Dark violet color and a nose of black cherry, allspice, and eucalyptus herald what is to come. A somewhat reserved, even awkward structure at first masks deeper flavors of chocolate, pepper, ginger, and boysenberry that gradually unfold. The finish is not particularly lingering, but the wine still demonstrates a sort of down-home elegance. Seems a good wine with Philly cheesesteak. If you can’t get to Pat’s or Geno’s in South Philly, then hunt down a Vietnamese-style banh mi sandwich. Recommended. GT

WHO: Brian Carter Cellars “Abracadabra”
WHAT: Red blend
WHERE: Columbia Valley, Washington
WHEN: 2007
HOW MUCH: $17

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About The Author

Gary Thomas
Wine Review Editor

Gary Thomas is also a longtime professional journalist, and former senior correspondent at the Voice of America. He was the wine columnist for the Austin American-Statesman in Austin, TX, and has freelanced wine articles for other publications, including the Wine Spectator. He has spent much of his long journalistic career working overseas, managing to cadge needed wine in the hardiest of circumstances and unlikliest of locales, even in places like Pakistan and Iran.

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