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Cheap Wine That Doesn't Suck

There's wine snobbery; then there's reverse wine snobbery.

We all know classic wine snobbery. It's the snooty sommelier at Le Grand Boof making you feel like an idiot because you don't know that the chief grape of St. Emilion is Merlot.  

Reverse wine snobbery is perhaps best displayed in the marketing of so-called "critter wines" -- Yellow Tail, Little Penguin, Four Emus, and the like -- the underlying assumption being that we're such a bunch of palate-challenged goobers that we base our wine-buying decisions on whether there's a cute furry animal on the label.

The latest attempt to make wine seem as unthreatening as a crappy fast-food burger is to give it nonsensical names -- Oops, Happy Camper, Rex Goliath -- many of them linked to completely made-up backstories. There's no nitwit backstory to Motos Liberty wines, though what a label illustration of a speeding motorcyclist has to do wine sure beats the fuck out of me. Which is why it pains me to admit that the 2008 Motos Liberty California Pinot Noir is a pretty freakin' good wine... and it costs all of $9.  

This downright cheap little sucker has more of that blessed funky-barnyard Burgundian character than many Pinot Noirs costing two to three times as much. It doesn't have much in the way of complexity, of course, but it does offer light, ripe, pleasant cherry-strawberry fruit, plus an alcohol content of 13.5 percent, so you can enjoy drinking it with or without food.

Which I did. Every drop. Even though it hurt.

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Bill Citara

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