Introduce Yourself

Snooth User: Rdstr

First post

Posted by Rdstr, Dec 21, 2009.

Hello all,

I'm really looking forward to lots of advice from you all, particularly the experts! I'm 57, retired, married for 37 years, love golf, cigars, guitars, and my grandchildren. I've been drinking wine for 40 years and just now getting a bit more serious about it. My favorites are merlot and cabernet but can enjoy almost any wine, red or white.




Reply by Gregory Dal Piaz, Dec 21, 2009.

Hey Rdstr, welcome to Snooth!

Roadster? Redstar?

Looking forward to hearing more about your vinous adventures!

Reply by Rdstr, Dec 21, 2009.

Thanks for the welcome Gregory.

Reed.....Reedstr......rdstr (an old nickname and Reed was already taken on the forum).

Reply by dmcker, Dec 21, 2009.

Reed, you forgot to mention your wife and children in your loves... ;-) Welcome to Snooth!

So what merlots and cabernets have you liked, and are there any other wines you've tried that have seemed interesting?

Reply by Rdstr, Dec 21, 2009.

I've pretty much tried every merlot and cab you can get from the grocery store. I like Clos du Bois, Columbia Crest, Berringer's Founder's Estate, Kendall-Jackson Reserves, 5 Rivers (all in the $8-15 range) also some Gewurtraminers and Reislings. A favororite Riesling of ours is the Dr. Wilkomm's Blue River which I think is sold exclusively at Sam's. A meager and immature list for sure but I'm ready to take a step or two up!!

Reply by dmcker, Dec 21, 2009.

Forgot to ask where you're located, and, depending on that, if you have anything against purchasing online.

Do you find you like bigger, more fruit-forward, oaky cabs and merlots, or do you like something more restrained?

Regarding the gewurtraminers, try some from Alsace. Trimbach and Zind-Humbrecht are excellent producers. Hugel can also be good, though I'm not always happy with their cost performance.

There are a whole range of Kabinett rieslings from the Mosel and Rhein districts in Germany that you can explore. I had some Dr Loosen Wehlener Sonnenuhr Riesling Kabinett for Thanksgiving that was very good. It was more than 10 years old, and riesling ages quite well for a white, but it's certainly also good young, and younger bottles are, of course cheaper. Once you find what you like, buy a case or more and save some for pleasure over the years.

Have you tried any chardonnay or sauvignon blanc or chenin blanc from Burgundy or Bordeaux (Graves) or the Loire in France? These varietals can also be good in California, the Pacific Northwest, Australia/New Zealand and elsewhere, but I've had better luck with the French versions in finding those that are balanced and stay within themselves.

The thread below has a number of good recommendations for cabernets under $25 or so:

This forum really hasn't discussed merlots as much as many other varietals. Probably a result of the snobbery that ensued from the movie Sideways, as much as anything else. It and chardonnay have received several upturned noses in recent years, but there's not only a lot of merlot still being made these days, but quite a bit *good* merlot out there. The Right Bank (of the Gironde River) in Bordeaux makes some of the most famous, and several of the Super Tuscans that have become famous over the past couple of decades have considerable merlot in them. Unfortunately both of those sources produce some of the most expensive merlot out there, though it's also possible to find good bottles that are reasonably priced. Spain has also started making a bit of merlot in recent years, and their prices will tend to be a bit lower.

Regarding New World merlots, the thread below has some recommendations, but they really aren't as in-depth as those for the cabs in the thread I refer to above (and many others that are also out there in Snooth ether).

Considering that merlot has seemed to get a bit of short shrift, perhaps Snooth might do a comparitive tasting of the varietal sometime in the not-too-distant future? Calling GregDP...! ;-)

Reply by amour, Dec 22, 2009.

Hello wine star !!!!
How about thinking outside of the box???
Try the lovely wines of LEBANON !
C H E E R S !! Will re-convene with further suggestions !

Reply by Rdstr, Dec 22, 2009.


Great response! To answer some of your questions.....I live in southern New Mexico and have bought just about everything else online so why not wine?! I like the bigger cabs and merlots. I have not tried any chardonnay or sauvignon blanc or chenin blanc from Burgundy or Bordeaux (Graves) or the Loire in France but am not opposed to doing so. Regarding merlot's underserved snobbery, it's amazing how we can be influenced by nonsense and how it can shape our lives. Let's start a merlot revival! I LOVE MERLOT AND I DON"T CARE WHO KNOWS IT. Excuse me for getting carried away.

Reply by cigarman168, Dec 23, 2009.

Welcome. You will definitely got lot of good recommendations of wine here especially the Italy one. Happy drinking.

Reply by dmcker, Dec 23, 2009.

Reed, good for you, and I like good merlot, too, either in blends or even on its own. Please do post here any good bottles you encounter as you widen your circle of wine acquaintances whether merlot, cab or any other varietal. And ask any questions that pop up as you're doing so...

Reply by Rdstr, Dec 23, 2009.


please see my comments regarding Chateau St Jean in the "wine talk" forum.

Reply by VegasOenophile, Dec 27, 2009.

Rdstr, do you have any liquor stores or wine stores either like warehouse style or boutique? It might behoove you to cost compare shop, because I usually advise against purchasing your wine from the grocery store. Sure they have sales, but they still end up being more than if you have other means but it all depends where you're from. This allows me to broaden my horizons and buy more for the money or some higher end bottles. Sam's Club, COSTCO, Trader Joes, at times Whole Foods and Wild Oats, and Cost Plus are all great wine resources. I'd recommend checking them out if you have any of those. The price difference might allow you to spend the same as you have been, but on slightly better bottles. Of course, it's all subjective to taste and we all have our favorite cheaper wines! Enjoy and share with us what you're drinking!

Reply by oklawinelover, Dec 28, 2009.

Rdstr, what cigars are you smoking and what are you drinking with your cigars....anxious to hear what others drink with their cigars..

Reply by dmcker, Dec 28, 2009.

A few ideas... ;-)

Reply by Rdstr, Dec 28, 2009.


Well, let's see........... a few of my favorites are:

Gurka Legend
Punch Gran Puro
Pepin Blue Label
Arturo Fuente Hemingway
Carlos Torano 1916

I usually have a glass of Knob Creek or Makers Mark (bourbons) but also enjoy any full bodied red wine as well.

Reply by Rdstr, Dec 28, 2009.


We have a Sam's Club in town and about an hour away is a COSTCO. I don't believe there's a Trader Joe's anywhere near here.

Thanks for the advice!

Reply by GregT, Dec 28, 2009.

Hi Rdstr and welcome. Don't know about Sam's Club, but some Whole Foods can have decent selections. Ditto Costco. Problem with Costco is that savvy people cherry-pick the selection because sometimes the prices are pretty good. Trader Joe's hasn't ever been inspiring to me. Usually has a lot of grocery store wines and the prices aren't always all that great.

Nor do I know much about the shipping laws in New Mexico, but don't overlook on-line shopping. It's pretty much how I do all my wine buying at retail these days.

Dmucker gave you some pretty good suggestions so I won't add any. But if I may, I'll suggest something else. That is to experiment a little bit. People make a big fuss about glassware for example. Go out and buy a couple of stems from Reidel, Schott-Zweissel, and a few others and try your wine out of each. See if it matters to you or not.

Second, pay attention to serving temperature. "Room temperature" is not a proper serving temperature for any wine IMO, unless you like your rooms really cold. Pour 2 glasses of wine, put one in the fridge for 10 minutes and see which one is better. For me, the slightly cooled one is always better.

Do a little tasting for yourself and a friend or two. You like merlot. Pick up a merlot like Pride for example, it might cost $50. Then pick up one like Whitehall Lane at $20 or Chateau Ste Michelle for $14. Taste them side by side and see what you think. Taste them after an hour or two and see if they change with a little air time.

Best of luck and happy learning!

Reply by oklawinelover, Dec 28, 2009.

Rdstr...thanks for suggestions....Pepin has had, CT 1916 resting in humi, only Gurkha's Park Avenue, lots of Rocky Patels....

Reply by Dombeya Wines, Dec 29, 2009.

Agree with Greg T about trying around to find good merlot. Can be very hit and miss, and is a tough grape to get spot on the vineyard. When it is good though it is very good, all the best with your search.


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