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by Fred McMillin
for March 2006

Wine

 

Most Expensive Wines

"The Most Expensive Wines Were Not Always the Best."
Wine Section Gourmet Magazine

We all read about inexpensive wines that are better than pricier counterparts. But how often does that actually happen??

To get an answer we pitted 19 California wines costing no more than $15 against 19 costing an average of $30. When the winners were pulled from their sacks, this is what we found.

 

The Results

Only three of the 19 winners were the inexpensive bottles; here they are, with the best listed last.

Rank   Category & Winery
3rd - Crane Lake Sauvignon Blanc, 2003, $4
2nd - Shenandoah Vineyards Zinfandel, 2003, $10
1st - Sobon Old Vines Zinfandel, 2003, $13

Close Shaves

Also, these two came very close to winning their matches.

2nd - Canyon Road Sauvignon Blanc, 2004, $8
1st - Century Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon, 2002, $7

Best of Tasting

As for the two best of the tasting, both were 2001 reds, one from Sonoma and one from Napa.

2nd - Michel-Schlumberger Sonoma Cab, 2001, $26
1st - Sterling Reserve Napa Merlot, 2001, $65
 

Conclusion

About one out of every four well-reviewed bargain wines matched or whipped pricier rivals. So get suggestions at your wine shop and don't leave for home without one!

 

And a Final Gourmet Grin

Sign on the door of a local bistro: "COME IN BEFORE WE BOTH STARVE."

 
 
About the Writer

Fred McMillin, a veteran wine writer, has taught wine history for 30 years on three continents. For information about the wine courses he teaches every month at either San Francisco State University or San Francisco City College (Fort Mason Division), please fax him at (415) 567-4468.

 


 

 
 

This page created March 2006

Copyright © 2006
electronic Gourmet Guide, Inc.

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