God bless the lunatic who dreamed up this insane blend of six grapes that shouldn’t go together. Markham’s Cellar 1879 blend is composed of Napa grapes in this proportion: 36% Merlot, 21% Petite Sirah, 14% Cabernet Sauvignon, 12% Syrah, 9% Zinfandel, and 8% Petit Verdot. Named in honor of Markham’s founding, it’s an insanely drinkable bottling that won’t break the bank.
There’s lots going on here: Intense violets, chocolate sauce, and a core of blackberry jam. Big currant notes build up, but it’s vanilla and chocolate — almost confectionery in quality — that dominate the juicy finish. Fortunately this is all just short of hitting that rampant jamminess that mars so many wines, and the floral elements are present throughout — though fleeting. A fantastic food wine, it’s a bit sweet (and a bit dangerous) on its own.
A- / $25 / markhamvineyards.com
- Review: 2006 Markham Single Vineyard Estate Cabernets
- Review: Barbed Wire 2014 Red Wine Blend and Cabernet Sauvignon
- Review: B Cellars Blend 23 and Blend 24 Wines
- Reivew: 2014 Septima Malbec Mendoza