Archive for the ‘Verified’ Category


Corkage Waived…because: scallops

July 20, 2018

Dinner was fantastic.  I’m not going to say where, because I love the place and want to be allowed back there, but this thing happened.  I brought in this mofo:meursault-les-chevalieres-2009-coche-dury…and it was mind blowing.  Needed a bit of time in the decanter to open up, but was classic Coche Meursault with its many layers of incomprehensible ethereal complexity that present the Chardonnay grape like no other producer can — like it’s from another planet — and ’09 is an intense vintage too.  Plus it wasn’t corked or premox’d, so…bonus.

Only two of us were drinking, and we were feeling generous, so we sent a glass to the kitchen (we’re huge fans of the chef, so we probably would have shared a bit, regardless).  Shortly after ordering our mains, our waiter came back to revise our order with the apology that they had just run out of scallops.  Upon receiving our bill, we were informed that corkage had been waived on account of the scallop situation.  Nice of them.  I don’t know offhand what their corkage is, but I’m fairly certain the glass I sent to the kitchen was worth upwards of 10 plates of scallops…


Cayman Krug

January 21, 2012

Slurping down Krug on 7-mile beach in the Cayman's.....I am the 1%.


Triptych of “statutory grape”

December 7, 2011

Three classic white burgundies opened way too early (three years) by a wine asshole:

Unfortunately, due to Kermit’s three-strikes policy, this means I’m cut off now…



Hermitage for the road…

October 8, 2011
Hermitage for the road

Now if there were only cup holders that would accommodate stem-ware...


Marc DRC

September 18, 2011

Ever get sick of Domaine de la Romanee Conti?  Me too.  Well, I found a better way to drink it:  distilled.


2004 Bertheau Bonnes Mares

February 16, 2011

Un 2004 (as the cork reads), going down nicely in an appropriately spectacular setting in Big Sur.  What makes this a wineasshole post?…well, where were you?


Cakebread and the Cuvee de Fail: Rubaiyat

March 3, 2010

Enjoy this lovely poem, from the namesake of the bottle in question:

Here with a loaf of bread beneath the bough,
A flask of wine, a book of verse --
and thou Beside me singing in the wilderness-
And wilderness is paradise …
(The Eleventh Quatrain of the Rubáiyat by Omar Khayyám)

…now about the wine. 90% Pinot Noir and 10% Syrah…wait…WHAT??!!!…Pinot Noir and Syrah, yes. Two grapes from two different planets. Two grapes that have absolutely no business being in the same bottle. It presents a confused melange of light floral notes, bright sweet berry flavors, and smokey hung meat — much like what we could imagine our prehistoric ancestors might have proudly piled on an altar as an offering to the gods. This wine is recommended by the vintner as an accompaniment to light picnic or barbecue fare — which describes a scene similar to that of our ancestors around the altar. Imagine a group of cavemen in a woodland clearing, a stone firepit going with the corpse of some animal sizzling away, and piles of other gathered comestibles; now, replace the woodland clearing with a suburban back yard, the stone firepit with a gas grill, and the cavemen with palate-impaired philistines wearing baseball caps. Bingo. I think we know who this wine is for.

Rubaiyat is only available only at the winery; limiting distribution is a way to limit the brand-damage blast radius (see article on Trollinger below). To remove any remaining doubt, the vintner recommends serving this (red) wine chilled — which would mute the flavors — now why would they want to do that?

Two requests for Cakebread:

  1. Please stop making this wine; the Pinot Noir and Syrah may be decent on their own, and if they can’t hold their own as varietals, have Germain Robin turn them into brandy. Whatever. Just stop the madness.
  2. Admit this was a mistake that you keep making to present the illusion that it was deliberate. Limited distribution, recommendations to serve chilled with low-brow food, etc., support this theory, but it’s even evident in the blend percentages. I posit that the first vintage of this wine was a simple error in the barrel warehouse: you had nine rows of pinot noir barrels, and when you rolled them out for blending, someone lost count and you got a tenth row (of syrah) by accident. Hey, it can happen to anybody when the occupational hazards involve alcohol.

Alsations, Asian Food, Degustation and Disgust (a plea to sommeliers)

March 1, 2010


When dining out at a Japanese/Sushi restaurant, ordering “Omakase” is the way to get the best experience possible: entrust yourself to the Chef. Put yourself at the Chef’s mercy, and the results will be a culinary epiphany that will enrich your life. It is very likely that you will try something you have never had before, ingredients and/or combinations thereof. Unfortunately, applying this technique to other styles of cuisine is not as reliable, despite the trend of most high-end restaurants inviting this option with degustation menus. While many mistakes can be made with the food itself in these tasting menus, there is no mistake more common or egregious than the epic epicurian failure of poor wine pairings. I’m not going to single out a particular restaurant or particular degustation/wine-pairing menu therefrom, because I don’t want to get sued; I will instead presume the guilt of all restaurants with such menus, and make this desperate plea to their sommeliers: STOP PAIRING SWEET ALSATIONS WITH ASIAN FOOD — FOR THE LOVE OF GOD. Whoever started this trend should be impaled on a giant satay skewer and waterboarded in a vat of Trockenbeerenauslese. What grows together goes together, and you can’t get much further apart than Southeast Asia and Northern Europe. The cloying sweetness of tropical and stone-fruit flavors in that late harvest Gewurz doesn’t complement the heat of that Thai curry at all; it clashes like blue and orange, like fire and ice, like Metallica and frickin’ Joan Baez. Just cut it out — seriously — or I’m never setting foot in your restaurant again…yes you.


199? Trollinger at Hotel am Schlossgarten

February 25, 2010

Stuttgart is an excellent example of a modern city that hasn’t lost its old world charm; it is a clean, efficient city with all the amenities of the present day, yet with character and traditions from ages past prevalent everywhere. One such tradition is a wine known as Trollinger. When my wife and I arrived at Hotel am Schlossgarten, we were greeted with a gift of a bottle of Trollinger. Being a collector of wine who is unafraid of the esoteric and obscure, I found it curious that I had never heard of Trollinger, and inquired of the concierge. He became visibly nervous, stuttering something in a mix of German and English about it being a humble country red wine of limited production, found only in the area of Wurttemburg; he concluded by very distinctly and emphatically observing that “this wine…it is *not* exported”. Folks, there is a reason it is not exported: it is ass. Do not drink this wine. Trollinger is to blame for the fact that I find myself dry-heaving as I write this, and on any occasion when I reminisce about an otherwise delightful vacation. Perhaps some traditions are better left in the past…