Wine Review: 2016 Dark Red, 19 Crimes

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Xavier bought me a fantastic wine decanter and that is the best part of this review.

A wine decanter helps the wine to open up faster by exposing more of the surface area to oxygen. Aside from that, it looks cool.

Of course you then have to hurry up and drink it before it gets too oxidized, grows bacteria, and turns into an unsavory science project.

The Banished is 19 Crimes’ Dark Red Blend. Once again, no info on the bottle and I can’t get the website to work because, for some inexplicable reason, my computer will not allow me to check the box certifying that I am of legal drinking age.  No checky box, no loady website.

In any case, I can tell you that 19 Crimes is located in south eastern Australia and the wine in this bottle was indeed dark red.

I think it tasted alright but I kinda don’t remember because it gave me a red wine headache that lasted for two days.

Two. Days.

If you’re prone to red wine headaches, I recommend skipping this one.

Wine Review: 2016 Red Wine Blend, 19 Crimes

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The label is curiously devoid of any words to describe the contents and the website won’t load so your guess is as good as mine when it comes to what’s in the bottle.

It’s definitely wine and it’s definitely red.

So there you have it.

19 Crimes is from Australia, home of Shiraz, and so far as I can tell Shiraz seems to be the main ingredient in this blend. I’m guessing the other ingredient to be Cabernet Sauvignon but that is purely a guess.

According to Xavier it, “smells like a whole lotta wood in there”, and it does indeed.

Despite the lack of information, I really liked this wine. It had a unique flavor that I had not tasted before; jammy but not heavy with the oak falling in exactly the right part of the flavor spectrum. Additionally, it tastes exactly the way it smells so the sipping experience is a harmonious and happy one.

I would absolutely buy it again.

Wine Review: Big Bold Red, [yellow tail]

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Why do I never notice the lack of cork at the store?

I guess it’s one of my special skills.

Anyway, once again I found myself being concerned over the lack of vintage or cork but here’s the thing; expectation management.

Back in the late 1990’s I used to work as a wedding photographer at several “little chapels” on the Las Vegas Strip.

These places are notoriously cheap and fast. Double booked every 15 minutes, we cranked out weddings complete with flowers and photos for less than my car payment; a situation which necessarily lead to a good deal of conflict.

Why?

Because when people would call, the receptionist would explain the details of our services but conveniently fail to mention the 7.5 minutes part.

Then couples would arrive, expecting to be greeted by people who give a shit, and would promptly be rounded up with the rest of the cattle. Brides who had spent their girlhood dreaming of the day they could finally be a princess were butt hurt when fantasy didn’t match reality.

But here’s that thing again, expectation management.

It’s simple math is all. Real estate on the Strip is EXPENSIVE, employees are not volunteers and, as always, Vegas wasn’t built on winners.

Chapel weddings are cheap so they have to make up the difference in volume.

I mean, duh, right?

For a real wedding, where people act like they care and think you’re special, it’s going to cost more than the finance payment on a 1997 Honda Civic.

For a $6.99 bottle of wine, [yellow tail] Big Bold Red isn’t bad. It’s typical of the red blends. If I had paid $20 for the bottle, I may have been miffed, but it was $6.99 so I’ll say it was alright. In my opinion the oak was splintery making the flavor seem a little unbalanced but we still drank it.

If you want something that’s a step up, spend five more dollars.

 

Wine Review: Sweet Red Roo, [yellow tail]

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Sweet Red Roo has a screw top.

I was concerned about the lack of cork but Xavier said it was ok because, “Now I can get to my liquor quicker.”

He’s funny like that.

We used to drink [yellow tail] Moscato all the time.  This was back in the day before I became interested in exploring the wide world of wine.  Some time ago I wrote a review about their Cabernet Sauvignon and, to be honest, I wasn’t that wild about it and hadn’t bought anything else from [yellow tail] since.

But then one day I was in the mood for something red and sweet, something like the Sweet Katherine from Elk Run Vineyards here in Maryland but maybe a little less expensive, and while perusing the liquor store noticed the Sweet Red Roo from [yellow tail].

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I decided it was time to give [yellow tail] another chance. As a matter of fact, I got the Shiraz too.

As it turns out forgiveness does indeed benefit the forgiver because I liked this wine quite a lot.

Maybe they put more Miracle Gro on the grapes.

The label on the bottle puts it at one hop past the dividing line between dry and sweet. I believe the name for that is semi-sweet and it pretty much hits the nail right on the head.

Pleasantly sweet, but not overpowering, the vanilla and chocolate overtones make it smooth and prevent the tanginess from getting out of hand.

I give it the Murphy dog seal of approval!

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Wine Review: 2015 Shiraz, [yellow tail]

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I may have gotten a little carried away with the [ yellow tail ] wine this week.

In my defense, it was on sale [ buy one at $6.99 and get the 2nd one for $4.99 ].

I mean, hey, what’s a gal to do?

Unlike Sweet Red Roo, the Shiraz has a cork and a vintage.

We had it with baked salmon and vegetables but then we were still hungry so the rest of the bottle disappeared along with a bag of blue corn tortilla chips and salsa.

Xavier and I don’t own a dining room table so we eat at the coffee table. When the food appears so do the animals. The funny thing is that the dog wants the broccoli and the cat wants the wine. Neither of them is very concerned about the baked salmon.

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For those of you who aren’t aware, Shiraz and Syrah are made from the exact same grape.

So why the different names?

Despite being made from the same grape, the final product is very different. Shiraz and Syrah have distinctly different flavors that are accounted for by a wide variety of climate and soil conditions along with different fermentation processes.

Syrah often comes from France and is considered to be more refined and sophisticated while Shiraz comes from everywhere else and is generally thought of as being more crass.

Crass, that was Xavier’s word.

“You mean it swears in public?”, I asked.

“I mean it hits the top of my mouth like a mushroom cloud”, he replied.

Well, that’s one way to put it.

This wine does open with an upper cut to the upper pallet but then diffuses to a softer finish.

Considering it was on sale for $4.99, I say it’s not bad.

Is it exceptional? No, but it’s alright and didn’t give me a headache. I’d drink it again.

Wine Reviews: Cabernet Sauvignon, [yellow tail]

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Cheap wine in a dirty kitchen. No counter tops were cleaned in the making of this photograph.

I suppose I should’ve know better but I decided to live cheap and dangerously.

This is Cabernet Sauvignon from yellow tail.

The price: $6.59.

That means no Mircale Gro for the grapes.

Now, to be honest, it’s not terrible, not pond water by any means, and it does start to taste better by the 2nd glass.

That first glass though.. it punches you in the throat on the way down which means it’s not very smooth and I figured out that this characteristic is what determines whether or not I like the wine.

It’s 13% alcohol so after the first glass, with the throat numb anyway, the punch is nearly painless.

While my review of this wine could double as zen wisdom for surviving a bar fight, it’s not all bad. If expendable income is tight and this is what you brought home to have with dinner, drink it fast, the pain is short lived.