Avia Pinot Noir

 Look, I never said everything inexpensive was good. In fact, if you look at the “Premise” tab at the top of this page, you’ll find a reference to the occasional “weed killer”. This, Avia Pinot Noir, just may be such a wine- more suitable to dandelion fighting than as a beverage.

I admit it. This was a price tag based decision, and nothing more. It was on sale for $8.49 for a 1.5 liter bottle, and I bit. Or was bitten. On two occasions, I have encountered people in The Store in the process of buying Avia wines, and had them recommend it. One lady told me a nearby fancy-schmancy restaurant sells it by the glass. But I may have picked the wrong varietal. The Store carries the Riesling, a Pinot Grigio, and a Cabernet besides this Pinot Noir, and perhaps those are less, uh, nasty. Maybe someday, I’ll try some of those-when the memory fades.

Avia is from Slovenia! I had to Google “Slovenia” to  figure out where that is. It’s sandwiched between the top of the Italy boot, to the west, Austria to the north, Hungary to the east, and Croatia to the south. They are owned by (according to their website) “well known and regarded winery Vinska Klet Goriska Brda in Dobrovo on the Italian border.” The section of Italy Slovenia borders is Fruili-Guilia, which has cred as a Pinot Grigio producing area. That fact makes it slightly less bizarre, to me, that a wine is Slovenia sourced, but still, few discussions of the world’s great wine regions, even lengthy discussions, would likely ever include Slovenia.

But whether it’s from the Bordeaux, Slovenia, or Bugtussle, it’s the drinking that matters, not the pedigree. And that didn’t work out real well. Wife actually had opened it, and had some before I got home. “How is it?” Just a left-right-left head turn, was the reply. We’ve been on opposite sides of wine tasting opinion polls in the past, so I poured some for myself. Strange. It didn’t taste like any wine I’ve had. Familiar, though…tea…flavored tea….Snapple Raspberry….that sat out all day. Thin, tiny bit sweet, fruit taste, but again, in a Snapple Tea fruit way. I tried to imagine, OK, someone hands me this drink, and tells me it’s Raspberry tea…do I like it now? Am I just prejudiced by a preconception of what wine should taste like? Maybe. But it’s not good tea, either. This is, as I recall, only the second time we’ve not finished a bottle before moving on. I opened a FAVE Shiraz, and fled Slovenia for Australia.

I’ve mentioned my, uh, lack of appreciation for this selection to some winers, who both said their Pinot Grigio is the one the fancy-schmancy restaurant serves. So, again, maybe I just picked the wrong one. But it may be a while until I’ll want to revisit Slovenia.

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