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Open that Bottle Night

We are invited to an OTBN party this weekend. As I understand the concept, the idea is to open a special bottle of wine that you have been saving for a special occasion. In general, apart from certain wines we are holding to mature to their full potential, for us, any wine in the house is fair game on any night of the year. We tend to try harder to find a special wine when we entertain friends and guests because we enjoy good wine with good company, but there is really nothing that we are "saving" for a "special" occasion. (It has occured to me the maybe our personal definition of special ocassion is just set at too low of a threshhold, as in "Hey, steak for dinner, let's open a nice wine" or "Hey, it's Thursday, let's open a nice wine". ) Notwithstanding our normal modus operandi, we will bring along a nice wine or two to the celebration, but probably will look for something we think others at the party may not have tasted before because we just don't have anything we are holding for some undefined and unscheduled special ocassion.

FWIW, I am considering a bottle of Blair Estate Red 2000 and an 1997 ESJ Syrah.

Curious if others on this board have any plans for OTBN?

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  1. Thanks for the reminder, going to have to scope out the cellar.

    1. We're hosting a dinner party for 8 and using OTBN as an excuse. As I understand it, the bottle to be opened doesn't necessarily have to be a special bottle as in great bottle of wine, but more a bottle that holds special meaning. For example, a bottle you received from a now dead relative or friend, or a bottle of wine from a great vacation, etc. I like your idea of bringing something others may not have tried, though. I'm guessing we'll have some guests bring a bottle they've been holding for that special occasion that never comes, and others who will just bring a good bottle of wine they want to share.


      1 Reply
      1. re: barry

        Actually, it was your post on the 85 Dow Port that reminded me we had the party this weekend, and started me thinking about what to bring. In our case, everyone is bringing an appetizer also. I like your approach to this - any opportunity to get together with friends and try a bunch of different wines sounds like a fun evening to me. If some of the wines have interesting stories attached, all the better.

      2. That's what OTBN stands for! Thanks!

        I have a couple of Didier Dagueneau wines (Pur Sang) that are ripe for opening...

        2 Replies
        1. re: moh

          ooooooooooh! what time is dinner?

          1. re: ChefJune

            If you're cooking, anytime....

        2. Actually instead of OTBN, there is a group of us that get together about once a month at local restaurants that permit corkage and all bring a bottle (or two) for the others to try. Since all of us are wine geeks, the bottles tend to be pretty good. This month's theme is either a producer that you want to introduce to the others because they are probably not familiar with it, or bring an orphan, one of those last bottles in your cellar that you only have one of left. I haven't decided which way I'll go, but in any case I know I'm going to be drinking a lot of special wine.

          1. I absolutely love your low threshold for special occasions! Thanks for the reminder!

            1. When, exactly, is OTBN? Saturday?

              1 Reply
              1. Thought I'd reply now, we just opened the bottle. We opened a Cab that was in my brother's wine collection. He passed away in October. He was a real foodie and love his wine. I was able to get a few bottles from his collection and so we have opened this one in his memory. RIP Bob Mervine.

                3 Replies
                1. re: eescuder

                  That is a nice story eescuder. It is a fun and respectfull way to remember your brother. Millygirl and I just opened a 2000 white Chateau Smith Haut Lafitte. What Cab of your brother's did you open?

                  1. re: Mr. Millygirl

                    It is a 2003 CASK (Rutherford) Cabernet - Rubicon Estate. We are on our second glass. We has it with a steak. The wine is good and the memories are better.

                    1. re: eescuder

                      Beautiful. Enjoy eescuder. I'm sure your brother Bob would be well pleased to know it's being enjoyed in his memory. Cheers!

                2. I was at wine shop today here in Florida and I heard a customer asking the wine guy to suggest a wine for dinner tonight. The wine guy said , what are you having? Lasagna, and we would like a great Cab.
                  This is so wrong. If you are having Italian for dinner you should have Italian wine like a great Chianti Classico, Barbera or even a Nero D'Avola. It kills me when people don't drink the wines that go with the foods from that country.
                  I guess you can blame this on the restaurant industry for not having the bulk of there wine lists geared toward the food and wines from the same country. Italian is the worst because they allow the wine companies and the public to tell them what they should have on there list instead of investing there time in building a list that goes with the food instead of carrying Jordan, Plumpjack and so on....
                  If your eating Italian you should be drinking Italian, no excuses.

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: horvath42

                    There are many wines that are not Italian that go with Italian food.

                    1. re: horvath42

                      It seems to me that part of the problem here is how the question was asked: as a statement.

                      It makes little sense to ask for a recommendation in this manner, though many people do. But as one who often receives this type of statement, it can be difficult to dissuade some people from making such mistakes.

                      When it comes to wine, people have a lot of hang ups. They are unsure, and would rather take a "safe bet" than try something new- in this case, sticking to a grape that they are familiar with even though lasagna will do very little to make a "great Cab" shine. And for most people, food and wine pairing is an unfamiliar idea- instead of choosing a wine and food that match, they choose on the basis that the wine is "good" and the food is "good" and therefor both a good choice for dinner.

                      I do typically pair wines with food from their country, but I don't think that one necessitates the other- there are many good matches to be had and it's experimenting and trying new combinations that is half the fun!