bour·geoi·sie – defined as upper middle class with materialistic values and conventional attitudes. Or in Marxism – the capitalist class. In southern – it’s old money, honey.
Unfortunately for the Hedges Family Wines Red Wine Blend – The Bourgeoisie – it did not live up to its name. It has an old money style label, and in that sense it’s impressive, but it was definitely an imposter. Straight new money from somewhere in the upper eastern states, who moved south for the lower cost of living and the sunshine.
Now, it could be that it was the 2016 vintage being drunk in 2022… and I know the bottle has been in my cellar for three years, as I bought it as a consideration for a party. Plus it’s from Colombia Valley, WA so it wasn’t your typical California wine.
The wine is a blend of mostly Cabernet Sauvignon, with the rest being Merlot and Syrah. It got an 88 from Wine Enthusiast, which is why it had been considered for a party. So, a solid B. But this was a Monday wine for me.
Opening the bottle I had to wonder on first sniff if it had turned. In fact the first taste had me wondering, but it was more sticky sweet than vinegar. Since I was cooking at the time, I let the glass sit on the counter for a bit while I heated my best friend’s spaghetti Bolognese and waited for the garlic cheese bread to toast in the oven.
While still waiting, I decided to try the wine again after having let it sit. It was better, so I decided I could have a glass and not have to get another bottle of red.
Several years ago an amazing girl friend gave me a Vinturi red wine aerator – so I pulled it out of the drawer and poured a second glass using it. Surprisingly, the wine was much better after having been aerated.
I still didn’t get much of the expected tasting notes (Wine Enthusiast says pepper, blackberry and a smoky notes). It was too sweet for my taste, much like new money in the old south. Regardless, it paired well with the Bolognese (he calls it that but it’s more of an Arrabiata due to the spice). However, after a glass and a half, the bottle went out on the garden, as it has served its purpose (alliteration – Bourgeoise and Bolognese). I might give it another try with another vintage, or I might not.