Gallo

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Gallo

Postby Thomas » Fri Oct 13, 2006 5:22 pm

Does anyone know the composition of Gallo's Hardly, I mean, Hearty Burgundy?

Years ago I used to use the wine as a ringer in wine tastings--it always astonished people, at least for its quality. Yesterday, I picked up a bottle of it with a plan for an upcoming gathering of wine people--like the old days.

Would love to be able to tell them what's in it--after they rave about it from a blind position, of course.
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Re: Gallo

Postby Hoke » Fri Oct 13, 2006 5:43 pm

It's mostly red, I think.

Seriously, Thomas, good question. I have no idea what Hearty Burg is made of these days.
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Re: Gallo

Postby Bob Ross » Fri Oct 13, 2006 5:50 pm

Here's a recent article on the brand, Thomas:

When they build the California Wine Hall of Fame, Hearty Burgundy almost certainly will be among the first inductees.

Since its introduction in 1947 as "Pastoso y Scelto" - roughly Italian for "full-bodied" and "specially selected" - the wine continually has been restyled as sources for grapes came and went and as American tastes changed.

It became Hearty Burgundy in 1964 and the name stuck, though its bottle shape, type of closure (screwcap once, then traditional cork, now plastic cork), and composition have continued to evolve.

Hearty Burgundy, an E.&J. Gallo product from the start, originally was a blend of such grapes as cabernet sauvignon, zinfandel, petite sirah, carignane and barbera. Much of the fruit was from such highly regarded appellations as the Napa Valley, Sonoma County and Lodi.

Today, many of the same grape varieties still are used, and some continue to originate along the North Coast, but more Central Valley grapes now go into the wine, says Vella, the E.&J. Gallo senior winemaster.

"At first we had the best North Coast cabernet sauvignon and zinfandel for the wine, the best petite sirah from Napa and the best Lodi zinfandel, but it's not possible to do that today.

"We have a higher calling for those varietals," says Vella, referring to Gallo's line of premium varietal wines.

From the start, Hearty Burgundy was meant to be a fairly robust everyday red wine. "It's still meant to be a heartier wine, but it's not as hearty as it was in its heyday. It's kinder, gentler, not as tannic and not as sweet; it's drier," Vella says. "It was adjusted to meet the consumer."

Hearty Burgundy also isn't as popular, with production down to around 200,000 cases.

Nonetheless, for $5.50 per magnum, wine drinkers get an approachable, balanced and solid everyday red table wine, light in body, dry on the palate, and cleanly fruity in flavor, with hints of cherries and a touch of herbalness.

"There are wines to be appreciated for their complexity, and wines like this one meant simply to be enjoyed," is how the label puts it.


AZ.Central.com.

I really enjoyed this article, a walk down memory lane, and it taught me a great deal since I only started drinking wine seriously 12 years ago. Some of these names are merely myths to me. :-)

Regards, Bob
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Re: Gallo

Postby Thomas » Fri Oct 13, 2006 6:03 pm

Bob,

The only one I don't remember that is mentioned in the article is LaSalle. All the others--even Mano-manishuboom, shaboom had passed these lips at one time or another. The learning curve can be wide...

Sounds like the Gallo Hearty won't be what it once was--we shall see. I will make a full report. But $5.50 a magnum? Hmm, I got taken for $5.95 a 750!

Do wish Vella, the winemaker at Gallo, and all others would stop referring to grapes as varietals. I'm on a vigilante trek to root out using adjectives as nouns, or nouns as verbs as in the nonsense structure "military base closure." The cork is a closure, the base wipe out is a closing.

Boy, have I digressed. Next thing you know, my single mindedness will get me into an online argument with some ill-informed English Masters like Robin... ;)
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Re: Gallo

Postby James Roscoe » Fri Oct 13, 2006 7:25 pm

Thomas wrote:Bob,
Boy, have I digressed. Next thing you know, my single mindedness will get me into an online argument with some ill-informed English Masters like Robin... ;)


Is this Thomas or Ti*?
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Re: Gallo

Postby Thomas » Fri Oct 13, 2006 8:01 pm

James Roscoe wrote:
Thomas wrote:Bob,
Boy, have I digressed. Next thing you know, my single mindedness will get me into an online argument with some ill-informed English Masters like Robin... ;)


Is this Thomas or Ti*?


Either you enjoy perspicacity or I enjoy perspicuity...or both!
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Re: Gallo

Postby James Roscoe » Fri Oct 13, 2006 8:57 pm

Thomas wrote:Either you enjoy perspicacity or I enjoy perspicuity...or both!


Ouch! I hurt myself lifting the OED. :lol:
.....we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain -- that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom -- and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth. A. Lincoln
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Re: Gallo

Postby Bob Ross » Fri Oct 13, 2006 9:47 pm

James, I got an online subscription just so I could try to keep up with Thomas (and Hoke of course).

It's such fun looking up stuff, I probably would give up my subscription to Wine Spectator, before dropping the OED. :-)
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Re: Gallo

Postby Thomas » Sat Oct 14, 2006 9:47 am

Bob Ross wrote:James, I got an online subscription just so I could try to keep up with Thomas (and Hoke of course).

It's such fun looking up stuff, I probably would give up my subscription to Wine Spectator, before dropping the OED. :-)


Bob,

If you do drop the OED you will need someone to repair your floors...

Big Gallo night tonight--report live at eleven.
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Re: Gallo

Postby Robin Garr » Sat Oct 14, 2006 11:26 am

Thomas wrote:Sounds like the Gallo Hearty won't be what it once was--we shall see. I will make a full report. But $5.50 a magnum? Hmm, I got taken for $5.95 a 750!


I don't want to prejudice your findings, Thomas, but I have to tell you that I think the period of Hearty Burgundy as a good QPR red blend (if not a "Burgundy") are well behind us. I did a cheap-wine tasting a few years ago for a magazine article and threw HB in to the blind flight based on my own happy recollection of it as a surprising value in the '80s, but the more modern rendition - or at least the one I had - was powerfully disappointing, sweet and thin and full of what I can only call "non-wine flavors."

In the corporate world of industrial wine production, things change, and a proprietary blend like "Hardly Burgundy" is under no obligation to maintain a consistent style year after year. I suspect that it's now aimed entirely at the Carlo Rossi market with no real interest in sales to wine geeks.

I'll be interested to hear what your group comes up with, but frankly, I'm not optimistic.
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Re: Gallo

Postby Thomas » Sat Oct 14, 2006 11:44 am

Robin Garr wrote:I don't want to prejudice your findings, Thomas, but I have to tell you that I think the period of Hearty Burgundy as a good QPR red blend (if not a "Burgundy") are well behind us. I did a cheap-wine tasting a few years ago for a magazine article and threw HB in to the blind flight based on my own happy recollection of it as a surprising value in the '80s, but the more modern rendition - or at least the one I had - was powerfully disappointing, sweet and thin and full of what I can only call "non-wine flavors."

In the corporate world of industrial wine production, things change, and a proprietary blend like "Hardly Burgundy" is under no obligation to maintain a consistent style year after year. I suspect that it's now aimed entirely at the Carlo Rossi market with no real interest in sales to wine geeks.

I'll be interested to hear what your group comes up with, but frankly, I'm not optimistic.


Yeah, I'm figuring it too.

Will make a report on the Chat board tomorrow. The Gallo will be among a Jumilla, Toro, and Corbiere.

The dinner is seared duck breast topped with a shallot, garlic, white pepper, Madeira/Maple Syrup/Soy sauce plus steamed white asparagus topped with lightly cooked egg yoke and broiled potatoes brushed with thyme infused olive oil.

Believe it or not, I can cook the above within half an hour and I will!
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Re: Gallo

Postby Covert » Sat Oct 14, 2006 5:49 pm

Thomas wrote:Does anyone know the composition of Gallo's Hardly, I mean, Hearty Burgundy?


Darn it, a few years ago I read exactly what it is made from, but I just can't remember. From a very fuzzy memory about it, it seems that there were a few grapes in it, more than I would have guessed; and some were grapes that I had either never heard of, or hadn't paid any attention to.

I have very fond memories of Hearty Burgundy. Used to drink it in 1968 and 1969 with my home made chili from a little bodega on the corner of Geary and Taylor in San Francisco.
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Re: Gallo

Postby Jenise » Sat Oct 14, 2006 6:02 pm

I used to have an old friend who always had a bottle of HB in the fridge for spaghetti nights, the only time he drank wine. It always tasted good at his house, and it would probably still taste good to me today.
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Re: Gallo

Postby Thomas » Sun Oct 15, 2006 2:57 pm

Well, here's how it turned out:

Could not find an aroma even with a six-person search party. All six of us sniffed and sniffed--nada.

Mouthfeel decent mid-bodied, a little stemy/weedy that spoke to a possible Bordeaux Superieur, some Rhone-like fruit to it, a scratchy tannin on the tongue but the finish was as elusive as the aroma.

Can't imagine how a wine with a scratchy tannin on the tongue could have absolutely no finish, but that's the case here.

Four out of six said it was worth from $10 to $12.
One out of six said it was worthless.
I of course knew that it cost me $6, but it was served blind and so I guessed it was a $4 wine--I knew there was a $4 Spanish wine among them, and that was my guess (I guessed the $4 wine to be worth about $10).

The four other wines were in the $12 to $15 range.

Anyway, Hardly Burgundy was nothing like the wine I used to know and used to love to put into Bordeaux tastings as a ringer.

Incidentally, since my wife and I knew the identity of the wines, I uncorked and bagged everything, and then I passed it over to another person who moved the bottles around, and then a third person moved them around again. Each person was instructed to crinkle the bags too. The third person numbered the bags.
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