Audio and Wine?

I was wondering whether any audiophiles out there share my wine obsession? I�ve found recently that my interest in wine and audio is very similar �

both eat up a lot of my disposable income
are very expensive and technical
very difficult to downgrade (or drink lesser wine) as time goes by.

Also, both interests (or obsessions) attract some scoffing or ridicule from non-believers. At least with audio, one has what could be called an investment, but with wine, the pleasures are more ephemeral. Anyway, are there any other wine aficionados out there? If so, what are your three favorite wines? Mine are:

(1) Neiabum Copolla Directors Reserve (both cabernet and merlot - $30).

(2) Groth Vineyards - just about anything � Cabernet ($48), Merlot ($35), Chardonnay ($25) or Sauvinon Blanc ($17).

(3)Whitehall Lane (Merlot - $22).

Best I�ve had � Whitehall Lane Reserve Cabernet �95 ($125).
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love good red wines! i have some 86 bv 50th aniversary george latour, some regular 86 bv private reserve george latour, some 86 & 87 clos du val, and some 86 jordan (and some other stuff). all cabernets. don't know what their worth.
I have to admit, I love wine... Too bad I don't drink anymore...

Here's my top 3 in both red and white...

(1) Pétrus 1982 grand vin (I still have 1 bottle)
(2) Toscany Tenua Sen guido Sassiscaia 1989 (around $50)
(3) Mas La Plana Gran Coronas Gran Reserva 1989 (around $50)
(4) Opus One 1998 Napa Valley ($75)

(1) Domaine Bonneau du Martray 1996 Corton Charlemagne ($70)
(2) Chevalier Montrachet Les Demoiselles 1997 ($200)
(3) Beaune 1er cru Clos des mouches 1999 ($70)

Also a special note to Klein Constantia Estates African sweet wine. It's worth $40 (for 500ML) and to my taste, it kicks any port on the planet...

By the way, for you really rich guys out there, here's a list of the most expensive wine that my local liqor store has in stock...

Château Lafite Rothschild 1900 ($36,000 CDN)
Pétrus 1921 grand vin ($27,500 CDN)
Pétrus 1947 grand vin ($25,000 CDN)
Pétrus 1961 grand vin ($19,995 CDN)
Château Mouton Rothschild 1945 ($12,000 CDN)
Château Cheval Blanc 1947 ($9,995 CDN)
Château Palmer 1945 ($7,000 CDN)

and so on...

Who said that Audio is an expensive hobby :-)
I am definitely a wine lover. While I enjoy many types, my favorites are the Premier Cru Bordeaux. I generally enjoy at least one per week. Some of the recent highlights have been: 1982 Lafite, 1982 Margaux, 1982 Cheval-Blanc, 1966 Margaux, 1927 Y'Quem, 1982 Cos d'Estournel,1982 Haut-Brion, 1975 Petrus, etc. I have a 1961 Mouton being shipped. I also really like vintage Port like 1977 Dow's. Some of the best values I've found recently are the Shiraz from Australia. Grant Burge Shiraz for $23 is excellent. Also, Peter Lehman Shiraz is great. We have a small wine club here to help share the expenses. Great fun!
I was fortunate to live in Europe during the late 1960's and early 1970's, and my former father-in-law was the procurement officer for NATO/SHAPE Headquarters in Belgium. In that role, he got to know a man who owned the largest wine distributorship in Belgium, and we were occassionally invited to his house in Brussels. His wine cellar contained some 40,000 bottles of wine, many of which were among the finest available. There were two that wines he served us during a dinner that was particularly outstanding included:
1. 1959 Richebourg (chosen by the Chevalier de Tastevin as the best burgundy in France for 1959);
2. 1959 Schloss Vollrads Trockenbeerenauslese.

The best wine that I have had this year was a 1997 Ridge Late Harvest Zinfandel.

The state of Washington, where I live, is now producing some excellent wines. For those who have not tried the following labels, may I suggest you try:
1. Woodmark Canyon Cabernet Sauvignon;
2. Kestrel (their Signature bottlings which have just been released will be excellent and should cellar very well).
Washington state wines from 1998 were uniformly good to excellent, and were even better in 1999.
One of my favorites is :

Opus 1 1998 ($100) like Avalon Opus.
Glad to hear I'm not alone. Wow, some awesome wines mentioned - I envy those who own the likes of Petrus or are drinking '27 wine. I can't talk at that level. The best I own is a '98 Margaux - (I've no idea what it tastes like :-) and likely won't know for another few years. I had a '98 La Fite Rothschild though - it was fantastic (great structure). Thanks for the recommendations - will explore further. I'm enjoying a well balanced California Zin as I write.

Also, I suspect that wine lovers gravitate more to tube equipment rather than solid state, and perhaps analog. Am I right? I have a tube preamp (Sonic Frontiers Line 3), hybrid amps (Blue Circle BC2 monos), and a somewhat analog CD player (YBA CD1).

Anyway, happy listening (and drinking :-)
I like good Burgandies and Late Harvest Reislings and gravitate towards solid state.
I love good wine, and appreciate all the above suggestions. I was fortunate enough to have a neighbor for several years who was a wine distributor. He would just tell me what I needed and what was great and everything was at wholesale. I got spoiled very fast, and can not really go back to the marginal wines I was previously drinking. My favorites include Cosentino: signature, Poet, and Cab Franc. Chateau St Jean Cinq Cepages is amoung my very favorite--but hard to come by. I used to enjoy Cain Cuvee when it was about $17 a bottle (no one knew about it then). At it's current price it's not such a bargain.
For all you theory-holders - here's one right down the middle for you: I like beer, heavy metal, horns, and solid-state.

I have a one-tower BevAir kegerator instead of a wine closet.

I hate processors. I like analog, but play mostly CDs. $20/bottle is an expensive wine for me, but I keep tasting notes and pick good ones for the money.

Cheers all, and a happy and safe 4th!
Try reversing the phlug. German and A-L whites.
So many big reds mentioned. To me California Cabs and Bordeaux are like solid state and Burgundy, and a good part of Northern Italy are more tubelike. Just kidding, I couldn't resist! As a 11 year veteran of the wine biz my tastes have certainly changed. I began as a Zin fanatic, a sucker for any blowsy fruit bomb that came down the pike. My tastes slowly migrated to the more elegant end of the spectrum, Pinot Noir, Sangiovese, Nebbiolo, wines of fragrance, delicacy, and earth. Sometimes the best thing isn't the most obvious. And for you Cab lovers tired of California rip-off prices two recommendations, L'Ecole No. 41 in Wash. state, great wines and Marty Clubb is a great guy, and many Bordelaise-style wines coming out of the Stellenbosch region of South Africa, such as Rustenberg and Klen Constantia. Sorry to be so long-winded but it's great to see a wine thread here. Cheers!!
25 things you really don’t need to know

What do wine geeks think about when they are not actually drinking wine? Well here is a list of some of them below, and there are hundreds more where these came from. Yep, it is annoying to be the one having to listen to some wine nut spew out these “bits-o-info” at a tasting, but it’s kinda fun when you know them. Then you can be the one who is annoying people.

Some are actually common knowledge and good to throw into your memory banks, while others are just useless. So read down the list a ways and see if you find any of this interesting. If you get through 11 or 12 of them, good job. If you read the whole list and actually enjoy it, then you may have a problem. Only another bottle of wine can help you out now. The damngoodwine guys take no responsibility in you boring your spouse and alienating your friends with the underlying information.

1. There has only been one change in the famous 1855 Classification of Bordeaux wines. In 1973 Chateau Mouton-Rothschild was bumped up from a ‘Second Growth’ to a ‘First Growth’ status.

2. The largest cork tree in the world is known as ‘The Whistler Tree’. This tree is located in the Alentejo region of Portugal and averages over 1 ton of raw cork per harvest. Enough to cork 100,000 bottles of wine.

3. The only 3 grapes that can be used in Champagne are Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier and Chardonnay.

4. The residual sugar levels in Champagne that are represented on the labels are categorized as follows: BRUT (0-1.5 % residual sugar), EXTRA DRY (1.2-2.0 % residual sugar), SEC (1.7-3.5 % residual sugar), DEMI-SEC (3.3-5.0 % residual sugar), DOUX (5.0 + % residual sugar). Brut being the most popular.

5. No vintage of Opus One has ever contained less than 80% Cabernet Sauvignon. Opus One’s debut vintage was in 1979.

6. The 10 Cru status villages of Beaujolais are Brouilly, Chénas, Chiroubles, Côte-de-Brouilly, Fleurie, Morgon, Régnié, Saint-Amour, (and the king of Beaujolais) Moulin-À-Vent.

7. The most recent American Viticultural Area (AVA) to be approved in Oregon by the B.A.T.F. is the Applegate Valley. The region is home to 7 wineries and about 30 vineyards. AVA status was issued in 2001.

8. Merlot is more heavily planted in the Bordeaux region than Cabernet Sauvignon.

9. Napa Valley recently surpassed Disneyland as California’s #1 tourist destination, with 5.5 million visitors a year.

10. Every state in the U.S. but 6 produced commercial wine this year.

11. The world’s smallest vineyard and winery is Africus Rex. The Vineyard is 4 feet by 18 feet, located in Canada, and produces Cabernet Franc.

12. The pressure in a bottle of Champagne is about 90 pounds per square inch. That is about 3 times the pressure in your automobile tires. Now you know why that metal cage is over that cork so tight.

13. Foxwoods Resort & Casino in Connecticut is the largest single purchaser of Dom Perignon in the world.

14. The strict French system for ensuring quality in winemaking and grape growing regulations known as the A.O.C. (Appellation d’Origine Contrôlée) was implemented in 1935. It was based on a system already in place in Châteauneuf-du-Pape since 1923.

15. Wine regions you have never heard of but may remind you of someone: Melissa, Nardo, Faro, and Ischia. All located in Southern Italy and Sicily.

16.. Coolest intro on a winery web site.

17. The average number of grapes it takes to produce a bottle of wine: 600.

18. According to scientist Bill Lembeck there are approximately 49 million bubbles in a bottle of Champagne.

19. The U.S. is the 4th largest wine-producing nation coming in behind Italy, France and Spain.

20. The U.S. ranks 33rd in per-capita wine consumption with a miserable 2.08 gallons a year.

21. The German law established in 1971 that categorized wine quality, designated the best stuff as Qualitätswein mit Prädikat or QmP for short. It means “quality wine with distinction or special properties”. Within this highest level there are 6 sub-levels that distinguish quality and grape ripeness at harvest. Kabinett-Reserve. Spätlese-Late Harvest. Auslese-Select Harvest. Beerenauslese-Berry Select Harvest. Trockenbeerenauslese- Dried Berry Select Harvest. Eiswein- Ice Wine.

22. The largest publicly displayed collection of Chateau d’Yquem, valued at 1million dollars and encompassing every vintage from 1855 to 1990, is on display at the Rio resort in Las Vegas.

23. The soil of the famed Grand Cru vineyard “Clos de Vougeot” in France’s Burgundy region is considered so precious that vineyard workers are required to scrape it from their shoes before they leave for home each night. Man, those French are hardcore.

24. The South African flagship grape varietal grape known as “Pinotage” is a hybrid of two grape varietals. Pinot Noir and Cinsault.

25. The oldest winery in Sonoma County: Buena Vista Winery, established in 1857. The oldest winery in Napa Valley: Charles Krug Winery, established in 1861.Bonus “Bit-O-Info”

26. Drunkest speaker I have ever seen arrive as a special guest at a winemaker’s dinner:
Marc Mondavi of Charles Krug Winery. The culprit: a lot of single malt Scotch.

Greg Meserole
and while we are on the subject, has anyone heard about screw caps (Stelvin Screwcaps to be exact) making their "debut" this year in better class wines? (we're not talking Boone's Farm here) What are opinions?
Screw caps have a great amount of support industry wide as the ideal closure, but it will be up to restauranteurs and retailers to sell the closure to consumers. Winemakers down under are leading the charge, with the 2002 vintage all Clare Valley, Australia, Rieslings will be bottled with screwtops. There are also quite a few vintners in New Zealand on the bandwagon as well. Lets hope this movement spreads because in my opinion cork taint is affecting upwards of 15-18% of all wines I taste. The worst part about that is the less knowledgeable consumer who tastes a corked wine,and not realizing the wine is corked simply dismisses it as bad wine.
I like an number of wines, though White Burgundies are my all-time favorite. Some folks are limit their wine experiences by only including Savs, Clarets, Chards, etc. and don't open up to Zins, Pinot Noirs, Sav Blancs and the like.

Lglegoir, DITTO the Domaine Bonneau du Martray 1996 Corton Charlemagne at ($70). The CC's are among the finest wines in the world at any price, IMHO. My wife and I enjoy the best Corton Charlemagne available on each anniversary at a couple if partcularly well-stocked restaurants. The wine has costed much more than the meals, but it leaves a longer-lasting impression as well! :-)
My roomate is a fine dining waiter and he and his industry peers have conspired to elevate my pallete to the point I have a difficult time enjoying cheap wine (single digit reds used to be my favorite thing to drink). I have exacted revenge on him by spreading the audiophilia bug and am seriously considering making him sit down and perform a speaker cable audition the next time he picks another region to educate me on.

So... of all the audiophile vinophiles... how many of you (us) own Reidel stemware?

'82 Petrus? Wow. I get excited when I buy a decent Barolo.
Count me in as a Reidel owner. The fact that I have a set of the Cabernet and Pinot Noir glasses should give you a clue to where my inclinations lie :).

However, summer for me is white wine season, so raise a glass of Sauvingon Blanc or Viogner (or if you must, Chardonnay) to celebrate the 4th!
Raguirre, almost a single digit red wine (10 bucks!) WORTH trying is
Bonny Doon's Big House Red

Ever try to empty one Lafite Rothschild each over two Manley 1200 Wotans simulateously ? You get a hell of a bang fsolute must for the money. ...and an absolute must for the congnoscienti.
I buy the wine for a restaurant -need I say more?
Absolutely. I would be very interested as to what your inclinations are as a professional buyer. For the record, there are many great restaurant winelists out there, but there are also many bad ones. Fill us in.
If anyone is interested in the 82 Petrus but can't afford it, there's a wine that comes close in taste (OK it's not the same thing but it's still pretty close) and it's from the same house (Petrus). You can get a Chateau Trotanoy Pomerol 1983 (don't even try to get an 82, they are all GONE) ($135US). The 83 is still available (in Canada at least) and it's dirt cheap compared to it's big brother (Chateau Petrus and Trotanoy are the same house)... The grapes come from the same soil as well...

By the way, I'm curious, how old are you guys... Most of the wine lovers that I know are in their 40s or above... I'm 26 years old...

I'm 32 but I started in the wine biz when I was 21.
Life is too short for a cheap wine. Or a nasty hi-fi system. I'm a red guy. My current favs. are Italians 'cause they're so reasonable. So three wines ...

Centine (sometimes called a 'Super Tuscan' which is a rather flash title for a cheap wine), $8

Any recent Valpolicella Ripassa, like Zenato or Tommasi, $18

Ridge Geyerville (any year but my preferance is for the 94), $30

Best I ever had was a choice between an '82 Margaux, $$$$$ !, or something obscure I had in a restaurant in Potugal, < $20.
Yes, there's nothing like cracking a fresh box - none of that old stuff for me - of Hearty Burgundy, fireing up the old Technics receiver, throwing five identical copies of the Clash's "London Calling" onto the Yamaha five disc changer and settling in for a long evening of listening with my good dog "Lucky" by the side of my chair. Cheers.
Good to see all my fellow AgoN members who also have a passion for wine. My wife and I just got back from a quick get-a-way up north (I live in Los Angeles) and spent some time in one of my favorite wine regions ...Paso Robles. I agree w/ Angela100 the BoonnyDoon Big House Red as well as their Barbera are outstanding for the money. I am a member of their wine club and am very seldom disapointed. Another great wine in the price v. value department is Navarro (Mendincino). Their current edition 7 of their Red Table Wine "Navarougue is an absolute sold out in a month (bought 2 cases)....great every day wine. ......and yes I am a Reidel owner as well, but since I have broken too many I am going to have to switch back to the Crate and Barrel $4.00 faux edition and break out the Reidel's (no pun intended) for special occasions.

FYI....Below are some of the "hot" Paso Robles wines I discovered on my trip or have been drinking lately:

L'Aventure 1999 Zin and 2000 Syrah and if you can find it L'Aventure "Optimus" 52% Syrah, 44% Cab Sav, 4% Zin.

Garretson 2002 Viognier, Fralich Vineyard and Aisling Syrah....Awesome!

Saxum Syrah....haven't tried it...available in Sept...but according to everyone I talked to in Paso this is the hottest Syrah produced to date in the region.

Dover Canyon 2000 Cujo Zin...gretat Zin @$18.00...also try theri Rhone blend.

Anything by Turley, Dark Star, Adelaida, Norman, Eberle, Tobin James, and Justin are high quality as well.

Also try the Alban Vineyards Estate Viognier and "Riva Estate Syrah" These wines are crafted and grown in the Edna Valley (inland from San Luis Obispo) and John Alban is known as the father of California Rhone varietals in the state.

Viridian, I'll bet you put an umbrella in your wine just like Steve Martin did in "The Jerk"

By the way, is your dog Lucky the one I saw the photo of? Three legs, torn ear, blind in one eye, neutered shortly after birth?
Also.....thought I should let everyone know that I am under 40 as well.....31.....good to see the youger generation enjoying fine wine and fine audio. Who says the hobby is dying and not engaging the younger generation!

Jond, after being invloved in technology for the last several years (worked for UUNET which was aquired by WorldCom...enough said) I would like to take a crack at that the wine business....any advice?
Thanks Albert! Now I'm taking criticism in a wine thread from a guy named after a beer. Sheesh!
My honest truth opinion? After 3 glasses of wine ALL audio systems sound pretty good, it's whatever the music inspires you that takes over. Louis Armstrong's "What a beautifull world" sound much better on a cheapie boom-box than an Englebert Humperdinck sleeper playing on Sim Audio W-5. I know. When I blew a fuse, muting my amp for the rest of the evening, in came the cheapie cd-box to the rescue. After 30 min or so, I said to myself, holy cow, this ain't that bad!!!
I placed small ferrites around the stems of all my Reidel glasses. The difference is AMAZING!

Trying cryo next week. Will advise.

Please don't cryo a good red wine ;-)
If you like a full bodied white wine may I suggest,
Pfalz 1996 Ungsteiner Herrengerg Riesling Spatlese. It is heavenly, although I can't seem to locate anyone who has any in stock. If any of you guys or gals come across this bottle of wine in your travels by all means please let me know.
I just had a 1982 Chateau La Conseillente Pomerol tonight. Very nice. About a 92-94 on my scale. Smoky, not very complex, lacking fruit, but some noticeable citrus notes, fairly good structure. Good bouquet, decent finish Although I expected better, it is not the equal of the 1986. Took about an hour to open up. Made a nice complement to the filet mignon with bernaise sauce. Coming up next week is a Pauillac comparison between the 1982 Lafite-Rothschild and the 1982 Latour. Should be interesting.