Readily available at your typical supermarket, the Cupcake Vineyards label is a solid value for everyday drinking. Some thoughts on two recent varietals follow.
2008 Cupcake Riesling is extremely dry for this varietal, harvested from Washington’s Yakima Valley and fragrant with aromatics. Herbal notes give way to a curious collection of fruit flavors — melon, pineapple, green table grapes, and maybe some apricot. The finish is a touch astringent, making this pair better with food than as something to drink on its own. Not bad for the price. B- / $14
2007 Cupcake Petite Sirah is kind of the opposite of the company’s riesling, a fruity and jammy wine from California’s Central Coast that reminded me a lot of a zinfandel, but with a smoky, tobacco, cedar-box character beneath it. Quite enjoyable, with a touch of chocolate on the finish. Not terribly complicated, but sometimes simple is good, even in a red wine. Again the price is a knockout. B+ / $14