We rounded out our Big Red Weekend with two cab sauvs. The Montes Alpha is an old standby, not hard to source, and easy going down. Since you can find it, usually, even in remote area liquor stores, it’s a great choice for BBQs and weekends when there’s nothing else but Yellow Tail and Piat Boring. But it doesn’t drink like a cab sauv; the flavour, yes I guess, but the body is soft and round and if it was a blind taste test I would think merlot blend. It sells for nearly $26 and at that price it’s always our first bottle, never our second, but this week it was three dollars off and not a bad wine at that price.
Our Sunday night dinner, however, was toasted with a hefty 2009 Beringer Kinghts Valley Cab Sauv. This has weight. Heady. Take no prisoners. It could use some rest. Unlike the Montes Alpha this is the real McCoy: Gorgeous depth, blackberry, black currant, some spice and mild tannins. A wonderful evenness if in the end just a little too heavy in 2011.
Price: BC Liquor sells the Montes Alpha regularly at $26; we got it for $23. BC Liquor sells the Beringer at a paralyzing $45 (!!!) but we picked up a bottle at Cost-Cutter in Washington for $22.49 USD.
Market Liquidity: The Montes Alpha is a $20 bottle of wine with a $26 price tag; province-wide accessibility somewhat redeems the price tag. The Beringer is manna at $22 USD and a second-mortgage stretch at $45 CDN.