Sometimes, I’m not exactly sure what my job is here at Snooth. I do get to review wine, which many people think is a glamorous and desirable thing to do. The truth is, it’s just a great vehicle for pissing people off. I can piss off producers by either not reviewing their wines or not reviewing their wines well, and I can piss off the consumers. Man, there are a lot of ways to piss off one’s audience. Insult favorite wines, recommend wines that are too expensive or too cheap, recommend wines before they have reached the market or, even worse, wines that don’t make it to their market or local corner store.
And then there is the issue of reviewing wines that, for the most part, no one knows about and are certainly not widely distributed, if they are distributed at all. Today, I’m talking about Old Vine Carignan from Chile, and I am about to ruin someone’s day. I’ve scored several of these wines lower than any producer might like, but the real problem is coming down the pike because these wines are generally not available. So, I’m going to hear it.
But what if no one wrote about the wines we didn’t know about? How would we find out about them? Is my job really only to try to pair you up with wines that you like that are already at your local store? Aren’t we all curious? Don’t we want more diversity in wines? Don’t we want to support emerging regions, particularly when the proceeds help sustain a viticultural jewel like these wines?
That’s a lot of questions, so I’ll stop and let you catch your breath. Still, I’m going to march ahead and talk about wines you can’t buy and wines you very well might not even know about, if only to see if I can pique some interest. Perhaps, I will get someone to ask about these wines or call the importer and have them sent to your neck of the woods. Or maybe, someone will at least call a store that carries some and try a few.
It’s all too easy to dismiss some emerging regions because they are dominated by big players, but that is usually how emerging regions find their way into new markets. You might think it’d be smaller shop owners and wine writers diligently writing about their latest discoveries, but those discoveries are usually dismissed as being too expensive, too unknown, and too, well, “if I can’t get it HERE, why should I care?”
Photo courtesy of TeamGeist via Flickr/cc
That opens the doors for people with resources to come in and establish the ground rules for the game that people who own Old Vine Carignan have to play by, so I break the rules. I write about things you can’t buy in the hope that you might do something to make these wines more widely available. Complaining to me is not going to get that done, folks!