Tonight we got a thorough downpour of rain and the most stunning lightning storm. This teaser to fall made me crave a rich, thick, hearty red wine. This is no weather for a flimsy pinot noir. I need some meat, man!
I grabbed a bottle of 2011 Terra Andina Scandalous Carmenere, and with the first pour of the thick, nearly black nectar, I knew it was a great choice!
Carmenere grapes originated in Bordeaux, France, but are all but nonexistent there now, finding a solid home in Chile. They are Chile’s signature wine grape but can also be found in vineyards in Washington, California and parts of Italy.
Wikipedia tells me that carmenere, a member of the cabernet family, will produce a rich, ruby red red wine with soft tannins — flavors like a cabernet sauvignon but gentler. The Terra Andina version embodies this description. The wine is so wonderfully savory like a cabernet sauvignon, but softer on the palate. For better or for worse, this is a wine you could savor all night until you woefully hit the bottom of the bottle.
The aroma of the Terra Andina is mossy with pungent green beans. The green bean aroma melts away when you sip, mellowing into an almost dried-herb flavor. Hints of cedar and vanilla round out the nuances discovered with each sip.
Like the lightning and rain, this wine is a welcomed prelude to autumn. My bottle came in a sample package, but it can be found in wine shops around the U.S. for around $11 and under.