But sometimes they're making forays into stores like Beverages & More. Recently I asked Wilfred Wong, BevMo's ebullient cellarmaster, if I could taste all of the Moscatos that BevMo has in stock.
Wong invited me to BevMo's new headquarters in Concord, where he has a freshly built WongCave that's perfect for all the professional tasting he does: multi-temperature fridges, wine glass-specific dishwasher. I'm jealous, and so is Christian Bale. But Wilfred takes better tasting notes than Batman. (Typical Batman note: "Cherry. Pyrazines. MegaPurple. A hint of strychnine. Alfred, antidote please.")
We tasted a lot of Moscatos, and friends, it was a grim business. Lots of sweetness with strong chemical notes. Let me be like Napa Valley Grapegrowers and be the first to call it: The Joker is behind this Moscato craze.
But this was the best of the bunch, clearly made at least by Catwoman and possibly even a member of the Justice League. It's also available at Costco, so pick it up for all those non-wine-drinking friends you're planning to convert. As for me, I would like it best after the meal, in place of dessert.
Cameron Hughes Lot 311 Moscato d'Asti 2011 ($10)
A pretty wine, with light floral notes and lychee fruit on both the nose and palate. Sweet and delicate, with a low level of fizz that's enough to carry the sugar.
I reached Hughes by email in Mexico (Me: "Are you sourcing a Tequila?" Hughes: "No, just drinking it and doing a wee bit of surfing.") and he says that even in a tight market for real Moscato d'Asti from Italy, he has two producers in Asti making the wine for him and expects to have plenty of it next vintage as well.
|So that's what he looks like without the mask|
Hughes adds: "The Italians laugh at the Moscato craze as they have been doing it for centuries. Nevertheless they're not above making a buck." And neither is he. I could almost hear him laughing in the email. Wait a minute ... could Cameron Hughes, a man whose livelihood depends on keeping secrets, actually be ...