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Hump Day Vices: Cannonball Cabernet Sauvignon

Big, Bright, and Fruity

Tasting Notes:

Wine: Cannonball Cabernet Sauvignon

Vintage: 2009

Price: $22.49

Producer: Cannonball Wine Company

Region & Country: California: 62% Mendocino, 32% Sonoma/ Dry Creek Valey, 4% Napa, 2% Other

Varietal: Cabernet Sauvignon

Place and Date Purchased: 11/6/2011 Whole Foods Market – Santa Monica, CA

Place and Date Tasted: 11/8/2011 Home – Los Angeles, CA

Appearance: Bright Grape-Juice Purple, extremely light legs.

Nose: Overwhelming aroma of fresh, juicy blackberries, ripe oranges, and pineapple

Taste: Extremely fruity-sweet with a medium-long tart finish.

Finish: Medium-long with progressively intense tannin

Overall Impression: I won’t deny it, this wine tastes great. The only problem is I couldn’t differentiate it from Welch’s Concord Grape Juice if my life depended on it. A good wine should exemplify and carefully explore all the grape has to offer. In the case of Cannonball Cabernet Sauvignon the only way I know it’s Cabernet Sauvignon is by reading the label. You don’t get any of the dark, subtle, rich complexity of cabernet in this wine…you get big, dumb fruit and enough of it to keep a room of kindergartners very happy indeed. I wouldn’t be as critical of this bottle as I am were it not for the price…for $22.49 you can get 8 bottles of 2-buck chuck Shiraz and two 2-liters of Pineapple Fanta, mix it together and have about 12 times the drink with the exact same flavor (trust me).

Food Pairing: I’m rarely at a loss for a wine and food pairing but Cannonball Cabernet Sauvignon is so insanely sweet it would steamroll anything with a similar flavor profile and would taste off compared to anything different. If you’re going to drink this drink it straight up.

Overall Rating (out of 100 points): 60

Overall Value (1-5 stars): 1 star

Pass, thanks.

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Hump Day Vices: Château Barreyres Cru Bourgeois and Chasing Lions Cabernet Sauvignon

This evening I would like to take a moment to share my notes on two very distinctive, very different wines I’ve had the chance to taste this week. The first continues on the theme of value-priced wines from Bordeaux I started last week. Château Barreyres Cru Bourgeois is a fabulous wine which captures all of what is good in Bordeaux for the remarkably low price of $19.99 per bottle. The second, Chasing Lions Cabernet Sauvignon, comes from the Napa valley and has one of the fruitiest expressions I’ve ever experienced from Cabernet Sauvignon. I highly recommend both wines and share my tasting notes below:

Château Barreyres Cru Bourgeois

When you uncork the bottle always take care to check the cork. A cork with a uniform red stain on the bottom indicates a wine which was properly stored on it's side. If the cork has no stain it means the wine was stored improperly upright, which will dry the cork out and spoil the wine.

Vintage: 2006

Price per Bottle: $19.99

Producer:Concours de Bourdeaux

Region and Country: Haut-Médoc (left bank), Bordeax, France

Grape Varietal: Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot

Place and Date Purchased: Whole Foods Santa Monica 10/9/2011

Place and Date Tasted: Whole Foods Santa Monica 10/9/2011

Appearance: deep burgundy color, medium-strong legs (12.5% alcohol by volume)

Rich red color

Nose: ripe blackberries and cranberries

Taste: nutmeg spiciness and honey-grape sweetness

Finish: long and spicy

Overall Impression: this is a very nice wine and considering this is a left-bank Bordeaux priced at $20.00 per bottle this is a steal not to be passed up. I foresee this wine aging well and would love to see how it mellows after being cellared for about 5 years.

Food Pairing: pair with roasted duckling or another fatty bird

Overall Rating (out of 100): 88 points

Overall Value (1-5 stars): 5 stars

Chasing Lions Cabernet Sauvignon

Again, When you uncork the bottle always take care to check the cork. A cork with a uniform red stain on the bottom indicates a wine which was properly stored on it's side. If the cork has no stain it means the wine was stored improperly upright, which will dry the cork out and spoil the wine

Vintage: 2008

Price per Bottle: $14.99

Producer: Nine North Wine Company

Region and Country: St. Helena, California

Grape Varietal: Cabernet Sauvignon

Place and Date Purchased: Whole Foods Santa Monica 10/9/2011

Place and Date Tasted: Whole Foods Santa Monica 10/9/2011

Appearance: light cranberry red with strong legs, 14% alcohol by volume

Light Red Appearance

Nose: honeydew melon, night blooming Jasmine, orange zest, orange blossoms

Taste: jam-sweet, this wine tastes exactly like orange marmalade

Finish: long and progressively smoother

Overall Impression: I normally prefer wines who’s taste is an accurate reflection of the character of the grape used, however Chasing Lions is a rare exception. This is a nice, fruity, highly drinkable wine which could easily be drank on it’s own or paired with a number of foods.

Food Pairing: Creamy cheeses such as Brie, anything with orange in it, and pork.

Overall Rating (out of 100): 90

Overall Value (1-5 stars): 5 stars

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