The Wine Idiot Reviews: Fort Cellars Merlot, 2012 ($4.99)
You guys...we have a Wine Idiot first.
I threw out this bottle.
I. THREW AWAY. AN ENTIRE BOTTLE OF WINE.
AND I DIDN'T HAVE ANOTHER ONE TO DRINK.
THAT'S HOW BAD THIS WINE IS.
Whew. Had to get that out. I was super-disappointed. OK, so, full disclosure, I bought this wine because of the label. I was looking for something to throw in my cart, I haven't reviewed a ton of merlot, I had just reviewed a random French red and I thought it was California's turn. Hooboy, Fort Cellars. Did you let your state down.
It smells really fruity--like opening a jar of raspberry and blackberry jam. On the first sip, it's just--not good. It coats your mouth, and tastes a bit metallic. Any fruitiness is overwhelmed by this cheap-wine flavor. I valiantly wrote in my notes: "it's a little sour? I keep hoping it will get better but I don't think it will"... And the rest of the page is blank.
It's blank because I handed the glass to my mom and said, "hey what do you think of this wine?" She sipped it and made a horrific face and yelled, "OH GOD THAT'S GROSS."
So I gave up. And I REALLY wanted a glass of wine. I left the corked bottle by the stove for a couple days, thinking maybe I would use it for cooking. I did not.
I poured it down the drain.
What the bottle says: "Along the sloping hills of the North Coast wine region, old historic forts from California's frontier past still stand over the rolling vineyards. A testament to the rich history of these lands, the Fort Cellars 2012 Merlot's elegant cedar and cherry aromas accentuate its soft, full-bodied texture. On the palate, flavors of dark stone fruit and roasted hazelnut combine with subtle hints of French Oak, culminating in a smooth finish."
What the Wine Idiot says: Nope.
Who's responsible for this? "Cellared and bottled by DNA Vineyards, Ukiah, CA"
Do I need a corkscrew? Well, if you wanted to open it, yes you would need a corkscrew. But since you don't want to open this...no. You do not.
What do smarter people say about it? Steveo at Ain't Found a Good Title Blog had a slightly better opinion, but not by much: "There’s a hint of vinegar on the cork and a medium-dark ruby color in the glass. The aroma of a crude red wine fills the air in the glass. Adding to the impression of a crude red wine is the dryish mouth feel of tannins, eventually leaving a semi-arid climate on the roof of the mouth. A more than bearable taste follows that. This is a classic table wine. A wine that’s not “refined” but ready for a tussle with a hearty bowl of stew and a chunk of bread torn from a long loaf. How would it stand up to a bowl of chili? The thought had never crossed my mind until now. Probably very well."
Should I bring it to a friend's house? If you hate your friend.