Chalone Vineyard, 2007 Monterey Cabernet Sauvignon

I was in the grocery store earlier this week picking up items to make “Tim’s $5.75 Spaghetti” when all of a sudden I had a hankering for some Tri-Tip.  So I picked up a little 2.5lb steak for 10 bucks and carried on with the shopping.  I ended up in the wine department, as always, and did a quick scan for new items and mark-downs.  I came across a coupon hanging on a bottle of wine, it read:

Buy 3 bottles of Chalone, get $7 off meat purchase.  The Chalone Monterey Cabernet was $16.99 a bottle, but with my VIP club card it was down to $9.99 a bottle. So I bought 3.  One way to look at it is I paid $7.56 for each bottle of wine.

So, was it worth it?

Short answer: Yes.

Long answer:

I let the wine breath for 30 minutes while I searched the internet for some information on the wine.  I couldn’t find any reviews or anything!  I found their website but it didnt seem to be working properly.  Wiki provided me with the history of Chalone Vineyard which is quite interesting.

13.5% Alcohol.

First sniff, not much going on.  Really almost nothing.  First taste and swirl, also nothing going on.  I read  the back of the bottle while I pondered whether I had made a wise choice in buying 3 bottles of this wine.  It mentioned vanilla oak.  So just as a test, I decided to add a few drops of pure vanilla extract to the wine!

It gave the wine a definite vanilla aroma, and made the tannins far more chewy.  but it didn’t taste particularly good, so I poured out the glass and rinsed it out and went back to blogging for an hour while I baked my Tri-Tip.

Eventually after close to 4 hours in the decanter this wine revealed itself.  The full force of the vanilla oak was present, the tannins were alive, the fruit and oak were in harmony, and it was actually an amazing wine even I had paid the full price.  It’s definitely not a “pop and pour” wine.  It requires a significant amount of patience if you want to enjoy it right now. Buy and hold.  Who buys $10 wine and holds on to it??  I do that’s who!



  1. I recently discovered the great value Chalone Vineyard wines and was so pleasantly surprised! It is wonderful to find really great $7-$20 bottles of wine. I would also recommend the Chardonnay. $10 91 point wine spectator wine (the $7.95 bottle is also a great buy although unrated).

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