All posts by J. R. Boynton

E. Guigal Cote-Rotie Brune & Blonde de Guigal 2011

This is a superb, expensive wine — I paid $66 on sale — from E. Guigal (gee-gall), 96% syrah and 4% viognier. Cote-Rotie is at the north end of the Cotes du Rhone. Cote-Rotie is among the fanciest places for wine. If you are fancy-wine-curious, this is an awesome choice: complex, primal, sensual, and fairly easy to find at good wine stores or online.


Luscious beyond the 14% alcohol, the viognier boosts the richness of the feel. Acidity is almost non-existent. The tannin is noticeable. Mostly, though: there’s a *lot* of earthy, primal flavor.


This is an expensive wine, but the extra dollars are rewarded. There is so much flavor and body and structure going on that it’s hard to notice it all at once. Take a sip and meditate on it for a while.

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WineSites We Love:!!!)

As a Great Big Reds lover, I thirst for knowledge of big, luscious wines.’s got the goods. is a cheerful, beginner-friendly website with a very pleasant design and lots of short articles on all kinds of wines and things wine-related. The attitude is young and fun. The articles range from short, easy introductions all the way to long, yet very clear explanations of the complexities of wine, wine making, and wine enjoying. They are published as a blog with a few new posts each week.

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Wine First! (Understanding Great­Big­

Team Great Big Reds puts the wine first. Here’s what we mean by that: we’re looking for Great Big Reds that are great to drink on their own. We want to sit down — before a meal, at a meal, after a meal, or with no meal in sight — and have a glass of wine that has so much flavor on its own that it’s worth writing home about… or writing a blog post about… or telling the story to future generations and passing it on to their children.

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How to spot full-bodied Great Big Reds in your neighborhood!

Great Big Reds Spotting

At your neighborhood grocery store, or even a convenience store, how do you spot full-bodied Great Big Reds?

Most large grocery stores near me have wine sections. The red wine section is usually endless shelves of cabernet sauvignon, then merlot and pinot noir, and some even have shelves of malbec. It can feel lonely for the Great Big Reds shopper.

But there may be one small section that has everything else… syrah, zinfandel, petite syrah, and blends.

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