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PINOT NOIR: Double Blind Tastings

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DOUBLE BLIND TASTING on 06/22/97 -- 4 pinot noirs and one cheap domestic burgundy

The Contestants:

1. Robert Mondavi (Napa Valley) 25th Anniversary Pinot Noir (unfiltered), 1992. Price: $19. Alcohol: 13%

2. G. Graham (Carneros, California) Pinot Noir, 1992. Price: $20. Alcohol: 13% 3. Thomas Family Winery Pinot Noir, 1995. Price: $14. Alcohol: 12% 4. Pepperwood Grove (California) Pinot Noir, 1993. Price: $10. Alcohol: 12.5% 5. Livingstone Cellars Gallo Premium Select Burgundy (no year on label, bought 6/97). Price: $2.34. Alcohol: 12.5%

Overall Comments: Although none of the wines were judged as top of the line, the winner in this tasting was the Robert Mondavi, followed by the G. Graham and the Pepperwood. The Livingstone Cellars Gallo was a clear fourth, though it was picked as favorite by two of the judges. Some of the judges did note a mass-produced, artificial feel to the cheap supermarket burgundy. The lowest ranking wine was the Thomas Family pinot, which was the least favorite of 7 out of the 8 judges and extremely disappointing. In all fairness, however, the judges who brought that contestant had been warned the wine was too young for drinking.

JK correctly identified 3 of the 5 wines; the other judges could not match more than two of the contestants to the correct label.

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