Thanksgiving thread #3. Bringing a questionable wine

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Dan Hammer
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Thanksgiving thread #3. Bringing a questionable wine

#1 Post by Dan Hammer » November 22nd, 2016, 6:36 am

Every year we go to my sister for Thanksgiving. Most attendees don't drink, or couldn't care less what wine they're drinking.

Every year, I knock myself out trying to bring the right wines. This year I decided on a '09 Sea Smoke Southing (should be good), and a '12 Arnot-Roberts Old Vine White Field Blend. I last drank that about 2 years ago and thought it was ok. Not great, but more than passable. With that said, I'm sure everyone at dinner will love this wine. I'm not so sure that I'd bring it to a BYO, or a Berserker dinner.

I always bring 3 bottles, with the 3rd bottle sitting in the wings as a backup bottle. This year it will be the 09 Rhys Pinot Noir Family Farm Vineyard. This wine has reported hit or miss brett issues (on CT and WB). Since I won't bring this to a BYO or offline, this Thanksgiving is the perfect opportunity to unload or enjoy this wine.

My question to you... have you considered bringing questionable wine to the Thanksgiving table?

If this dinner had Berserkers sitting around the table, my wine choices would be different.
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Thanksgiving thread #3. Bringing a questionable wine

#2 Post by AndrewH » November 22nd, 2016, 7:35 am

In the situation you describe, I wouldn't bring a questionable wine to back up another questionable wine.

But, yes, I've done it, but at home. Easy enough to open, try, and then pull something else if need be. A bit more risk when on a road trip.
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Thanksgiving thread #3. Bringing a questionable wine

#3 Post by GregT » November 22nd, 2016, 7:53 am

I would do the reverse. If you think the wine is questionable, and if you're the only one who really cares about wine, don't bring it. After all, you'd only be punishing yourself. Unless the dinner with family is a kind of penance, in which case, save all your bad wines or bring something like Meiomi. You'll be forgiven your trespasses for a whole year if you put yourself through that. Besides, there are often questionable dishes, e.g. store-bought pies, etc.

OTOH, if there are brett issues, I would definitely bring it to a Berserker event. There are many on this forum who claim to like such things, feeling that it adds some terroir into the mix. Or who just don't know and who would like the earthiness it shows. Moreover, if it's a wine that gets a lot of talk here on the forum, people will probably convince themselves that they like it anyway. And either way, you get some convo going about the wine.

And in the latter case of course, bring something you really like too.

Good luck and enjoy the meal!
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Thanksgiving thread #3. Bringing a questionable wine

#4 Post by stewart lancaster » November 22nd, 2016, 7:59 am

I wouldn't bring a questionable wine. I would stick to well known wines like a riesling, zin, and fruity pinot. Most rare drinkers like the sweetness in the wines.I am charge of the wines for my relatives who know nothing about wines and this philosophy always works

'

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Thanksgiving thread #3. Bringing a questionable wine

#5 Post by Bruce Leiser_owitz » November 22nd, 2016, 8:53 am

Dan Hammer wrote:My question to you... have you considered bringing questionable wine to the Thanksgiving table?
No. I try to bring reliably crowd-pleasing wines, esp. if the group isn't very wine-geeky. If I thought a wine ran the risk of being too funky/bretty,
I would open it at another time.

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Thanksgiving thread #3. Bringing a questionable wine

#6 Post by Robert.A.Jr. » November 22nd, 2016, 9:26 am

I would never bring a wine that is potentially flawed in that way.

I will, however, bring wines that I do not like but that I know or suspect others will. Our family dinner will easily have 30 people at it. I went to my storage and pulled out 8 bottles of wine that I do not like, the last of my "modern" Bordeaux and a couple of other things that I found too jammy, oaky. I bet that they are crowd pleasers. These include a 2009 Chateau Poujeaux, 2009 Barde Haut and some other Parkerized 2005 St Em.

And then I will have a couple of bottles for the geeks, which includes me.

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Thanksgiving thread #3. Bringing a questionable wine

#7 Post by Eric S n y d e r » November 22nd, 2016, 9:31 am

My family has a Cali cab palate, and are firmly in the camp of "drink what you like, pairing be damned". So, I'm bringing a Ridge Geyserville. Tasty, pairs well enough for me, and sure to be a crowd pleaser.

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Thanksgiving thread #3. Bringing a questionable wine

#8 Post by Mike Cohen » November 22nd, 2016, 9:38 am

Robert Alfert, Jr. wrote:I would never bring a wine that is potentially flawed in that way.

I will, however, bring wines that I do not like but that I know or suspect others will.
I recently attended an evening with a private chef with five couples (all my close friends) and I was in charge of the wine. I know that they appreciate wine, but they are far from geeks. Among other bottles, we opened the 2003 Pegau and the 2003 Le Vieux Donjon. As we all know, both wines are highly rated by RMP and both wines (more so the Pegau) are controversial. Everyone seemed to enjoy them. I took a small sip of each, but was very content to stick with the Champagne's on the table.

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Thanksgiving thread #3. Bringing a questionable wine

#9 Post by Loren Sonkin » November 22nd, 2016, 11:32 am

Yes. I bring a bunch of wines and hope there is something for everyone. Some people love Brett. Some people love oak. Some people love other peoples wines. You never know what will be popular, especially among non wine geeks. Heck, a first growth might get panned by a non geek crowd.
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Thanksgiving thread #3. Bringing a questionable wine

#10 Post by Doug Hein » November 22nd, 2016, 12:56 pm

Robert Alfert, Jr. wrote:I would never bring a wine that is potentially flawed in that way.

I will, however, bring wines that I do not like but that I know or suspect others will. Our family dinner will easily have 30 people at it. I went to my storage and pulled out 8 bottles of wine that I do not like, the last of my "modern" Bordeaux and a couple of other things that I found too jammy, oaky. I bet that they are crowd pleasers. These include a 2009 Chateau Poujeaux, 2009 Barde Haut and some other Parkerized 2005 St Em.

And then I will have a couple of bottles for the geeks, which includes me.
This is exactly my plan this year! [cheers.gif]

The only variation is that we will have family for a few days. It's the perfect opportunity to unload some of my unwanted crowd pleasers, while sharing a few select bottles with the geeks. Then, for the meal, I'll go with some Foillard or Lapierre Morgon, Fevre Chablis and sparkly. Everyone will be happy!

To the OP: I would not bring questionable wines. Bring something you know.

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Thanksgiving thread #3. Bringing a questionable wine

#11 Post by MaiMadigan » November 22nd, 2016, 4:32 pm

Robert Alfert, Jr. wrote:I would never bring a wine that is potentially flawed in that way.

I will, however, bring wines that I do not like but that I know or suspect others will. Our family dinner will easily have 30 people at it. I went to my storage and pulled out 8 bottles of wine that I do not like, the last of my "modern" Bordeaux and a couple of other things that I found too jammy, oaky. I bet that they are crowd pleasers. These include a 2009 Chateau Poujeaux, 2009 Barde Haut and some other Parkerized 2005 St Em.

And then I will have a couple of bottles for the geeks, which includes me.
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Thanksgiving thread #3. Bringing a questionable wine

#12 Post by P@u1_M3nk3s » November 22nd, 2016, 6:41 pm

Dan Hammer wrote:Every year we go to my sister for Thanksgiving. Most attendees don't drink, or couldn't care less what wine they're drinking.

Every year, I knock myself out trying to bring the right wines. This year I decided on a '09 Sea Smoke Southing (should be good), and a '12 Arnot-Roberts Old Vine White Field Blend. I last drank that about 2 years ago and thought it was ok. Not great, but more than passable. With that said, I'm sure everyone at dinner will love this wine. I'm not so sure that I'd bring it to a BYO, or a Berserker dinner.

I always bring 3 bottles, with the 3rd bottle sitting in the wings as a backup bottle. This year it will be the 09 Rhys Pinot Noir Family Farm Vineyard. This wine has reported hit or miss brett issues (on CT and WB). Since I won't bring this to a BYO or offline, this Thanksgiving is the perfect opportunity to unload or enjoy this wine.

My question to you... have you considered bringing questionable wine to the Thanksgiving table?

If this dinner had Berserkers sitting around the table, my wine choices would be different.
Dan,
Timely thread. I'm hosting and planning to open my first 09 FF. If it's one the bretty ones than I open something else. What harm is there with that?
Cheers,
Paul

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Thanksgiving thread #3. Bringing a questionable wine

#13 Post by davidlown » November 22nd, 2016, 6:59 pm

Bring at least one bottle your excited to open and drink. Everything else is just theory

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Thanksgiving thread #3. Bringing a questionable wine

#14 Post by Kevin Porter » November 22nd, 2016, 7:59 pm

I'm with the 'crowd pleasers that I'm happy to get rid of' movement. Kosta Browne for all my friends!

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Thanksgiving thread #3. Bringing a questionable wine

#15 Post by Philip N. Jones » November 22nd, 2016, 10:25 pm

Take wine that is pretty good but not fabulous. Once you have picked out the wine, don't give it another thought. Move on.
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Thanksgiving thread #3. Bringing a questionable wine

#16 Post by Dan Hammer » November 23rd, 2016, 7:13 am

Pmenkes wrote:
Dan Hammer wrote:Every year we go to my sister for Thanksgiving. Most attendees don't drink, or couldn't care less what wine they're drinking.

Every year, I knock myself out trying to bring the right wines. This year I decided on a '09 Sea Smoke Southing (should be good), and a '12 Arnot-Roberts Old Vine White Field Blend. I last drank that about 2 years ago and thought it was ok. Not great, but more than passable. With that said, I'm sure everyone at dinner will love this wine. I'm not so sure that I'd bring it to a BYO, or a Berserker dinner.

I always bring 3 bottles, with the 3rd bottle sitting in the wings as a backup bottle. This year it will be the 09 Rhys Pinot Noir Family Farm Vineyard. This wine has reported hit or miss brett issues (on CT and WB). Since I won't bring this to a BYO or offline, this Thanksgiving is the perfect opportunity to unload or enjoy this wine.

My question to you... have you considered bringing questionable wine to the Thanksgiving table?

If this dinner had Berserkers sitting around the table, my wine choices would be different.
Dan,
Timely thread. I'm hosting and planning to open my first 09 FF. If it's one the bretty ones than I open something else. What harm is there with that?
That's the plan. If the wine is in good shape, I'm a genius. If it's bretty, they probably won't be able to tell. My backup is a zinfandel blend 2010 Bedrock Wine Co. Heirloom Wine Pagani Ranch.

Dan
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Thanksgiving thread #3. Bringing a questionable wine

#17 Post by andy velebil » November 23rd, 2016, 7:56 am

Let me help. Don't bring any of the wines from your cellar. Drive to local market. Pick up a few bottles of buttery Chard and oaky rich fruit Cab. Share with relatives. Everyone will love you. Save the geeky, weird, questionable wines for home and wine loving friends.
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Thanksgiving thread #3. Bringing a questionable wine

#18 Post by Brian Tuite » November 23rd, 2016, 8:43 am

I thought questionable wines got sent to questionablewines.com aka WineBid.
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Thanksgiving thread #3. Bringing a questionable wine

#19 Post by lleichtman » November 23rd, 2016, 9:07 am

Not an issue for me as Thanksgiving is being done with our wine tasting group so I am expecting big things. We already know we will have vintage champagne of Krug and Pierre Peters. We have made a choice of Cabernet Franc and the only questionable part is whether some of them will still be good though the provenance of the cellars involved is excellent.

As to the OP's original question, this I assume to be going to a Thanksgiving dinner with people who have no knowledge of wine. I never bring anything I would not want to drink myself. Who knows, you may wake someone up to the taste of good wine. I just keep the price point down several notches.
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Thanksgiving thread #3. Bringing a questionable wine

#20 Post by Josh Kurek » November 23rd, 2016, 3:42 pm

Sometimes things work backwards. I had a bottle of 1970 BV George de Latour standing up for tomorrow. The label was atrocious, looks like someone stored it underwater. The fill and color were both good though. It was part of an auction lot purchased about a year ago. Another bottle from the lot that was opened about 6mo ago in similar condition (slightly lower fill) was gone, completely ox'd.

I decided against opening such a questionable bottle tomorrow (even though it would be one of a dozen bottles I open) after reading this thread so I got home from work a bit early tonight, threw some Flannery dry aged shortloin tails on the grill, and opened it up. The wine is absolutely stellar...one of the best wines I have had in months. Sure maybe a touch past its best but not by much.

Lesson learned, don't over think it. Sucks that my guests won't be able to share it tomorrow but my wife and I are quite full and happy right now!

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Thanksgiving thread #3. Bringing a questionable wine

#21 Post by dteng » November 23rd, 2016, 10:48 pm

andy velebil wrote:Let me help. Don't bring any of the wines from your cellar. Drive to local market. Pick up a few bottles of buttery Chard and oaky rich fruit Cab. Share with relatives. Everyone will love you. Save the geeky, weird, questionable wines for home and wine loving friends.
But then what will he drink?!
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Thanksgiving thread #3. Bringing a questionable wine

#22 Post by andy velebil » November 24th, 2016, 6:39 am

dteng wrote:
andy velebil wrote:Let me help. Don't bring any of the wines from your cellar. Drive to local market. Pick up a few bottles of buttery Chard and oaky rich fruit Cab. Share with relatives. Everyone will love you. Save the geeky, weird, questionable wines for home and wine loving friends.
But then what will he drink?!
Sparkling Apple Cider [rofl.gif]
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Thanksgiving thread #3. Bringing a questionable wine

#23 Post by GregT » November 24th, 2016, 9:04 am

Or expensive versions of the same things purchased of mailing lists! Break out the QC!
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Thanksgiving thread #3. Bringing a questionable wine

#24 Post by Arv R » November 24th, 2016, 9:13 am

I just try to bring crowd friendly stuff, that will not get me vexed if I see people pouring one bottle into a glass with another (different) wine in it. Or that won't bum me out if there is a lot of wasted wine (full glasses at the end of dinner). I do find that among my extended family, even the non drinkers LOVE dessert wines, so that's a great opportunity to open multiples of those.

It's just my nuclear family this year, so won't have that problem.
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Thanksgiving thread #3. Bringing a questionable wine

#25 Post by Michae1 P0wers » November 24th, 2016, 9:43 am

andy velebil wrote:Let me help. Don't bring any of the wines from your cellar. Drive to local market. Pick up a few bottles of buttery Chard and oaky rich fruit Cab. Share with relatives. Everyone will love you. Save the geeky, weird, questionable wines for home and wine loving friends.

I guess every crowd is different, but geeky wines do pretty well in my family. No one except me would select these wines if they were buying, but they are usually well received. The main thing is just that quality speaks. Most people buy supermarket wine, nothing very expensive, so when you put a higher quality wine in front of them, whether it's a Burgundy or a Cali cab or Gonon or Beaujolais or Barolo they tend to like it because it is objectively better wine. Maybe it helps that we have a crowd of adventurous eaters and drinkers. The only exception is sweet wines which are a hard sell in my family.

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Thanksgiving thread #3. Bringing a questionable wine

#26 Post by Karl K » November 24th, 2016, 12:37 pm

Michae1 P0wers wrote:
andy velebil wrote:Let me help. Don't bring any of the wines from your cellar. Drive to local market. Pick up a few bottles of buttery Chard and oaky rich fruit Cab. Share with relatives. Everyone will love you. Save the geeky, weird, questionable wines for home and wine loving friends.

I guess every crowd is different, but geeky wines do pretty well in my family. No one except me would select these wines if they were buying, but they are usually well received. The main thing is just that quality speaks. Most people buy supermarket wine, nothing very expensive, so when you put a higher quality wine in front of them, whether it's a Burgundy or a Cali cab or Gonon or Beaujolais or Barolo they tend to like it because it is objectively better wine. Maybe it helps that we have a crowd of adventurous eaters and drinkers. The only exception is sweet wines which are a hard sell in my family.
Overall it sounds like everyone just needs to know their "market," know what the crowd they will be with will like to drink.
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Thanksgiving thread #3. Bringing a questionable wine

#27 Post by P@u1_M3nk3s » November 24th, 2016, 6:58 pm

Dan Hammer wrote:
Pmenkes wrote:
Dan Hammer wrote:Every year we go to my sister for Thanksgiving. Most attendees don't drink, or couldn't care less what wine they're drinking.

Every year, I knock myself out trying to bring the right wines. This year I decided on a '09 Sea Smoke Southing (should be good), and a '12 Arnot-Roberts Old Vine White Field Blend. I last drank that about 2 years ago and thought it was ok. Not great, but more than passable. With that said, I'm sure everyone at dinner will love this wine. I'm not so sure that I'd bring it to a BYO, or a Berserker dinner.

I always bring 3 bottles, with the 3rd bottle sitting in the wings as a backup bottle. This year it will be the 09 Rhys Pinot Noir Family Farm Vineyard. Thi
Dan,
Timely thread. I'm hosting and planning to open my first 09 FF. If it's one the bretty ones than I open something else. What harm is there with that?
That's the plan. If the wine is in good shape, I'm a genius. If it's bretty, they probably won't be able to tell. My backup is a zinfandel blend 2010 Bedrock Wine Co. Heirloom Wine Pagani Ranch.

Dan
I opened the Family Farm and made it a show - "Smell any merde? What? No merde?" - and it was classic. Probably the best Rhys red I've opened!
Cheers,
Paul

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Thanksgiving thread #3. Bringing a questionable wine

#28 Post by Eric Sch » November 24th, 2016, 10:27 pm

Ha! I took the SQN ...And an Eight Track tonight for dinner with some friends and it was terrible. Luckily I was redeemed with a 1990 Vouvray SQN Moelleux.
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Thanksgiving thread #3. Bringing a questionable wine

#29 Post by Dan Hammer » November 25th, 2016, 7:49 am

Pmenkes wrote:
I opened the Family Farm and made it a show - "Smell any merde? What? No merde?" - and it was classic. Probably the best Rhys red I've opened!
I wasn't as lucky as you were. Even the non-Geeks had something to say about it. pileon
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Thanksgiving thread #3. Bringing a questionable wine

#30 Post by P@u1_M3nk3s » November 25th, 2016, 10:47 am

Dan Hammer wrote:
Pmenkes wrote:
I opened the Family Farm and made it a show - "Smell any merde? What? No merde?" - and it was classic. Probably the best Rhys red I've opened!
I wasn't as lucky as you were. Even the non-Geeks had something to say about it. pileon
Ugh. At least Rhys will replace it. I had three bottles of one of their early Alesia Syrahs that were all bretty, fecal messes. They were instantly replaced.
Cheers,
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Thanksgiving thread #3. Bringing a questionable wine

#31 Post by Mark Golodetz » November 27th, 2016, 5:25 am

I play safe, with really good Cru Bourgeois. This year a 2010 Lanessan, and three people asked me where they could find it.
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