Gallo Family Vineyards Merlot

Not too long ago I was on a business trip to Chicago.  It was a quick trip, but an interesting one.  I’ve enjoyed some great trips to the Windy City in years past, but had no time this go-round for fun.  Unfortunately.  Because on my only night there I had to work late in my room preparing for the next day’s activities, I decided to run to the drug store across the street to see what kind of brain food (aka junk food) they might have on hand.  Much to my surprise, they had more than snacks, water and soda.  They had a very large selection of wines and spirits – yes, liquor.  Sadly, I had to keep my wits about me or my work would not have gotten done.  Thus, I grabbed a personal-sized bottle of this Gallo red – just enough to warm me yet not prevent me from accomplishing the task at hand.

Winemaker:  Gallo Family Vineyards
Varietal:  Merlot
Vintage:  NV
Appellation:  California
Price:  $5.99*

Notes:   On the nose I caught scents of wood, berries, and earth with some floral notes.  It was very light-bodied.  It even seemed watery at times.  Acidity was OK, and tannins were light.  Alcohol was at 13%.  On the palate I tasted generous amounts of wood with notes of crème de cassis.  I know it’s inexpensive, but I think there have to be better options out there – from Gallo even – within this price range.

* This is the price for a 750 ml bottle in my local area not the personal-sized mini I purchased while on travel.

Gallo Moscato Chile (c. 2013)

Evidently, the folks at Gallo are doing their part in providing plenty (and I do mean plenty) of options for Moscato lovers.  This Chilean import is part of their Gallo Family Vineyards line of wines.

Winemaker:  Gallo
Varietal:  Moscato
Wine:  Moscato Chile
Vintage:  NV
Appellation:  Chile
Price:  $5.99

Notes:  In the glass, this budget white was a light gold.  On the nose I found scents of peach and apple.  It was medium-to-light in body and with enough viscosity to begin edging toward a syrupy feel.  Flavors for me were ripe peach, apple and a touch of persimmon.  It’s a sweet wine, to be sure.  Alcohol is at 9%.   I think if the acidity had been a tad brighter in this Gallo offering, I would have enjoyed it more.  I’ve been tasting a number of Moscato’s lately.  This wasn’t a terrible glass of wine in my opinion, but it wasn’t my favorite.

Important:  I am not a professional sommelier or wine connoisseur.  See “About” for the full disclaimer.