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Archive for February, 2012

Feb 27
Monday

Supermarket Cellars: Doluca Kav 2008

Filed under Reviews (Drinks), Wine

(Editor’s Note: This post marks the inauguration of “Supermarket Cellars,” a new feature whose aim is to seek out affordable Turkish wines that are worth recommending. To assist us in doing that, we have enlisted the help of Aaron Stein — an expert on nuclear non-proliferation issues and PhD student by day, avid wine drinker and enthusiast by night — who has been assigned the thankless task of scouring Istanbul’s supermarket wine department shelves for budget-friendly diamonds in the rough. We plan on featuring his discoveries on a regular basis for as long as he can survive this hazardous assignment.)

For the frugal traveler or middle-income resident, Turkey’s wine industry does not offer many options. While more and more Turkish winemakers are churning out high quality wines, mid-level consumers are consistently priced out of the market. On a quick visit to any of Istanbul Eats’ alcohol-serving restaurant recommendations, one instantly gets the sense that Turkey remains a beer and rakı country – not surprisingly, as these are also the cheapest of Turkey’s alcoholic options.

Close friends interested in wine, but put off by the consistently high prices, have been left to scrounge the aisles at their local supermarket for something decent to drink that doesn’t break the bank. While determined, their methods of evaluation leave much to be desired. The lower-tier wines are often judged by the intensity of the hangover, rather than things like balance, taste, bouquet and food pairings. Clearly, this has to change.

I have recently started to scour the shelves at Migros and my local Tekel shops – state supervised liquor shops – to find decent wines priced between 15-30 TL. Continue…


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