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11 September 2006

(wine) Lent in September

Who's up for a month's-worth of wine lent?  From 9/13 to 10/13 I challenge all you pious wine lovers out Lent there to abstain from:

Pinot Noir
Merlot
Cabernet Sauvignon
Zinfandel
Syrah
Riesling
Sauvignon Blanc
Chardonnay
Pinot Gris/Grigio
Viognier

Still with me?  Great.  By 'abstain from' I mean any of the varietals listed above cannot comprise more than 50% of your selected wine.  So, for example, you could drink a Rhone blend from California that contained 30% Carignane, 25% Mourvedre and 45% Zin and Syrah.  However, a white with 60% Sauvignon Blanc and 40% Semillon would be right out (sinner!).

The point of this little exercise is to expose ourselves to as many lesser-known wines as possible.  If you're down with me, drop a comment and keep us all informed as to what you discover over the course of the month.  I'm looking forward to surprising discoveries!

[update] A few grape varietals to seek out during your lenting

  • Carbernet Franc
  • Carignane
  • Carmenere
  • Cinsault
  • Nebbiolo
  • Pinot Meunier
  • Rousanne
  • Marsanne
  • Muscat
  • Furmint
  • Pinot Blanc
  • Pedro Ximenez (it can be found as a dry white!)
  • & many, many, more

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Comments

Alison

Gah! I'm abstaining from wine in general right now, but maybe in a couple of weeks I'll get out there and look for some lesser-known wine. I bet Liquor Barn has some. :)

Outdoorgrrl

I'm in! Those bottles of marachel foch and muller-thurgau are calling my name!

beau

Ali - get into the barn. Liquor Barn!

Og - that's the spirit. Let mf & mt reign!

Steve R

Cool -- now I have an excuse to crack open the Lagrein, Aglianico, Moscato, and Gewurtztraminer (unless you grandfather that onto the forbidden list). This should be fun! BTW, for those of you in GA who want to comply with this resolution, Silk has the most unusual wine list in the area -- had Furmint by the glass at the bar and Roter Veltliner with dinner!

beau

Steve -
Great suggestions. I toyed with the idea of forbidding Gewurz - but then realized it's far more common to see Viognier floating about. I think a nifty Alsatian Gewurztraminer would make for a grand exploration for many wine lovers.

Melissa

Great plan--I am in. Like you all, I am so ready for side by side comparisons of three Romorantin's; aged Chenin's from the La Roche aux Moine vineyard in Savenierres; Kerner, and my Egly-Ouriet Champagne of 100% Pinot Meunier. Maybe it's time to explore better Nero d'Avola too. A friend brought me a Cremant du Jura Rosé of 100% Ploussard by Frédéric Lornet of L'Abbaye de Genne. Not sure if that one will make the round.

Jared S.

I have to disagree regarding Gewurz and Viognier. At least in the Northeast, there is much more Gewurz on the shelves than Viognier. However, in your defense, most of it stays right there - on the shelves.

I am going to pass on participation, for two reasons, but I am with you in spirit. First, I teach wine classes which include tastings - usually of the common varietals. And I drink the leftovers. :) Second, I just last month completed my certificate for the Wine Century Club:

http://www.winecentury.com/

After going out of my way to find the oddest varietals I could for the last three months, I'm in need of a few classics!

Dan

I just opened a Fox Run (Finger Lakes) Cabernet Franc and I must admit that I'm disappointed. I think Reislings are exceptional in this region, but reds have a long way to go. The Cabernet Franc, 2004 vintage, was tart, dry and had a dust-laden taste. Not exactly what you look for in a wine.

beau

Hi Dan -
YEs I think red wine from the F Lakes can be dicey. However, I had a Cabernet (Franc & Sauv. blend) from K. Frank and it was quite good.

But yes, Rieslings are the go-to wines for that region.

jeff

I love that you included Viognier on your list of excessively common wines!

Drinking Tempranillo, Grenache, Marsanne and Roussanne for a month shouldn't be too much of a hardship...

(congrats to Jared on completing the 100!)

- j

David J

Ooops- blew it- didn't know about this, but-- postponed opened a Tilenus
(Mencía from Bierzo) to try a JLColombo St.Joseph-- Syrah, I presume?
But I have a recoomend for ya--
An(ima Negra), wine from Mallorca ("table Wine from Balears") made from autochtonous Callet grape-- some vintages adding Mantonegro & Fogoneu,
I think-- gotta goog-search-- it's like a Salice Salentino on steroids!
I need to sit down & do a checklist to see how close I am to joining th Wine Century club!

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