Thursday, January 5, 2012

Preposterous Pundit Pontification of the Month (Silly Wine Review of the Month) Part One

Behind as usual.  We'll start with target-rich November.  Two editions in the month filled me with opportunities to wag my finger at their writers.
"Though not what you expect from a To Kalon bottling" seems insufficient.  I have had a handful of wines produced from To Kalon vineyard fruit and found them all to display more of the hand of the producer than to show a distinct thread inherent to the vineyard.  That should not necessarily surprise anyone when you realize the vineyard is over 500 acres.  Not exactly a pinpoint specific location.  At any rate, the comment might help To Kalon experts but left me baffled.  It's irrelevant though, as I'm not about to spend $125 on a bottle of wine from a producer I do not know, even with 93 points.
A large producer received a 90 for an upper end malbec and the review included the following note: "The better of two bottles tasted."  That's it.  No, 'seemed a bit corked' or, even better, 'we'll get a third bottle to determine which might be more representative.'  Nope, just a 90 for the good one.  How bad was the other?  How is this okay?  They did offer a corrective review for another wine, "Better than previously reviewed" so maybe there's hope.
The word "winey" continues to appear to describe wine.  Stop it!  No food reviewer writes about a chicken dish as tasting "chickeny."  The same writer fond of "winey" (three times in November) also pulled out "mature incense" for one wine.  I have no idea what that means.  
"Grippy plum skin frame" sounds interesting enough to forgive the silliness.  But speaking of a finish that "cuts a deep trough" sounds painful to me.  My tongue and the phrase "cuts a deep trough" should never meet.
Perhaps no one likes to write about merlot but T.F. got stuck rating 27 of them and used "tomato leaf" in eight of the reviews.  That's plain lazy.  Did you assume that no one actually reads merlot reviews?
B.S. referenced eucalypt, menthol and mint so often during his Barolo ratings that I found myself nearly convinced I don't like the wines.  I am tired of minty flavors in my wine and routinely avoid bottles with that aroma.  One of these got 93 points despite being described as having "eucalyptus, balsamic and licorice aromas."  Ugh.  In one glass?  93 points?  I know you're not trying to sell me the wine but sometimes it's awfully hard to tell why you liked it.
He also managed to mention citronella in three white Burgundy reviews, all of which were 90+ wines, in his estimation.  All I can think of is candles supposedly keeping mosquitoes at bay and for $57, $64 and $75 a bottle, I'll pass.
The most insane reference I found also belongs to our friend, B.S.  In a fairly rave review of a Canadian Icewine he tosses in, "flavors of truffle, decaying apple, honey and rhubarb."  Forget that most of the planet does not know rhubarb and let's focus on "decaying apple."  DECAYING!  Mmmm, can't wait to get a glass of that!  Next fall I could just fight off the raccoons and drunk bees instead of laying out $65 for a half bottle.  
More later...

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