What does Larry Stone think distinguishes a $10 bottle from one that costs $100?
I don’t know if you can put a price on wine in that way. What can make a bottle of wine that is unpretentious brilliant is the company you drink it with. I think the setting you enjoy wine in is part of the whole thing; whether it’s a picnic and you’re having a bottle of Bourgueil or some elaborate dinner. Frankly, you can have some of the most expensive wines in the world, and in the wrong company its just a horrible experience. The beautiful thing about food and wine is the beautiful thing about human society. Food and wine can bring people together and wine can be a focal point for a conversation. It can also be deathly boring if it is done the wrong way.
What makes a great wine great is the people you are drinking it with. A great wine has to be something like a great person. It has to be something that draws you in and keeps you engaged, that stimulates you and makes you think things you never thought. A great wine makes you experience things you never experienced before, and it reveals something about itself, as well as about you, when you taste it. A really great wine can do that. A wine that can be delicious and perfectly wonderful with a meal might not have the same impact on its own. But, a great wine will definitely make you remember it. It will make you wonder about it and try to unravel all the mysteries that it presents to you. You’ll just keep going back to it and that’s the beauty of wine: it has so many facets.