Calling on the Bullpen

I write this column only two days after the stunning Chicago Cubs World Series victory. While I am a loyal fan of the Detroit Tigers, the baseball theme is working for me due to my workplace (Chicago) and my circumstances. I had a total knee replacement in mid-October, and I’ll still be on medical leave when this article reaches you. Rather than rehash some stale old thinking, I went to three friends who are known oenophiles for their best stuff.

Mark Schnurman, Co-founder of Filament, a regular consultant to our agency, recommends the wines of Priorats, a region just south of Barcelona in the northeast of Spain. Like Bordeaux wines, they are deeply red, and very full-bodied wines. They are blends, featuring Garnacha and Cariñena varietals, plus Cabernet and Syrah. A great example is Alvaro Palacios Camins del Priorat, a true bargain at about $22 retail. It features hints of dried herbs, mineral, and has a velvety texture.

camins-del-priorat

My business partner and friend Jeff Berg is also a fan of Spanish wines. He recommends Bodegas El Nido “Clio” Jumilla Monastrell (retail at about $40) from Gil Family Estates in Jumilla Spain. “I fell in love with the 2011 vintage and the 2012 and 2013 have not disappointed. The Clio (70% Monastrell, 30% Cabernet Sauvignon) is the little brother of El Nido (70% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Monastrell) and in my mind is the far greater value of the two. If you are looking for subtlety look elsewhere—Clio leaps out of the glass and is a full-bodied wine with beautifully integrated tannins. A great blend of blue and black fruits with a hint of smoke and spice.” As a gift recipient of this amazing wine, I have to agree (and open a bottle soon).

clio

I reached out to my colleague Katerina Steele for a different perspective, and she came back with a gem worthy of Game 7: “On my honeymoon, we visited a small winery in Anderson Valley, California called Knez. It was such a small winery that the vigneron himself was pouring tastings that day. He was so knowledgeable about the wine, in a way that was both passionate and utterly unpretentious. He helped me discover the perfect Pinot noir: The profound brightness of ripe cherries, strawberries, and wild blackberries perfectly balanced by earthiness and terroir.” The Knez Winery Anderson Valley Pinot Noir retails for around $33.

pinot-noir

  • Jay Carter

    Jay Carter is Senior VP and Director of Strategy Services for AbelsonTaylor. Jay has worked for 31 years in the medical advertising industry, the last 28 at AbelsonTaylor. He’s had the pleasure of working with some of the finest minds (and hearts) in pharma. Along the way, he’s developed a passion for championing health brands to clinicians and consumers, and championing the medical advertising industry as a worthwhile career.

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