Monday, January 28, 2013
Naked Rebel Cabernet Sauvignon–Syrah Blend, California
Has the TWAV tasting team found its perfect match? This Cab-Syrah blend from a brash winery that started out in a college dorm captures the imagination as well as the senses.
Naked Rebel Winery was started by brothers Chip and A.J. Forsythe. They began making wine in the dorms at Cal Poly. It was barely drinkable but each year it got better.
They bill this Cab-Syrah blend as their first “legal vintage” from Napa. The Cab comes from the Oakville region of Napa Valley and the Syrah is sourced from Amador County. The aroma from this wine is amazing, perhaps due to aging in “badass” French Oak barrels.
Even if the wine wasn’t outrageously good, this wine would be worth the $19.99 price tag for the bottle along. Its label is the first in the world to be printed with glow in the dark ink.
As you’re sampling a glass, you can enjoy the rambling manifesto on the back of the bottle. Here are a couple of excerpts:
“This wine goes out to all those who live by the philosophy that it takes a big man to cry; but it takes an even bigger man to laugh at that person.”
“This bottle pairs perfectly with every food and anyone who is mentally prepared for a zombie apocalypse. But if you love white zinfandel and drove your Prius here, put this bottle down. It’s not for you.”
Some low-end wines try to capture their sales with a gimmick or a dog, penguin or monkey on the label. As we opened this bottle, I wasn’t sure what to expect. But this wine overdelivered in spades.
If the Naked Rebel team knew I poured this into a decanter they might shatter my decanter with a bullet or perhaps drive over it with a monster truck. In any case, the wine opened up very nicely.
The aroma is lush with intense berry goodness. On the palate this is a full bodied wine with well integrated tannins. It was a bit sharp on the front end then smoothed out nicely. Tasting team members Dr. J and the Cabinator were soon singing the praises of this wine.
Syrah and Cab is a winning combination and when you work with Oakville Cab and Syrah from Amador County, you have some of the best grapes California can offer. This wine has deep blackberry rumblings with a smattering of earth and tobacco. Yeah, it’s a robust wine.
This is a wine with an attitude and the result is delicious.
Rating: 4.5 of 5 Value: 5 of 5
Full Disclosure: We received this wine as a marketing sample.