Navigating a distributor’s wine portfolio can be daunting. It isn’t much of an exaggeration in the case of some of the biggest distributors to call the task herculean. Fortunately, wine events like Second Glass’ Wine Riot in Boston provide people with the chance to taste wines, learn about them, and make contact with reps.
With all the attention that craft beer and brown spirits have been drawing, wine has sort of gotten lost in the shuffle. Operators need to understand that Millennials are still interested in wine, they just aren’t as interested in California cabernet sauvignon, chardonnay, pinot noir and other standbys as their predecessors. Nightclub & Bar staff members attended Wine Riot Boston this year and found 3 compelling budget friendly wines that will grab your guests’ attention.
Anderra 2012 Carmenere
Carmenere is ideal for those guests who like cabernet sauvignon but have grown a bit bored with it. This varietal is sometimes referred to as “the lost grape of Bordeaux” because French winemakers basically ripped out their carmenere vines to plant more cabernet. Winemakers in Chile took the cuttings and clones and ran with them, producing a lush, elegant alternative to full-bodied California cabs. Anderra 2012 Carmenere features a nose of blackberry and black currants. Guests should expect a bit of vanilla, spice, strawberry and cherry on the palate with a somewhat sweet finish. It pairs well with savory dishes so this is a great recommendation if you have stew, ribs or steak on your menu.
A bit of trivia to share with guests: Anderra was founded in Chile by Baron Philippe de Rothschild from the renowned Château Mouton Rothschild. The château produces exceptional wines with price tags to match. For example, the 1982 vintage of Château Mouton Rothschild can hit prices in excess of $2,000.
Marqués de Cáceres 2010 Crianza
The winery is located in Spain’s famed Rioja region. Crianza tends to be the most accessible of Rioja vino: they’re intended to be daily drinking wines of high quality. Marqués de Cáceres’ 2010 Crianza is approachable with notes of fresh berries on the nose and clean, bright flavors of plum, cherry and cassis on the palate. Guests should also expect hints of smoke, licorice, spice and toast, which balance the fruit. This is a red blend consisting of 85% tempranillo and 15% garnacha tinta and graciano. It pairs well with pasta, fried foods, beef, and cheese.
Martín Códax 2010 Ergo Tempranillo
This red blend (86% tempranillo and 14% garnacha) is also produced in the Rioja wine region of Spain. Known for their albariño, Martín Códax also makes fantastic reds. Ergo Tempranillo is smooth and supple with bright acidity. The tempranillo delivers cherry flavors and the garnacha balances the sweetness with dark berry and spice. The barrel aging lends more to the wine’s complexity with vanilla and toasted oak. Finishes long.
You can share with your guests that tempranillo translates to, “little early one,” which references the varietal’s tendency to ripen early.