As a wine consultant at Surdyk’s, I am often asked “what is the best value wine in the store,” as most people are looking for a $12-$15 wine with complex flavors and a full-bodied structure that they normally find in their favorite wines that cost $20 and up. I often recommend Marietta Old Vine Red, as that wine has been a perennial staff and customer favorite for years, but we recently added another red blend that I can add to
my ‘excellent value’ list, Gravel Bar 2014 Alluvial Red Wine Blend from Columbia Valley in Washington. The deep soils in this arid region were formed by floodwaters from melting ice-age glaciers, creating sandy, rocky, alluvial soils that are perfect for growing grapes with complex flavors. The blend for this wine is 35% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot, 15% Cabernet Franc, 10% Malbec, and 10% Petit Verdot. It immediately shows dark, rich cherry and cassis fruit with spice notes of clove, vanilla, and chocolate. It is full-bodied with bold tannins framing the long finish. Perfect with beef or lamb stew, grilled ribeye steak with blue cheese, or pasta Bolognese. Stock up on this great value red, as I am sure that you will find yourself reaching for this wine in your wine rack again and again. Cheers!