Monthly Archives: November 2014

Wine Cube Cabernet Sauvignon (4 out of 5)

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I have been drinking this wine for over two years now; for some reason, I thought I had reviewed it. I had a glass while going through my football scores this evening, and I double-checked the blog to see if my thoughts had changed. Of course, then I realized I had never reviewed it! What folly! I am here to fix that this evening.  This is carried primarily through Target, which you know is my second home, and where my friend D gets a ton of the wines I review here. Anyway, the small wine cube is very affordable- usually about $4.99. One of these yields three glasses of wine, which lasts me about three weeks these days (one glass a week, usually. Sadly, no joke). They have four or five reds, three whites. A good balance.

The cab is very smooth, very fruity. When you open it up and get a whiff of it, you immediately get fruit. It’s well balanced and not overly acidic. When you actually try the wine, you get sweet berries, some spice but not a lot, a little bit of clove, some plum flavors, and a bit of cherry to round it off. It’s a fragrant wine, even when you let it sit out for a while. I drank the one glass over four hours, and it was still as good after sitting here that whole time. It lost nothing of the fullness, nothing of the pleasant taste, nothing of the aroma, nothing! Usually exposed to air, something changes. Nothing seemed to here- it stayed pretty consistent. I love that in a red wine. I had it with tacos, and it worked, which I didn’t think was possible. I will definitely drink this again- it wasn’t super hearty, it wasn’t super light, it was medium bodied and perfect in every sense. Definitely a fan. Alcohol content is 12.% so a little on the light side; don’t plan on being messed up from this vintage; it is a sipping, relaxing sort of wine.

You can pick up the Wine Cube in a box also; those retail around $19.99; although lately, I’ve seen them for $14.99 during peak times of year, summertime, etc. I think you should probably pair this with burgers, BBQ chicken, roast chicken, things of that nature. The heavy duty meat artillery should be kept to the merlot of this blend. The cab is for lighter fare. If you’re doing a cheese, I would recommend Parmesan Reggiano, Bellavitano, or Alehouse Cheddar. Lighter cheeses with a strong flavor work well with this wine. If you’re pairing with a dessert, I would say chocolate mousse would work well; or even a crème brulee would work well. No matter how you go, pick it up and give it a shot, it’s delicious.

Menage A Trois Midnight (5 out of 5)

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I just had to use that image. If the name of the wine isn’t enough to get your dirty minds jigging in the aisles, I don’t know what will. This wine comes courtesy of D, who saw it and decided I needed a new wine to light my fire. Congratulations, my friend, you have succeeded! This sucker is out of this world. If the Meritage is Mariah Carey, the Bogle is Whitney Houston, then this wine is Aretha! Queen of dark, forbidden wines that make your heart sing, your lips thirst for more, your head ache more in the morning, yes, people, this is it. It’s probably my new favorite red of the year, hands down.

This blend is a mix of four heavyweight grapes; Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Petite Sirah, and Petit Verdot. I can’t give you exact percentages, but the merlot is very present, so I’d guess that’s the majority of the blend. When you uncork and get your first whiff of the wine, you know you’re in for a good time. It’s full frontal lobe sensory advisory- once you smell that fragrance, it stays in your nostrils for quite awhile. I’m pretty sure I told D a few times that I could still smell the wine- and it was on the other side of the kitchen airing out, so that will give you an idea. The flavors are amazing- blackberry, plum, mocha, and spice add to the allure. The taste is velvet gold; it’s smooth, but it also packs one hell of a wallop on the tongue, so watch out. It definitely cleared out my nasal cavity! The label is all elegance and dark mystery; how can you go wrong having a sip of the forbidden elixir? The only way you could go wrong is to NOT try this wine. It is magnificent. It retails for $12.99 normally, but it’s been popping up on sale all over the place. I had the wine with ham; probably not the best idea; as I told D, it’s the kind of wine that you use to accompany a 3 course steak dinner, pot roast, rump roast, any roast, for that matter. Or 90% super dark chocolate. This would pair excellently with that.  No matter what you pair it with, or if you just have a glass after a super stressful day, you can’t go wrong with this wine.

Bogle Vineyards Essential Red (4 out of 5)

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D found this one for me and brought it by last weekend, along with a bag of gluten-free goodies (a tough couple of weeks, good friends can tell and always manage to make it better. D is on that friends list). The bottle tells you it’s good for pairing pizza…and it is! I liked it for several reasons right off the bat- the name is close to Bogie, one of my favorite actors. The wicked hieroglyphic finger painting on there (a psychedelic tree?) caught my attention- it reminded me of Arizona and the sun goddess that is all over everything there (what is her name again, D?). It also looked like it could be an inkblot from the Rorschach test. All of these factors played a largely superficial role in my liking the wine. 13.5% is also a good indicator that it’s going to make me silly. Always good. Now onto what I actually thought of the wine.

This is a blend of Zinfandel, Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Petite Sirah. Since both Syrah and Petite Sirah are present, prepare yourself to be thrust into Dryville…. it’s a very dry wine. After letting it open up to air for awhile and trying more, it had lessened its heartiness somewhat. But not completely. If you are one of those people who drink wine and expect it to instantly knock you off your feet, well, it will, but from the sheer potency of it. Take my advice, let this one air out before you dive into it further. Once it had breathed, you get a delicious blend of boysenberries, cherries, vanilla, and some deep, dark, sexy, somewhat oaky spice (the secret member of the Spice Girls? Oaky Spice…). You cannot call it full-bodied, though, because once it hits the air, it soothes into a medium-bodied structure. There are no stale notes here, no overly spicy or overly notes, just smooth finish all the way through. I cannot tell you enough how tasty this wine is, and not in a cheap Walmart wine sale sort of way.  It’s precisely the sort of wine you will expect to find at a high-class dinner at a fancy Italian restaurant, or in an upscale steakhouse, and I would highly recommend it for more than pizza. I think this is the sort of wine that does incredibly well with prime rib, steak, and pot roast. We had it with pizza and it did indeed pair well, but it missed its true pairing. Not sure how well this would pair with cheese, though. You may want to use this wine primarily with hunks of delicious carnivorous meat , and not with some pale demon cheese. Save that for the white wines!

I really enjoyed this wine. Not sure what D paid for it, and it’s rude to ask, but a rudimentary check of it on Google shows it as retailing around the $12.00 mark. I’m sure you can find it cheaper at your local Target or liquor store. But pick up a bottle and give it a spin, you won’t be disappointed.