Wine rules you should break

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Brady Daniels
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Wine rules you should break

#1 Post by Brady Daniels »

I’m not convinced all or even most of these are real rules, but I’ve broken every one with pleasure. My personal favorite is adding ice to a too warm red wine.

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Re: Wine rules you should break

#2 Post by Jason T »

I don’t think these are real rules. That said I have run into a lot of “common wisdom” within those less geeky than us that is anything but wise. For example, lots of folks think white meat of any kind should be served with white wine.

These aren’t real “rules” but they are bad practices. We all know that- but this article isn’t written for us. In that regard I like this article.

Only one I really quibble with is the one on using proper stemware. I’m not saying everyone needs Zalto/Grassl etc, but even low-end stems that are properly shaped vastly increase my enjoyment.
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Re: Wine rules you should break

#3 Post by JDVanHoose »

It’s an entertaining article, kind of tongue in cheek but sadly highlights some common stereotypes associated with “wine snobs” (am I a wine snob?)
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Re: Wine rules you should break

#4 Post by Rich K0rz€nk0 »

I think the only lines I've never crossed on that list were "Wine should only come in a bottle" and "Don't put ice in wine".

I've never had a box wine so far as I'm aware and I can't recall ever dropping an ice cube in a glass.

Not that it could not have its place, I just don't find myself in the positions, maybe by design.
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Re: Wine rules you should break

#5 Post by D@vid Bu3ker »

Wine articles you shouldn’t read.
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Re: Wine rules you should break

#6 Post by Albert R »

D@vid Bu3ker wrote: January 17th, 2021, 4:55 pm Wine articles you shouldn’t read.
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Re: Wine rules you should break

#7 Post by YLee »

D@vid Bu3ker wrote: January 17th, 2021, 4:55 pm Wine articles you shouldn’t read.
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Re: Wine rules you should break

#8 Post by Anton D »

Don’t make your own blends.

If I get a faded wine, I will add a touch of something more vibrant.

I like reds and whites served at cellar temp.

I will cook with wines that didn’t meet my drinking standards.
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Re: Wine rules you should break

#9 Post by Jason T »

D@vid Bu3ker wrote: January 17th, 2021, 4:55 pm Wine articles you shouldn’t read.
Wine articles a Berserker shouldn’t read. Anyone with less wine experience could actually learn a great deal from this. There’s a lot of really bad “wine wisdom” out there that needs to be dispelled.

On that note, would have been nice if the article noted that Champagne can really shine in wine glasses other than flutes. I’ve run into quite a few folks who considered themselves “into wine” that had never heard this.
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Re: Wine rules you should break

#10 Post by Tomás Costa »

This might be uncontroversial, but if I'm having red meat in an acidic sauce I will always reach for a white.
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Re: Wine rules you should break

#11 Post by Rich K0rz€nk0 »

Tomás Costa wrote: January 17th, 2021, 7:17 pm This might be uncontroversial, but if I'm having red meat in an acidic sauce I will always reach for a white.
That wasn't listed yet its something I always heard as a norm. Red meats mean red wines. I like a full bodied acidic white with an acidic sauce no matter what the meat. They work IMO. Good call.
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Re: Wine rules you should break

#12 Post by Hans-Peter Eisele »

Tomás Costa wrote: January 17th, 2021, 7:17 pm This might be uncontroversial, but if I'm having red meat in an acidic sauce I will always reach for a white.
Which acidic sauce with which red meat would that be? Something like German Sauerbraten etc.?

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Re: Wine rules you should break

#13 Post by TimF »

I didn’t think any of those were rules except holding a glass by the bowl. I will admit I don’t do that and will mentally judge those who do. I will also admit that I use stemless glasses a lot — like 95% of the time.

I haven’t personally had a wine I liked out of a box or bag or can.
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Re: Wine rules you should break

#14 Post by TimF »

Anton D wrote: January 17th, 2021, 5:36 pm I will cook with wines that didn’t meet my drinking standards.
I’ll go so far as to say I never cook with a wine I’d drink. For cooking I typically buy four packs of 187ml bottles from Gallo or something similar. I guess they’re drinkable but I usually reach for something at a higher price point when drinking.
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Re: Wine rules you should break

#15 Post by Jason T »

TimF wrote: January 18th, 2021, 3:46 am
Anton D wrote: January 17th, 2021, 5:36 pm I will cook with wines that didn’t meet my drinking standards.
I’ll go so far as to say I never cook with a wine I’d drink. For cooking I typically buy four packs of 187ml bottles from Gallo or something similar. I guess they’re drinkable but I usually reach for something at a higher price point when drinking.
Yeah this is good advice. Many restaurants - even the fancy ones - use bulk wines in their sauces.
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Re: Wine rules you should break

#16 Post by Jay Miller »

While the article was silly one "wine rule" that I happily break is "always serve white wines other than Sauternes, etc. before reds".
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Re: Wine rules you should break

#17 Post by Tomás Costa »

Hans-Peter Eisele wrote: January 18th, 2021, 3:30 am
Tomás Costa wrote: January 17th, 2021, 7:17 pm This might be uncontroversial, but if I'm having red meat in an acidic sauce I will always reach for a white.
Which acidic sauce with which red meat would that be? Something like German Sauerbraten etc.?

Cheers,
Hans-Peter
I was thinking more in line of lighter sauces, based on mustard, vinegar and/or cider. I believe Sauerbraten is much richer and has a significant sweet-savory aspect to it, so I'm not sure.
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Re: Wine rules you should break

#18 Post by Blake Brown »

The part that suggests decanting champagne "{sparkling wine}" is one I've considered doing numerous times, but yet to do. We've had a few discussions in this forum about doing so, but I don't recall any feedback that validates doing so. I just makes sense to me, but some argue we lose the bubbles or at least there is significant reduction. Not the end of the world for me. I will decant one soon.
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Re: Wine rules you should break

#19 Post by Alan Rath »

Tomás Costa wrote: January 17th, 2021, 7:17 pm This might be uncontroversial, but if I'm having red meat in an acidic sauce I will always reach for a white.
I’m of the opinion there’s literally nothing you can’t drink white wine with. Maybe tootsie rolls ;)
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Re: Wine rules you should break

#20 Post by Blake Brown »

Jason T wrote: January 17th, 2021, 7:03 pm
D@vid Bu3ker wrote: January 17th, 2021, 4:55 pm Wine articles you shouldn’t read.
Wine articles a Berserker shouldn’t read. Anyone with less wine experience could actually learn a great deal from this. There’s a lot of really bad “wine wisdom” out there that needs to be dispelled.

On that note, would have been nice if the article noted that Champagne can really shine in wine glasses other than flutes. I’ve run into quite a few folks who considered themselves “into wine” that had never heard this.
Both good points especially re the stemware for champagne.
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Re: Wine rules you should break

#21 Post by larry schaffer »

For those of you who find the article 'silly' or 'simple', I can tell you first hand by dealing with as many different wine consumers that I do that many of these 'conventional wisdoms' truly are the way most wine consumers feel.

And if you want to come up with a similar list specifically for WB, perhaps consider 'conventional wisdoms' that are used around here:

Unfiltered wines are better than filtered wines

Wines made in a more 'natural' way are 'truer expressions' of the wines than those that are manipulate

A high scoring wine is one that should continue to evolve over many many years, not one that gives 'immediate gratification'

Wines over XX% alcohol cannot be 'balanced'

Pinot Noir is the toughest grape to grow

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Re: Wine rules you should break

#22 Post by Jason T »

larry schaffer wrote: January 18th, 2021, 10:55 am For those of you who find the article 'silly' or 'simple', I can tell you first hand by dealing with as many different wine consumers that I do that many of these 'conventional wisdoms' truly are the way most wine consumers feel.

And if you want to come up with a similar list specifically for WB, perhaps consider 'conventional wisdoms' that are used around here:

Unfiltered wines are better than filtered wines

Wines made in a more 'natural' way are 'truer expressions' of the wines than those that are manipulate

A high scoring wine is one that should continue to evolve over many many years, not one that gives 'immediate gratification'

Wines over XX% alcohol cannot be 'balanced'

Pinot Noir is the toughest grape to grow

Cheers
Hah. Larry in for the win - I see what you did there!

Agree with you Larry that this is how most wine consumers feel. I think another element to it is that many consumers are just so intimidated by wine and are afraid to ask, or are maybe not intimidated but either don't know where to look for good wine info, or are overwhelmed at the amount of info out there and can't cut through it all.

They just grab ahold of whatever nuggets come there way since it's 'conventional wisdom'. We see this in other areas of life - and even 'experts' fall victims to this. How many people still think you have to sear a steak to 'lock in the juices'. Heck how many CHEFs still think that? A lot, and yet we now know that's total garbage.
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Re: Wine rules you should break

#23 Post by larry schaffer »

Jason T wrote: January 18th, 2021, 3:37 pm
larry schaffer wrote: January 18th, 2021, 10:55 am For those of you who find the article 'silly' or 'simple', I can tell you first hand by dealing with as many different wine consumers that I do that many of these 'conventional wisdoms' truly are the way most wine consumers feel.

And if you want to come up with a similar list specifically for WB, perhaps consider 'conventional wisdoms' that are used around here:

Unfiltered wines are better than filtered wines

Wines made in a more 'natural' way are 'truer expressions' of the wines than those that are manipulate

A high scoring wine is one that should continue to evolve over many many years, not one that gives 'immediate gratification'

Wines over XX% alcohol cannot be 'balanced'

Pinot Noir is the toughest grape to grow

Cheers
Hah. Larry in for the win - I see what you did there!

Agree with you Larry that this is how most wine consumers feel. I think another element to it is that many consumers are just so intimidated by wine and are afraid to ask, or are maybe not intimidated but either don't know where to look for good wine info, or are overwhelmed at the amount of info out there and can't cut through it all.

They just grab ahold of whatever nuggets come there way since it's 'conventional wisdom'. We see this in other areas of life - and even 'experts' fall victims to this. How many people still think you have to sear a steak to 'lock in the juices'. Heck how many CHEFs still think that? A lot, and yet we now know that's total garbage.
Jason,

Great points - and great analogies to other areas of life. Could not agree more.

One of the things that kills me, though, is that even on this board, with 'enlightened' wine consumers, there continues to be a somewhat 'pompous' attitude towards wines folks feel are 'beneath' them for some reason. As I tell folks all of the time, I don't want to be judged on the food I eat or the way I dance - and therefore will not judge others on the wines they drink. To each his or her own should be the golden rule, but unfortunately we are far from being there . . .

Cheers!
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Re: Wine rules you should break

#24 Post by Michael S. Monie »

"It's only a little corked."
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Re: Wine rules you should break

#25 Post by larry schaffer »

Michael S. Monie wrote: January 18th, 2021, 3:51 pm "It's only a little corked."
And yet I've seen plenty of 90+ scores on CT and here from 'sought after' wines that were corked . . .

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#26 Post by Jason T »

Michael S. Monie wrote: January 18th, 2021, 3:51 pm "It's only a little corked."
But it can be. Probably 99.5% of corked wines I've had to dump. But there have been a handfull where the perception of TCA was so faint that I could still taste some of the qualities of the wine, and it was a special/unique enough bottle that I just kept going.
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Re: Wine rules you should break

#27 Post by larry schaffer »

And therein lies the 'challenge' of TCA - we all have different thresholds for picking it up. So you can sit at a table with 'knowledgeable' wine drinkers and one can say it's corked and another finds it 'wonderful' - and they are both kind of correct, eh?

Cheers.
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Re: Wine rules you should break

#28 Post by Mike Francisco »

larry schaffer wrote: January 18th, 2021, 4:05 pm And therein lies the 'challenge' of TCA - we all have different thresholds for picking it up. So you can sit at a table with 'knowledgeable' wine drinkers and one can say it's corked and another finds it 'wonderful' - and they are both kind of correct, eh?

Cheers.
Larry,
Sorry for the tangent, but as someone very sensitive to TCA and related compounds this has always confused me. As I understand how these compounds affect the wine, whether or not you can smell/taste the wet cardboard, the damages is done. By that I mean the TCA has reacted with other compounds it the wine responsible for smells, flavors and freshness and changed them and therefore the wine. So what someone not sensitive to the TCA itself is tasting is still different from what the wine should taste like, right? As you would have a better handle on the actual chemistry involved I was hopping you could help me better understand this.

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Re: Wine rules you should break

#29 Post by G. D y e r »

I'd say the only rule there that probably shouldn't be broken is putting ice in wine. Unless you have a 16% ABV, high extract wine that could stand to be watered back a bit, I don't like the idea at all.

I have a couple of standard cooling approaches when I'm decanting a red wine. If the wine is too warm upon tasting, I pop the decanter it in the fridge with the wine for a 15-30 minutes. If it's a warm day and I know the decanter is going to warm the wine up too much with certainty, throwing a few ice cubes in with a splash of water and swirling aggressively gets the decanter instantly chilled. Dump the ice water, then decant as usual.
Greg

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Re: Wine rules you should break

#30 Post by Samuel Dearden »

There should be no real rules when it comes to drinking wine (for the most part), pairing a wine with a food, drinking a certain wine out of a certain glass, etc. There are definitely suggestions people give for enhancing certain situations, but people should really do whatever makes them happiest and gives them the most pleasurable experience from their glass of wine, bottle, meal.

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Re: Wine rules you should break

#31 Post by Ben M a n d l e r »

Mike Francisco wrote: January 19th, 2021, 8:02 am
larry schaffer wrote: January 18th, 2021, 4:05 pm And therein lies the 'challenge' of TCA - we all have different thresholds for picking it up. So you can sit at a table with 'knowledgeable' wine drinkers and one can say it's corked and another finds it 'wonderful' - and they are both kind of correct, eh?

Cheers.
Larry,
Sorry for the tangent, but as someone very sensitive to TCA and related compounds this has always confused me. As I understand how these compounds affect the wine, whether or not you can smell/taste the wet cardboard, the damages is done. By that I mean the TCA has reacted with other compounds it the wine responsible for smells, flavors and freshness and changed them and therefore the wine. So what someone not sensitive to the TCA itself is tasting is still different from what the wine should taste like, right? As you would have a better handle on the actual chemistry involved I was hopping you could help me better understand this.
It’s not so much that TCA reacts with other compounds (it is present in vanishingly small quantities compared to some odorants), but rather that it actually affects your nose’s ability to smell other things. Which is why corked wines often seem muted, even if they don’t smell overtly of TCA.

The sensitivity of an individual’s nose to this effect is variable, so Larry is right in saying that the same wine can genuinely smell terrible or muted to one person, and genuinely wonderful to another.
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Re: Wine rules you should break

#32 Post by Brady Daniels »

G. D y e r wrote: January 19th, 2021, 8:29 am I'd say the only rule there that probably shouldn't be broken is putting ice in wine. Unless you have a 16% ABV, high extract wine that could stand to be watered back a bit, I don't like the idea at all.

I have a couple of standard cooling approaches when I'm decanting a red wine. If the wine is too warm upon tasting, I pop the decanter it in the fridge with the wine for a 15-30 minutes. If it's a warm day and I know the decanter is going to warm the wine up too much with certainty, throwing a few ice cubes in with a splash of water and swirling aggressively gets the decanter instantly chilled. Dump the ice water, then decant as usual.
Hard disagree. Your approach works fine at home, but is useless in a restaurant that serves a wine at kitchen-influenced room temperature. Minimally diluted wine at the right temp is far better than warm wine, IMHO.
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Re: Wine rules you should break

#33 Post by Mike Francisco »

Ben M a n d l e r wrote: January 19th, 2021, 11:02 am
Mike Francisco wrote: January 19th, 2021, 8:02 am
larry schaffer wrote: January 18th, 2021, 4:05 pm And therein lies the 'challenge' of TCA - we all have different thresholds for picking it up. So you can sit at a table with 'knowledgeable' wine drinkers and one can say it's corked and another finds it 'wonderful' - and they are both kind of correct, eh?

Cheers.
Larry,
Sorry for the tangent, but as someone very sensitive to TCA and related compounds this has always confused me. As I understand how these compounds affect the wine, whether or not you can smell/taste the wet cardboard, the damages is done. By that I mean the TCA has reacted with other compounds it the wine responsible for smells, flavors and freshness and changed them and therefore the wine. So what someone not sensitive to the TCA itself is tasting is still different from what the wine should taste like, right? As you would have a better handle on the actual chemistry involved I was hopping you could help me better understand this.
It’s not so much that TCA reacts with other compounds (it is present in vanishingly small quantities compared to some odorants), but rather that it actually affects your nose’s ability to smell other things. Which is why corked wines often seem muted, even if they don’t smell overtly of TCA.

The sensitivity of an individual’s nose to this effect is variable, so Larry is right in saying that the same wine can genuinely smell terrible or muted to one person, and genuinely wonderful to another.
Ben,
I hate to seem dense but I just want to make sure I get what you are saying. So if someone who is not sensitive does not smell or taste the TCA, then they also don't get the dead nose, striped fruit and lifelessness in the flavors? So a corked bottle to them would taste and smell the same as a good bottle would to me? If that is true, man am I envious, there a time I don't even have the cork out and I know I will be pouring the wine down the drain. [cry.gif]

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Re: Wine rules you should break

#34 Post by G. D y e r »

Brady Daniels wrote: January 19th, 2021, 11:13 am
G. D y e r wrote: January 19th, 2021, 8:29 am I'd say the only rule there that probably shouldn't be broken is putting ice in wine. Unless you have a 16% ABV, high extract wine that could stand to be watered back a bit, I don't like the idea at all.

I have a couple of standard cooling approaches when I'm decanting a red wine. If the wine is too warm upon tasting, I pop the decanter it in the fridge with the wine for a 15-30 minutes. If it's a warm day and I know the decanter is going to warm the wine up too much with certainty, throwing a few ice cubes in with a splash of water and swirling aggressively gets the decanter instantly chilled. Dump the ice water, then decant as usual.
Hard disagree. Your approach works fine at home, but is useless in a restaurant that serves a wine at kitchen-influenced room temperature. Minimally diluted wine at the right temp is far better than warm wine, IMHO.
Fair point. Sounds like a restaurant where I would choose water, beer or BYO corkage--paying an aggressive markup for service where the service degrades the experience is not my thing. But if taken by surprise by ordering by the glass/bottle, the ice route is the lesser of evils.
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In that way, he is like cornerback Darrelle Revis, deserving of his own island, Mangold Island, if you will. “That would be a rusty, filthy island where people wear ripped jeans and stay in hotel rooms that are half price,” tight end Dustin Keller said. “But they would serve wine, and only the finest for Nick Mangold.”

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Re: Wine rules you should break

#35 Post by Ben M a n d l e r »

Mike Francisco wrote: January 19th, 2021, 12:29 pm
Ben M a n d l e r wrote: January 19th, 2021, 11:02 am
Mike Francisco wrote: January 19th, 2021, 8:02 am

Larry,
Sorry for the tangent, but as someone very sensitive to TCA and related compounds this has always confused me. As I understand how these compounds affect the wine, whether or not you can smell/taste the wet cardboard, the damages is done. By that I mean the TCA has reacted with other compounds it the wine responsible for smells, flavors and freshness and changed them and therefore the wine. So what someone not sensitive to the TCA itself is tasting is still different from what the wine should taste like, right? As you would have a better handle on the actual chemistry involved I was hopping you could help me better understand this.
It’s not so much that TCA reacts with other compounds (it is present in vanishingly small quantities compared to some odorants), but rather that it actually affects your nose’s ability to smell other things. Which is why corked wines often seem muted, even if they don’t smell overtly of TCA.

The sensitivity of an individual’s nose to this effect is variable, so Larry is right in saying that the same wine can genuinely smell terrible or muted to one person, and genuinely wonderful to another.
Ben,
I hate to seem dense but I just want to make sure I get what you are saying. So if someone who is not sensitive does not smell or taste the TCA, then they also don't get the dead nose, striped fruit and lifelessness in the flavors? So a corked bottle to them would taste and smell the same as a good bottle would to me? If that is true, man am I envious, there a time I don't even have the cork out and I know I will be pouring the wine down the drain. [cry.gif]
No it's a good question. There are two separate thresholds to consider:

One is the concentration of TCA in the wine required for a person to smell it.
The other is the concentration of TCA in the wine required to interfere with the person smelling other things (this is a kind of behavior that is known in the perfume industry as "masking").

The question is then whether those two thresholds covary. I.e., is your sensitivity to the smell of TCA related to your sensitivity to its aroma-masking effects? I haven't read anything that really convincingly studies the relationship between these two, but the studies I have seen suggest that the answer is yes, and that the threshold for aroma-masking is approximately the same as the threshold for smelling TCA itself. I don't know about you, but this doesn't jive with my personal experience - I have detected aroma masking from TCA in wines where I couldn't actually smell the TCA itself. Not that often, but occasionally.

Of course, comparing two people's sensory experiences is notoriously difficult. But in short, yes, it is probable that, if you are very sensitive to TCA, there are other people who would smell and taste the wine as good.
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Re: Wine rules you should break

#36 Post by Chris S p i k e s »

Mike Francisco wrote: January 19th, 2021, 8:02 am
larry schaffer wrote: January 18th, 2021, 4:05 pm And therein lies the 'challenge' of TCA - we all have different thresholds for picking it up. So you can sit at a table with 'knowledgeable' wine drinkers and one can say it's corked and another finds it 'wonderful' - and they are both kind of correct, eh?

Cheers.
Larry,
Sorry for the tangent, but as someone very sensitive to TCA and related compounds this has always confused me. As I understand how these compounds affect the wine, whether or not you can smell/taste the wet cardboard, the damages is done. By that I mean the TCA has reacted with other compounds it the wine responsible for smells, flavors and freshness and changed them and therefore the wine. So what someone not sensitive to the TCA itself is tasting is still different from what the wine should taste like, right? As you would have a better handle on the actual chemistry involved I was hopping you could help me better understand this.
Just to add another anecdotal point to this discussion, consider the old "solution" to corked wines, the adding of shrink wrap to absorb the TCA. When I've tried this, I've found it helps a lot with moderately or lightly corked wines to minimize the corkiness. However, the resulting wine tastes stripped down and is still unenjoyable. I can't speak to the science, but it appears that in eliminating the corkiness, what is left is just a mediocre to bad wine without cork. Maybe the TCA destroyed the wine to start or maybe the shrink wrap pulls desirable characteristics with it? The scientist in me acknowledges that there could be considerable subjective bias in my analysis without better study design. Hard to do much of a double blinded study with that though.

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Re: Wine rules you should break

#37 Post by Mike Francisco »

Ben M a n d l e r wrote: January 19th, 2021, 4:41 pm
No it's a good question. There are two separate thresholds to consider:

One is the concentration of TCA in the wine required for a person to smell it.
The other is the concentration of TCA in the wine required to interfere with the person smelling other things (this is a kind of behavior that is known in the perfume industry as "masking").

The question is then whether those two thresholds covary. I.e., is your sensitivity to the smell of TCA related to your sensitivity to its aroma-masking effects? I haven't read anything that really convincingly studies the relationship between these two, but the studies I have seen suggest that the answer is yes, and that the threshold for aroma-masking is approximately the same as the threshold for smelling TCA itself. I don't know about you, but this doesn't jive with my personal experience - I have detected aroma masking from TCA in wines where I couldn't actually smell the TCA itself. Not that often, but occasionally.

Of course, comparing two people's sensory experiences is notoriously difficult. But in short, yes, it is probable that, if you are very sensitive to TCA, there are other people who would smell and taste the wine as good.
Wow, I have allot of people to apologize to, from over the years, as I have been in many a heated stand off over wines I knew as clearly corked and that the other person clearly had no taste. Judge not, lesson learned.

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Re: Wine rules you should break

#38 Post by Ben M a n d l e r »

Mike Francisco wrote: January 20th, 2021, 7:08 am
Ben M a n d l e r wrote: January 19th, 2021, 4:41 pm
No it's a good question. There are two separate thresholds to consider:

One is the concentration of TCA in the wine required for a person to smell it.
The other is the concentration of TCA in the wine required to interfere with the person smelling other things (this is a kind of behavior that is known in the perfume industry as "masking").

The question is then whether those two thresholds covary. I.e., is your sensitivity to the smell of TCA related to your sensitivity to its aroma-masking effects? I haven't read anything that really convincingly studies the relationship between these two, but the studies I have seen suggest that the answer is yes, and that the threshold for aroma-masking is approximately the same as the threshold for smelling TCA itself. I don't know about you, but this doesn't jive with my personal experience - I have detected aroma masking from TCA in wines where I couldn't actually smell the TCA itself. Not that often, but occasionally.

Of course, comparing two people's sensory experiences is notoriously difficult. But in short, yes, it is probable that, if you are very sensitive to TCA, there are other people who would smell and taste the wine as good.
Wow, I have allot of people to apologize to, from over the years, as I have been in many a heated stand off over wines I knew as clearly corked and that the other person clearly had no taste. Judge not, lesson learned.
Haha yeah I went through the same penance when I discovered that too ^_^ one other related thing I find interesting about TCA is that inexperienced tasters are just as good at distinguishing TCA-flawed wine as experienced tasters. That’s not true for things like Brett, VA, and smoke compounds, which experienced tasters are more likely to recognise as flaws.
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Re: Wine rules you should break

#39 Post by HoosJustinG »

Ben M a n d l e r wrote: January 19th, 2021, 4:41 pm
Mike Francisco wrote: January 19th, 2021, 12:29 pm
Ben M a n d l e r wrote: January 19th, 2021, 11:02 am
It’s not so much that TCA reacts with other compounds (it is present in vanishingly small quantities compared to some odorants), but rather that it actually affects your nose’s ability to smell other things. Which is why corked wines often seem muted, even if they don’t smell overtly of TCA.

The sensitivity of an individual’s nose to this effect is variable, so Larry is right in saying that the same wine can genuinely smell terrible or muted to one person, and genuinely wonderful to another.
Ben,
I hate to seem dense but I just want to make sure I get what you are saying. So if someone who is not sensitive does not smell or taste the TCA, then they also don't get the dead nose, striped fruit and lifelessness in the flavors? So a corked bottle to them would taste and smell the same as a good bottle would to me? If that is true, man am I envious, there a time I don't even have the cork out and I know I will be pouring the wine down the drain. [cry.gif]
No it's a good question. There are two separate thresholds to consider:

One is the concentration of TCA in the wine required for a person to smell it.
The other is the concentration of TCA in the wine required to interfere with the person smelling other things (this is a kind of behavior that is known in the perfume industry as "masking").

The question is then whether those two thresholds covary. I.e., is your sensitivity to the smell of TCA related to your sensitivity to its aroma-masking effects? I haven't read anything that really convincingly studies the relationship between these two, but the studies I have seen suggest that the answer is yes, and that the threshold for aroma-masking is approximately the same as the threshold for smelling TCA itself. I don't know about you, but this doesn't jive with my personal experience - I have detected aroma masking from TCA in wines where I couldn't actually smell the TCA itself. Not that often, but occasionally.

Of course, comparing two people's sensory experiences is notoriously difficult. But in short, yes, it is probable that, if you are very sensitive to TCA, there are other people who would smell and taste the wine as good.
This is something I’ve wondered before. I’m *not* very sensitive to TCA, but there have been wines where I’ve really wondered if they were corked, knowing that I’m not super sensitive to TCA, because of a wine feeling surprisingly muted on the nose (even after decanting/swirling) or otherwise not as expected.
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Re: Wine rules you should break

#40 Post by Chris Seiber »

HoosJustinG wrote: January 20th, 2021, 12:23 pm This is something I’ve wondered before. I’m *not* very sensitive to TCA, but there have been wines where I’ve really wondered if they were corked, knowing that I’m not super sensitive to TCA, because of a wine feeling surprisingly muted on the nose (even after decanting/swirling) or otherwise not as expected.
My personal and anecdotal experience is that corked bottles can be corky smelling (ranging from slight to overwhelming), they can be masking/muted, but the extent of the two effects seems mostly independent of the other.

For example, I have tasted wines that had a clear corky smell, but where there were still a lot of flavors to the wine too. I have also tasted wines with barely perceptable corky smell (that may have only become noticeable to me after the wine had been open awhile), but where the wine was heavily muted. Sometimes, in the latter case, I never get a clear read on signature corky aromas, but then I open another bottle of the same wine and it's obvious the first one was deadened by TCA.

Never happened to me with a wine under screwcap, though -- keep fighting the good fight, Larry.

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Re: Wine rules you should break

#41 Post by Todd F r e n c h »

My wife's rule on 'what wine to pair with...' is DRINK WHATEVER YOU WANT!
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Re: Wine rules you should break

#42 Post by John Glas »

I haven’t personally had a wine I liked out of a box or bag or can.
Me neither. Too many good wines for $10.00 I would rather drink than a boxed wine.

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Re: Wine rules you should break

#43 Post by Michael S. Monie »

Chris Seiber wrote: January 20th, 2021, 12:32 pm
HoosJustinG wrote: January 20th, 2021, 12:23 pm This is something I’ve wondered before. I’m *not* very sensitive to TCA, but there have been wines where I’ve really wondered if they were corked, knowing that I’m not super sensitive to TCA, because of a wine feeling surprisingly muted on the nose (even after decanting/swirling) or otherwise not as expected.
My personal and anecdotal experience is that corked bottles can be corky smelling (ranging from slight to overwhelming), they can be masking/muted, but the extent of the two effects seems mostly independent of the other.

For example, I have tasted wines that had a clear corky smell, but where there were still a lot of flavors to the wine too. I have also tasted wines with barely perceptable corky smell (that may have only become noticeable to me after the wine had been open awhile), but where the wine was heavily muted. Sometimes, in the latter case, I never get a clear read on signature corky aromas, but then I open another bottle of the same wine and it's obvious the first one was deadened by TCA.

Never happened to me with a wine under screwcap, though -- keep fighting the good fight, Larry.
This is my experience also. But when I do perceive even a little cork taint, I have no interest in trying to go beyond it to find redeeming value. Life is too short to drink flawed wine.
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