Home Wine Regions Californian Wine Apothic Red Winemaker’s Blend

Apothic Red

As the story goes, in 2006 a veteran winemaker worked alongside his protégé Boyd Morrison to explore old world winemaking traditions and in so doing realized a wine with a new world style.  Morrison used that inspiration to create Apothic Red.  The wine is a blend of zinfandel, Syrah and Merlot.

Apothic Red

This is a dark colored wine with aromas that also smell… well…  dark—like chocolate, black pepper and salami.  Underneath those earthy aromas there are some sweet cola and berry aromas too.  It has a full mouth feel that’s bursting with ripe cherry and cola flavors.  It takes on a vanilla characteristic on the finish, and that sticks with you for some time.  This is not your run-of-the-mill, average cheap wine.  It’s different.  It’s interesting.  But be warned, it is a little bit on the sweet side for a red.  It’s not a sweet wine, just sweeter (if that makes sense).  Still, if you like to explore different wines, this one is worth a shot.

Wine: Apothic Red Winemaker’s Blend
Variety: Red Blend
Vintage: 2008
Alcohol: 13.1%
Rating: 85
Price: $14.00

Here’s what others thought of the this wine:

Update: Check out our review of the 2009 Apothic Red.

Disclosure: This wine was received as a sample.

25 replies to this post
  1. We tried this wine quite by accident. My husband honestly bought it because he said the bottle was classy looking. We fell in love with it!! Even more after we let it breathe. A great find!

  2. This was recommended to me by a coworker who was born in wine country California. She sent me a photo of the label and said to try it. The next time I bought wine, I put it in my cart. That evening I had just had some chocolate (something I rarely do), followed by a savory mouthful of that Apothic Red… among other flavors, the mocha in it explodes on the palette, and simply stays put. Tremendously complementary to deserts, but is by far, a favorite for every day, or any special occasion! Best value for its robust perfect blend of flavors.

  3. This wine was presented at the escondido food and wine festival in San Diego and won first place by everyone who attended in my personal party.$10 a bottle and I wouldn’t be surprised if it grows to over $50 a bottle through time. This wine pleases most tastes whether you prefer sweet or dry. An excellent blend that I highly recommend!

  4. Tim,
    We tried this one with this chimichurri steak and your review was right on! What I can’t figure out is why they sell it for $10 at Biggs and $21 at Kroger. I’m thinking of setting up a stand in Kroger’s parking lot and doing some wine arbitrage. Anyway, thanks for the recommendation.
    Cheers, Eric

  5. Thanks for all the comments on this. I’ll be reviewing the 2009 vintage soon. Keep an eye out for it.

  6. This wine tastes much more expensive than it costs. This has the taste of a special event wine, but the price of an every day staple. I will be buying in bulk.

  7. there was a red wine in argentina that had a stag on the lable it was ceap but very good. do you know the name

  8. just opened the 2009 I will be honest I went blindly picking a bottle of wine and chose this because of the bottle. it is amazing! my new must have!! you can taste the aftertaste of the chocolate Wich makes it a real treat. can’t wait to curl up with a glass if this for a relaxing night! best I have had by far!!! can’t believe it was such a great price too:)

  9. Awesome comment, Genevieve. The chocolate characteristics do really add some character to this wine.

  10. I am another lucky soul drawn to the absolutely stunning bottle. I love this wine! I’ve only been buying fabulous Spanish reds lately and was happily surprised at how this wine compared to them. Just wonderful!

  11. A great wine. 2 managers at 2 different Trader Joes recommended this wine so i tried it, boy for $10 its a great great deal.

  12. Picked it up because I liked the label on bottle. I know…very sophisticated connoisseur am I!
    But it’s actually one of my new favorite reds.
    Highly recommennd.

  13. Wines to me are a 1 or a zero. Only one question – would you buy it again? I found this to be just short of Riunite sweet – your description is accurate. My take on the blend is its the equivalent of making a carpet out of remnants. Full of potential but has to be executed well. Don’t know if I had a bad bottle but I get a whiff of nail polish remover along with a lot of dark fruit and vegetal overtones. Tasted better refrigerated the second day. Not usually a recommendation for a wine. I wouldn’t throw it away if someone gave it to me but I’d likely add brandy, sugar and some fruit and make a sangria out of it. I don’t think I would buy it again.

  14. Thanks for your comments, Paul. I haven’t had this wine in a couple years, and based on your description it sounds like I may want to avoid it.

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