PODCAST

VinePair Podcast: The Enduring Thriller of Cult Wines

On this episode of the “VinePair Podcast,” hosts Adam Teeter and Zach Geballe are as soon as once more joined by VinePair’s managing editor Oset Babür-Winter to debate the elusive world of cult wines. The place did the time period originate, and what are some modern-day examples?

Then, be a part of Geballe as he speaks with Elizabeth Bourcier, winemaker at Bionic Wines. What are among the advantages of working in a proclaimed “cult vineyard”? And what are among the challenges? Your hosts finish this Friday’s episode with a tasting from certainly one of Bionic Wines’ quite a few choices, 2017 Cayuse En Chamberlin Syrah. Tune in to study extra.

Pay attention On-line

Pay attention on Apple Podcasts

Pay attention on Spotify

Or Examine Out the Dialog Right here

Adam Teeter: From VinePair’s New York Metropolis headquarters, I’m Adam Teeter.

Zach Geballe: In Seattle, Washington, I’m Zach Geballe.

A: And that is the “VinePair Podcast.” Nonetheless visitor internet hosting is Oset Babür-Winter. What’s up, Oset? Comfortable Friday.

Oset Babür-Winter: Comfortable Friday.

A: Isn’t it nice?

O: It’s so nice.

A: It’s the perfect. Friday is at all times good. How are y’all doing?

Z: Good. Good. Good..

A: Feeling good. At present, we’re going to speak about one thing actually attention-grabbing, which I feel all of us don’t actually perceive. Zach will current us with the reply in all probability, because the oracle. We’re speaking about cult wine. Zach, you’ve a whole interview you may inform us about in a second that’s going to additionally play throughout this episode. I feel cult wine is one other certainly one of these items that isn’t actually outlined, proper? Everybody type of decides what they suppose a cult wine is. I’ll be sincere, when Oset and I have been speaking about this in my workplace, I noticed that I really haven’t any f*cking clue what makes one thing cult? I feel you’ve described the wine we’re going to attempt as a cult wine. And I feel others describe it as a cult wine. However you will get it very simply on wine.com.

Z: That’s true for nearly each wine as of late.

A: Screaming Eagle? Can I get Screaming Eagle on wine.com? No f*cking method.

Z: Perhaps not on wine.com.

A: That’s a cult wine. You possibly can solely get Screaming Eagle in the event you’re on the record otherwise you purchase it within the secondary market. However what makes a wine culty?

Z: Effectively, that’s a extremely good query. I hoped that you simply guys might supply some perception onto this, too.

A: We are able to. We are able to all supply perception.

Z: It wants a mixture of no less than a number of of those components that I’ll identify. One in every of them is worth. There’s no such factor as a reasonable cult wine, and I don’t precisely know the place the edge cutoff level is. It’s no less than three figures, in all probability extra. However that’s one piece of it. The second piece is precise or perceived shortage. Dom Perignon prices some huge cash, however it’s no cult wine. They make like a billion bottles of it a yr. It’s not simply the value. And third, that is really possibly the most important a part of it, however it’s exhausting to outline. There must be a mystique concerning the wine or the winemaker or the vineyard or all the above. Usually, it must be introduced as these merchandise of 1 particular person or possibly a small group of individuals’s ardour and genius and borderline insanity. That’s the place the entire cult half comes into play to some extent. You’re type of strolling this line of greatness and insanity that’s thrilling, but in addition scary.

A: Attention-grabbing. Can I learn the definition that the Jedi wine grasp Jancis Robinson offers for it?

Z: Keith Beavers? My god, if anybody’s going to be a Jedi wine grasp, I believed it might be Keith.

A: Jedi wine grasp.

Z: He’s only a wine Padawan.

A: I’m a wine Padawan. Keith’s a Jedi wine grasp. OK, right here we go. What’s attention-grabbing is, within the “Oxford Wine Companion,” it’s not cult wine. It’s particularly “California Cult Wine.” What she says is, “California Cult Wines is a phrase coined within the Nineteen Nineties to embody wines made within the state of California. Sometimes however not completely, Napa Valley Cabernets, for which collectors and presumably a number of buyers have been prepared to pay costs increased than these of Bordeaux’s first growths. They embody such names as Araujo, Bryant Household, Colgin, Dalla Valle, Grace Household, Harlan Property, Moraga, Screaming Eagle, Sine Qua Non, and Winery 29. What many of those names have in frequent is that they’re made in extraordinarily restricted portions by gifted winemaker guide oenologists, usually feminine, presently favored by style.” Attention-grabbing.

O: I’ve a special perspective with this. To me, after I see, “This can be a cult wine” talked about in dialog or on Instagram or in an article at an outlet that possibly caters extra to millennials and youthful drinkers, I consider Intestine Oggau. That’s what involves thoughts. They’re the bottles which have the illustrations on the entrance of the headshots of the Austrian pure wine. For some time, it was the Calcarius wines earlier than issues occurred there. Earlier than all of that occurred, that, to me, was a cult wine. Issues just like the The place’s Linus wines, stuff like that that was actually buzzy that you simply preserve seeing images of the wine label on Instagram, that strikes me as this era’s cult wine, the place it’s not about accessibility and the way costly it’s. It’s nearly, how a lot are you seeing it throughout your feed? As a result of it’s acquired a cult following, individuals are actually obsessive about that label.

A: I feel that’s a greater definition.

O: It may not be what we’re speaking about right here, however that’s what I consider. As somebody who actually enjoys pure wine, that’s my perspective on what the definition is there.

A: To me, these are nearly like hype wines. In New York, for instance, everybody within the Italian scene likes Roagna. Now, they’re scarce. However then we began calling them allotted wines. We haven’t completed this episode but, however we’ve talked about it earlier than: Does allotted at all times imply good? It might simply imply that possibly the winemaker solely shipped a case into the nation and it’s allotted simply because they solely ship a case?

O: Or a really hyped producer. What’s that piquette-like beverage? Have you ever guys ever had that? It was a holographic wine label that was throughout Instagram final summer time. I feel they’re in Willamette. Zach, have you learnt what I’m speaking about?

Z: Oh, I feel you’re speaking about The Marigny. Certain. I do know which when you imply.

O: Sorry, everybody, I used to be mispronouncing it. Effectively, the producer’s identify, no less than. However that felt very buzzy and cult-like to me.

A: Yeah, like Clos Rougeard. Yeah. However I don’t suppose they’re cult in the way in which {that a} conventional collector would focus on cult.

Z: Right here’s the place I feel we’ve to separate out two issues. Clos Rougeard is completely a collector’s wine, that may be a wine that individuals purchase and age and dangle onto.

A: And it will increase in worth.

Z: Sure. Nearly every thing that Oset is describing, whether or not they’re hype wines or whether or not they’re simply buzzy wines, which is mainly saying the identical factor. However nobody is shopping for these bottles and saying, “I’m going to carry on to them with the aim of reselling them for 10 occasions the worth in 20 years.” The bottles would possibly explode earlier than you get to that time.

O: I don’t know what you’re doing together with your bottles.

Z: I don’t know that I might dangle on to that wine for very lengthy. However anyhow, I do suppose that shortage is part of it. Jancis alludes to it, no less than for my understanding of cult wines, there must be some part of collectability to it.

A: I agree with that.

Z: There may be an concept that it’s not the stylish wine to be sipping proper now. That’s one other factor that we will speak about. However there must be a component that these wines have a notion of being an funding. Now, whether or not your aim with these wines is to drink them or not, that’s a complete different query. However I do suppose that’s a bit of the cult wine description that may’t actually be transferred over to wines that aren’t made with that in thoughts.

A: I feel that’s very true. The place it will get muddy is that, to begin with, this has one thing to do with the “American” thought. It’s attention-grabbing as a result of I do suppose that there are wines which can be thought-about pure, like Roagna and Clos Rougeard, which can be tremendous collectible. They do enhance in worth and may very well be “cult.” However I’ll agree with you that in the event you’re going to say it’s cult, it has to have this funding potential. We’re additionally taking Jancis’s definition under consideration the place she talked about being purchased by buyers. It’s people who find themselves saying “When am I going to have the ability to promote this at Sotheby’s, and what’s the exit worth going to be?” That’s additionally type of the bummer of cult wines. These are wines that always are solely consumed by the critics that fee them after which everybody else doesn’t devour them. They simply maintain them for resale, they usually proceed to resell and resell, resell. Nobody ever really appreciates them as a result of in the event you open them, you lose your funding. If it’s actually a cult wine, then you may by no means really drink it. That’s the saddest fucking factor on the planet.

O: Catch me with my piquette at Sotheby’s in a few many years.

A: That’d be the perfect. Laughing all the way in which to the financial institution being like, “Suckers.”

O: Suckers, you need some piquette from 2015?

Z: It’s additionally not simply that nobody ever drinks it. It’s additionally that if anybody ever drinks it, it’s the identical individuals. It’s the identical extraordinarily rich individuals who can afford to purchase these wines and aren’t shopping for them for funding or they purchase them at an public sale 25 years down the street as a result of they’ve the cash they usually need to drink them. It does create this entire world, and I feel it’s actually attention-grabbing to consider it in wine. We’ve talked about this in sure methods: Grand cru Burgundy first-growth Bordeaux, in sure instances. You might have all these items which can be put on the market to youthful wine drinkers and wine professionals because the apex of wine. And but, nearly nobody can attempt them. You can’t drink these wines until you might be very rich or very lucky, and many people are neither. That, I feel, is why the hype wines that Oset was speaking about are so attention-grabbing. They’re not low cost, usually. Generally they’re $25 or $30. They may be scarce. However you may be part of that sense that, “Oh, I acquired to do this factor that everybody is speaking about, however I didn’t need to pay an arm and a leg for it.” That’s cool. It’s cool that we will have these buzzy issues that don’t require many years of time to mature in no matter method you’re describing maturing, and likewise aren’t utterly inaccessible to individuals with out belief funds.

O: It’s a extra egalitarian cult wine.

A: I agree.

Z: A cult wine for everybody, for the lots.

A: A cult wine for everybody.

Z: I’ve really had wine made by an precise cult, which is a special story solely.

A: Oh, that’s rather a lot.

Z: It’s actually good, really. They’re actually good.

A: What sort of cult?

Z: Esther Mobley, good friend of the present and wine author for the San Francisco Chronicle, wrote a bit a variety of years in the past about Renaissance Winery. It was run by — I don’t keep in mind what the identify of the cult was. They have been very into antiquity, and notably, the Romans. The property has quite a lot of statues and columns.

O: Are you referencing the Ivy League or…?

A: It’s the Ivy League.

O: I don’t know. Might you be referring to that?

Z: It’s out in the course of the Sierra foothills, so I don’t suppose so.

A: However who is aware of? It may very well be a secret membership from Yale or one thing.

Z: Undoubtedly may very well be a kind of, too. However they made a bunch of wine, and a few of it was really actually, actually good. I nonetheless have some bottles. Adam — or Oset — in the event you ever really come go to, you’re welcome to have some. That’s the closest to cult wine that I personal.

A: I really like that. We’re gonna allow you to go and have this dialog. We need to set it up actual fast so we will attempt the wine whenever you get again.

Z: You possibly can hear me speak about cult wines with an individual who makes cult wines, together with one we’re about to attempt on the opposite aspect of this interview. Elizabeth Bourcier is the winemaker at Bionic Wines, technically in Oregon, however mainly in Washington (she’s in Walla Walla). We’ll give {that a} hear after which come again and check out a few of her wine.

A: Cool.

A CONVERSATION WITH ELIZABETH BOURCIER, RESIDENT VIGNERONNE OF BIONIC WINES

Z: For the “VinePair Podcast,” I’m Zach Geballe. Becoming a member of me right this moment is Elizabeth Bourcier. She’s the resident vigneronne at Bionic Wines in, properly, technically Washington State, technically Oregon. It’s slightly hazy there on the border. Elizabeth, thanks a lot to your time.

Elizabeth Bourcier: Hey, thanks for having me. It’s actually nice to be right here.

Z: Yeah, I’m very enthusiastic about this dialog. We’re going to speak about some issues that I discover fascinating on the planet of wine. Perhaps first earlier than we dive into a few of these particular questions, you can begin by simply telling the listeners slightly bit about your self and your background. How did you come to Bionic Wines and wine usually?

E: I grew up with a household of wine drinkers, and we really also have a bloodline to a household vineyard within the Bordeaux area of France. My household type of at all times loved wine and launched it to me from a younger age to study it on the dinner desk. I used to be at all times asking questions, and my father just about advised me that I might examine wine, and that actually sparked my curiosity. So I heard that the Walla Walla Neighborhood Faculty was going to be beginning a program. I moved as much as Walla Walla after I was 18 years previous, proper after I graduated highschool, to begin the primary yr of Walla Walla Neighborhood Faculty Viticulture Program. After that, I transferred to Cal Poly to get my bachelor’s diploma in viticulture. From there, I did slightly touring and a few harvest overseas and in California. I ended up again right here within the Pacific Northwest. I had met Christophe earlier than, and I heard that he was hiring and I interviewed for the job. That was again in 2008. So I began there as an oenologist and have labored my method up through the years, and that’s how I ended up right here.

Z: For individuals who aren’t accustomed to Bionic Wines, are you able to give slightly background on the vineyard and on Christophe. Who’s that?

E: Undoubtedly. Christophe is initially from Champagne, France within the city of Charly Sur Marne. He comes from a protracted household lineage of Champagne growers, and his household owns a Champagne home. Christophe at all times needed to study extra and discover extra. As an alternative of constant work with the household at the moment, he needed to go and work overseas and work some harvests. So he ended up coming to america again in 1993 to work an internship at a vineyard in Walla Walla. He ended up doing a little extra touring and returned again to Washington state. His authentic aim was to plant some Pinot Noir or work at a vineyard within the Willamette Valley. However sooner or later in Milton- Freewater exterior of Walla Walla, the place we’re located, he drove by the realm and noticed the stones. He actually jumped out of the automobile and stated, “That is it.” His good friend who was driving on the time was like, “What do you imply, ‘That is it’”? And he was like, “That is the place I’m going to plant vines.” And his good friend was like, “You’re loopy.” As a result of no one crops vines like this, it was pure stones that actually reminded Christophe of the galets you see in Châtenay. He’s like, “No, that is the place I’m going to do it.” So in March 1997, Christophe had the primary modern-day vines in that space and has since established nearly 70 acres within the stones of Milton-Freewater.

Z: By the point you come on board in 2008, a few of his wines have already garnered quite a lot of important acclaim and a focus. For a few of our listeners who’re undoubtedly within the wine business and even for many who aren’t, there are individuals who would possibly take into consideration getting concerned with an operation as extremely thought to be an operation as that as very thrilling. Clearly, I’m positive it was and is thrilling to work on wines which can be so extremely regarded, but in addition possibly slightly bit scary. Perhaps for you individually beginning on the market, there’s slightly little bit of anonymity. However the wines are going to be closely prized, collected, scrutinized, reviewed, and many others. Whenever you first began out working for Bionic Wines, was that one thing that you considered or have been you identical to, “Hey, I want a job.”?

E: Even after I joined in 2008, it was comparatively early within the Washington Walla Walla scene, and locations have been undoubtedly established. However I had heard about Christophe and his wines. I had really come out to tour the vineyards after I was in class. I attempted among the wines and I additionally labored in some higher-end eating places by my school years in Seattle and had the chance to attempt some Cayuse wines from clients who introduced them in. Greater than, like, scared, I used to be so intrigued. So it wasn’t so scary to me. It was very thrilling as a result of I had by no means tasted wines like that anyplace in Washington, however even america. They have been so terroir-driven. It was one thing so new to me that I used to be like, “What is that this? And the way is it so superb?” I couldn’t actually consider it. They’re wines that actually make you suppose. So getting concerned with it was what I’ve at all times needed to do, to work with wines like that which can be genuine. And so it felt actually proper to me.

Z: For people who find themselves not tremendous accustomed to the wines, are you able to speak slightly bit about what you guys make when it comes to varieties and kinds and a few fundamentals concerning the wines? As a result of once more, half of what’s talked about on this dialog is that these are what some would name cult wines. They’re actually extremely regarded and prized and never produced in enormous portions. A few of our listeners might have even heard of among the labels or the wines, however might not have ever tried them. Are you able to speak slightly bit about what sort of what you guys make? And clearly, that record has grown through the years.

E: Our major focus is Syrah. We additionally do Grenache and Tempranillo and a few Bordeaux varietals, so some Cab Franc, Merlot, and Cabernet. However undoubtedly our focus is Syrah from all of our property vineyards which can be all within the stones of Milton-Freewater. Beneath Bionic Wines, we’ve totally different manufacturers. We’ve acquired the Cayuse model, we’ve acquired No Women model, after which we even have the Horsepower model, which is tight-spaced vines which can be all labored with our draft horses. We even have Hors Categorie winery, slightly bit exterior Milton-Freewater, it’s only one winery planted up close to the North Fork of the Walla Walla River and converges with the South Fork. It’s really a winery that’s planted on a reasonably steep slope. We even have Christophe’s Champagnes. There’s quite a lot of totally different manufacturers, quite a lot of totally different wines, quite a lot of small labels inside Bionic Wines. However there are quite a lot of alternatives to work with some totally different varietals. Undoubtedly the core basis of what Cayuse is all about is the stones and the terroir. The place the place we’re is actually the inspiration of what we do, and it’s actually what makes the wines so distinctive.

Z: Very cool. I don’t need to get too deep into winemaking simply because I might spend eternally there and I’m positive you could possibly, too. When it comes to what you guys do within the vineyard, clearly there are quite a lot of totally different approaches to winemaking, whether or not with Syrah or these different varieties. However broadly talking, might you speak about what you guys do within the vineyard and the methods by which the belongings you do or don’t do assist deliver that terroir to life or show you how to seize it in a completed wine?

E: Certain. That’s undoubtedly a extremely vital a part of the entire Bionic Wines idea. We’ve been biodynamic nearly because the very starting of the vines being planted. Christophe did resolve to begin changing to biodynamics proper after his first couple vineyards have been planted and we follow biodynamics within the vineyards in addition to the wine creation. I feel that’s undoubtedly one thing that’s crucial to the completed product and to what we do in philosophy. Contained in the wine studio the place we create the wines, it’s all pure. We don’t add any business yeast or business micro organism or malolactics. So it’s all-natural fermentation, low-impact winemaking. It actually lets the wines and the varietals present by and communicate for themselves. The aim is to let that terroir present by as a result of it’s such a novel rising space, and the wines are undoubtedly so distinctive, they don’t want a lot.

Z: Once more, for folk who possibly have had an opportunity to attempt your wines or want to search for them sooner or later or who’ve possibly had the chance to attempt different wines from inside Milton-Freewater, what are among the hallmarks of the wines? Clearly, there have been different plantings since Christophe supplied a proof of idea for the entire notion that you could possibly plant vines and make wine from there. I’ve my very own ideas on this, however quite a lot of our listeners will not be tremendous accustomed to the Rocks District or tried lots of the wines. In my expertise, there are traits that actually present by throughout a variety of various varieties.

E: We prefer to seek advice from them because the stones, and there’s that phrase “Cayuse,” the unique winery that Christophe planted that interprets actually into “the stone.” That’s what it’s. We speak concerning the stones and there’s a savoriness and a saltiness. This whole minerality-driven wines and they are often smoky and meaty. Not smoky within the smoke taint method. I’m speaking about smoke like charcoal or a chilly fire. Once we speak concerning the traits, they’re actually mineral-driven wines. I do know that time period will get thrown round rather a lot from individuals, however it’s exhausting to clarify these wines in every other method. They’re so distinctive. Whenever you attempt wines from this space, it’s in contrast to the rest on the planet. As a result of actually the soil is in contrast to the rest on the planet. There’s actually nowhere else on the planet apart from seabeds, the place you’ve this sort of basalt stone. It’s so distinctive to have that and also you see that within the wine.

Z: It’s one thing to notice, too, you may possibly right me if I’m unsuitable right here. However my understanding is that one of many issues that’s totally different, versus Châteauneuf-du-Pape and different areas within the southern Rhône, or possibly a number of different locations on the planet, right here you’ve stone that’s like tons of of ft deep, proper? It’s not like a floor layer. There’s unbelievable depth to those bits of stones.

E: You might have that precisely proper. Down one thing like 400 or extra of pure basalt stone, which may be very totally different from Châteauneuf-du-Pape. I’ve by no means been there, however you’ve acquired a few layers and ft of the stone of the galet. So it’s pure, these vines go deep down persevering with to search for assets from vitamins and for water. They go so deep.

Z: I’ve been there and I can let you know, you may choose up a few of stones and discover filth. It’s not that arduous. That’s undoubtedly not potential in Milton-Freewater. I need to come again to one thing you have been speaking about slightly bit earlier than and ask you to develop on it slightly bit. As you talked about in the middle of your time with Bionic Wines, you guys have added a number of totally different vineyards and some totally different labels, both to focus on a few of these particular person vineyards or simply supply a chance to do some barely various things. We’re not going to do PR work, however anybody who’s curious can search and see there are any variety of 100-point wines. They’re quite a lot of very excessive regard. The wines aren’t cheap. So it’s undoubtedly truthful to say that something that you simply guys put out underneath no matter label goes to get quite a lot of consideration paid to it. So how do you, as a vigneronne and as a workforce extra broadly take into consideration, “We’re snug placing our identify on this,” or “We predict that is going to be as properly obtained by our subscription record members, by our critics, and many others., as every thing else we’ve completed?” Is there some added weight? Not that you simply essentially can communicate from private expertise, however I’m positive you realize a lot of different winemakers. I think about for some wineries, it’s like, “Hey, we’ve a brand new challenge. We’re simply going to place it on the market.” They don’t actually take into consideration what it’s going to imply for his or her repute in the way in which that you simply guys might need to.

E: It’s actually attention-grabbing as a result of after I began that Cayuse, it was superb how detail-oriented Christophe was with every thing he did. There may be a lot thought that goes into each side of the wine and that basis of the vineyards. That’s the place the work occurs, and that’s the explanation. We do rather a lot within the wine studio as properly, however as soon as the product is available in it’s straightforward for us to not do a lot to let it present by. Yeah, it’s quite a lot of stress as a result of each choice we make must be very thought out. What’s the aim? How are we going to do that? Cash is unquestionably not the motive force right here. All the pieces we do must be justified. There’s a purpose Christophe has gotten to the purpose he’s gotten at, and it’s 25 years of very exhausting work. However I do see quite a lot of wineries now the place lots of people do the early releases of the wine and put it on the market as their new classic. I ponder typically, too, “Are you simply earning money, or do you actually really feel nice about that product?” I feel it’s vital for the business to have a look at that proper now as a result of we have to keep in mind that high quality is vital. We might make extra wine. At Cayuse, we will make much more and promote much more. However we don’t. It’s about steadiness and ensuring that the product is actually the very best high quality that it may be each time we put one thing out. And if it’s not, we don’t actually promote it.

Z: One of many final issues I need to ask about, whenever you speak about wineries like yours, the place there are very extremely regarded wines that aren’t made in enormous portions — there’s been a aware try to preserve the standard extraordinarily excessive — that inevitably creates circumstances the place demand presumably does outstrip provide. Presumably there are any variety of particular person customers and collectors, wine retailers, eating places, and many others. who would possibly need to purchase your wines, and there isn’t sufficient to promote all that potential demand. And naturally, it creates a secondary market. Once more, that’s one thing that not quite a lot of wineries have to actually take into consideration. If somebody buys a bottle after which resells it, in the event that they even do this, it’s not going to meaningfully respect in worth. However with Cayuse wines, together with any small variety of different wines on the planet, individuals purchase them to gather them. They purchase them as investments. Having talked to and heard from some producers at different locations which have wines that fall into that very same common class, they’re of two minds about it. Clearly, it’s flattering in some sense that individuals are prepared to spend tons of or hundreds of {dollars} on a bottle of wine. However in fact, within the secondary market, that cash doesn’t come again to the vineyard in any respect. It does create probably bizarre incentives for individuals to get their fingers on the wine with out ever aspiring to drink it. Once more, I’m not a winemaker, so I don’t know. But when I have been a winemaker, it might type of bum me out that individuals are shopping for my wines for causes different than simply to drink them. How do you’re feeling about that? I do know it’s type of a broad query.

E: Undoubtedly for Christophe and I, that bums us out, as a result of that’s not what wine’s all about. The intent to purchase Cayuse is to drink Cayuse wine. It’s particular in the event you get to that time the place you should purchase it. That’s a bummer that individuals would need to do this, and that makes us actually unhappy. When Christophe and I purchase wine, that’s not what we do. I don’t go and promote my bottles. We purchase wine to drink our wine. With that stated, there’s not quite a lot of time within the day to go round and police each single particular person on the record and attempt to discover out who did what. Persons are going to purchase the wine, and there’s going to be individuals doing that on the market. It’s not what we like and it does make us fairly disenchanted. However on the finish of the day, it’d make us go loopy if we have been continually attempting to trace all of them down and discover it. If we see it or we hear about and somebody has a wine store and out of the blue it’s exhibiting up there, there are some issues which can be very apparent, we’re capable of say, “Sorry, however you received’t be receiving the wine anymore.” After which we’ve completed that, undoubtedly. However with that stated, the costlier the wines get and the extra individuals need them and the extra individuals hear about them, the extra individuals are going to need to attempt to get their fingers on it and earn money. You’re seeing it taking place with quite a lot of costlier wines throughout. It’s too dangerous. Christophe and I might love for individuals to only purchase our wines to get pleasure from our wines. That’s the aim right here.

Z: Glorious. Effectively, that’s good to listen to, I’ll say. That’s an ethos that, from my expertise, usually shared — however not universally shared by each producer that I’ve talked to. Principally off the document, frankly. I might say, it’s not a lot that they’re making wine for causes apart from individuals to get pleasure from them. Let’s say that they’re extra OK with the secondary market going loopy as a result of it has allowed them to bump up the first value rather a lot increased than possibly it might have. Clearly, making wine is just not a simple proposition. It’s tough, it’s fickle. It’s time-consuming, labor-intensive, and many others., particularly the way in which you guys make wine. And naturally, in any state of affairs or in nearly all conditions, there’s a restricted provide. To some extent, as demand grows and grows and grows, the fee grows. It’s capitalism, the fee will go up, too. Effectively, Elizabeth, thanks a lot to your time. I actually respect it. It’s fascinating to study extra about you and about your wines and this entire world of extremely coveted and beloved wines. So once more, thanks a lot to your time. I actually respect it.

E: Undoubtedly. Thanks a lot, it was nice talking with you.

A TASTING OF BIONIC WINES

A: Zach, we’re about to attempt a cult wine. That is Cayuse Vineyards. However that is nonetheless Bionic Wines?

Z: Sure, so Bionic Wines is type of just like the overarching firm. They’ve a number of totally different labels now. Cayuse refers to among the authentic vineyards that the founder, Christophe Baron, planted. A few of their newer plantings are underneath the Horsepower label, the No Women label, and many others. However Cayuse refers to their wines from their core preliminary planting, together with this En Chamberlin 2017 Syrah, which we’re about to have. Have both of you had Syrah from the Rocks District Walla Walla earlier than?

A: No method.

O: I don’t actually drink a lot Syrah.

Z: Oh my God, Oset. OK, we’ll choose that up one other time.

A: I do love Syrah.

Z: This may in all probability shock you. Effectively, simply style it.

A: Let’s swirl slightly within the glass.

O: I like your ASMR right here.

Z: Acquired to get that genuine sound, Oset.

A: It doesn’t style like Syrah.

O: It doesn’t, from my restricted publicity as a leisure-time Syrah drinker.

A: There’s quite a lot of menthol happening.

O: It’s menthol, isn’t it?

Z: There’s undoubtedly an herbaceous be aware to it, for positive. It’s acquired a bitter herb, you could possibly say there’s a tiny fernet high quality to it, for positive. Nevertheless it very a lot belies the basic expectation for a West Coast cult wine in that it’s not large and ripe and fruity and closely oaked in something. It’s very wild and type of gamey and meaty.

A: It’s extraordinarily gamey. That’s what I used to be going to say, it’s like uncooked meat.

Z: That’s a bizarre signature of this AVA. Not simply Cayuse wines, however mainly every thing I’ve had from there, particularly what’s constituted of Syrah or Grenache. It has this character to it. It’s simply wild. It’s additionally one of the weird wine areas I’ve ever seen. It has a type of superficial similarity to quite a lot of the Southern Rhône, as a result of it has these tumbled river rocks because the winery base. However whenever you go to Châteauneuf-du-Pape and also you stroll by the vineyards, the stones are a few ft deep. Right here, it’s 400 ft of this. There’s nothing else. It’s f*cking wild.

A: It’s a loopy wine.

O: I’ve a tough time placing it right into a bucket. It actually defies buckets.

A: It’s certainly one of these wines, Zach, the place I can see how it might turn out to be cult as a result of it’s exhausting to understand. I feel that’s what lots of people like about cult wines is that they’re difficult. As you stated, they’re not for everyone. So I feel that that type of fashion of wine supersedes others. This wine is from this very sick place. It tastes very totally different from different belongings you’ve had earlier than. So subsequently it turns into this wine that everyone goes apesh*t for. It’s actually an attention-grabbing wine.

Z: I’ve one different piece of this that very a lot connects to what you simply stated, Adam. Some people who find themselves fascinated about shopping for costly wine, who aren’t essentially wine connoisseurs per se however are individuals who prefer to spend cash on costly issues, are drawn to wines which have very distinctive traits and are very straightforward to acknowledge in their very own method. Actually my expertise promoting them in eating places has been that some individuals are turned off by the fashion; they don’t prefer it. However some individuals simply need one thing that’s each intense and complicated and provides all of that. However on this case, clearly in a really totally different method than your basic Napa Valley cult Cabernet, which provides you a really totally different type of depth and complexity. Simply from totally different supply materials, totally different winemaking method, and many others. This has come alongside on the identical time that equally styled wines from France, like from the Northern Rhône, have additionally turn out to be extremely popular and in some instances, type of eye-poppingingly costly. It is smart as a result of in a method, they’re very totally different each from the basic costly Pinot Noir Burgundies and likewise Bordeaux or Cabernet-based wines.

A: Attention-grabbing. This has been a extremely fascinating dialog. And I need to thanks, Zach, for sharing this wine with us.

Z: Thank Elizabeth. I simply gave her your handle.

A: Thanks, Elizabeth. Very cool wine and a extremely fascinating dialog. I’d love to listen to what listeners suppose. What do you suppose makes a wine cult? Or what do you suppose the definition of cult wine is? Hit us up at [email protected]; we at all times love to listen to these opinions. Or slide into individuals’s DMs, it’s fantastic.

O: When you’ve ever squirreled away bottles of Joe Swick, that is your time to talk up.

A: Yeah, precisely.

Z: We’ll see you at Sotheby’s in 20 years.

A: Oset, we’ll see you for the piquette sale in 20 years.

O: Yeah, possibly.

A: It’s in all probability all going to be flat.

O: I’m in all probability going to be on the coast of Italy at that time with my earnings. So no matter, guys.

A: With that, have an excellent weekend, each of you. Zach, I’ll see you on Monday.

Z: Sounds nice.

Thanks a lot for listening to the “VinePair Podcast.” When you love this present as a lot as we love making it, please depart us a ranking or overview on iTunes, Spotify, Stitcher or wherever it’s you get your podcasts. It actually helps everybody else uncover the present.

Now for the credit. VinePair is produced and recorded in New York Metropolis and Seattle, Washington, on my own and Zach Geballe, who does all of the enhancing and likes to get the credit score. Additionally, I might love to provide a particular shout-out to my VinePair co-founder, Josh Malin, for serving to make all of this potential, and likewise to Keith Beavers, VinePair’s tastings director, who’s moreover a producer on the present. I additionally need to, in fact, thank each different member of the VinePair workforce, who’re instrumental in all the concepts that go into making the present each week. Thanks a lot for listening, and we’ll see you once more.

Ed. be aware: This episode has been edited for size and readability.

Related Articles

Back to top button