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March 01, 2010


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I've been drinking lots of southern Rhone wines in the last year or so and I can tell from what i've had is that there really is no putting them into a category, as much as we like to do. And thats human nature. Ive had CDP look and smell like pinot and others that are bold and tannic. And everything in between. Different winemaking philosophies, soil, vintages, and huge varietal leeway, all contribute to a huge swing in style. Barolo is also all over the map as well. And I like the different styles.

Usseglio is one of my favorites. I had an 04 about 6 months ago--it was my favorite CDP of the last year. I love the more spicy, acidic style of CDP rather than the more full-throttle ones...the full throttle ones are really missing something a lot of the time.

Dan - Good points, though I don't recall having any CdP that was evocative of Pinot (not classically styled Pinot, anyway). But I'm not surprised, given the range of winemaking and growing preferences.

Jeff - Very much agree on the full-throttle CdPs. They tend to come off as ostentatious wines rather than true depictions of place. This Usseglio is a classy effort and an excellent value at $33 at our local store. What a nice bonus: If you love the sleeker style, you'll often spend less to get it.

Try Cuvee du Papet by Mont Olivet from a cooler year or their basic cuvee. Or Mas de Boislazon. Elegant and perfumed like a nice Burgundy.

As the winner of this weight-loss challenge and the recipient of this mixed half case...I'd like to NOT know about every wine in it before I get it.

Got that, Dawson? ;)

Dan - Will do, and thanks for the recs. Really appreciate it.

Lenn - The discovery comes when you open the bottle, not when you read the names. ;)


I love that beer. They are releasing a special barrel aged version soon.

Hi Lenn. This is Zak Davis from Shmaltz Brewing Company, the makers of Bittersweet Lenny's R.I.P.A. Just wanted to say thanks so much for picking up that bottle. I'm really glad you enjoyed the beer, it's definitely one of our favorites.

And Kevin, you're right, we will be releasing a barrel-aged version at some point over the next few months, so keep your eyes out.

Thanks again for the support. L'Chaim!! ~Zak

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