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So why is the 2012 Ladera Cabernet—made from almost entirely from Howell Mountain fruit, from an incredible vintage—sitting pretty at $34.99? I honestly can't tell you. Maybe it's because no one knows how good the Ladera holdings in Howell Mountain are. Or maybe it's the pride that winemaker Jade Barrett takes in making a serious wine for a reasonable price. Or maybe it's because Ladera is an overlooked gem in a sea of Napa alternatives. For whatever the reason, I'm not going to complain. We tasted the 2012 vintage at our staff training yesterday and I was just floored by the quality of this wine. Dark, fleshy fruit cloaked in fine tannins, bits of earth, and in total balance, with enough gusto to go the long haul in your cellar. It's a whole lotta wine for $34.99, and it's made primarily from Howell Mountain grapes, harvested during a great vintage. 

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Monday
Jan172011

Thinking on Drinking: Mediocrity

Here at K&L we love great wine. We love to drink it and we love to share it. But if you ask any of us what makes a wine "great," you'll probably get 50 different answers, which is why I love question above from the deck of wine Tabletopics conversation starters that my neighbor gave me for Christmas. 

"Would you rather drink a mediocre wine with incredible people or an incredible wine with mediocre people?"

Personally, I think who you drink your wine with directly affects your perception of the wine, for better or for worse, and so I think I would rather drink okay wine with incredible people because I'd actually enjoy both the company and the wine more. What you think?

Leah Greenstein

 

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Reader Comments (8)

I would much rather drink mediocre wine w/incredible people. Good company can make up for what's lacking in the glass.
January 17, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMartin Silva
I absolutely agree. People are the most important things in your life. Your friends and your family are what make life worth living. Good wine and good food can enhance your life, but do not define it. You can always go out the next day and get a better bottle, but you cannot simply go out and get better people.
January 17, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterLarry Chandler
I'd rather have mediocre wine with incredible people. I may forget how boring the wine is if my mind is stimulated and happy. Drinking anything with mediocre people, no matter how incredible the wine would be, is too much like drinking alone -- sad and a waste.
January 17, 2011 | Unregistered Commentermanila58
Great Question! After much consideration, and even though I enjoy exceptional wine, I would have to choose incredible company. Something I've learned over the last few years with the downturn in the economy is there are no finer things in life than great friends and family
Cheers!
January 17, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterWeekly Wine Journal
I have friends who chase exceptional wine and will suffer drinking it with the most unexceptional people. Can't do it. Being with people that you care about or that are interesting always elevates the overall experience.
January 17, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterKeith Mabry
I would choose the exceptional wine in hopes it would elevate the mediocre people to an exceptional level. If it doesn't than I'm left with an exceptional wine. I believe in the power of wine.
January 17, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterTom Martinez
Since I believe everyone has a spark of the divine hidden in them somewhere, I would have to choose the exceptional wine in the hope that I overcome any belief I had in the mediocrity of my companions.
January 17, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterNick
wine is subjective. Great company can elevate mediocre wine. But great wine can make mediocre company bearable.
January 17, 2011 | Unregistered Commentersteve bearden

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