Posted on August 17th, 2008
Saved in Wine
Previous brand perception of Ernest & Julio Gallo wine
To be very honest, I didn’t have high hopes for this wine – I don’t have a great perception of Ernest & Julio – it’s massed produced and on the shelves of Centra, Spar etc. and on the bottom shelf of any wine shop that stocks it. I most associate the sickly bright pink “White Zinfandel” with the name Ernest & Julio Gallo.
However, none of this is based on any real experience of tasting it. It’s brand perception. Sure, I’ve tried it a couple of times, but have no memory of it being good or bad. I certainly wouldn’t have sought it out, unless it was to go into a mulled wine recipe.
Even though it was free, I was ready to pan this wine.
No ordinary Ernest & Julio Gallo
So, with little or no hope I opened this and began to pour. Immediately, the powerful nose smashed any previous perceptions I had.
Gorgeous powerful nose, full of juicy ripe blackcurrants, vanilla and eucalyptus or aniseed.
Delicious, longlasting full-bodied with great balance. This is no ordinary Ernest & Julio Gallo.
From the back label,
The grapes for this ruby-red wine were selected from our family’s vineyards, primarily from the Stefani and Frei Ranch Vineyards, originally planted in 1910 and 1885, respectively, and located in the scenic benchlands of Sonoma County’s Dry Creek Valley. The grapes were harvested in late October at an average of 25 brix. To further enchance its bouquet, flavour and body, this Cabernet Sauvignon was aged for 23 months in oak barrels, predominantly French. Our wine tastes of layers of blackberry, dark cherry and currant highlighted by rich vanilla and toasted oak with a hint of anise on a long finish. The 2002 Estate Cabernet is limited to only 605 cases and should continue to develop over the next 12 years.
Compared to the icons from last Monday
I tried a number of “Icon” Cabernet blends in Enowine last week and I’d love to have had this alongside them. I think it’s actually better than some of the icon wines that are priced from €85 and up. Perhaps a tough call to make when not tasted side-by-side.
Available from The Corkscrew, Dublin
I’m not sure what the final retail price is, but it’s likely to be between €20 and €30. Expensive, perhaps, but this is no ordinary wine.
Disclosure: wine received for free from The Corkscrew wineshop, Chatham Street, Dublin