2009 The Prisoner


Rarely do I have the opportunity to review a true California Cult wine. However, over the last couple of years the Prisoner has been more available to “the rest of us” so I gave it a shot, if for nothing more than bragging rights. Kim and I popped the cork last Friday and poured out two glasses. This Cabernet blend, was tar like black in color, and the nose was an eye watering blast of white pepper. First sip I am afraid was so tightly wound the only identifiable taste was the unpleasant burn of alcohol. We put it down immediately, Kim actually gave up on it but I endured and picked it up two hours later. A completely different wine this time around; the alcohol and white pepper had melted away into a spicy full bodied beauty. Layers of Chocolate, Cassis and Dark fruit with a hint of spice cake and cedar. Boy was it good, but not for the faint of heart. This is a huge wine that takes patience and time to enjoy. But it is worth it in the end. Enjoy it with the most robust of meats, Leg of lamb would be ideal. At $35 bucks it is not the deal of the century but is not a bad value.



Ruffino Riserva Ducale 2006

Sangiovese and Ruffino Riserva Ducale, Chianti Classico in particular is like a cup of tomato soup and a grilled cheese sandwich on a cold winters day to me. The wine is not in the least bit flashy, it is simple and easy to drink. Soft and supple with a mid-mouth berry flavor and medium finish with the slightest hint of spice. It’s easy to drink and easy to find, and when paired with a lasagna and a loaf of bread on a cold rainy Tuesday it’s as comforting as you can get. At about $17 bucks, it’s a great value… because you can count on it. No pretense or California Cult here, it is just a good solid Steady Eddy.


Enjoy the wine.

DM