Muriel Fincas de la Villas Crianza 2016
The warmth of late spring in Texas has forced its presence onto the scene, one is reminded that serious grilling season is nigh upon us! Whether your home grill favorite is burgers, dogs, ribs or chicken, a delicious Red from the Rioja Region of Spain is an excellent choice to pair with spring and summer fare. If you are not familiar with the nuanced, delicious Reds from Rioja, you are... Read MorePosted by Len Musgrove, Admin The Wine Bargain Sleuth on 2020-May-Sun
Marchesi Antinori 2015 Villa Antinori Riserva (Chianti Classico)
Your humble Wine Bargain Sleuth has been, like most of my fellow sleuths, observing the local "shelter in place" directive during the uncharted waters of the COVID-19 virus scare. During this seemingly unending period of (more or less) voluntary quarantine, my significant other and I have been cooking at home more frequently, and one of the house favorites is Italian, particularly pasta with hearty meat sauces. I have also taken... Read MorePosted by Len Musgrove, Admin The Wine Bargain Sleuth on 2020-Apr-Tue
Pedroncelli Merlot Dry Creek Valley Bench Vineyards 2017
Those of us who are Big Red fans are always on the lookout for a great Value Wine to enjoy and serve to our own wine buddies. As most of you have heard, the classic Bordeaux varietal Merlot fell out of favor for several years, coinciding in part with the 2004 dark comedy "Sideways" (and Miles' classic utterance that he wasn't "drinking any *&^%ing Merlot" to his twisted buddy Jack),... Read MorePosted by Len Musgrove, Admin The Wine Bargain Sleuth on 2020-Apr-Sat
Olema Chardonnay Sonoma County 2018
Greetings and Salutations! As the vast majority of the country is in some stage of quarantine (in Dallas, we call it "Shelter in Place"), it seems that we wine sleuths need to have good information for quality Value Wines more than ever. Otherwise, or so I am told, one is liable to end up cracking open in frustration a prized bottle of Kistler Chardonnay or that favorite Nuits St. Georges... Read MorePosted by Len Musgrove, Admin The Wine Bargain Sleuth on 2020-Mar-Sat
Milbrandt Merlot (Columbia Valley) 2017
I am always on the lookout for a satisfying Big Red that meets our criteria as a Value Wine--i.e., high quality and a price of less than $20. We at The Wine Bargain Sleuth have long been a fan of Washington Cabs and Merlots and have frequently recommended the same to our wine sleuths! The Milbrandt Merlot Columbia Valley 2017 is a terrific example of a great Value Wine: at... Read MorePosted by Len Musgrove, Admin The Wine Bargain Sleuth on 2019-Dec-Sat
Courtney Benham Napa Valley Sauvignon Blanc 2018
In the Great Southwest, a quality Napa Valley Sauvignon Blanc is a guaranteed crowd-pleaser around the pool or for a summer cocktail. The Napa expression of the international Sauvignon Blanc grape tends to be a bit rounder than others, with flavors such as peach and nectarine rather than the grapefruit and citrus profile generally associated with, say, the New Zealand Sauvignon Blancs. A terrific value version of this wine is... Read MorePosted by Len Musgrove, Admin The Wine Bargain Sleuth on 2019-Aug-Mon
2015 Land of Promise Pinot Noir
Say you have a birthday or a big anniversary coming up. Or you closed that big deal at work...or just because you are worth it! Some days you just want to have an amazing glass of wine. After a long day this week, I had one of those amazing glasses of wine: the 2015 Land of Promise Pinot Noir from Sonoma Coast, California. Even better, I got to share a... Read MorePosted by Len Musgrove, Admin The Wine Bargain Sleuth on 2019-Apr-Sat
Chateau Guiraud G Bordeaux White 2016
With spring comes colorful, fragrant flowers and budding trees, as well as warmer weather that pairs so delightfully with light, crisp wines. Some of my personal favorites include Bordeaux Blancs from France's legendary wine region. In addition to being refreshing with their cleansing acidity and nuanced with their classic blends of Sauvignon Blanc and Semillon, many of these French beauties are an amazing value as well. One vivid example of... Read MorePosted by Len Musgrove, Admin The Wine Bargain Sleuth on 2019-Apr-Sat
Cline Zinfandel Contra Costa County Ancient Vines 2016
Looking for a great value wine in a Big Red? Tired of the ongoing Napa Valley price creep? Enjoy a Zinfandel with a old vines taste profile? Well, wine sleuths, I believe I have you covered for this month! I highly recommend the Cline Zinfandel Contra Costa County Ancient Vines 2016! None other than leading wine publication Wine Spectator bestowed a strong 91 rating on this delicious red Zinfandel, calling... Read MorePosted by Len Musgrove, Admin The Wine Bargain Sleuth on 2019-Feb-Mon
Bogle Old Vine Zinfandel 2015
This terrific everyday Big Red is from Bogle, a remarkably consistent California producer of value wines. Big, bold and spicy yet still elegant, this Zinfandel is a terrific pairing for your favorite pizza, BBQ ribs or a juicy cheeseburger on Wednesday night or Saturday night! Flavor hints of blackberry and blueberry are on the front palate of the Bogle 2015 Old Vine Zinfandel, with a light pepper finish that keeps you reaching for... Read MorePosted by Len Musgrove, Admin The Wine Bargain Sleuth on 2018-Oct-Mon
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Greetings and salutations! You wine sleuths are sly dogs! Your friends, parental units, family and significant others are already reaching out to you for your suggestions as to that Perfect Thanksgiving Wine! And at the risk of blowing up your inboxes since we just delivered Chapter 27 a week or two ago, your humble Wine Bargain Sleuth has nevertheless worked overtime to deliver our 3rd Annual Thanksgiving Wine Recommendations just in a nick of time for the holiday feast!
Greetings and salutations! Fall season is upon us in Texas. College football battles, crisp mornings, State Fair corny dogs, lawns turning the shade of corn tortillas and leaves transforming to golden and bright orange colors. What an ideal time to focus upon great bargain Big Reds! Accordingly, this month’s Chapter will focus on a handful of Splurge Wine values in Cabernet Sauvignon for your enjoyment. Remember, a true bargain wine is not necessarily a wine of $15 or so, but rather a wine that outperforms its price point and thus gives the consumer worthy bang for his or her buck! The list below fits into our concept of Splurge Wines that manage to outperform their class.
THE TAKEAWAY: So what did we learn today? First, don’t EVEN think about failing to double check the spigot on that delicious box wine, whether on your counter or elsewhere. Second, despite what were definitely humble beginnings, more and more decent wines are available in box containers and even (really?!) aluminum cans with sippy straws. Don’t think that this Wine Bargain Sleuth can go that far, my dear friend Lisa, but to each her own!
Suddenly, it became popular, even patriotic, to drink wine in general and those from Napa Valley in particular. The past few decades have been an era of increasing interest and demand by Americans in wine that the statistics clearly bear out. From personal experience, I have seen the price of quality Napa Cabernet Sauvignon more than quadruple in the past 15 years alone! Clearly, your Wine Bargain Sleuth should have had either more foresight or better cash flow in the late 90’s. Sigh.
Let’s get to the bad news first: Wine is decidedly not a panacea that magically fixes otherwise substandard health. However, many medical studies have suggested and in some cases concluded that moderate consumption of wine may be a factor in a healthy lifestyle. Before you take this statement as a green light to tip back a magnum per night and automatically become Mr. or Ms. Health, most of such studies are also quick to conclude that in no circumstances does excess alcohol consumption, in wine or otherwise, improve one’s health. There’s always a catch, isn’t there?
I frequently am asked by my friends to recommend everyday wines to enjoy and share with guests. We’re not talking about fancy, expensive wines here, mind you. No, we’re talking about quality, good values, go-to wines. Or as I like to call them, House Wines!
So what are your favorite House Wines? Do you have one? If not, you should!
It strikes me that there is no better time to discuss great Cabernet Sauvignon than the beginning of a new year. The cooler weather of the winter season is affords a perfect opportunity to enjoy the robust flavor of your favorite Cabs. Accordingly, this month’s Chapter will list of some of our favorite Cabernets for your enjoyment: the official Wine Bargain Sleuth 2014 Top Five Worth a Splurge Cabernet Sauvignons for $35 and Under list!
Greetings and salutations! I know what you are thinking as you read this month’s Chapter. You’re thinking, “How in the wide world of sports can it already be the week of Thanksgiving? Wasn’t I just handing out sweet treats to cutely costumed ankle biters a couple of days ago?” And you’re also thinking, “Ruh, Roh, I haven’t done my heroic wine acquisitions for the traditional Thanksgiving feast—I have to get on that—and now!”
I managed a few of thoughts of my own and formulated my theory of just what makes a Wine Snob. Does having a discerning taste in wine make one a Wine Snob? Hardly. Does the thirst (pun intended) to learn about new and different wines make one a Wine Snob? I think not.
How can you maximize the odds that special bottles will reward your sacrifice and patience rather than tasting like last month’s vinegar when uncorked?
Assuming for discussion’s sake that you do not have a cave handy, then a cool basement, a dedicated wine cellar or a wine refrigerator may all be possibilities for your cellar.
Save Water —- Drink Wine!
We have carefully attempted to identify very good (and even great) wines that set themselves apart from the herd each month, but we don’t necessarily just try to identify the least expensive wines. Heck, that would be cheating. Besides, as you wine sleuths are well aware, Life is Too Damned Short to Drink Bad Wine!
Greetings and salutations! Believe it or not, kids, what still vaguely seems like a new year is more than halfway to 2014. Is it me, or is the…
Greetings and salutations! June, sweet June! The kids are out of school, my rapidly deteriorating math homework skills are placed securely on the back shelf, the grass is…
Peeling Back the Curtain: One of the most enjoyable parts of taking on the commitment of writing The Wine Bargain Sleuth is the many conversations I have had with friends and wine experts about their favorite wines, varietals and ideas.
Italy has led the world in wine production for the past three years, with 2012’s total being a whopping 40.8 million hectoliters produced. Even more relevant to Americans, Italy is the number one exporter of wines to our country. Yet many of us in the United States (along with everyone in France!) still consider France to be the wine leader of the world.