At first look, this wine had me shaking my head in dismay. I found myself groaning over the fact that I’d be tasting another uninspiring, thin, ho-hum cheap Bordeaux. There is no shortage of such creatures; in fact I’ve had difficulty finding good Bordeaux for under $15.00 with the exception of those I had in France.

So I went ahead and opened the latest bottle, rolling my eyes after looking at the $7.99 price, took a deep breath, gave the wine a good sniff. Low and behold if I didn’t raise an eyebrow and even smile a bit as I raised the glass to my lips.

Now don’t get me wrong, you’re not going to confuse this wine with a $30.00 St. Emillion, but it is a fairly complex blend of 65% Merlot and 35% Cabernet Sauvignon. There is a strong black fruit influence on the nose along with hints of tobacco and mocha. The taste is basically dry, but with a delicate sweetness on the long finish that includes cherry, dark plum, and vanilla. The wine is medium-bodied, but not thin or harsh. I am quite impressed with this wine and can’t wait to try it with food.

It is cold and rainy today and tomorrow will be dry but cool. Hearty lamb stew tonight or a goodbye to summer grilled steak tomorrow, either way, this little gem will fill the bill.