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Peter May

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traveling to see Missouri and taste Norton....

by Peter May » Mon Aug 19, 2013 4:38 pm

I'm thinking of taking a vacation (I live in UK) to visit Hermann and Augusta in Missouri to taste Cynthiana/Norton.

I have a liking for odd wines - wines on the edge.... and I like the few Nortons I've had.

For various reasons I'm thinking of flying BA into Chicago driving down to Missouri and then driving up to Sandusky Ohio for the American Wine Soc conference in Sandusky (November 7 - 9) where they have sessions on Norton and NC wine before driving back to Chicago (40 odd miles) to catch a plane home.

Any comments suggestions etc?
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Redwinger

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Re: traveling to see Missouri and taste Norton....

by Redwinger » Mon Aug 19, 2013 5:51 pm

Sandusky, Ohio to Chicago is more like 300+ mi. and can seem much longer depending upon the time of day you approach Chi.
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Re: traveling to see Missouri and taste Norton....

by Sam Platt » Mon Aug 19, 2013 6:18 pm

Peter,

Depending on where you are going in Missouri you may be facing well over 800 total miles of driving with your planned itinerary. That is quite alot for what sounds like a relatively short visit.
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Jim Cassidy

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Re: traveling to see Missouri and taste Norton....

by Jim Cassidy » Mon Aug 19, 2013 7:14 pm

I have never dined well in Chicago but would like to based on what I have read. I'd suggest lunch or dinner in Chicago coming and going.
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Re: traveling to see Missouri and taste Norton....

by Carl Eppig » Mon Aug 19, 2013 7:41 pm

Despite the mileage underestimation, I'm sure you'll have a great trip Peter.
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Thomas

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Re: traveling to see Missouri and taste Norton....

by Thomas » Mon Aug 19, 2013 8:20 pm

I second and third the idea that it is a lot of driving in a short time. Also, in early November it is possible to encounter snow somewhere on that drive--not definite, but possible.
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Re: traveling to see Missouri and taste Norton....

by Richard Fadeley » Mon Aug 19, 2013 10:44 pm

Have at it!! It is a great part of our country. I've had several of the Hermann wines and they are very nice. But like others suggested, allow plenty of time for delays, etc. You might want to do a "google maps" to see just what you are up against. Hope it works out well.
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Peter May

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Re: traveling to see Missouri and taste Norton....

by Peter May » Tue Aug 20, 2013 2:32 pm

Thanks for the warning about distances and picking up on my mistake about Sandusky>Chicago - I realised after I turned of the computer that I'd made a mistake with the travelling time there, confusing 400 miles with 40!

We'll have about three weeks in the US and part of the attraction is driving and seeing the countryside and stopping where the fancy takes us. Apart from the fixed date at the end of our time to be at Sandusky for the conference we have nothing set in stone.

Missouri is a state I have not been to, nor Ohio or Indiana.

Had some good meals in Chicago, including being taken by a local to some historic old restaurant where they had Ridge Zinfandel at good prices and we went had two different bottles simultaneously to compare them... but where in Chicago it was I have no idea!
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Hoke

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Re: traveling to see Missouri and taste Norton....

by Hoke » Tue Aug 20, 2013 3:17 pm

Chicago is a lovely town for culinary and beverage---Blackbird, Avec, etc. Plus Joey Buono's Italian Beef sangwidges (full dip). :lol:

Missouri is well worth seeing but a caution: it can be appalling as well as beautiful...in a wine sense, I mean. It has long been a vinous area, surprisingly, with some very well developed vineyards and long track records. Vinifera and American and hybrids; they're all there.

Missouri poses problems primarily because of the heat/humidity and extreme bugginess afflicting the area, so sometimes good wines are a struggle.

There's some damned good wine. There's also an inordinate amount of what, for wine geeks, is absolute trash. Both exquisite and ham-fisted wine making exist. Nagging tendency toward the masses--those darned masses---that aren't wine drinkers and so looooooove sweet and sticky wines.

So you'll get varied experiences. One winery I visited had not one single potable wine out of the entire line of ten that I tasted. And some of it was so egregiously flawed, in a variety of ways, as to be a textbook example of everything that could go wrong with a winery.

On the other hand, have had some sublime dessert and fortified-style wines (quasi-ports mostly) from Missouri, and have even doled out gold medals in competitions for them. For still reds Norton/Cynthiana wines are good. Seyval and Vidal have at times shown well.
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Peter May

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Re: traveling to see Missouri and taste Norton....

by Peter May » Tue Aug 20, 2013 3:44 pm

Thanks Hoke ...

My focus is primarily Norton..

I understand wineries have to make wines their local clientele will buy - hence the very sweet stuff.

I could just as easily go to CA, OR or WA, but I was there last year (of course I didn't see it all, never will).

But I have the yen to go somewhere in the US I've not been before. When I broached the trip to Mrs M she immediately asked if I wanted a chauffeur. She's not fan of touring wineries - "If I see another fermenting tank I'll scream" she's said in the past, so this will be a holiday primarily with Norton as a target.

I don't know how for much longer I'll be able to long-haul holidays so I'm grabbing the opportunity while I can
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JC (NC)

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Re: traveling to see Missouri and taste Norton....

by JC (NC) » Wed Aug 21, 2013 1:33 pm

Kansas City, Missouri is a great city with some good restaurants ranging from famous barbeque to steak houses and French cuisine. JJ's Restaurant was my favorite with a great wine list including numerous Ports and dessert wines but it was destroyed in an explosion last spring caused by a natural gas leak. (The explosion occurred while the restaurant was open and killed a waitress and injured 15 others.)
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Peter May

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Re: traveling to see Missouri and taste Norton....

by Peter May » Wed Aug 21, 2013 2:04 pm

Thanks JC - I was reaching for a pen to note JJ's name till I got to the latter part of the sentence :)
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Peter May

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Re: traveling to see Missouri and taste Norton....

by Peter May » Wed Aug 21, 2013 2:05 pm

OK - Flights now booked and paid for, ditto AWS conference. We're on our way
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Mark S

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Re: traveling to see Missouri and taste Norton....

by Mark S » Thu Aug 22, 2013 11:09 pm

Peter -

I would check out some of the many (wit a capital M) natural springs in the state, further south towards the Ozarks (but north of them) than from the Missouri River areas of viticulture. They are unique and beautiful.

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