One thing I always struggle with is finding new wines. I have a handful of my trusty old-faithfuls that I know I can go to in a pinch. However, there's nothing I like better than getting to try out something new. The only problem, is that I'm a bit indecisive with so many options, and I tend to pick a wine based on the design of the label. I'm beginning to find that while I have great success choosing my books that way, I end up disappointed more often than not when trying to choose a new wine that way. This is exactly why I think wine clubs are so great. They already know what's good, and all you do is sit back, and let the choices get made for you, and then delivered to your doorstep.
"Our most popular club features two bottles of award-winning wine from California's best "mom & pop" wineries. No membership fees, cancel anytime and all wines are 100% guaranteed." ~ California Wine Club (www.cawineclub.com)
The term "club" tends to make me a bit iffy in general. In my past experience with various other clubs, the monthly fees are always what keep me away. That, and the fact that canceling usually ends up to be a bigger pain in the tuchus than it needs to be. The California Wine Club takes the guesswork out of wine shopping by "vetting" in the wines that they chose. They're all tested and approved for the club, so you know you're getting something good. And, each bottle is guaranteed. They have a variety of options that allow you to customize your monthly selections to better suit your taste. For example, their Premier Club allows you to choose between two whites, two reds, or a red and a white. And if wine isn't something you consume too often, meaning two bottles of wine monthly is too much, you can set up your shipments to arrive every other month, or even quarterly.
For this month's California Wine Club Shipment I received The Seven Brothers 2009 Tempranillo (red), and The Seven Brothers 2009 Sauvignon Blanc from the Robledo Family Winery. Now, the thing about a wine club is that you need to enjoy surprises and be up for the unknown. When I purchase wine myself from local stores, I tend to stick with the sweeter wines. I'm usually a Moscato fan, or a good Lambrusco-esque type person. So, I was a bit timid to try these two wines out.
Sauvignon Blanc: Grapefruit and herbal notes turn to melon and ripe passion fruit on the mid-palate. Aromas of honeysuckle and mango. Concentrated with green tea and citrus. Rich and complex with a tang of lemongrass. ~ Robledo
Not surprisingly, the Sauvignon Blanc was my favorite out of the two wines, and I was pleasantly surprised with how much I enjoyed it being a little dryer than what I usually prefer. I was prepared to mix the wine with a Sprite or 7up. (I know, way to ruin the wine, right?) However, I didn't have to, and in the end really loved the bottle. The fruity notes rang through loud and clear, but weren't overpowering, and were on the verge of refreshing. Definitely a wine I would purchase again, and one I think would make for a great gift if you aren't sure whether the receiver of the gift prefers sweet or dry.
Tempranillo: This wine has a bright ruby color with heavy aromas of cranberry, blackberry, cinnamon, spice and toasted oak. The flavors of dried black fruit, toasted cedar and tobacco mingle with great acidity and strong tannins to produce a long, rich finish. ~ Robledo
Only because of personal tastes, the Tempranillo was borderline line for me. It was much richer in flavor, and had less of the sweetness that I usually prefer. Unlike the Sauvignon Blanc being in the middle, this was definitely on the dry side. The finish remained longer (which I hear is a sign of a good quality wine), however it was just too "earthy" for me. Still a good wine, and after a glass or two I was well enough acclimated to it to be able to better enjoy it. It's just not one I would purchase on my own again, and if I were to gift it I would need to make sure of the tastes of receiver.
I wasn't disappointed in the choices at all. I loved that I didn't have to worry about selecting what to purchase, and now I know which wines/varieties I would try again, and which ones I wouldn't. I also really enjoyed being introduced to a new winery. I just adore learning about new "mom and pop" businesses, and this one seems to be top notch. And, the fact that The California Wine Club brings wines to many people who can't always find these wines in their local stores while giving California wineries some exposure is just fantastic bonus. I do think that outside of this review, I probably would have chosen two white wines instead of one of each from The California Wine Club (which is fine, because that IS an option for club members).
The California Wine Club also makes for a great gift idea! We all know the holidays are closing in, and let's face it, we don't always have time to run out to the stores and grab the "perfect" gift for our loved ones. However, for any wine connoisseurs this is the perfect present. You can buy 1 month all the way up to 12 months if you're feeling generous!
The California Wine Club has a pretty fantastic giveaway happening right now too! Head over [HERE] and enter to win one of the following prizes (52 winners in November & 52 winners in December):
1) One of four, Three Month Wine Club membership (A $150 value you can give as a gift, or keep for yourself)
2) One of 50 handy Two Bottle Wine Totes ($25 value)
3) One of 50 Red Tulip Music wine country CD's ($15 value)
* This review was made possible by Mom Spark Media. Thoughts are my own. I received a 2 month Membership to the California Wine Club for the purpose of this review. All opinions are 100% mine. See Disclosure Policy.
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