Tzuba Winery: The Tasting That Was Not A Tasting

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Tzuba Winery: The Tasting That Was Not A Tasting

Postby Daniel Rogov » Thu Jul 24, 2008 3:49 pm

Of the various occasional dilemmas faced by the wine critic, not many are as discombobulating as returning to a series of wines only to find almost the entire series vastly different than at a recent tasting. That is precisely what happened to me today when I attended a press tasting of the wines of Tzuba winery.

I had tasted each of these wines these wines on at least one and sometimes even three other occasions (see the references below), most recently a mere 40 days ago and had written in very positive terms about this still young winery. What I found today with all but the dessert wines of Tzuba were "wines without fault". Those not familiar with this term should realize that this is not a compliment, a wine without fault describing a wine that although technically well made and without obvious flaws fails to catch our attention as it has nothing that makes it stand out as above the norm. At least in one sense, a wine without fault is a wine without interest.

As a good critic should, throughout the tasting I made notes and, as I did, memory had me scratching my head as the wines were nowhere near their earlier status. And then, towards the end of the tasting, the proverbial penny fell.

My hypothesis – the wines were transported today from the winery to the restaurant at which the tasting took place – a mere hour or so by auto but in temperatures that exceeded 31 degrees Celsius (90 Fahrenheit) and in the luggage compartment of a car probably well over 45 degrees Celsius (112 Fahrenheit). If that isn't enough to reduce most wines (and most winemakers) to tears, nothing is.

My decision – for the moment I'll let my earlier notes hold. I will, however, contact the winemaker and arrange for a tasting bottle of each (not all of the wines have been released yet), give those an appropriate chance to rest in my own cellar and then do a re-tasting. I will, of course, post again immediately after that tasting.


My earlier tasting notes:
18 June 2008: http://stratsplace.zeroforum.com/zerothread?id=17257
13 June 2008: http://stratsplace.zeroforum.com/zerothread?id=15311
7 June 2007: http://stratsplace.zeroforum.com/zerothread?id=14306

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Re: Tzuba Winery: The Tasting That Was Not A Tasting

Postby Michael P » Fri Jul 25, 2008 11:36 am

Is Tzuba for sale in the US? If so, anyone know where?
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Re: Tzuba Winery: The Tasting That Was Not A Tasting

Postby Trevor F » Fri Jul 25, 2008 12:00 pm

Michael P wrote:Is Tzuba for sale in the US? If so, anyone know where?


It is in the UK ( but maybe a bit far for you to go )
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Re: Tzuba Winery: The Tasting That Was Not A Tasting

Postby EY Han » Sat Jul 26, 2008 8:45 pm

I mentioned at the end of last week that I was to start a meal on Friday night with a tasting of the newly released Tzuba Sangiovese-Nebbiolo, 2006, along with three other wines (see viewtopic.php?f=29&t=17239). I just wanted to share that everyone thought that this Sangiovese was the best wine out of them all, despite a description by some of the tasters as being "fruity on the nose, yet bitter on the palate."

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Re: Tzuba Winery: The Tasting That Was Not A Tasting

Postby Daniel Rogov » Tue Jul 29, 2008 1:29 pm

I have had several communications about this thread and wanted very strongly to clarify several points. What I wrote clearly states that what happened at this event may well have had nothing whatsoever to do with the quality of the Tzuba wines, but was almost surely related to the extremely hot weather of the day.

Let it be loudly and clearly understood that if I had thought there was a problem with the wines, I would have so stated. My faith in Tzuba stands firm and I am looking forward to receiving the wines in the quite near future and doing a tasting, blind, in my own tasting room. In the meanwhile, my sincere advice to all...... be of good faith. Things do get screwed up from time to time and that is why one does re-tastings.

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Re: Tzuba Winery: The Tasting That Was Not A Tasting

Postby Daniel Rogov » Fri Aug 08, 2008 10:04 am

The wines indeed arrived and have been re-tasted. Please see my notes at viewtopic.php?f=29&t=17605

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