Aldi’s at it again. They’ve spent the past month stocking up their shelves with Burlwood Cellars wines. Not sure if this is for seasonal sales, or if they’re just mixing it up, but these bottles are now hanging out with the Winking Owl winefolk. I thought I had tried a Burlwood Cellar wine months ago, but the similarity of their label to the other wine had me confused. My neighborhood Aldi doesn’t have a lot of pinot noirs, so when they have one, I always try to pick it up and try it. It’s not as bitter as a merlot, nor as light as a cabernet sauvignon. It’s usually a little lighter and heavy on fruit accents, and this was no disappointment in either area.
Perhaps the dirtiest little secret I can reveal about Burlwood Cellars is that it’s a sub-label of E&J Gallo Wineries. Ernest and Julio Gallo.. you remember those dark, sultry wine ads of their vineyard in the 1980’s? No? Well, the hell with you, I’m old, and I know they existed.
*Now I dare you to get that annoying music out of your head. I dare you!*
Maybe that’s why I enjoyed Burlwood more than some of the other unique brands I find at the local Aldi. There’s some history behind these wines, and it’s a well known winery. This pinot has a lot of bright cherry flavor to it, also some plum, and I also detected strawberry. With a good hint of smokiness in the wine also. After it was exposed to air for awhile, I tasted and sniffed what I thought were some notes of blackberry as well. Overall? A great little blend, this pinot. It’s currently available at Aldi for $4.99. Your alcohol content won’t topple you over, nor that cement bust of Mozart that you have behind the shed that you talk to while inebriated. This is the sort of pleasant pinot that would go well with ham and pineapple, pork loin roast with ginger sesame glaze, or even some prime rib. I tried it with dark chocolate, and it really didn’t pair well. Definitely worth a nice afternoon sip or with a light dinner, but make sure there’s some sweetness in your dinner somewhere, and it’ll pair off fabulously.