It’s that time again – Wine Wednesday!
Big news in the wine world this week – too bad so bad Americans – if you live in the UK you’re rejoicing right about now.
More than ninety wines – by the case! I am going to bet you’re thinking – “Gross, silly Aldi wine.” — but, alas, they bagged 43 medals last year at an international wine competition in the UK. I’ve told you once, and I’ll tell you again – that there are vineyards out there that charge $20-$30+ per bottle (not restaurant prices- retail) that are the same grapes, relabeled and bottled under Aldi’s private label… but they share physical space and grapes!
Anyway, today’s wine is not, however, an Aldi wine – BUT – it is one of my absolute favorite wines that is under $10 a bottle.
Several months ago, nearly a year, I discovered Save Me San Francisco Wines. I grabbed a bottle on a whim at our local Schnucks and it was $10.99ish, if I recall correctly. I usually try a winery’s go-to Cabernet before trying their other wines – because if I do not like their Cabernet, I can most certainly guarantee I am not going to enjoy any of their other wines. Down the hatch went the California 37 – the Cabernet Sauvignon. I. Loved. It. The California 37 Cabernet only continued to restore my faith that a $10 bottle of wine could be so fabulous to potentially serve to special guests. The California 37 does not have that harsh aftertaste that often confuses people who are new to drinking full-bodied red wines. “Why is it giving me a sour aftertaste like green grapes? Yuck.” That means someone gifted you, or you purchased, a wine that was not left in the aging process for AT LEAST 18 months… it means they attempted to turn you around a cheap red wine without giving it at LEAST 18 months to age appropriately. Somewhere beyond 18 months in the fermentation/aging process that bitter taste that hits you in the back-center of your tongue and makes many decide to go back to sweeter wines (YUCK!) —goes away. Some varietals take longer than others, but most reds and red blends NEED 18 months to get rid of that bitter aftertaste that lingers on the way down. If they didn’t age this beyond 18 months – I could NOT tell – and I have an irritating palette in most cases where I am not simultaneously eating food. Food has a tendency to decrease the sensitivity of my palette and I drink for fun – but when I am drinking to taste wine – I get the correct Riedel crystal wine glass for the type of wine and do not also, simultaneously, eat.
I loved this wine enough that I followed them on Instagram and congratulated them on a great Cabernet! They thanked me.
Just this weekend, my husband took me out for my Valentine’s gift – which, if you know, you will know how much this speaks to my soul… He took me to try yet another stop on the Cuban Sandwich Tour (we dubbed it that) of trying all of the top Cuban sandwiches in St. Louis – and I consider myself somewhat an aficionado. Don’t judge me. I think I am allowed to self-proclaim things. Had the best one so far!!! —- and he took me to a local wine place to stock up on some of my favorites.
There I saw Save Me San Francisco’s 2013 ‘Drops of Jupiter‘ Red Blend. INTO MY CART IT WENT!!!!! I would be lying if I told you I was not thinking about how much I might like it on the drive home…
What an awesome blend! It’s kind of spicy, but still fresh! Not as deep and earthy with the tobacco hints of the Cabernet 37 — but contains more fruit and berry notes — while still maintaining a dryness that us super boring DRY DRY DRY wine drinkers love! And yet, it goes down so smooth, you might be compelled to gulp it. Don’t.
I can tell you for sure, that like me and do stuff like this often, when you want to have a lazy dinner night and you grab some goat cheese logs, some brie, some crackers — and if you’re feeling adventurous, even a mug cake recipe from Pinterest… and reject traditional cooking — DRINK THIS WINE WITH THAT DINNER!… You will not be disappointed. I am a Save Me San Francisco Wine Co lover for life.
P.S. Apparently, the band Train has partial hand in this wine venture – or at least with the winemakers. Hence… the name. 😉