As I pointed out in my recent bloggerview, I don’t obsess on the stats here but I have been doing some checking recently in preparation for some site design improvements. I was somewhat surprised to see the following wines as being the most popular this year based upon pageviews:
1 – Crane Lake, Petite Sirah 2003 – A varietal I love at a ridiculous price of $4.99 a bottle. I picked up the 2004 a while back and found it undrinkable (it also smelled especially bad so it was most likely an off bottle). I’ll pick up a fresh bottle to see if this pick is still good.
2 – Mark West, Pinot Noir 2004 – Everyone seems to be into Pinot Noir these days so it’s tough to find anything to recommend for less than $20. I really liked this wine and reviewed the next vintage upon release.
3 – Mark West, Pinot Noir 2005 – The effect of the market for bulk Pinot Noir really showed here but still a good wine. I’ll pick up the 2006 and review in the next few weeks.
4 – Napa River, Cabernet Sauvignon 2003 – The “upscale” brand from Charles Shaw producer Bronco Wine Company only available at Trader Joe’s. I found this to be very much worth the $4.99 asking price. Perhaps it’s time to see if they have released the 2004?
5 – Bodegas Borsao, “Tres Picos”, Garnacha 2004 – This is the first wine on the list that I think is a great value outperforming it’s asking price by quite a bit. I first picked this wine blind off a restaurant list and was impressed with the depth of flavor and balance. I’ve enjoyed several more bottles since and will have to see if the 2005 vintage is released for another review.
6 – Two Hands, “Gnarly Dudes” Shiraz 2005 – The first higher-end wine on the list, this one sells for $30 a bottle. Tasted at Vino Venue in San Francisco, I really enjoyed the concentration here. I haven’t seen this available here in Minnesota, so perhaps I’ll have to return to California to try it again. It will probably be quite a while until the 2006 vintage is out but there might be some 2004 still around to check out.
7 – Loring Wine Company, Pinot Noir, “Garys’ Vineyard” 2005 – The most expensive bottle on the list at $48 (if you can find it). Although Loring has taken some heat on recent vintages I really liked this wine. Hope to try some more of his other wines sometime soon.
8 – Bodegas Borsao, “Red Wine”, Campo de Borja 2005 – Another nice wine from Bodegas Borsao of “Tres Picos” fame. A solid everyday red for less than $10. I’ll be reviewing this one each vintage as it’s turned into a personal house wine for mid-week enjoyment.
10 – Napa River, Merlot 2003 – Another $4.99 special from Trader Joe’s. I didn’t like this one as much as the Cab but I guess it’s worth the price charged.
So I guess most people like the lower priced wines with 40% of the list under $10 and 80% under $20. I’ll be tracking this every few months to help tailor my reviews to the audience. Interesting stuff…