2008 Marques de Caceres Crianza Rioja

As you may have already read, I love wines from Spain. This particular bottle is my go-to bottle when I want a cheap yet tasty Spanish red. This is a great example of a wine from La Rioja from northern Spain at just $13-15 dollars at time of purchase. There is plenty of cherry taste and the wine is exceptionally smooth. It also has mild tones of oak, smoke and herbal flavor.

A good and value priced example of a Rioja.

A good and value priced example of a Rioja.

Francis Ford Cappola Winery – Director’s Cut Zinfandel 2009

This Zinfandel hails from the Dry Creek valley of Sonoma County. I would describe this particular wine as a classic example of a Zinfandel from Sonoma County, and very representative of a quality American red wine. There are lots of rich flavors of blackberries and plums. I’m also detecting a hint of vanilla and espresso with some very light wood flavor. It’s very smooth and not overbearing at all. At $20 per bottle in early 2012, this wine is a pretty decent deal. It’s not as good as my favorite Zinfandel from Talty Estates, but it’s not >$30 either and it’s very very good. If you want to try a good first Zinfandel that is representative of the breed, try this one!

This Zinfandel is representative of the breed!

This Zinfandel is representative of the breed!