This. You want this bottle (or I, at least, want more of them):
Region: Napa Valley
Grapes involved: 90% Cab Sauv, 10% Malbec
Food pairings: It’s a Napa Cab, so think “steak wine!” and go nuts on whatever variation of that theme suits your tastes. I actually had it with a hunk of Tillamook Extra Sharp Cheddar (like, so sharp that it was flaking) on some wheat crackers and was a happy, happy girl. In a few hours, I will finish the bottle with a giant hamburger topped with the same cheddar, bacon, caramelized onion and brown mustard, and I will be an even happier girl.
Rating: 92 points, Wine Enthusiast
Here’s the wine itself:
This glass of wine produces all kinds of scents: black cherry, black currant, violet, rubber, spun sugar, vanilla and oak, orchid, and lots and lots of earth. It’s really fun (to me, because I’m really nerdy like that) to stick one’s nose in the glass and huff like it’s some sort of illegal substance. I rarely have this much fun smelling any wine that isn’t Pinot Noir (because they smell crazy, like an amalgamation of everything I’ve ever smelled in 31 years of life).
The wine’s flavors are mostly in the blackcurrant arena with some cherries and plum, all dominated by earthiness (like, go outside, dig for a moment and then sniff), woods (cedar comes to mind for some idiot reason, even though I know they age in oak and there’s nothing in this wine that says “hamster cage” to me – instead, it’s more real, clean cedar, like a forest) and some warmth from the alcohol. There are lots of little, tiny whiffs of rubber and leather and mushroom and a bunch of oddities like that which I’d expect more from an Oregon Pinot Noir* than a Napa Cab, but which are fun to pick up and play with. It’s full and thick and layered, with teeth-coating tannins and a long, blackcurrant-y finish (that again, I swear, has some rubber in it)(and yet, it’s good – like, I know I hear “rubber” and think EEWWWRGH WHYYY and yet I like it here)(just trust me here, people).**
So this wine was far too much fun to play with and write about. It’s a bit more expensive than I usually go for (being, like most of us, rather broke), but it’s still a reasonably-priced wine and, well, it’s Sunday late-afternoon and I do not live in an afternoon tea-drinking part of the world. So, forget the tea: I have a few precious hours of leisure time, so I’m spending them with a trippy fun wine.
I hope your day passes as happily.
*if ever there was a wine that tasted like *everything*, it would be an Oregon Pinot Noir.
**whenever I find a flavor in wine like rubber (or brown leather jacket or whatever else), and I find that I really, really like it, I wonder what’s wrong with me.