Little things excite me and one of my favorite thrills is discovering a really good inexpensive bottle of wine. A few weeks ago, I went to a fun gathering where everyone was instructed to bring a bottle of Cabernet that was under $35, and to keep it in it’s little brown paper bag. Using a black sharpie, our host wrote a number on each bag and we then proceeded in order to taste 41 bottles of Cabernet Sauvignon. Well, we did break into two groups, because that is a LOT of wine to taste. 🙂
At the end, we had the unveiling and it was so much fun and a bit surprising to see which bottles were the most popular. You’d assume that the pricier bottles would be at the top, but that wasn’t the case. The top vote getter, #7, was a 2009 Waterstone Cabernet from a small vineyard in Napa, and retails for about $20, a close second was #15, 2009 Frei Brothers Reserve (Alexander Valley Cab Sav) that is more easily found and usually around $17 or so.
Also high on the list was 2010 Dreaming Tree, which was #31 and though I remember liking it well enough, I’m not sure the wines at the end of the line got a fair shake. After a certain point none really stood out. But, while at the wine store over the weekend I noticed Dreaming Tree had a blend available, called Crush. I often like blends and looked more closely. They described it as “a special blend of our favorite varieties creating a red wine that pulls you in with notes of smoky berry and a pop of raspberry jam.” They had me at raspberry jam. 🙂
This may be my new favorite wine! It’s easy to drink, gets it’s mellowness from having more Merlot than other varieties, but the Syrah, Zinfandel, and Cabernet blended in give it a wonderful mix. It’s rich and fruity, definitely get the raspberry jamminess which I love, but it’s not too fruity, there’s a nice dry finish. I think this wine would go well with everything from Salmon to pasta, especially cream based pastas like a rich alfredo, to a steak or even Mexican.
I looked up the reviews after I bought and tasted the wine, and was happy to see it got high marks, an average of 90, which is impressive! Dreaming Tree 20101 Crush is a nice all purpose wine, and the price is right too, $14.99 at my local store. With the pretty label, this one would make a nice hostess gift as well. If you try it, let me know what you think?