now if we only had some "goumada".


Edit: 2nd Goomba is in on the "hit".

Ok, The Associate checked in, and he's bringing his "comare" as well.




Prequel:

The Capo di tutti capi (WD) sent the 2006 LangeTwins Merlot for us to whack. It's cork will be sleeping with the fishes tonight!

My crew (Java, zTimBz, & Nostrom0) will be grabbing a Gabagool around 7:15 PM tonight at a local dive, and will cap it then.

We will report back after the Gabagool and "Spring Cleaning".


Oh, and the comare will be unable to make it.


Someone has to put WD's kids thru college, but why does it have to be me!
*This post is for purposes of enabling only, and does not constitute any promise of helping pay for said enabling. It does indicate willingness to assist in drinking said wine.

cheron98


quality posts: 123 Private Messages cheron98
JoeLange wrote:Maybe I should get to those instead of being a ww forum addict?



One of us... one of us...

I saw HitAnyKey42 on wine.woot! and clicked "I want one!"

cheron98


quality posts: 123 Private Messages cheron98
Moondragon wrote:I've heard there are some nice zins that come from Amador. Any suggestions?

Could be fun to grab a few and compare to Lodi zins (like LangeTwins, hint hint...)



Probably already answered, but our good friend Scott Harvey makes an Amador County Zin that's awesome.

I saw HitAnyKey42 on wine.woot! and clicked "I want one!"

ahaslett


quality posts: 1 Private Messages ahaslett
LoonBoarder wrote:Oh, for Pete's sake.

I've been following all the discussion here today, deciding whether to pull the trigger and incur SWMBO's wrath, only to have the decision made for me in that shipping to NH disappeared from the list some time in the middle of my reading.



Well drats - I was on the brink of it, too.

Maybe they can send us a shipment of "olive oil."

rooboy


quality posts: 1 Private Messages rooboy
kylemittskus wrote:We need El Jefe back!!!





I agree! Great wine and great participation.

cheron98


quality posts: 123 Private Messages cheron98
rooboy wrote:I agree! Great wine and great participation.



People should read the pub(s) sometimes

I saw HitAnyKey42 on wine.woot! and clicked "I want one!"

dakiyoshi


quality posts: 0 Private Messages dakiyoshi
MarkDaSpark wrote:Doing great. Thanks for popping in so fast.

Winemaker participation is always appreciated, and usually is rewarded by great sales numbers (and sell-outs as well).

Scott Harvey (one of our guest bloggers) posted recently that a wine with a pH higher than 3.7 can be more of a drink anytime wine (one you don't need food with). Would you agree with that, and is that what you and the winemaker were aiming for?



Dave Akiyoshi, LT winemaker: Time to take a break from blending the '07 old vine zinfandel today and add my one-cent's worth (the other half went to TARP) about wine pH.

Simply defined, pH is the hydrogen ion concentration expressed as a negative logarithm.

Sorry, just trying to shake-out the casual drive-by wine wooters...I read Scott's blog (a great winemaker and friend, hi Scott!) regarding wine pH with great interest. He makes some good assumptions about old world or traditional vs. new wine style and notes the relationship of pH and wine style. I think this is a good rule of thumb. From my perspective, pH is only one number that partially defines a wine style. In winemaking, we analyze many different elements, but what is most interesting to us is how all of the pieces fit to make the blend. So, be careful when your reading the wine stats. The final arbiter is taste, not the numbers (100pt score incl.) and the best judge of taste is you, trust yourself and enjoy a glass of wine, sans numbers.

My feeling is simply the best wines are developed in the context of the vintage and the vineyard. In other words, don't try to force a wine to become a style that it is not best suited.

Like I told my parents, "I don't want to be a doctor, I want to be an astronaut". Winemaker was my second choice...but not when I was twelve. Cheers, Dave

akadanak


quality posts: 0 Private Messages akadanak

First of all, let me thank the powers that be for my first labrat. I received the 2006 Langetwins Merlot today.

I am a lover of big red wines. It may be that too many of my taste buds have died as I have aged but most white wines are pretty tasteless for me. This Merlot had a good nose and nice fruity flavors but I wouldn't call it a fruit bomb. Nicely dry and it paired very well with our dinner of cheese and crackers.

This wine is ready to drink now so pass if your cellar is full but if you are looking for a big red hit the buy button now.

LoonBoarder


quality posts: 6 Private Messages LoonBoarder
ahaslett wrote:Well drats - I was on the brink of it, too.

Maybe they can send us a shipment of "olive oil."


I've heard 'artisan vinegar' passes the litmus test as well.

[ha! I made a pH joke.]

Dude... wait, what?

Moondragon


quality posts: 8 Private Messages Moondragon
dakiyoshi wrote:In winemaking, we analyze many different elements, but what is most interesting to us is how all of the pieces fit to make the blend. So, be careful when your reading the wine stats. The final arbiter is taste, not the numbers (100pt score incl.) and the best judge of taste is you, trust yourself and enjoy a glass of wine, sans numbers.



I'm curious, how often during the winemaking process do you do chemistries vs. taste tests?

Edit: Or whatever testing you do...

halfginger


quality posts: 0 Private Messages halfginger

Cabernet labrat checking in! On first pour, the wine is a deep red with berry on the rim. The nose is spicy and fruity, with a hint of sharpness. The first taste is chewy with a berry fruit flavor, with the tannins giving a good showing.

I think it could use some opening up and would be a great food wine with a hearty bold-flavored meal as suggested earlier. I'm going to give it a shot with some chocolate once it mellows and I'll report back.

I am definitely looking forward to my shipment!

MoveoverCinderella


quality posts: 3 Private Messages MoveoverCinderella

Rat report: Lange Twins 2006 Cab Sav:
Wine is transparent and free of sediment. Smell of oak and dark berries. Not a nose burn. First taste is raspberry,cinnamon and clove. After an hour of decant...blueberry, raspberry,prune and pepper/clove. The balance of this wine is extraordinary for the price. Nothing is overwhelming. The alcohol and tannins are balanced, that said..the oak is apparent. This is not a fat cab, but very drinkable now and I would suggest a bit of an increase of temp for this one. Food: Grilled shishkabobs with shrooms/peppers/onion/pork tenderloin.Glad I got in on this and great job Lange!!

Love it or leave it!

Moondragon


quality posts: 8 Private Messages Moondragon

This is a little bit of a side track, but after reading the blog on this offer again, the importance of lineage and family in wine-making/growing struck me. It's one of the places that pride in the "family business" still shines. I find it refreshing, though I wonder why it hasn't struck me until now, having seen so many wonderful wineries and vineyards on wine.woot. Cumulative effect, maybe?

psmurf


quality posts: 1 Private Messages psmurf

Thanks akadanak, halfginger, and MoveoverCinderella for the timely reports... and favorable ones at that.
I eagerly await for MarkDaSpark's.
It's now so tempting to attempt upping my order to 3 sets, esp with the qpr. That and the fact it's hard to find drinkable wines nearby under $20/bottle.
~the cooler's getting low, and I don't want to resort drinking my pricey stuff just yet~

"If you choose not to decide, you still have made a choice."
Neil Peart(of Rush)

ddeuddeg


quality posts: 29 Private Messages ddeuddeg
cheron98 wrote:Probably already answered, but our good friend Scott Harvey makes an Amador County Zin that's awesome.



And I have an autographed double magnum of it for you to admire in 2 weeks.

"Always keep a bottle of Champagne in the fridge for special occasions. Sometimes the special occasion is that you've got a bottle of Champagne in the fridge". - Hester Browne


Ddeuddeg's Cheesecake Cookbook

cheron98


quality posts: 123 Private Messages cheron98
ddeuddeg wrote:And I have an autographed double magnum of it for you to admire in 2 weeks.



oooh pretty

I saw HitAnyKey42 on wine.woot! and clicked "I want one!"

dayoff53


quality posts: 6 Private Messages dayoff53
dakiyoshi wrote:Simply defined, pH is the hydrogen ion concentration expressed as a negative logarithm.



Thank you! I have read so many misstatements or partially correct statements of pH (here and elsewhere on the great innerweb) that I despaired of reading someone who actually understood it (though I know there must be a lot of you out there). In high school, my science teacher taught me that it is the negative decimal logarithm of the hydrogen ion concentration. A great short explanation of logarithms can be found at this Wikipedia entry. So, if the pH of a liquid is 3.7, then the hydrogen ion concentration is 10 to the -3.7 power. Neutral water is approximately pH 7, meaning that the hydrogen ion concentration is about 10 to the -7 power or 1/10,000,000. If the pH of a wine is 3.7, that means the hydrogen ion concentration is 10 to the -3.7 power, or roughly 1/5011. This means there is nearly 2000 times the hydrogen ion concentration in the pH3.7 wine as in the pH7 water.
That's it, class. There will be a short quiz tomorrow. Now, why did I end up in law, do you suppose? Musta been my winning personality.

DayOff53
my cellar

MarkDaSpark


quality posts: 181 Private Messages MarkDaSpark



Merlot Lab Rat Report:



My crew (Java, zTimBz, and Nostrom0) went to Carvao Grill, a Brazilian/Argentinean Steakhouse in Brea. Wonderful meal, but forgot to take pictures of the food (stoopid, stoopid, stoopid). Java had the Salmon, Nostrom0 had the Lamb Shank, and zTimBz and I had the Filet. YUM!

We also had some beef, chicken, and spinach/cheese empanadas and a mushroom appetizer.

Along with the LangeTwins 2006 Merlot, I brought a Ty Caton 2004 Merlot (Sonoma – Caton Vineyards) for comparison. The Caton is twice the cost of the LangeTwins, and I would have brought the Caton Upper Bench Merlot, had I been able to dig it out.

We used both the Parker and UC Davis Rating systems. zTimBz and I also rated using the American Wine Society Wine Evaluation Chart, and ended up with the same results as the UC Davis system.

Both wines had been “iced”, so we had to let them warm up prior to cutting up the evidence (had to remove incriminating evidence such as fingerprints, teeth, etc.).

For those interested, the 100 point system considers between 80 & 90 a “B” (Above Average) score. The UC Davis system considers wines between 13 & 17 Standard wines with neither outstanding character or defect. I have to apologize since I forgot that we could use decimal scores (.5 etc).

Results:

LangeTwins – UC Davis System

MDS – 17
Java – 14
zTimBz – 14
Nostrom0 – 15
- Average = 15


LangeTwins – Parker System

MDS – 88
Java – 82
zTimBz – 83
Nostrom0 – 85
- Average = 84.5



Ty Caton Merlot – UC Davis System

MDS – 18
Java – 19
zTimBz – 16
Nostrom0 – 19
- Average = 18


Ty Caton Merlot – Parker System

MDS – 91
Java – 89 to 90
zTimBz – 90
Nostrom0 – 94
- Average = 91


Overall, we determined that the LangeTwins Merlot was a good food wine, and Java enjoyed it with his salmon, as suggested. This wine is ready to drink now.

Nostrom0 got Sour Cherry and Tim got Tart Cherry & strawberry on the nose and Java & I got Dark Cherries.


The LangeTwins was lighter in color and appearance to the Caton, but Java noticed more alcohol on the nose than I did on the LangeTwins Merlot.

Both wines are now sleeping with the fishes.

The crew has returned to our den of inequity and are now enjoying RockBand2 with more wine (a 2002 Gustavo Thrace Winery Petite Sirah Premiere Napa Valley 2004 Lot 97 that I brought (and has been open since 7pm) and a 2006 Michael-David Vineyards Petite Petit (Petite Sirah and Petite Verdot) from Tim. And there is a bottle of 2006 Klinker Brick Zinfandel Old Vine (from Tim) to open as well, if we find a need to cap someone.


So Nostrom0 made his bones on this one, and is now a made man.


And for those interested, Java and Nostrom0 would not buy this (Not offensive at all, but Java feels he could get something this good for less at the store - Tim said Java must be channeling Clayfu). Tim is on the fence. And I’m happy with buying it and would buy again.

And for the record, none of us are anti-Merlot at all.



The yellow monkey is being shy and hiding behind the LangeTwins Merlot bottle.


Someone has to put WD's kids thru college, but why does it have to be me!
*This post is for purposes of enabling only, and does not constitute any promise of helping pay for said enabling. It does indicate willingness to assist in drinking said wine.

Cyradia


quality posts: 29 Private Messages Cyradia
MarkDaSpark wrote:

Merlot Lab Rat Report:



My crew (Java, zTimBz, and Nostrom0) went to...



Awesome report! Muchas gracias for all the details and scoring.