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88 Points

Saturday, February 2, 2013 - This is a very nice red blend, with a mostly red fruit flavor profile (raspberries and cherries), along with a healthy dose of black fruit as well. This is a medium-bodied blend with a very moderate alcohol level, which is very refreshing since I’m used to California rich, creamy, spicy, alcoholic fruit bombs. Which means this is a very nice, well-balanced blend with not too much of anything (fruit, oak, spices, alcohol, acid, etc.). I enjoy a big, bold, brash, obnoxious red wine as much as anybody, but every once in a while, it’s pleasant to enjoy a sublime, subdued, quiet, delicious, well-made wine. I’m assuming partly due to the six different varietals used in this blend, this wine has a very nice flavor profile (though not extraordinarily deep and/or complex), along with beautiful earthiness, spiciness, ever-so-slightly oakiness, perfect acidity and alcohol content, with a smooth, lingering finish that knows exactly how long to stick around and when to get the hell off of my palate.

I’ve had more compelling Bordeaux-styled red blends, but for an affordable Washington red blend (according to Hedges website, this wine has a retail price of $25), if you’re partial to Bordeaux blends, this is one heck of a bargain.

We served this wine with Arthur’s beef stew, which paired very nicely with the beef, veggies, and spices. Because this blend shows beautiful restraint, it would also pair well with a grilled/spiced ribeye steak, prime rib, and just about any other red meat dish. But because it isn’t a Fruit/Spice/Cream/Earth/Alcohol/Oak Bomb, I would stick with more restrained red meats, especially simply-spiced steaks and prime rib. Spicy lamb dishes would pair better with Zins, Syrahs, Petite Sirahs, and Cab Savs, but this beauty would pair perfectly with a simple stew (like what we had tonight) or a simple grilled steak.

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