Bottoms Up

Beer and wine in the Bay Area and beyond

Vinum wine somewhere between “Las Vegas” and “The Office”

By Jessica Yadegaran
Friday, October 19th, 2007 at 9:39 am in Uncategorized.


The other night, my roommate and I popped open a bottle of 2005 Vinum Cellars’ Red Dirt Red, a blend of the Rhone varietals Syrah, Mourvedre and Grenache. The weather was nippy, we were catching up on Tivo, and needed a good Wednesday night blend.

Caleb Taft, the sales manager over at Vinum Cellars, had advised me to give the wine a lot of air, alerting me that it was a “bigg un.” I followed his recommendation, decanting the purplish wine (with unmistakable brown undertones) and letting it sit for a good 20 minutes while Gav fried his brain on an episode of “Las Vegas.”

“This is my US Weekly,” he said. Fair enough.

I poured us each a glass, swirled the sucker and took a sip. Despite having less than 15 percent alcohol, the wine slightly singed my nose hairs, and I was disappointed in its viscosity. Big? Where? I shrugged and checked email for another 20 minutes.

By the time “The Office” came on, I cuddled up on the couch and took another swig. There it was! Aromas of black and even red crushed pepper on the nose and layers of bacon-wrapped blackberries on the palate. Gav concurred — much better. We polished off the decanter, pleased with ourselves for drinking a $30, low-production (766 cases six-bottle cases) wine that puts a Cali twist on Chateauneuf du Pape.

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