Wine Talk

Snooth User: Carly Wray

Wine on tap?

Posted by Carly Wray, Apr 3, 2010.

Just encountered this phenomenon for the first time, in person, the other day. Has it spread to your neck of the woods?

 

 

Replies

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Reply by Philip James, Apr 3, 2010.

I thought you were referring to the USB wine key for a moment there: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CRL1SeTJ1rk

 

 

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Reply by redsfortherestofus, Apr 3, 2010.

What did you think about it Carly? 

I haven't seen it in the Cincinnati/Dayton area, but I can't wait to try it!  I'd also love to have one of these around here... http://www.thewineroomonline.com/

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Reply by dmcker, Apr 3, 2010.

Well, Philip, now you see how much of a pain in the keester it is to post links with the new editor.

Suggest you kick tail and get a tweak to it effected... ;-)

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Reply by gregt, Apr 3, 2010.

Lots of places doing it.  I think its a smart idea because you don't have to deal with as many bottles and you don;t have to worry about preservation.  I like it.  Rather than get a $10 a bottle house wine, you can get the equivalent of a $12 or $14 bottle for far less.

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Reply by dmcker, Apr 4, 2010.

Certainly looks like a praisable practice, and if the cost savings really are passed on to the customer, the more the merrier. Haven't been aware of having this style of serving in San Fran, but I have had wines served at restaurant from recyclable stainless steel thermos-like jugs, since that's how they're delivered from that particular winery. What's described in the article sounds more reasonable.

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Reply by zufrieden, Apr 4, 2010.

For imported wine - which is the normal fare in northern latitudes - this approach may also have the added benefit of reducing transportation cost - glass bottles being notoriously bulky and often shipped in wooden cases.

That implies a possible means of reducing carbon emissions per tipple.  And if we are lucky, we may eventually see a downward effect on price.

 

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Reply by AdamJefferson, Apr 4, 2010.

Perhaps the most I was ever "overserved" occurred at a wonderful wine and food place overlooking Vienna called the Grinsing.  I suppose you could order by the bottle; but as I recall the choices, you could have red or white, and nobody seemed unhappy about that or anything else.  Ate at a place on one of the famous Roman piazzas a few months ago and it seemed that most of the wine by the bottle was being ordered by tourists; the locals (and they weren't dressed like peasants) had theirs' delivered by the carafe.  I'm for it. 

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Reply by zufrieden, Apr 4, 2010.

@AdamJefferson.  Yes, isn't that a most surprising thing to the North Amercian tourist - the fact that most Europeans are quite relaxed about wine in normal social settings and show genuine pleasure at just partaking of same without resort to pomposity?

Even most French people are like this - including the well-educated, well-travelled and most wine-aware among them.  I especially like Italy where most of the pomposity is lacking entirely - or smaller countries with relatively tiny wine production - like Austria - which you mention.

We North Americans could do with more than a dollop of this sehr gemutlich, relaxed attitude.

 

 

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Reply by dmcker, Apr 4, 2010.

But how much of that carafe wine comes out of bottles, of whatever size, and how much out of other types of container?

Adam, are you talking about an actual drinking establishment called Grinsing in the Grinzing district of Vienna, the northwestern side of town known for its vineyards and wine taverns (the heuriger) operated directly by growers? PerhapsGrinzinger Bräu, or instead some heuriger in the district? By law those establishments can only serve their own wine (and are limited to buffet food), and almost always from the most recent vintage, so that pretty much puts paid to bottles, anyway...

Regardless, a very pleasant way to spend an afternoon and evening with friends. Had a girlfriend from near Graz once, and ended up spending a lot of time traveling through Vienna... ;-)

And I've had plenty of meals in Italy or France where the locals are drinking out of bottles. Sure, carafe wine has its uses, but Sunday wines are never out of carafe, nor are weekday wines usually for those with money in their wallets, though it depends on the establishment and what they put into their carafes...

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Reply by zufrieden, Apr 4, 2010.

Well, of course everything depends on the occasion.

 When North Americans travel abroad, they are in a serious mood for celebration and that's the most simple explanation for their desire to splurge.  I think what we're getting at here is that Europeans don't really worry as much about the appearance of things; the 2,000 years of experience they have on us juvenile North Americans is reflected in superior deportment (generally speaking, of course).

Europeans will also buy by the bottle in restaurants most assuredly - but we are talking about the usual ebb and flow of life - not the exceptional cases.

My Gothic girlfriends (few in number though they may have been) were from the beer-swilling area of North Germany near Hamburg - not that far from where my Swedish ancestors made their mark during the 30 Years War (Pommern). The attitude of these very attractive girls was pretty much give and take - something pretty new to a Canadian boy whose forebears go back a long, long way in America. I think that's something we're hinting at here, but I leave it others to draw their own conclusions.

But back to carafe wine.  Yes, the very, very best is unlikely to ever be dispensed in something as pedestrian as a glass or porcelain carafe.  And for those special occasions - or every occasion - if you can afford it - it is unlikely that bulk delivery will ever do.  But I think we were talking about the magical 80% rule here.

So I guess we mostly agree - depending on the situation.

:-)

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Reply by dmcker, Apr 4, 2010.

Don't think anybody at this place in Vienna orders by the carafe

http://www.palais-coburg.com/_en/

nor at any of the other places I or others list in this thread... ;-)

http://www.snooth.com/talk/topic/best-wine-menu-at-a-restaurant/2/

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Reply by AdamJefferson, Apr 4, 2010.

It was in 1986 and I must not have been paying attention to whether the place was a district of the town or an establishment (nor apparently was I paying attention as to how to spell it).  I told you I was overserved.  Somebody said we're going to the Grinzing, and that was that.  But the food was buffet or cafeterial style, and the wine came in 1/4 L glass mugs, that much I will never forget. 

Just making an observation--on a thread about tap wine--that  wine served without presenting the bottle is acceptable in some terrific places where good wine is made and the experience of sharing it is appreciated; didn't mean to convey anything more than that.               

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Reply by dmcker, Apr 4, 2010.

For sure that sounds like any number of places in the Grinzing district, and many a pleasant drinking experience to be had there by all. ;-)  No pretense about the stemware, too, which can also be refreshing. Wine as utilitarian, daily libation bringing joy with minimal fuss...

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Reply by zufrieden, Apr 4, 2010.

As I said, I think we mostly agree on this.  Saying that carafe wine is a pleasant everyman (or person) way of interaction was probably most of what we were trying to convey here.

The problem might be that most of us are savvy wine drinkers and know the difference between plonk and the good stuff and therein lies the basis of deeper discussion - assuming I read you both correctly...

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Reply by AdamJefferson, Apr 5, 2010.

Dmcker, good words to live by.  I think an interesting issue is the impact on the wine caused by storage and dispensing from tap.  Not much sense in taking some of the fuss and waste out of the equation only to discover that the product has suffered for the effort.  Any thoughts about that for the chemists in the readership? 

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Reply by zufrieden, Apr 5, 2010.

That's a great line for further discussion.  Although I saw the original link from Carly, I did not actually see any hard information on what the effect would be on the wine.  Probably (though I don't know for certain at this point) the wine is fine if turnover is high.

More information on this might be interesting, though I can't find anything new off-hand.  Carly, did you find out any more about this form of wine dispensing?

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Reply by chadrich, Apr 6, 2010.

There's a restaurant (Two Urban Licks) here in Atlanta that did this when they opened 5 or so years back.  They explain it (below) better than I can.  They said that it was initially a really tough sell to the wineries.  But once they got a few on-board and proved the concept, others were anxious to jump in.  Their wine list isn't online, and it's been a while since I've been there; but I recall that the list is well-known and well-regarded producers (Qupe comes to mind as one I'm pretty sure was included on my last visit, for example).

"The unique wine barrel program is the only one of its kind in the United States. The wine wall stands 26 feet tall and holds 42 stainless steel barrels of wine and features a gravity flowed system for pouring. The barrels are displayed in a glass and steel, temperature controlled tower designed exclusively for TWO urban licks."

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Reply by FreeFlowWines, Apr 6, 2010.

For people that are interested in more information about the benefits of Wines on Tap, check out www.FreeFlowWines.com. We are relaunching the concept nationally, and you can find wine on tap in CA, TX, AZ, NC, NY, CT, and NJ right now (adding more states as fast as we can). On our website you will find out about the benefits of wine on tap. Any questions, feel free to email us at info@freeflowwines.com.

 

Thanks for the interest...this is the future of by-the-glass!

-Jordan (head of production for Free Flow)


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