Tag Archive for Wine

Bandit Wines Cabernet Sauvignon

Bandit Wines Cabernet Sauvignon


Bandit Wines is a boxed wine company that you can find on Safeway’s lowest shelf. I haven’t had much boxed wine in my life. But when I tap into the foodie party line, I hear from craft enthusiasts that beer in a can has no metallic aftertaste and that boxed wine can be just as good as wine in a bottle. It appears as though mere reputation alone has kept me from embracing either thus far.

I’m not ready for beer in a can. I’m barely ready for beer in a pint glass—half pints do me well. But wine in a box? I could try that…and I swear my willingness has nothing to do with how ridiculously cheap this box was (about $5). Nope, what sold me is what that the pretty little lavender box said clear as day (good job, marketing!): At a liter, one box is the equivalent of one and a third bottles of wine, making it even more ridiculously cheap than it already was. Sold!

(Yes, I realize that means I bought it for exactly the same reason as I claimed I didn’t buy it. You don’t need to tell me that. And now I’ve lost my literary effect. I blame you.)

How does it taste? As I drink, I feel a kinship emerge with one Violet Beauregarde and her amazement as the gum she chewed at Willy Wonka’s factory shifted and reshaped itself into something new. A lovely, simple, cherry-leather nose broadens to include eucalyptus and pine notes on the palate. Those fade away, and the cherry reasserts itself to engage in delicious dessert play with milky cocoa. Luckily, no adverse side effects have been detected…yet.

I’ll be clear; this wine exceeds all my expectations. It gets an 80/100, and I will be back for more of that value buy. Heck, I’ll even give their chardonnay a chew.

Here’s my full Quini profile for more specific tasting notes:


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The Great San Francisco Mac and Cheese Throwdown

When four, count ‘em four, friends contacted me this week to make sure I was aware of this event, I realized I’d made a bit of a mac-and-cheese-tasting reputation for myself.

This throwdown comes your way through the combined efforts of the SoMa StrEat Food Park and FunCheapSF, both great organizations with a goal of keeping Bay Area residents in good food for fair prices. In addition to over 10 food trucks offering their mac and cheese spins, there will also be games, beer specials, and a cheesy cover band. And yes, that’s the precise language used to describe the band.

What: the Great San Francisco Mac and Cheese Throwdown

Where: SoMa StrEat Food Park, 428 11th Street, San Francisco.

When: 11/22 from 11am to 5pm.

How Much: $5 for entry, which includes 1 tasting ticket OR $20 for a passport that includes entry, 5 tasting tickets, and a PBR. Individual tasting tickets are $4 each.

Get me tickets: Order them through Eventbrite here.

Unfortunately, I will not be attending the throwdown because I already have plans Saturday and because I’m pretty sure that many mac and cheese options are too many even for me. But my quest to conquer 7 x 7′s list of the best Bay Area mac and cheeses continues, and my most recent post on that is here. Coming up soon are my thought’s on Paragon’s offering and then the Mac and Cheese nights will continue after the New Year. Only 4 to go!


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Sin Fronteras Dos Mujeres 2013

Sin Fronteras Dos Mujeres 2013

Sin Fronteras

Drinking this blend of albarino and grenache blanc from winemaker Macario Montoya brought to mind scraggly bushes laden with berries and rooted in the thin, loamy soil of a cliffside or sandy hill—manzanita, maybe. Whatever it is, the slightest breeze threatens to uproot it, but the bush holds tight and doesn’t let go.

Which is to say the minerality of this wine comes through strong in the finish, but it still needs more depth of flavor. My Quini profile:

Sin Fronteras quini

My rating:


Other Winos’ Thoughts

Alfredo Wang, Naked Wines Angel

Light, fruity, and refreshing. Faintly sweet, goes well with or without food. Very nice.

Debbie Dunn-Boysen, Naked Wines Angel

Loved this one. Light, but had some body. Little dry and grassy, but not too much. Great with summer food. Love the screw top. Will be looking forward to more from this winemaker.

Robin Teague, Vivino User

Big citrus notes, a touch of pear, then as it opens a wink of vanilla. Found it to be a nice summer sipper.

This is another NakedWines.Com bottle, but it’s no longer available for sale. I’m looking forward to trying Montoya’s red wines soon, though. And just because you can’t purchase this wine doesn’t mean you can’t take advantage of NakedWines.Com’s $100 off voucher!

Receive $100 Off a $160 Order of 6 or More 750ml Bottles of Wine. First Time Customers Only.

I just made my first purchase as an Angel with NakedWines.Com, and let me tell you, between the two free bottles I received in my second shipment of wine and that I only paid 60 additional dollars for a case with the funds I’d already banked, it does feel like a deal. Not sure that it genuinely is yet or not, but tasting my way through all these new reds will help me determine that. I’ve had worse tasks.

If you’re interested in becoming an Angel regardless of my end result, click away and sign up here! Miss my post on what being an Angel is exactly? It’s right here. I’ve been an Angel for approximately 30 days now and that case I just mentioned was my first purchase as one. And yes, if you make a purchase through those ads, I’ll make a commission, but all the funds I’m spending on NakedWines.Com are my own (obligatory disclosure).

Reviewed 9 October 2014.

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