2009 A by Acacia California Red Blend

20590A by Acacia is the entry level label for Acacia Vineyards, a top notch producer of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir in the Carneros AVA of Napa Valley. The A by Acacia Red Blend is 85% Syrah, 10% Merlot, 2% Grenache, 2% Petite Sirah and 1% Zinfandel, the grapes were sourced from vineyards in several AVA’s of California’s Central Coast. The wine was aged for 15 months in 60% French and 40% American oak barrels, 15% of the barrels were new oak, the rest used oak barrels. The alcohol content is 13.8%.

The color is Dorothy’s ruby slippers red. The nose is raspberry, Starbucks Venti Mocha, black cherry and a hint of toasted vanilla. Well balanced flavors, tart cherry, raspberry, a little licorice and softer black cherry upfront. The mid-palate adds blueberry, sweet tea, a light brushing of curry spice and dark chocolate, a very tasty melange of flavors. The tannins are soft and smooth, the finish is “ok,” but not up to the standards of the body of the wine.

Look what I found in the local supermarket, an expertly made Rhone style blend, made from good grapes, aged in oak for 15 months and best of all, selling for $8.99. The A by Acacia is several cuts above the usual back porch, pizza and burgers wine found on the shelves, but sells for the same price or less. Fire up the Weber grill, pop the top on the A by Acacia Red Blend and you have the makings of a very good night.

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Don’t tell anyone, but there is absolutely no correlation between the cost of wine and the quality of wine.

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