Chaberton Valley Cab 2009I am a firm believer that we cork dorks and most winery agents are experts at speaking wine speak, however, the vast majority of consumers that I deal with have no time or patience for wine speak. They simply want to know how this wine will make their day better and if it is a better bang for their buck than all the others on the shelf. Here’s a story about a wine that would appeal to both the cork dork and the person simply looking for the best buy for the price.

Last Friday we planned on having lamb steaks for dinner so I was thinking Cotes du Rhone would fit the bill perfectly. Just before I left the office the local agent for Domaine de Chaberton came into the office with a sample of their 2009 Valley Cab. I took the sample, picked up a bottle of 2010 Cotes du Rhone went home to craft dinner.

While making dinner I opened the Cotes du Rhone to let breathe. About 45 minutes later we were ready to sit down to dinner so I poured a glass of the Cotes Du Rhone and a glass of the Valley Cab. I know that the characteristics of each wine would be like comparing apples and oranges, however after a long week I was more interested in slipping into a lovely glass of wine than I was about breaking the wine down. I tasted both and stopped in my tracks.

I have to say that the $19 Valley Cab blew the doors off the $30 Cotes du Rhone. It shows rich aromas, a complex palate full of flavour, and a long juicy finish. It showed strength in both worlds. It appealed to my cork dork side and my hedonistic side. On the other hand, the Cotes du Rhone was good and certainly showed lots of complex aromas, texture and finish, but it was missing that sensual hedonistic quality to truly justify the price to anyone other than a cork dork.

There is only about 120 cases of the Valley Cab 2009 left from the winery and I bought it all as it is truly a treat. A treat as a wine and a treat in making a really nice guy smile. Go out and get some and enjoy it with friends or in those self-serving hedonistic moments that we all have, either way, you won’t be disappointed.