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Monthly Archives: October 2012

More contrasts.

Remember my VERY LAST POST, in which I experienced consumer paralysis and ended up the not-so-proud owner of a litre of French Cross Cab-Merlot? And said don’t do that to yourself?
Well, the next day, my spouse and I hit the LCBO and I said I didn’t need anything, because I had terrible wine at home. She said I should get some decent wine, rather than drink the terrible wine any more out of either a) cheapness or b) stubbornness or c) both. So I said okay. But having resolved myself to finishing the French Cross, I was having trouble feeling inspired, so I decided to at least make sure I tried something local and grabbed Open Cab-Merlot. I thought it would be fun to do another similar varietal, by a winery whose other wines I’ve liked (the Open Riesling-Gewurtz is one of my yummiest summer staples).

Yeah. So. Not really that fun, turns out. This Open stuff is… jammy. I think I finally know what reviewers mean when they say that, and it’s not good. Cloying? Not exactly sweet, just — overly smelly and aftertastey. Blargh. I didn’t even finish a glass of it. Today, a few days later, I thought I might be more in the mood for it — and the only other option is the French Cross, mocking me from the countertop — so I opened it, got a whiff, and closed it right the hell up again. It’s probably going to go straight down the drain.
This makes me sad and confused, because that Riesling-Gewurtz, you guys! I’m sure part of it must be that I still really don’t like Merlot. But it also seemed truly awful as an example of its type. Hence, I type this entry beside a glass of the French Cross, which suddenly doesn’t seem that bad. I’ll take wine-flavoured cheap vodka over that mess any day.



My spouse is allergic to wine — wine, a.k.a. the Universal Random Gift. Last week, I drank her birthday wine. At the time, I didn’t think I liked it, because Merlot.


It was Kacaba 2007 Reserve Merlot. At 5 years old, it was a lot more WINE than I usually drink. I liked the smoothness, but I don’t usually love a Merlot (such a weird combo of heavy darkness but fruity flavours… should be the best of all worlds but usually just seems to be arguing with itself) so I kept saying “This is great for a Merlot” and “this is a great MERLOT.”
Today, I knew I’d want wine after a kind of ridiculous day, so at the grocery store I went into one of those places that are popping up in grocery stores and headed to the cheap section. Most of them don’t have a great selection and what they do have is kind of overpriced, IMO, so I figured I’d just get some plonk. I was torn between $12 plonk I was slightly worried I’d had before and hated, and $10 plonk I knew would be bad but figured wouldn’t be THAT bad.

So I got the $10 plonk, namely, the French Cross 1L Cab-Merlot. Cause I drink cheap stuff all the time and am often sure I can’t tell the difference between the okay and the bad wines.

Turns out, yes I can.

I mean, it’s not TORTURE bad. I’m drinking it. It’s ok. It’s really only almost ok, though, and really only with food. It has a strange just-plain-alcohol burn that I haven’t tasted in a while and usually associate with a strong cheap vodka cocktail. Not with wine. After that, it’s a bit sour and has kind of “red wine flavour” going on. That’s all.

Drink it with a really greasy takeout pizza, definitely. Supply it at an open-bar wedding reception nobody’s rich parents are paying for, totally. Otherwise, buy the $12 plonk. And know that you can, in fact, tell the okay wines apart from the bad wines.