The wine market is crawling with grifters and fakers and pretentious idiots and probably has since wines were first collected. If you've paid more than ten or twenty dollars/euro for a bottle, you've likely become a victim. I was drinking bulk/sfuso Montalcino that was seriously fantastic in Italy this spring and it came to around four euro a bottle. But there was no label, and it came from a plastic hose into jugs so lacked any snob appeal at all. And that's pretty expensive for vino sfuso, a nice non-Brunello sangiovese would be hardly more than half that and still quite delicious if still a bit young.
I think rich people convince themselves they became so on merit, that they really are smarter and more clever and have better and more refined tastes than the average shlub and this makes them easy marks for people whom actually *are* smart--at least smarter than they are.
Wine ignorance is still huge and this is so easy to do. Wine is among the many products where the more people pay, the higher they are sure the quality is. Ir works along the lines of "the emperor's new clothes."
I paid most of my bottle smore than 10 €/bottle, some more than 20 and 2 bottles I paid around 80 € apiece. I don't know if these ones are good, I've bought them 5 years ago and intend to drink them after 10 years...
In wine there is a lot of snobbing and a lot of anti-snobbing. I have some friends who know wine (I don't, I just like the ones I like), and strangely enough when they explain their choices, you tend to agree.
I'm worse on whisky - the more I pay, the better I like them as a rule. I went from GlennFiddich to Talisker and am now stuck with Lagavullin 18 years old. How much do I pay ? The f.ck if I know. I buy one bottle a year and don't look at the price. But I know it doesn't come cheap.
Now I don't care if people are ripped off with wines, or art... if you have enough money and not enough taste, you are a prey. I just put the treshold much above 20 € a bottle...
Now where the hell did I leave my glass of Sauternes... I paid the bottle 10,75 € for a bottle of 50 cl only.
Last Edit: Sept 13, 2016 20:14:28 GMT by whatagain: drink or write...
Oui, c'est ça. Basically, I have found that real wine connoisseurs (horrible way to spell that word in English!) keep silent when they serve fine wine and just wait for a reaction. If it is truly appreciated, they will serve more and often lots of it; if the person drinking the wine doesn't seem to notice anything special, then you might as well continue with Préfontaines in a plastic bottle. People who brag about their wine generally only brag about the price they paid or how hard it was to get. That is how the wine fraud merchants are making all of their money.
I do enjoy wine and try to keep my wine rack somewhat stocked. I usually buy a few bottles at the beginning of each season and am always confused and wander around aimlessly at the LCBO store. When at a restaurant I usually order the house wine and when I find myself in the LCBO I wish I had remembered to ask the waitress what it was when I find one I really like.
I love wine, but my greatest pleasures were either vino sfuso or wines bought in the countryside in Italy and the south of France - the latter with friends as a) I don't drive and b) I did not want to buy the equivalent of Préfontaine or "La Villageoise". I was accompanying friends who did know something about the producer.
Wine is ridiculously expensive in Canada, and in most places controlled by a government monopoly, such as the LCBO in Ontario or the SAQ in Québec. And where it is privatized as in Alberta, the taxes are no less.
I don't think I've ever paid over 20€ anywhere in Europe (I've not been to Norway, where the prices are higher than here) but I have occasionally paid a bit more here, upon recommendation from a trusted SAQ advisor and because I wanted something very special to share with friends.
I think single malt whiskys are another category, as I don't really enjoy hard liquor in general except for those very smooth and velvety premium products (which I might drink a glass or two of once or twice a year). If single malt scotch whisky were $2 a bottle, I'd no longer have a liver. I find cheap spirits so harsh that there is no such danger.
whatagain, this is of a whole different order than enjoying something a bit special and better.
fumobici, are there still pizzerias and other cheap eateries with vino sfuso in Italy? They were everywhere when I studied in Perugia, and Rome, and I didn't see any in Perugia twenty years later (alas I didn't get to Rome, though I did get to Florence).
I fell for some Portuguese wines at a special promotion sale in our large supermarket. The names Casal Garcia Vinho Verde and Lagosta took me back to my youth and my days working as a telephonist in a bottle store. These wines have been going for years and I wonder why after re-acquainting them with my taste buds. Light drinking for sure but nothing I would want to repeat too often. Then I moved along the shelves to pluck out a bottle of Dr.Reinhardt Reisling(Trocken 2012) from Germany. Next a bottle of Henri Ottmann Pinot Blanc 2013 from Alsace fell into my basket. I will be surprised if they are still any good after both being well over the time limit of two years for white wine to be at its best. Next, I grabbed a Geyser Peak Zinfandel from California. That is all I drank when I visited the States. Last but not least I think I will be pleased with my bottle of Casillera del Diablo Pinot Noir 2015 from Chile. In the meantime I also spotted a lovely deep red from South Africa called Alvi's Drift. A smooth Merlot that I absolutely loved the first time I tried it, so I took 4 bottles home.
Although I don't usually spend a lot of money on a bottle of wine, I have discovered over the years that, although you can get something okay and drinkable for 4 or 5€, a few more euros and you can get something noticeably better. That said, I never spend more than 8-10€ and not often that much. We have company this weekend so we had wine at each meal: the Graves Château de Carolle (7€49 if memory serves) was much better than the Montagne Saint-Emillion we opened just afterwards. The first from 2014, the second from 2015. Both Bordeaux red wines, but different areas.
Aah! Bjd. You have hit the nail on the head when mentioning the different wine areas. I opened the Zinfandel from California for lunch today. Oh Oh! a very distinctive after taste which was not pleasant. So, for my second glass I opened a new bottle of Alvi's Drift for the main meal. It is really a hit and miss affair when it comes to wine tastes. But, at the end of the day we love wine.....even bad wine sometimes!