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Screen Shot 2014-11-04 at 4.25.28 PMThere are thousands of grape varieties out there and probably hundreds of thousand wineries out there. We all have to make choices on which ones we will try and which ones we will not. As you may know, for me it is all about trying different stuff. Sure, the weather changes and the terroir it comes from matters and may be different for the same wine each year. But still finding that niche grape is fun too.

Club W who, as you also may know, has been letting me down with their red but blowing me away with their whites and roses. For the red wine (mostly) drinker, this is great but my dollars going towards them is going down and down. But one thing they have done a good job of is finding grape varieties you cannot find anywhere else.

This brings us to the 2013 Bonatti Legrein from Paso Robles, California. Legrein is a red grape found in northern Italy. According to Wikipedia & ClubW, it is related to Syrah and Pinot Noir. Of course, I had to get my hands on this. Here are their notes:

Lagrein is really hard to find. Native to the mountainous wine region way up north in the Italian Alps, it’s rarely seen outside Italy, and even rarer to find growing in the US. Three, maybe four wineries in California grow this varietal. It’s tooth-staining liquid will give you a taste of wine on the savory side.

Lagrein is a cousin of Pinot Noir and Syrah, but is a little more rough around the edges in style. If you could picture a mountain man as a wine, Lagrein would be it. Earthy, chewy, full-bodied yet light on the palate, Bonatti’s dense flavors of black raspberry, leather and herbs make for a workhorse of wine for dinner pairings.

Mountain man as a wine, huh? So how was it?

Color – Bright velvety red.

Nose – Black cherry and blackberries with a little bit of a dark roast coffee.

Taste – Black cherry and mocha with a little herb.

Finish – Long with medium acid and medium to high tannins.

Overall, this is not terrible! Okay, sorry Club W. This is one of their best reds I have had in a while. It is still slightly jammy but still a bold fruit forward wine with bright flavors. It wasn’t too rough around the edges but it was different enough you could tell this was a varietal you have never had. I recommend this wine.

Rating: B+

~Justin