Red blends...so hot right now. And for good reason. They appeal to such a wide variety of wine drinkers that you can find whatever you are looking for in a great bottle of wine by knowing where to look with Red Blends. These wines are usually holding a younger, hipper vibe with names such as Troublemaker, Double T, and Conundrum while the labels are literally pieces of artwork as seen in the Saved label designed by tattoo artist for the stars, Scott Campbell.
But lets not stop with whats on the outside of the bottle. You can call it whatever you want but the juice on the inside is what you're really buying at the end of the day. So what is it that makes a red blend so appealing? Often in our discussions of wine preference we lean towards a comfort level with a certain grape. "I'm a Merlot drinker" or "I prefer big, bold Cabernets" and we hope to find consistency there. But the one thing a wine maker can't control, and the reason we hear so often about vintages in the US, is weather, temperature, humidity, etc. The one thing they can control however, is what goes in the bottle. You've probably become familiar with Bordeaux, Rioja and Chianti as "styles" of wine. More often than not, at their roots, these wines are blends. You'll find Cabernet, Merlot and Cab Franc in Bordeaux, Garnacha, Syrah and Mazuelo in Rioja and Sangiovese with Merlot and other regional grapes in Chianti. These wine makers, while subject to certain regional restrictions which we will talk about another time, are focused on just making great wine and will let their region, their expertise, their heritage shine through on the front of the bottle. Saved Red Wine is a blend of nine different grapes. Going from 3% to 4% Cabernet next year to achieve the same end result in the bottle is a lot easier than building a dome over the vineyard to maintain temperature and humidity.
Now on to these individual wines...
Saved Red Wine- Very robust as the Merlot, Malbec, Syrah and Zinfandel shine through. Ripe fig and blackberry jam blended with spice give this wine its California backbone. $19.99
Vigilance Cimarron- Zin, Syrah, Petite Sirah and Merlot aged in oak for 13 months. Bright tart cherry notes with blackberry, and black pepper this is a great wine for these cold months in NE Ohio. $11.99
Troublemaker Red Blend- From Paso Robles this wine carries Syrah as its structure. Deep in color, fruity in aroma with notes of vanilla as well. Coffee lingers on your palate at the end of this long finish. $15.99
Conundrum- The 25th anniversary for the Wagner family wines behind big labels such as Caymus and Mer Soleil. Great with spicy Mexican food, pasta, and anything on your BBQ. Bright, balanced fruit makes this a wine for anyone. $22.99
Trefethen Double T- A Bordeaux style blend of Malbec, Merlot and a bit of Cabernet Sauvignon, this wine is one of the best bargains you will find. Ready to drink not and meant to be enjoyed this bold red wine won't steer you wrong. $23.99