After: Insignia Prime Steak & Sushi, which is a recipient of Wine Spectator’s 2012 Restaurant Awards “Award of Excellence”
What a stark contrast, huh?
Explaining the French term cru [or “growth”] to someone is like trying to explain cars.
These are your everyday, workhorse wines/cars that do what they are supposed to do.
These wines/cars represent a step-up from the usual and an increase in substance and style.
You pay for what you are getting at this level.
Having said all that, do not be easily led astray by a label. Just because it is not Premier cru Chateau Latour does not mean it is going to stink; a good ~$20 Cabernet-Merlot blend from the Haut-Medoc region of Bordeaux is very easy to find. Likewise, just because it is a Lexus LFA does not mean it is going to always get you from Point A to Point B faster, especially if you plan on doing a lot of city driving.
And this is only French wine ;-).
You won’t catch any hardcore Giants nor Patriots fans drinking this wine come Super Bowl XLVI Weekend [even though it is pretty good].
Here’s to a great game on Sunday, February 5, 2012.
1. I learned something from my Dad over dinner tonight: compared to Italian wines, California wines generally tend to be fruitier, less tight/focused, and less intense.
In other words, he would be killin’ it right now if he were in Tuscany and/or Russian River Valley.
2. On that note, if you are looking for a decent, medium-bodied red wine for under $20.00, Columbia Crest Horse Heaven Hills 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon (http://www.columbiacrest.com/wines/release/176/) is something to consider. A Washington State wine, it has a nice floral nose, earthy flavors, and a surprisingly nice cocoa finish to it, something that becomes more evident as it opens up. It may be a bit too fruity to some of you looking for a more serious Cabernet, but it still is worth a try, especially if you are on a budget and/or new to wine.