A Distinctively Unimpressive Wine

(TORONTO, ON) – When you write about wine and have guests coming over for dinner you find your mind turning into a bit of a computer when their bottle of wine is presented to you. In some instances, you have tried to wine, or at least have a fairly good idea of its price.

So, I have invited you over for a fantastic meal I have prepared myself and you bring over a bottle of $12.95 plonk?

I’m sorry. I just can’t stop myself. In fact, I know some $9.95 plonk that isn’t plonk at all, but a tremendous value.

Some guests are terribly frightened if I open up the bottle and give it a good taste. Every furrow of their brow is scrunched up as they seemingly await some pontification on my part.

I’ll never say this tastes like cheap shit, but rather say, “Now, that is interesting.” When the wine is good I’ll say, “Very interesting.” If my guests know me well they’ll ask if I am being honest.

If you don’t open the wine they brought, that will lead to all sorts of inferences. It’s a tough life writing about wine.

Apothic Red wineSorry for digressing, but when I write about wine I feel there should be a story or two before the wine is tried. In this case it is an Apothic Red, which seems to be a Millennial favourite. It was brought over for a stellar dinner, prepared by yours truly, by a Boomer which, between you and me, is bit of a disgrace.

I thought Boomers have a better appreciation for wine.

This crude snob notes its dark ruby colour. It has a nose that is a bit ragged and tough, full of uncouth black cherry, tar, and sweet raspberries. Just a rough, gruff, and raw, if not overly aggressive, nose.

On the palate, again a very aggressive fruit attack of blackball candy, bitter cherry, and blackberry gelatin, and is rather sickly and sweet.

Although the tannins and acids are well balanced the finish, being of a sickly and sweet nature, wants to make you shiver.

I can buy into the aromatics on this wine but, as far as taste goes, it’s just too sweet.

If this is what Millennials like, I am a Boomer and prefer a palate which offers complexity and intrigue, as opposed to some quasi cough syrup medication.

I can recall my son telling me about some rappers it Atlanta singing chop and screw music based on a high from cough syrup. This wine fits into that category.

Buyer beware.

I have a friend who is a hunter and locks his guns up in a closet. I suggest this wine be locked up with the guns.

(Apothic Red, Winemaker’s Blend 2014, Apothic Wines, Modesto, CA, 750 mL, 13.5%, $16.95, LCBO #234369, Square Media Group Rating 85/100)

A blend of Zinfandel, Merlot, and Syrah. Ideally suited to spicy homemade burgers, be they ground sirloin or black bean based. Not a great sipping wine.

A Gallo company which produces mass proletarian wines in California. A staggering 18 grams of sugar per litre.

Millennials, enjoy. Boomers, the sugar will rot your teeth.

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About the Author

Robert Stephen (CSW)
Robert K Stephen writes about food and drink, travel, and lifestyle issues. He is one of the few non-national writers to be certified as a wine specialist by the Society of Wine Educators, in Washington, DC. Robert was the first associate member of the Wine Writers’ Circle of Canada. He also holds a Mindfulness Certification from the University of Leiden. Be it Spanish cured meat, dried fruit, BBQ, or recycled bamboo place mats, Robert endeavours to escape the mundane, which is why he loves The Square. His motto is, "Have Story, Will Write."Email Robert Stephen

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