The Two Buck Chuck nickname is a bit of a misnomer in this day and age of inflation. Still, that’s about all this is worth – with its watered down body and astringent flavours and aromas. But let’s be honest – what was I expecting?
Actually, I was expecting that by now this would be vinegar. So, the mere fact it wasn’t is amazing. I was looking in the basement archives for a bottle of something to make sangria with and found this in a corner.
Really, I should pay better attention to my cataloging system.
For those who don’t know, this is a bottle of the famed Two Buck Californian Chuck. You can read here for the background on this brand and all the intrigue and controversy surrounding it – and the MOG that’s in it (Material Other than Grapes).
A LOT of people buy Charles Shaw. Motivated by price and perhaps needing a wine for their spaghetti sauce or chili, or whatever, they buy it. Tons of it – like, about 5 million bottles a year of it.
That said, artisanal it is not. Nor will it ever be. And it doesn’t taste anything like Merlot should taste.
On the eyes, it’s a thin shade of garnet. The aromas show red cherry and medicinal alcohol, which is surprising as it’s only 12.5% abv.
The palate is dry with surprisingly medium plus acidity, but it has an extremely light body as if its been watered down. Flavours show cherry juice with a whiff of cardboard.
WSET Acceptable / Faulty. It depends how badly you want to make sangria as to whether or not this should be tossed or recycled with fruit juice and brandy.