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I read all these threads about these fabulous dinners people have at home, with photogenic, obviously labor-intensive food, and legendary bottles.   I can't speak for anybody else on this board, bu

If I'm not enjoying wine when I'm seventy, then my nieces and nephews are going to be stuck with a shitload of wine they won't know what to do with.   Or my next wife, who by then should be almost

Whaddya mean? That's more than half the meals I serve. Tossed with great care, I might add.

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And yet wouldn't occur to you (or me) as a centerpiece for a 6Xth birthday celebration.

In case anyone cares, my last birthday, which was not a significant one, was celebrated with a half bottle of champagne and a large bowl of spiced nuts at the only East Village bar where I could find such a thing. Champagne, I mean, not nuts. The result of a stomach bug obliterating all plans for a magnificent feast.

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I know nothing about wine other than I won't drink something I don't like.    I'm a cheap date.  I really like many small California winemakers, eg Sandlands and Navarro and at the same time find delicious yet affordable wine in restaurants by chatting up the wine guy and letting him/her know what I want and don't want.   I find that I often get better results than friends who know a lot and try to control the wine discussion at restaurants.

 

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21 minutes ago, Wilfrid said:

And yet wouldn't occur to you (or me) as a centerpiece for a 6Xth birthday celebration.

In case anyone cares, my last birthday, which was not a significant one, was celebrated with a half bottle of champagne and a large bowl of spiced nuts at the only East Village bar where I could find such a thing. Champagne, I mean, not nuts. The result of a stomach bug obliterating all plans for a magnificent feast.

Oh sure. 

But to be clear, I don’t save these old wines for special occasions.  They’re just among the wine I drink with dinner. 

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I mean, obvs you wouldn't drink an aged wine with just anything.  Not because certain food isn't "special" enough, but because it wouldn't go with an aged wine.  Something too spicy, for example, would overbear all the nuances an aged wine has developed.

But with a simple roast, for example, nothing is better.

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I feel about wine the way I feel about food.   It's YOURS!    Use it, consume it as it delights you.     Make it memorable on your own terms.  

Re birthdays and other milestones, I can't even remember where I was on maybe my last dozen actual birthdates.    But other occasions filled in the gaps.

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Hot dogs!  With formerly fresh cranberry beans.  (I don't remember these being so salty.  Do beans somehow throw off salt as they get too old in the refrigerator?)   And -- I just thought this would go with hot dogs, don't ask me why -- Khaetnip Namul.   That's Korean sautéed perilla to you.

We've been talking about aging wines.  But there's another category of aged wines we haven't been talking about:  inadvertently aged wines.

2008 Red Hook Winery Jamesport Vineyard Rosé

I found this somewhere in my storage "system" where it never should have been.  I simply lost track of it.  Nobody would think it should have aged 12 years.

This was part of Red Hook Winery's initial release.  It's an "Abe" wine, crafted by Abe Schoener.  As far as I can tell, it's a blend of Merlot and Cabernet Franc, with Merlot predominating.

Rosés can last a bit -- but not this long.  Even rosés made from "substantial" grapes like this one.

OTOH, Abe Schoener's wines -- which I note as a sympathetic supporter are weird to begin with -- have a canny knack of aging against expectations.

I'd like to say this was in a good place.  But it wasn't.  The fruit has virtually disappeared.  What's left isn't actively unpleasant.  But "not actively unpleasant" isn't a very high endorsement.

OTOH (again), given the high salt level in this meal as a whole, maybe it doesn't matter.  I don't know that there's a wine in the world that could have stood up to it.

I'm certainly going to finish the bottle.

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10 hours ago, AaronS said:

I went to a tasting of that stuff when it first came out and I think me and my ex wife were the only people there who liked it.

ask me to tell you my abe story if we ever meet.

I really actively disliked a lot of his wines that where coming out around that time - even in context of "high profile natural wine makers who might not know how to make wine yet" which was a surprisingly large cohort ten years ago.

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The end of my chouriço and peppers (happily before it started to fester).  On the usual Portuguese roll.  God this is delicious.

Unbeatable side of raw radishes and their greens, drizzled with a little bit of olive oil and sprinkled with a little bit of salt.

Last night I had a wine that was too old.  Tonight I had one that was too young.   But with this last chouriço and peppers sandwich, I couldn't resist something that's been described as a cross between a CDR and a Rioja.  Especially when I have enough of it to taste along the way as it ages without unduly depleting my stores.

2016 Edmunds St. John "El Jaleo"

This is Edmunds St. John's Rioja blend.  But they seemingly can't help making wines that taste a bit like Rhones.  It's in their DNA.

This is too young.  I gave it a good 90 minute–2 hour decant, and it still seems ungainly.  Edmunds St. John seemed un-Californian when they started in that their wines always privileged vibrancy over power.  But this seems to be in an ungainly "closed" period where any initial uncomplicated fruity charm has receded but balance has not yet been attained.  It seems a bit syrupy -- which is NOT what this producer's wines are about.

We'll check back in a few years.

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