What is your method for choosing wine?


Lot of great tips in here.

I’m sure some just prefer to select what they know they’ll like / will be good, but I’ve enjoyed being in a couple wine clubs from a couple shops. Seems to offer a nice variety and includes some wine that I might not have chosen myself. Think this prolly only works if you have a trustworthy shop that offers a wine club.


How are the prices at Larchmont Wine?


For the most part, about average (for a small wine shop). As I mentioned up thread: they have a middle aisle of wines that are priced for everyday drinking and they also have some monthly “picks” that are usually a good value as well.

In the area, K&L probably has better prices (due to their size and volume) and more “bargains” to be found.


I absolutely look for the distributor. Never had a wine I didn’t like from Louis/Dressner or Kermit Lynch. Will have to check out your other recommended distributors.

By contrast, I can go to my local high-end grocery store and pick out a bottle of wine for $40 and I’ll generally hate it. So I stopped doing that. I have even had bad experiences in high-end wine stores. For me, it’s the distributor all the way.


Exactly how wine critics, somms, and retailers should be considered. You calibrate their recs with your preferences.


In both these cases, Louis/Dressner and Kermit Lynch are the importers of the wine. The back and/or strip label reads “Imported by _______________” (Louis/Dressner and Kermit Lynch, in this case). It may seem like splitting hairs, but “importers,” “distributors,” and “wholesalers” are three different things.

That said, FWIW, I agree completely, and it’s what I have always suggested to my students: check out the importer, and Louis/Dressner and Kermit are two very solid ones to follow.


Importer. My local fancy grocery store has few non-California wines (and most of the California wines are high alcohol fruit bombs). Didn’t recognize any of the importers on their few bottles of French and Italian wines. Took a chance on a $40 bottle of Côtes du Rhône and it was so bad I poured most of it down the sink. I think for $40, you should get a drinkable bottle of wine – maybe not transcendent, but drinkable. That’s when I said I would never buy wine from that grocery store again. The only reason I was at the grocery store looking for a bottle of wine was because I had no wine at home and stopped off after work to pick up some dinner and thought wine would be nice, but unfortunately have learned that at least in my neck of the woods, wine requires pre-planning (as in drive across town to a wine store that I know carries the importers I like).


I’m going to let Martha Stewart pick my wine from now on. What could possibly go wrong?


i suffer no delusions about the general quality of California Central Valley wine grapes compared with those of ‘better’ origin but that article gives zero information as to the specific origin of the fruit they’ll use in Stewart’s product. Most likely it’ll be lower-end or bulk quality product but that doesn’t necessarily follow and, without any pricing info, there’s no way to know if there’s a consumer value in the product.

I was once told that the average retail price of a bottle of wine in the US is around $5-$6. To me that means there are a hell of a lot of people who are happy drinking lower end wine. Certainly Trader Joe’s more than priced that with Charles Shaw. So… I get the issue that Martha Stewart is supposed to be a quality brand, but it is also supposed to be a value brand. Shouldn’t we try the wine before concluding that it MUST be garbage? Anyway… lots of people LIKE garbage wine.


As you likely know, one bottle could be very good, and the next bottle from the same “winery” could be plonk.


Of course there’s more bottle variance in lower level wine. Actually I didn’t read anything in that piece that would tell me WHAT level the wine might be at other than the production sourcing revealed and a presumption about that kind of marketing.


I look after my favorite additives [ just joking! ] ::



Didn’t know I was Martha’s target customer, yet Groupon found me for her. Talk about a package deal to rope you in!!!


Isinglass - sounds safe for vegans :grin:[quote=“Midlife, post:33, topic:366”]
Didn’t know I was Martha’s target customer, yet Groupon found me for her. Talk about a package deal to rope you in!!!

So each bottle got at least 15 points!