Focus on Excellence!
Focus, Focus, Focus – when a winemaker devotes 100% to create an excellent wine.
Sunday afternoons are food and wine exploration times for me. I enjoy going to 2 or 3 different stores in order to find new wines. I particularly enjoy new wines that the store beverage manager or buyer recommends and wines that sell particularly well in a given area.
My local Central Market (an upscale foodie heaven that is part of the HEB family) sources wines from a wide variety of regions and is usually a go-to when I am trying to find that new experience. Being a big fan of California red wines – particularly those from the Lodi appellation – I came across a Central Market favorite, Ghostrunner Ungrafted Red Blend 2016.
Ghostrunner is the single wine in the portfolio of the team lead by Mike O’Connell and Larry Levin (www.ghostrunner.com). Most winemakers produce multiple varietals and for now the moment a decision was made to focus on making the best California red blend possible. Polaner Selections distributes Ghostrunner as well as those of several other producers from around the world.
Ghostrunner is a deep ruby colored wine with a fragrant black cherry nose. Grapes sourced from multiple central valley vineyards are handcrafted to provide a dark berry fruit taste on the palate with small hints of spice including a little flash of pepper. Ghostrunner has smooth tannins with a long finish that shows the character that Mr. Levin created with his 100% French Oak barrel aging. This is one of the better barrel aged red blends that I’ve tasted recently where the winemaker knew how to balance out the fruit and oak flavors so that neither are overbearing. This is a great wine to drink alone or paired with foods.
When to Drink: Now
Alcohol Content: 13.5%
Varietals: Syrah, Petit Syrah and Zinfandel
Food Pairing: Beef, Pork, Hearty Mushrooms dishes
Average Selling Price: $19 (though I’ve found it for as low as $13)
Give Ghostrunner a try and experience winemaking by a team that has taken the approach of focusing 100% of their time, resources and talent in providing the wine world a rich red blend.
Remember to drink what it is that makes you truly happy and always think positively!