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  1. #551
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Sticky Click here to enlarge
    It depends.

    If I'm trying a varietal I don't traditionally drink I will go by the region and vintage that is well known for that varietal. For example if all the Cabernets on the list suck I'll see what Malbecs they have and if it's from Argentina in a good year I'll choose that as at the same price point at the crappy/cheap cabernets it will offer better quality.

    I also will google on my phone quickly to see the reviews if I need to.

    Additionally, you can always ask for a taste. If the bottles are open I just ask the server/bartender to bring me a little bit of 3 or 4 and make up my mind that way.

    More or less with enough time drinking wine you just know what to order and what not to even if it's something you have never tried. Knowing your regions, vintages, and grapes really helps.
    I usually stick to varietals that I enjoy, Cabernet, Malbec, and Syrah.

    Can you recommend any websites you use frequently?
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  2. #552
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by jdub679 Click here to enlarge
    Can you recommend any websites you use frequently?
    cellartracker.com and the wine spectator forums

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  3. #553
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by jdub679 Click here to enlarge
    I usually stick to varietals that I enjoy, Cabernet, Malbec, and Syrah.

    Can you recommend any websites you use frequently?
    Cellartracker is okay...... although some people who post there think a lot of themselves (I am dogsbrekky there) .... also wine.com is good..... or some of the reviewers... I like Hugh Johnson and an Aussie guy called James Halliday.... Robert Parker is good 89.487456% of the time too and Jancis Robinson

    I am lucky where I live because I have world class wine shops within 3 miles and they sell vintage stuff and some value stuff which is really well rated
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  4. #554
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Group.america Click here to enlarge
    Cellartracker is okay...... although some people who post there think a lot of themselves (I am dogsbrekky there) .... also wine.com is good..... or some of the reviewers... I like Hugh Johnson and an Aussie guy called James Halliday.... Robert Parker is good 89.487456% of the time too and Jancis Robinson

    I am lucky where I live because I have world class wine shops within 3 miles and they sell vintage stuff and some value stuff which is really well rated
    I like Stephen Tanzer the best of all reviewers and Parker overrates wines although his scores are still the most important by far in wine.

    Cellartracker is definitely my most important wine tool.

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  5. #555
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    Can you recommend some wineries to check out in the Santa Ynez region? Lompoc? I'm taking a trip at the end of February.
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  6. #556
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by jdub679 Click here to enlarge
    Can you recommend some wineries to check out in the Santa Ynez region? Lompoc?
    Oh yes I can. That is currently my favorite winemaking region in the world but shhh. Don't want the Santa Ynez market to get inflated like Napa.

    You'll want to go to Los Olivos. Short drive from Lompoc but it's where all the good stuff is. There are several tasting rooms there and you can walk around to each.

    First stop should be Stolpman. Their stuff is the best IMO especially for the money: https://www.stolpmanvineyards.com/

    After Stolpman go to Tensley, it's directly across the street. Their Grenache is mind altering.

    Andrew Murray is another one to check out. Stuff is priced really well and tasty plus good variety.

    People rave about Dragonette and I admit the juice is really good. It's the trendy hip stuff coming out of Santa Ynez and their tasting room is also in Los Olivos.

    If you are going to be in Lompoc try Flying Goat. Their Pinot is excellent.

    I can go on and on about Santa Ynez and Lompoc as that is where I go to wine taste now. Especially as my taste has ventured out from Cali cabs.

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  7. #557
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    Los Olivos - "If anyone orders Merlot"

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  8. #558
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    Stolpman - just ordered the Syrah and Petite Syrah... thks for the heads ups Sticky
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  9. #559
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Sticky Click here to enlarge
    Oh yes I can. That is currently my favorite winemaking region in the world but shhh. Don't want the Santa Ynez market to get inflated like Napa.

    You'll want to go to Los Olivos. Short drive from Lompoc but it's where all the good stuff is. There are several tasting rooms there and you can walk around to each.

    First stop should be Stolpman. Their stuff is the best IMO especially for the money: https://www.stolpmanvineyards.com/

    After Stolpman go to Tensley, it's directly across the street. Their Grenache is mind altering.

    Andrew Murray is another one to check out. Stuff is priced really well and tasty plus good variety.

    People rave about Dragonette and I admit the juice is really good. It's the trendy hip stuff coming out of Santa Ynez and their tasting room is also in Los Olivos.

    If you are going to be in Lompoc try Flying Goat. Their Pinot is excellent.

    I can go on and on about Santa Ynez and Lompoc as that is where I go to wine taste now. Especially as my taste has ventured out from Cali cabs.
    Nice recommendations! I'm determined to join some wine clubs. Any of those recommendations worthy of being a member?
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  10. #560
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by jdub679 Click here to enlarge
    Nice recommendations! I'm determined to join some wine clubs. Any of those recommendations worthy of being a member?
    Cellartracker is free

    it is excellent for run of the mill wine snobs like me
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  11. #561
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by jdub679 Click here to enlarge
    Nice recommendations! I'm determined to join some wine clubs. Any of those recommendations worthy of being a member?
    Nah wine clubs are pointless IMO. Just try a bunch of stuff and if you like it buy it. That's why tasting rooms are the best thing ever.

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  12. #562
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Sticky Click here to enlarge
    Nah wine clubs are pointless IMO. Just try a bunch of stuff and if you like it buy it. That's why tasting rooms are the best thing ever.

    I guess I just like the idea of wineries that I like sending me wine on a regular basis instead of having to make bulk purchases at wineries and lugging the stuff back home.
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  13. #563
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by jdub679 Click here to enlarge
    I guess I just like the idea of wineries that I like sending me wine on a regular basis instead of having to make bulk purchases at wineries and lugging the stuff back home.
    I hear you I just don't like wine forced on me that I haven't tasted.

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  14. #564
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    Tonight a nice 2005 Grigich Hills Estate Grown Cabernet Sauvignon - a somewhat unique Napa Cab as it is less fruit forward and milder, less tannic and medium bodied... will decant for a few hours and see how we go
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  15. #565
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    Grgich is ok stuff. My dad used to be a fanatic and it was what he mostly drank until I introduced him to better wine but it's certainly not bad.

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  16. #566
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Sticky Click here to enlarge
    Grgich is ok stuff. My dad used to be a fanatic and it was what he mostly drank until I introduced him to better wine but it's certainly not bad.

    Thanks... honestly, I haven't had the stuff in 15 years.. used to be great.. I got the 2005 at a good price at Michaels Liquor in Riverhead NY... it is one of those huge discount WINE stores.. the owner knows his stuff and he recommended that over the 2006 Heitz (which is good stuff but just okay like 90/100) and the '06 Cakebread.....

    This '05 Grigich got good reviews on cellartracker...

    BTW... I used to love CAKEBREAD wines but their Cabernets have that horrid Aussie (Barossa Cabernet) MINT taste which at my age (now) I just hate............. used to love that taste when I was 20 not now
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  17. #567
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    My fave Cab now is the Lewelling...... $54 for the '10 Lewelling Cabernet (base Cab not the Wight which is $110+ a bottle)

    Also I got some Hewitt Cabs 1997-2010 by the mixed bakers dozen... we are having a vertical next month on those.... 6 guys and 13 bottles... 1 big night
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  18. #568
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Group.america Click here to enlarge
    2006 Heitz
    The only Heitz worth drinking is the Martha's Vineyard. That's it.

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  19. #569
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Sticky Click here to enlarge
    The only Heitz worth drinking is the Martha's Vineyard. That's it.
    That would be it, 2006 Marthas Vineyard at a discount is $99
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  20. #570
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Group.america Click here to enlarge
    That would be it, 2006 Marthas Vineyard at a discount is $99
    It's worth it.

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  21. #571
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    Click here to enlarge

    Meh.. lot of Cassis, coffee, medium long finish... ok but not for the price 88/100
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  22. #572
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Group.america Click here to enlarge
    Meh.. lot of Cassis, coffee, medium long finish... ok but not for the price 88/100
    You nailed it.

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  23. #573
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    2004 Stella's Garden Lost Hwy Project Shiraz from McLaren Vale (makers of Mollydooker)

    Glorious righteous stuff 97/100 - just got a taste at my mate's wine shop... best Shiraz under $50 I have ever tasted

    WOW, a no apologies, in your face, magnificent McLaren Vale Shiraz from my home town area... just sublime

    BLACK ink, squid ink, purple hues...... some coffee, blackberry, black currant on the nose, glorious coffee, plum, berry flavours, deep raisin (but not sweet) and some Aussie sultana... woo hooooooo and perfectly integrated tannins... this thing is drinking so well without any decanting... will try again in a few hours...

    As great as it gets from Australia

    This is not a wine for little wusses !

    This will last another 10 years in the bottle

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  24. #574
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    97 basically means perfect.

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  25. #575
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    No mate 100/100 like a 1982 Margaux or a 1990 Grange Hermitage or 1973 Hill of Grace is perfect... this is just great though
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