Rusty Sly: Results from this week’s blind tasting

The Cellar High-End Wine Tasting

The high-end Wine Tasting held by DiMaggio Washington last night (22 December 2010) at The Cellar Wine Bar was spectacular.  

Have you ever wanted to try a $100 plus bottle of wine but were afraid that you  would not like it?  Too risky?  This tasting took that worry away.  

For the price of a bottle of mid range wine ($45), you had the pleasure of trying seven different high-end wines.  What I really enjoyed is that the tasting was blind and no prices were put on the provided list.  This forced all participants to assess each wine independent of price, region and varietal.  In other words, sample the wines and evaluate them according to your senses.  This removes all possible pre-perception about the wines based on cost, varietal or region.

A small group weathered the storm in order to participate in this blind tasting of wines costing as much as $150. I sat with Chuck and Heidi Wiedeman and had a lot of fun putting together the details of each wine.  Trying to resolve the mysteries of whether it was Old World or New World, Winery location, varietal with the hope of finally matching the brown bagged wine with the name from the provided list.  

I only had one issue with the tasting.  DiMaggio threw a real curve ball at us by putting three Cabernet Sauvignons  from Napa Valley on the list.  Unless you have had these cabs prior to this tasting, it would be impossible to identify the three.  He said that next time he would consider not putting same varietals from the same region.  We all thanked him for that as that seemed to be the stumbling block for the group.  

I was rather surprised at the 2004 La Sizeranne Hermitage.  I have the 1999 vintage in my wine locker.  The two vintages were miles apart in taste and aroma.  I did not care for the 2004.  I opened a 1999 at my Grape of the Night Syrah varietal tasting and the participants really enjoyed this wine.

This was a most memorable evening.  I have been hoping for a tasting like this for a long time.  Think about it.  Without spending a lot of money, you get to try expensive wines that you have always wished you could try but were afraid to spend the money only to find out that you don’t like them.  Or worse yet, you will love them and become hooked on high-end wines.  So when is the next one DiMaggio???  Count me in.

Rusty Sly

2 thoughts on “Rusty Sly: Results from this week’s blind tasting

  1. Hello Anonymous,

    I talked to Rusty, he said, "Since I had commented on all 7 prior to the event I felt that I didn't need to repeat the list. I wanted to bring out unusual discoveries."

    So please refer to Rusty's post before this one.

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