The main factors I take into account when accessing a wine are; balance, complexity, staying power (duration) and how well they grab me (distinctiveness).  When tasting I like to first compare them blind and then drink them separately both with and without food.  My ratings should be viewed as directly relevant to my palate and should only be followed without question or deviation if you find you have a perfectly identical palate (if you are my doppelganger, please stop breaking my Riedel glasses when I’m not looking).

In choosing wines to review I will do my best to pick those with good availability- so that all of you can at very least order them at their local wine shop or online.  When it comes to purchasing wine, I am personally a fan of developing a relationship with the people at a local wine shop.  Often this means spending a touch more for your bottles but is typically paid back in full with knowledge and personal service.


Show Stopper = la crème du la crème based on overall quality and price

Top Notch = excellent based on quality and price

High Rollers Heaven = if you’ve got the dough, I’d give this one a go

Class for the Coin = the three vs: value, value, value

What Else is on the Shelf? = totally enjoyable but not a standout

Sommelier Looking for a Write Off = not worth the money

Sizzle that Fizzled = excitement that turned into blah

Maybe Next Year = we’ll see what the next vintage has to offer

Buy Beer Instead =  don’t bother


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