As we move toward late Spring/early Summer, we’re still drinking red wines as well as moving into the whites and rosés that sing of summer. Here are two that fit the season well – not overly rich and heavy, but well balanced. Both are wines that offer value to the restaurant and the consumer as the price points are modest ($10 retail range) and both are well made and a good fit for every day drinking.
GNARLY HEAD Malbec – Grown in Argentina (Mendoza) in vineyards located in the high eastern foothills of the Andes Mountains, the wine offers a nose of dark berries – think blueberry and blackberry. The 2016 vintage saw what its winemakers call an “outstanding harvest” with bold, juicy concentrated fruit. It’s a big wine for a small price, 13.5 percent ABV, and somewhat like Argentinian Zinfandels in style. The name is for the gnarly vines of the grapes that twist around. This particular harvest was deemed “outstanding, exciting and somewhat unexpected.” It’s a nice surprise for a relatively inexpensive bottle to offer such depth of flavor. Visit www.gnarlyhead.com.
SMOKING LOON – This Cabernet Sauvignon is a product of Chile, imported and bottled by Smoking Loon Winery in Napa, CA. Rich and savory, it’s well balanced with notes of blueberry, dried cherry, and a hint of nuts, black raspberry, red currant and notes of vanilla and even coconut. It’s aged in American oak and is 13.5 percent ABV. Check it out at www.smokingloon.com.