Gather round sports & wine fans, I've got an analogy for you. Do you remember Sam Perkins? He played basketball at the University of North Carolina with some guy by the name of Michael Jordan. To me, Sam was always the 'other guy' with MJ in the 1983 Sports Illustrated cover I had taped to my bedroom wall as an aspiring Bantam Basketball player. I averaged 10 minutes, 2 points, 3 rebounds and 3-4 fouls. In other words, I was average. Indeed, I was quite unlike Mike. Most folks saw MJ's potential. However, at the time, Sam was the more complete player. He was a big guy (6'9") who could pass, shoot from the perimeter and rebound well. In fact, Perkins was the 4th overall pick in the 1984 NBA draft. He was a fairly solid player in his younger days, but later in his career, Sam became a niche player. He evolved into a long distance shooter - the player who always hangs out by the three point line. Perkins garnered the nickname "Big Smooth" for his trademark shooting form. He was a crowd favorite, yet in my humble basketball opinion, he actually devolved as a player over the course of his career. He was a liability on defense, he didn't rebound particularly well and for a coordinated big man, he never developed a passing game. In other words, the Big Smooth was a one-trick pony.
...Segue to one-trick wine ponies...
Recently I sampled a wine which also might easily receive the moniker, "Big Smooth." It's a chubby, full-bodied, high-alcohol, lusciously-oaked Viognier. One whiff and your nose welcomes a sweet vanilla-cream bouquet. One sip and your mouth welcomes a smooth vanilla/caramel custard cocktail. Great stuff. This wine is sure to be a crowd pleaser. Yet whiff & sip #2 delivers the same scents and flavors. Then whiffs/sips 3 through 12 bring more of the same. This isn't necessarily a bad thing. However, the wine is lacking in nuance and complexity. This Big Smooth is most definitely a one-trick pony. Perhaps, if you're a fan of big 3-point shots, you'll enjoy this wine. On the other hand, if you're partial to assists, blocks, rebounds and mid-range jumpers, you may find yourself wanting more from K-Vintners Columbia Valley Viognier, 2004 ($20).
As for me, I'll take Oscar Robertson over the Big Smooth every time.