Ménage à Trois Decadence Cabernet Sauvignon 2015

The Ménage à Trois Decadence Cabernet Sauvignon 2015 is 84% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Petite Sirah, and 6% Merlot (those 3 grapes are the Trois in Manage a Trois) sourced from vineyards in Lodi, Monetary and the North Coast AVAs of California.  There are 17 different Menage a Trois wines, a brand created in 1996 by the Folie a Duex winery and today part of the Trinchero Family Estates line of wines. The original concept for Menage a Trois is that there would be a 3 grapes in every blend, today with 17 different wines, they use 3 grapes where feasible, but a check of their portfolio saw single varietal wines and 2,3, and 4 grape blends. This Cabernet is “infused” in 70% French oak, I am not quite sure what infused means and they don’t indicate what the other 30% is, American oak?, stainless steel tanks? The Decadence name indicates this should be a full-bodied Cab, with rich, ripe grape flavors and plenty of French oak influence. Oak and French oak particularly can add vanilla, spice, and the full range of chocolate from butterscotch, caramel to molasses to the wine depending on how the oak barrel or staves are toasted. For whiskey they char the inside of the oak barrels, wine is much too delicate for a char and a light toast goes a long way. Different levels of toasting bring different flavors and intensities. The alcohol content is 13.8%.

The color is a barely see-thru black cherry red with black highlights. The nose is ripe, plums, cherries, and blackberries, light black pepper, spice, vanilla and chocolate candy bar. This is a medium to full-bodied Cabernet with rich flavor and a nice contrast of spice. It tastes of blackberry, black cherry, mint (like those chocolate candies with the green layer of mint, but not candy sweet), vanilla, and dark chocolate. The mid-palate adds raspberry, pepper and a final slap of spice. The tannins are sweet and the acidity is well-balanced, though while you can pair this with the meal I see it more as a sipping wine. The finish is full and long.

See also  Kirkland K Vine Rosé 2022

The Ménage à Trois Decadence Cabernet Sauvignon 2015 is a very solid example of the very popular style of rich, extracted wines such as the Prisoner or Meiomi Pinot, and the Decadence is much cheaper (lists for $14, but a check of the web showed actual prices in the $10 to $12 range). Even though it is bold and rich it does not lose overall balance, you still know you are sipping a California Cabernet Sauvignon. While it is currently 80 degrees in October in Chicago, the Decadence would be a fine wine to drink while sitting around a fire pit on a cool fall evening. 

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