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OK first things first, if you have this confused with "The Whine Thread" i will immediately refer to you to literally any thread in the Tour Talk Section.

 

Now that we are clear on that, i am talking about wine made from grapes. I started a thread many years ago here, but that was before i became really knowledgeable on what i liked and my tastes were all over the place.

 

I drink Red and White, but pretty much exclusively 2 regions

 

1) Pinot Noir's from Oregon. Love them.....My go to's here on the less expensive side are typically Erath Resplendant, Elouan, Rex Hill, Eola Barrel Select or Regular Eola.....And on the higher end Maison Roy, Bergstrom, Beaux Frere, Ken Wright, Colene Clemens, Maison L'Envoye.....Those are like 70-100 bucks here though so it's not a weekly thing.

 

2) Sauvignon Blanc's from New Zealand. I will not listen to anyone who says New Zealand does not make the best Sauvignon Blanc. In the summer these are great. I typically have 3-5 Matua Valley's in my house at any given time. I'm drinking a Babych right now. I have probably had 30-40 different ones so i can't list them all. For the money though i think Matua is one of the best wines on the market. I have literally never recommended it to someone and have them not like it. My wife loves Stoneleigh. On the pricier (for white anyway) side Cloudy Bay or Saint Clair are good too.

 

What do you guys drink?

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Rex Hill when I can. Its $32.00 a bottle but I know exactly where the grapes are grown. I like Pinot Noir. Under the radar and cheaper than most, Cameron Hughes Pinot Noir. Can catch some good value at $9.00 and $13.00 a bottle when you get the 20% off and free shipping. Check them out my friend. You should enjoy. I need to check out the new Zealand wines. New wife and I may be planning a trip there very soon. Thanks for your insight.

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Is that the french one? Had to look it up. I've had a few french pinots but definitely not an expert. Sorry!

 

Were a bit limited by what we get here too. There's a government monopoly called the SAQ , and high taxes. So we don't have the best selection.

 

Ontario is a lot better. thankfully not a long drive

 

The Rex hill is nice though. I had one 2 weeks ago.

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I like all styles of wine when done well and offering good value. Rarely go for anything over $30, even for a special occasion.

 

Current favourites are:

 

Kloof Street Swartland Rouge; a Syrah blend from the Western Cape, South Africa $19.95

 

Roero Arneis Sabbie; a white Barolo from Piedmont, Italy $16.95

 

Cono Sur Bicicletta Pinot Noir Rosé, Chilé $11.00

 

Our son is in the industry and he is pretty handy at sleuthing out the great values, but availability is often limited. It helps being close enough to Toronto to hit one of the LCBO rare wine stores. We would never find these on our own shopping at the local outlets.

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My wife and I are Malbec fans. That means a lot of South American wines from Argentina and Chile. Our favorite is the Uno Malbec.

 

Ive had Chilean whites just because there's a restaurant around here that has Errazuriz and caliterra. And they are fairly affordable restaurant wines. They are not my favorite but a pretty good compromise if no NZ options are available.

 

Errazuriz is pretty mild so hard not to like at least a bit

 

These are the sauv Blancs again though

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My wife and I are Malbec fans. That means a lot of South American wines from Argentina and Chile. Our favorite is the Uno Malbec.

 

Ive had Chilean whites just because there's a restaurant around here that has Errazuriz and caliterra. And they are fairly affordable restaurant wines. They are not my favorite but a pretty good compromise if no NZ options are available.

 

Errazuriz is pretty mild so hard not to like at least a bit

 

These are the sauv Blancs again though

 

I’m not a bit fan of whites outside of a summer Riesling or Moscato with a piece of white fish or shrimp.

 

South American Malbecs are interesting because the Malbec grape was kind of a filler used in French wines but the conditions of Aregentina and Chile were perfect for the grape and turned it into it’s own wine.

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OK first things first, if you have this confused with "The Whine Thread" i will immediately refer to you to literally any thread in the Tour Talk Section.

 

Now that we are clear on that, i am talking about wine made from grapes. I started a thread many years ago here, but that was before i became really knowledgeable on what i liked and my tastes were all over the place.

 

I drink Red and White, but pretty much exclusively 2 regions

 

1) Pinot Noir's from Oregon. Love them.....My go to's here on the less expensive side are typically Erath Resplendant, Elouan, Rex Hill, Eola Barrel Select or Regular Eola.....And on the higher end Maison Roy, Bergstrom, Beaux Frere, Ken Wright, Colene Clemens, Maison L'Envoye.....Those are like 70-100 bucks here though so it's not a weekly thing.

 

2) Sauvignon Blanc's from New Zealand. I will not listen to anyone who says New Zealand does not make the best Sauvignon Blanc. In the summer these are great. I typically have 3-5 Matua Valley's in my house at any given time. I'm drinking a Babych right now. I have probably had 30-40 different ones so i can't list them all. For the money though i think Matua is one of the best wines on the market. I have literally never recommended it to someone and have them not like it. My wife loves Stoneleigh. On the pricier (for white anyway) side Cloudy Bay or Saint Clair are good too.

 

What do you guys drink?

If you like Cloudy Bay, you should try Greywacke and Dog Point if you can find them. Kevin Judd, who was the original winemaker at Cloudy Bay left and set up Greywacke a few years ago while Ivan Sutherland and James Healy set up Dog Point. If you want to remortgage your house and try something special, buy some Dog Point Section 94 or Greywacke Wild. Both wines are barrel fermented sauvignon blanc's and a step up from their regular labels. Cloudy Bay have Te Koko which is made the same way. Away from Malborough, Palliser Estate in Martinborough in the lower North Island makes a really good Sauvignon Blanc that would be one of the best NZ Sauvignons year in, year out.

 

Malborough Pinot Noirs have come a long way in the past few years and are normally a bit better value that Central Otago or Martinborough so worth trying if you like their whites. Never tried Oregon Pinots so can't compare but tried many Santa Barbara area Pinots while there a couple of years ago and didn't taste anything that stood out as better than NZ Pinots.

 

May be even harder to find but Tasmania produces some really good Sauvignon Blancs as well. Actually bought some last year when we were there, which pleased the winemaker no end. "Sold some Sauvignon Blanc to a Kiwi" being yelled out across a crowded tasting room as we left isn't something a proud kiwi lives down in a hurry.

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I have had dog point and remember liking it, but haven't seen it at an SAQ in 2-3 years now. Unfortunately we don't get all of them.

 

I've had some of the Pinot noir from New Zealand too, but I don't like them as much as Oregon

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SGC #002 flow neck 385g

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Hi Jeff,

 

Here is a bit of info that may find of interest:

 

Sauv Blanc:

 

The Marlborough region of NZ produces many good SB's. I assume you have tried Kim Crawford (huge seller), but probably prefer Matua? I worked for a wholesaler that sold both of those. We sold thousands of cases of KC. Long ago Kim sold his name to the producer (so he cannot use his own name) and he now makes a wine with his wife - I believe the label is called Loveblock SB. (I have not tried it.) You could try that one as well. Chile also produces some good value SB.

 

I would recommend a good "fine wine" shop where you can establish a relationship with one of these wine geeks who could help you select wines. Just tell him what you want to spend. Most have very affordable wines. Start with the lower priced wines! Work your way up. They have a ton of knowledge and you will learn a lot.

 

Sauv Blanc: What most look for in a good dry white wine (like SB) is good acid (which makes your mouth water), good minerality, and fruit. Now, one of the downsides with SB can be a "cat pee" nose. It's common. Some (like me) don't like. Some don't care and some actually prefer it. If you don't like it, I would highly recommend trying a few Bordeaux Blanc. Most of those are a blend of SB and Semillion. The French know what they are doing and you should have a large selection at stores in Montreal.

 

Pinot Noir: I also really like Pinot Noir. Probably my favorite for just drinking wine without a food pairing. Oregon makes some great ones and they tend to be more affordable than the California or French Burgundy. Chile also make some decent PN. And other countries are making some good stuff too - like Portugal and believe it or not - Germany (due to slightly warmer weather).

 

Hope this helps,

MM

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Hi Jeff,

 

Here is a bit of info that may find of interest:

 

Sauv Blanc:

 

The Marlborough region of NZ produces many good SB's. I assume you have tried Kim Crawford (huge seller), but probably prefer Matua? I worked for a wholesaler that sold both of those. We sold thousands of cases of KC. Long ago Kim sold his name to the producer (so he cannot use his own name) and he now makes a wine with his wife - I believe the label is called Loveblock SB. (I have not tried it.) You could try that one as well. Chile also produces some good value SB.

 

I would recommend a good "fine wine" shop where you can establish a relationship with one of these wine geeks who could help you select wines. Just tell him what you want to spend. Most have very affordable wines. Start with the lower priced wines! Work your way up. They have a ton of knowledge and you will learn a lot.

 

Sauv Blanc: What most look for in a good dry white wine (like SB) is good acid (which makes your mouth water), good minerality, and fruit. Now, one of the downsides with SB can be a "cat pee" nose. It's common. Some (like me) don't like. Some don't care and some actually prefer it. If you don't like it, I would highly recommend trying a few Bordeaux Blanc. Most of those are a blend of SB and Semillion. The French know what they are doing and you should have a large selection at stores in Montreal.

 

Pinot Noir: I also really like Pinot Noir. Probably my favorite for just drinking wine without a food pairing. Oregon makes some great ones and they tend to be more affordable than the California or French Burgundy. Chile also make some decent PN. And other countries are making some good stuff too - like Portugal and believe it or not - Germany (due to slightly warmer weather).

 

Hope this helps,

MM

 

Nice, yes, I dont drink much white but when I do, sauv blanc is a preference and I enjoy the right combo of fruit and minerals. Hard to quantify the minerals but its like you can actually taste the stone/minerals that the water that fed the grapes and came to the wine.

 

I find I gravitate toward wines that I enjoy the "earth" of. Bordeaux, italian regions, the soil defines these wines.

 

Day to day, I just go with anything the compliments food well and has size with a balance of fruit and dryness.

 

But, I most enjoy the medocs and saint emilions if I have some very good food and want to spend some money.

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Is that the french one? Had to look it up. I've had a few french pinots but definitely not an expert. Sorry!

 

Were a bit limited by what we get here too. There's a government monopoly called the SAQ , and high taxes. So we don't have the best selection.

 

Ontario is a lot better. thankfully not a long drive

 

The Rex hill is nice though. I had one 2 weeks ago.

It is from France. If you can find a 2012 Oregon Pinoit Noir, it will be very good as that was one of the best years for the grape.
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I drink pretty much everything. More of a red wine person than white though. Favourites would be Pinot Noir and Syrah.

 

Being in New Zealand, Central Otago has some great Pinots covering the full range of prices so always something to find that fits the budget. Wines that we buy consistently year in year out include Rockburn, Carrick, Peregrine, Valli and Grasshopper Rock. Hawkes Bay makes some really good Syrah and some favourites include Craggy Range, Te Mata, Elephant Hill and Trinity Hills. Still really enjoy the Bordeaux varietials though with most NZ wines being Merlot based as we don't consistently ripen Cabernet Sauvignon like Australia or Napa does.

 

Not so loyal with white wines and enjoy experimenting with new wines. Being loving Viognier for a few years now and this would be our go to white at the moment but still enjoy Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Riesling and Gewurztraminer. Tried some NZ Albarino recently which was surprisingly good so bought some Spanish bottles as well, but not as nice!! I'm sure with a bit if research, I could find some better producers as it is a native Spanish grape.

 

 

We try and visit wine regions where we can on holiday as it's a great way to spend a day. If golf is included, it's a bonus. We spent a week in Tasmania last year and got to play golf at Barnbougle and Lost Farm and spent a few days travelling around the island visiting wineries. A memorable holiday and would definitely go back again.

 

Whatever happend Merlot in the US. Has it ever made a come back after the movie Sideways. I read somewhere that Merlot sales plummeted after this movie but never heard if this was temporary or permanment. Some of the best wines I've ever tasted have been Merlot dominant so it would be incredible if a movie could almost kill off a wine.

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Hi Jeff,

 

Here is a bit of info that may find of interest:

 

Sauv Blanc:

 

The Marlborough region of NZ produces many good SB's. I assume you have tried Kim Crawford (huge seller), but probably prefer Matua? I worked for a wholesaler that sold both of those. We sold thousands of cases of KC. Long ago Kim sold his name to the producer (so he cannot use his own name) and he now makes a wine with his wife - I believe the label is called Loveblock SB. (I have not tried it.) You could try that one as well. Chile also produces some good value SB.

 

I would recommend a good "fine wine" shop where you can establish a relationship with one of these wine geeks who could help you select wines. Just tell him what you want to spend. Most have very affordable wines. Start with the lower priced wines! Work your way up. They have a ton of knowledge and you will learn a lot.

 

Sauv Blanc: What most look for in a good dry white wine (like SB) is good acid (which makes your mouth water), good minerality, and fruit. Now, one of the downsides with SB can be a "cat pee" nose. It's common. Some (like me) don't like. Some don't care and some actually prefer it. If you don't like it, I would highly recommend trying a few Bordeaux Blanc. Most of those are a blend of SB and Semillion. The French know what they are doing and you should have a large selection at stores in Montreal.

 

Pinot Noir: I also really like Pinot Noir. Probably my favorite for just drinking wine without a food pairing. Oregon makes some great ones and they tend to be more affordable than the California or French Burgundy. Chile also make some decent PN. And other countries are making some good stuff too - like Portugal and believe it or not - Germany (due to slightly warmer weather).

 

Hope this helps,

MM

 

Kim Crawford is a very common gift wine here. I'd bet it's one of the top 3-4 bottles in the entire Quebec market on the list of "what people bring to dinner parties". It's priced at 20$ so right in that range where people know you spend enough on it, and it's a known name. It's like the white version of Robert Mondavi Reds here. I've had it probably 50 times and i've probably only bought it 3-4 of those times LOL. It's a perfectly good wine, but yes i much prefer Matua or Stoneleigh as i find them a bit crisper and not as fruity, not sure how else to say it. I prefer Matua to Stoneleigh though. Tastes are so personal but i could drink only Matua the rest of my life and be fine.

 

We have a wine monopoly here called the SAQ, so unfortunately we don't have shops. It's government controlled.

 

Worst thing is you are held to what they order. One year they only ordered a few boxes of Cloudy Bay, they were sold by the first week of January and that was that. Another year they had one called "Le Petit Clos" that i liked and bought a box of....haven't seen it again in like 2-3 years

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  • 2 weeks later...

Another poster mentioned albarino, I'll second the notion of giving that a try if you haven't. I've had a couple Spanish ones that I really enjoyed. Last one was a martin codax I believe. Solid wine, fair pricing.

 

 

Even though it's summer, ive gotta say I do love a big smack you in the mouth cab.

 

Nice thread Mtljeff!

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I'm drinking a Nobilo tonight. A new sauv they are stocking here from NZ. It's pretty meh. Good enough that I won't pour it down the sink though

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My daughter and Son in law bought us a 2014 Vieux Telegraphe. I'm almost afraid to get near it($89.00 bottle). Any one have any experience with this one?

 

Vieux Telegraphe usually needs several years to come around - it is heavily Mourvedre and can be funky and closed down when young. Chateauneuf de Pape goes great with beef and lamb roasts and cassoulet. Here are some tasting notes https://www.cellartr...p?iWine=2223988

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To the OP, I've been drinking/collecting wine for 25+ years. My tastes and palate has changed over the years from big, over-oaked cabs and merlots and Australian Shiraz to champagnes, pinot noir, grenache, syrah, chardonnay, pinot blanc and white rhone varietals. I am transitioning my cellar (drinking down) a lot of California pinots and will be replacing them with Oregon pinots. It's been a great but expensive hobby. I'm currently at a point of burn out, though, and will be buying less and drinking more. It happens from time to time. Cheers!

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To the OP, I've been drinking/collecting wine for 25+ years. My tastes and palate has changed over the years from big, over-oaked cabs and merlots and Australian Shiraz to champagnes, pinot noir, grenache, syrah, chardonnay, pinot blanc and white rhone varietals. I am transitioning my cellar (drinking down) a lot of California pinots and will be replacing them with Oregon pinots. It's been a great but expensive hobby. I'm currently at a point of burn out, though, and will be buying less and drinking more. It happens from time to time. Cheers!

 

Sounds like you and I have gone through a similar metamorphosis in terms of development of palate. I too appreciate the more delicate and complex wines over the bold standards that many drinkers favour. Sadly, or not, I've not had much luck with developing much of a cellar. The desire to consume is just too strong with little in the way of incentive to let things age when I've had a few expensive bottles turn on me.

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Was recently recommended a great wine from the french region of Cahors.

 

Cant recall the winery but the woman said this wine was unusual for the region as it was not as deep/full bodied as is usually the case from Cahors.

 

Think she said it was malbec/merlot.

 

Interesting, she also pointed out that "centuries ago", wine from the Bordeaux regions were actually not as full bodied as they are today and were actally "fortified" with wine from Cahors to add body.

 

I knew that Bordeaux was/is called "Claret" in the UK but she informed me that the word is derived from the latin root for "clear" and that Bordeax wine was once much lighter/pink colored.

 

Wine was great, Ill have to go back and get the vinyard and share it.

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To the OP, I've been drinking/collecting wine for 25+ years. My tastes and palate has changed over the years from big, over-oaked cabs and merlots and Australian Shiraz to champagnes, pinot noir, grenache, syrah, chardonnay, pinot blanc and white rhone varietals. I am transitioning my cellar (drinking down) a lot of California pinots and will be replacing them with Oregon pinots. It's been a great but expensive hobby. I'm currently at a point of burn out, though, and will be buying less and drinking more. It happens from time to time. Cheers!

 

Sounds like you and I have gone through a similar metamorphosis in terms of development of palate. I too appreciate the more delicate and complex wines over the bold standards that many drinkers favour. Sadly, or not, I've not had much luck with developing much of a cellar. The desire to consume is just too strong with little in the way of incentive to let things age when I've had a few expensive bottles turn on me.

 

It's a slippery slope. You age wines to taste them over time to find out where your sweet spot is. And then you have some that you miss the mark on and they're gone. I'm coming back around to enjoying wines with less age. I've also learned over the years that exclusivity and price don't guarantee a wine I will enjoy. I'm down to about 1200 bottles, and except for some Italians and California syrahs from the early to mid 2000s, most of the wine I have is from 2008 to 2015.

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Being from South Africa and a wine enthusiast myself I feel it would be remiss of me not to suggest some of my local favorites.

 

One thing to note is South Africa honestly makes fantastic wine, the issue is that most of the exported wines are the cheap mass produced wines that for some reason are easily sent around the world. I have noticed through my travels in France, Italy and SE Asia it's easy to get cheap poor quality SA wine but not as easy to find good quality wines.

 

To the OP I have had cloudy bay Sauvignon Blanc and I am not going to say one is better than the other but I would suggest trying Constantia Uitsig Sauvignon Blanc as well both are cold climate high altitude wines and will offer interesting tasting points to compare.

 

For the Chardonnay lovers, I would suggest Oak Valley Chardonnay as well as their Pinot Noir. Hamilton Russell makes equally good albeit more expensive Chardonnay and Pinot Noir that comes from our "Burgandy" region of Hemel and Aarde valley (literal translation heaven and earth).

 

For those fond of the heavier more tannic red blends, I would suggest classic Stellenbosch red blends like Meerlust Rubicon and Kannonkop Pual Sauer which are classic Bordeaux claret blends but they will need to be aged at least 10 years to reach their full potential.

 

For Shiraz, I would suggest either Glen Carlou or Boekenhoutskloof (make sure its Boekenhoutskloof, not porcupine ridge which is entry level variant).

 

I wanted to share these as I honestly believe South Africa makes startlingly good wine for the price if you know what to get. To be honest all of the farms I have mentioned above make great wine in nearly every variety (barring entry-level wines) but these are some of my favorites.

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Being from South Africa and a wine enthusiast myself I feel it would be remiss of me not to suggest some of my local favorites.

 

One thing to note is South Africa honestly makes fantastic wine, the issue is that most of the exported wines are the cheap mass produced wines that for some reason are easily sent around the world. I have noticed through my travels in France, Italy and SE Asia it's easy to get cheap poor quality SA wine but not as easy to find good quality wines.

 

To the OP I have had cloudy bay Sauvignon Blanc and I am not going to say one is better than the other but I would suggest trying Constantia Uitsig Sauvignon Blanc as well both are cold climate high altitude wines and will offer interesting tasting points to compare.

 

For the Chardonnay lovers, I would suggest Oak Valley Chardonnay as well as their Pinot Noir. Hamilton Russell makes equally good albeit more expensive Chardonnay and Pinot Noir that comes from our "Burgandy" region of Hemel and Aarde valley (literal translation heaven and earth).

 

For those fond of the heavier more tannic red blends, I would suggest classic Stellenbosch red blends like Meerlust Rubicon and Kannonkop Pual Sauer which are classic Bordeaux claret blends but they will need to be aged at least 10 years to reach their full potential.

 

For Shiraz, I would suggest either Glen Carlou or Boekenhoutskloof (make sure its Boekenhoutskloof, not porcupine ridge which is entry level variant).

 

I wanted to share these as I honestly believe South Africa makes startlingly good wine for the price if you know what to get. To be honest all of the farms I have mentioned above make great wine in nearly every variety (barring entry-level wines) but these are some of my favorites.

 

Great post....I have fully sworn off Argentinian and South African wines because whatever we get imported here is crap. Same with some of the cheaper French wines.

 

What drives me nuts lately is that my tastes are evolving towards a Bordeaux style (or Meritage here). You almost can’t find that anymore, but you can find any number of red blends, and it’s impossible to tell if it’s a dry red or fruity red. On that point the Estancia Meritage I bought at Costco recently for $12 was a steal.

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Another poster mentioned albarino, I'll second the notion of giving that a try if you haven't. I've had a couple Spanish ones that I really enjoyed. Last one was a martin codax I believe. Solid wine, fair pricing.

 

 

Even though it's summer, ive gotta say I do love a big smack you in the mouth cab.

 

Nice thread Mtljeff!

 

Albarino is becoming a very popular California wine. They grow some excellent albarino grapes here in San Luis Obispo County. You can see the vines from the driving range of the local country club!

 

My sister and brother-in-law bottle some under their Mattina Fiore label. It's served at Stave Wine Cellar at Spanish Bay Inn.

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Being from South Africa and a wine enthusiast myself I feel it would be remiss of me not to suggest some of my local favorites. One thing to note is South Africa honestly makes fantastic wine, the issue is that most of the exported wines are the cheap mass produced wines that for some reason are easily sent around the world. I have noticed through my travels in France, Italy and SE Asia it's easy to get cheap poor quality SA wine but not as easy to find good quality wines. To the OP I have had cloudy bay Sauvignon Blanc and I am not going to say one is better than the other but I would suggest trying Constantia Uitsig Sauvignon Blanc as well both are cold climate high altitude wines and will offer interesting tasting points to compare. For the Chardonnay lovers, I would suggest Oak Valley Chardonnay as well as their Pinot Noir. Hamilton Russell makes equally good albeit more expensive Chardonnay and Pinot Noir that comes from our "Burgandy" region of Hemel and Aarde valley (literal translation heaven and earth). For those fond of the heavier more tannic red blends, I would suggest classic Stellenbosch red blends like Meerlust Rubicon and Kannonkop Pual Sauer which are classic Bordeaux claret blends but they will need to be aged at least 10 years to reach their full potential. For Shiraz, I would suggest either Glen Carlou or Boekenhoutskloof (make sure its Boekenhoutskloof, not porcupine ridge which is entry level variant). I wanted to share these as I honestly believe South Africa makes startlingly good wine for the price if you know what to get. To be honest all of the farms I have mentioned above make great wine in nearly every variety (barring entry-level wines) but these are some of my favorites.
Great post....I have fully sworn off Argentinian and South African wines because whatever we get imported here is crap. Same with some of the cheaper French wines. What drives me nuts lately is that my tastes are evolving towards a Bordeaux style (or Meritage here). You almost can’t find that anymore, but you can find any number of red blends, and it’s impossible to tell if it’s a dry red or fruity red. On that point the Estancia Meritage I bought at Costco recently for $12 was a steal.

 

 

 

https://www.totalwine.com/wine/red-wine/cabernet-sauvignon/meerlust-rubicon-stellenbosch/p/95834750

 

Really great South African Bordeaux Blend if possible age for a few years but will be good now

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