Are there Protector Wines, Randy?
Yes, Randy, @TheWineWhore, there are protector wines and they are good. They exist as certainly as love of and generosity towards and devotion to wine exist and you know they abound and give longevity to your collection. Alas! How dry we would be if there were no protector wines in the world. Have faith! Protector wines are not to cheat your friends or yourself out of your sacred collection but to protect it from folly and whim.
Everyone has some protector wines and as a matter of fact, some people have protector cigars. What's a protector wine? A protector wine is the wine that does the heavy lifting. It's your day-to-day wine that can be drunk with your pizza or with your Uncle Harry who isn't going to notice if you pull out a 1989 La Tâche or a decent Chianti. Proctor wines allow you to reserve your 1990 d'Yquem or Climens or great Ice Wine for those special anniversaries or occasions but still gives you the pleasure of drinking good wine.
When we were moving from California to New York, I told my good friend Gregg to pick any bottle from my collection and we'd drink it together before Kim and I left. He chose a 1989 La Tâche. I blanched but, because these wines are for drinking, we did drink it together on our last night in Los Altos. Gregg, who is a Burgundy lover, said it was the best wine he had ever drunk. Personally, I think La Tâche trumps even Romani Conti. The four of us drank heaven in a bottle. We shared it with our wives, even joyously. What did we have for dinner? Hint, potatoes were involved.
I have a whole slew of protector wines for my private collection but that doesn't stop me from drinking my most cherished wines. As a matter of fact, sometimes my protector wines are as good as the wines from the sanctum sanctorum and in rare cases, better and most of the time just as expensive. My private collection is private and in many cases old and rare. But that's easy for me to do because I have a restaurant with an extensive collection of great wines.
In terms of your average wine drinker, protector wines are vin de table protecting that special gift from Uncle Joe who bought you a 1994 Taylor port to put away for another 10 years.
No Protector Wines! Thank Bacchus they live and live forever. Ten years from now, Randy, nay, two times ten years from now, that 1994 Fonseca, perfectly aged, will make glad your heart and please your palate.