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A red daily drinker medium bodied alternative to Pinot Noir?
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Hi everyone. I find myself drinking Pinot Noir regularly on week nights due to its medium body and versatility to pair. Frankly I just don't see myself drinking on a daily basis heavier bodied reds like Cabs, Syrahs, Merlots, Malbecs most of which I tend to pair with beef dishes or robust dishes with heavy sauces etc. However I would like to try something different as I am buying and drinking way too much California Pinot.

Could you recommend a medium bodied alternative to Pinot Noirs for about $15 that I could buy by the case? I was thinking perhaps ligher grenache based style? Any specific region and label? What else could be an alternative? Although Chiantis are probably an option, I have had trouble finding a nice daily drinking Chianti to buy by the case at around $15.

Grateful for your help.


"The hardest thing to attain ... is the appreciation of difference without insisting on superiority" George Saintsbury
 
Posts: 1615 | Location: DC Suburbs, Potomac MD. | Registered: Dec 12, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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A few off the top of my head. Not sure about the exact US pricing, but I suspect around the 15 area.

Frescobaldi Nippozzano Chianti Rufina
Chapoutier Rasteau
Pesquie Les Terrasses
Mourgues du Gres
Mas des Bressades


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Posts: 1946 | Location: Ontario | Registered: Jul 23, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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St. Cosme Cotes du Rhone
Lan Crianza Rioja
 
Posts: 5489 | Location: Aurora, IL | Registered: Jul 29, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by billhike:
St. Cosme Cotes du Rhone
Lan Crianza Rioja


Two solid wines.
 
Posts: 30169 | Location: Dallas, TX & Santa Fe, NM | Registered: Feb 21, 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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New Zealand Pinot

Oyster Bay

$13-$15 a steal!
 
Posts: 7448 | Location: Long Island, NY | Registered: Sep 27, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Do you mean lower alcohol than what you're usually drinking or higher acid or are you referring to the weight on your palate?

As examples of things that are medium-bodied, or rather that CAN be medium-bodied (not that they always are) I usually go for something made from Barbera, Blaufrankish, Nebbiolo, St. Laurent, Zweigelt, Lagrein, Cab Franc (from Chinon or Saumur, not CA) some Sangiovese-based wines like Morellino di Scansano, Teroldego, some Garnacha-based wines from Spain or the south of France as mentioned by others, Mencia, Syrah from certain producers like Edmunds St. John or some in Austria, Freisa, Gamay, and some Tempranillo. Those are what I'd probably look at.

Actually, those are exactly what I look at.

But those are when I want something "medium-bodied".

Now if we're talking in preference to Pinot Noir, I'd take that list and add every other grape except perhaps Pinotage, and those would be my alternatives.

Cheers!


"The best part is how he said the ENGLISH language. Fine irony. Use American next time."
 
Posts: 2643 | Location: NY | Registered: Dec 09, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Thanks everyone for pitching in. Will definitely look for the Rasteau and the les terrases, some Chinon and Barbera d' Alba which i love. I find the Lan Rioja a bit too oaky so more difficult to pair, and unfortunately here in Maryland the Nipozzano and the St.Cosme are closer to $25 than to $15. Any tips on a good value Barbera and a Chinon are welcomed. Following the Rhone suggestions, i Just bought some Vinsobres Altitude 420 from Domaine Jaume.


"The hardest thing to attain ... is the appreciation of difference without insisting on superiority" George Saintsbury
 
Posts: 1615 | Location: DC Suburbs, Potomac MD. | Registered: Dec 12, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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RBF, great suggestions above. Another to seek out: Schiava (AKA Trollinger). A local friend who owns a small wine shop had a couple of examples in stock recently, and it was just delicious. Wikipedia it. Both bottles were under $20 and reminded me a lot of a brighter version of Pinot Noir, with very similar body.


-IB

"Wine only turns into alcohol if you let it sit."---Lindsay Bluth
 
Posts: 8883 | Location: The Circle City | Registered: Nov 24, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Originally posted by RightBankFan:
Any tips on a good value Barbera and a Chinon are welcomed.


Fontanafredda Briccotondo

quote:
Originally posted by RightBankFan:
Following the Rhone suggestions, i Just bought some Vinsobres Altitude 420 from Domaine Jaume.


Not sure about Domaine Jaume as I've never tasted (nor heard) before but Alaine Jaume makes some killer wines in Southern Rhone. Not sure about price point though for their CdRs.


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Posts: 1946 | Location: Ontario | Registered: Jul 23, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Originally posted by billhike:
St. Cosme Cotes du Rhone
Lan Crianza Rioja


Billhike, thanks. Bought and drank the St. Cosme Cotes du Rhone 2009 the other night. Really enjoyed it, a bit young and tight but its very good after letting it breathe. Great fruit and i loved the cocoa notes! Great wine for $13. Will buy by the case.


"The hardest thing to attain ... is the appreciation of difference without insisting on superiority" George Saintsbury
 
Posts: 1615 | Location: DC Suburbs, Potomac MD. | Registered: Dec 12, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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RBF, glad you liked it. Hard to beat CdR for the combination of quality, value and food-friendliness. The added bonus is that there is a massive crapload of it out there! Smile
 
Posts: 5489 | Location: Aurora, IL | Registered: Jul 29, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Look for the Aromo Carmeniere Reserve from Chile.
Probably about $10-11 per bottle. It definitely is medium bodied and a great QPR and daily drinker.


99% of lawyers give the rest of us a bad name.
 
Posts: 7169 | Location: Baltimore, MD | Registered: Feb 04, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Originally posted by billhike:
RBF, glad you liked it. Hard to beat CdR for the combination of quality, value and food-friendliness. The added bonus is that there is a massive crapload of it out there! Smile


Bill, we drink a decent number of these as well. I usually need a good decant (or age) to really like them, but my wife likes the young bottles pop/pour. Good stuff.


-IB

"Wine only turns into alcohol if you let it sit."---Lindsay Bluth
 
Posts: 8883 | Location: The Circle City | Registered: Nov 24, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I'd look at CdR as others have suggested. You might also want to try Nero d'avolo. I've had two 08s recently at tastings that surprised me. Medium bodied, higher acidity and solid fruit. I had always thought of Nero as a big fruit lower acid wine.... I'll try to find the name and re-post...

I would also keep an eye on rioja - I will often open an older bottle in lieu of pinot as a pairing.

GregT's sggestions of Blaufrankish and Zweigelt are spot on as well. We don't get much of either in TN, but there is one Zweigelt that comes in a one liter bottle with a crown cap that is damn good for around $18-$20 dollars.

G
G
 
Posts: 2104 | Location: Nashville, TN | Registered: Feb 17, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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La Vieille Ferme (Perrin & Fils) Côtes du Ventoux. Depending where, from $6 to $10. Always found this to be a good QPR daily drinker that's not heavy, but tasty.


"Drink wine! You will achieve eternal life. Wine is the only drink that will return to you your youth.- Divine season of wine and roses, of good friends! - Enjoy the fleeting moment that is your life!"
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Posts: 94 | Location: Pennsylvania | Registered: Jan 01, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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There appears to be a number of North American wineries releasing a very enjoyable Pinot Noir alternative. Done as a still red, Pinot Meunier is becoming a interesting and enjoyable well priced wine. Google it and you will find a few listed from California, Long Island and Niagara.
You can't get any closer to PN than its first cousin.
 
Posts: 25 | Registered: Aug 19, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Originally posted by Sid_Mac:
La Vieille Ferme (Perrin & Fils) Côtes du Ventoux. Depending where, from $6 to $10. Always found this to be a good QPR daily drinker that's not heavy, but tasty.


+1

Good 'ol Chicken Wine.


Ἐν οἴνῳ ἀλήθεια
En Vino Veritas
 
Posts: 289 | Location: New Orleans, LA | Registered: Dec 14, 2011Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Do you like Nebbiolo? Not exactly a cheap alternative but a lovely grape that is not too heavy in most barbs and some lower level barolos. I also love Barbera for weeknight drinking (and it's cheaper too).


In wine there is truth.
 
Posts: 5 | Location: Washington, DC | Registered: Jan 12, 2012Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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There are some nice and affordable Cabernet Franc and Lemberger (Blaufrankish) being grown in the NY Finger Lakes. My favorite producer is Fox Run.

For Loire reds look for Bernard Baudry or Domaine de la Chanteleuserie.
 
Posts: 2207 | Location: Chicago Suburbs | Registered: Oct 25, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I'd recommend Sangiovese. You should definitely be able to find some good bottles within your price range, it's very food friendly, and often has some similar qualities to pinot noir.
 
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Mencia, A little hard to find, but the ones that make it over are pretty much always tasty!
 
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Monastrell (Spain). Easy drinking. Good for pizza night. $10 range.
 
Posts: 1923 | Location: Etobicoke (Toronto burb) | Registered: Apr 14, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Originally posted by ethanfries:
Mencia, A little hard to find, but the ones that make it over are pretty much always tasty!


Just dumped a Mencia down the drain last week.

What specific wines are you talking about?
 
Posts: 30169 | Location: Dallas, TX & Santa Fe, NM | Registered: Feb 21, 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Originally posted by VinCentric:
Monastrell (Spain). Easy drinking. Good for pizza night. $10 range.


+1 Also Cotes-du-Rhones


Just one more sip.
 
Posts: 36878 | Location: NY | Registered: Oct 18, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Originally posted by NewOrleansWinosaur:
quote:
Originally posted by Sid_Mac:
La Vieille Ferme (Perrin & Fils) Côtes du Ventoux. Depending where, from $6 to $10. Always found this to be a good QPR daily drinker that's not heavy, but tasty.


+1

Good 'ol Chicken Wine.


+2, The white and rose are also great values. Love the Chicken Wine.


Paul Romero (tlily)- Owner, Winemaker, Tour Guide
Stefania Wine
http://www.stefaniawine.com
 
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