2012 Red Blend, Bell Canyon Napa Reserve

It’s the profile of the winemaker that originally drew me to the first reserve–the 2012 Red Blend–from Bell Canyon in Napa. We’ll revisit that idea in a later post on the 2012. For the time being, let’s focus instead on the wine itself.

2012 Red Blend, Bell Canyon Cellars Napa Reserve, Napa, California, USA.

2012 Red Blend, Bell Canyon Cellars Napa Reserve, Napa, California, USA.

You have some big, juicy grapes in play here. It’s easy to think cherries in some dominant way, with other dark berries in the mix, and just a hint of vanilla (less desired by this taster) too. I detect some spice accents, particularly as you swirl it in red waves around the glass, that come through in the taste too. It’s yards from a Pinot Noir, and more seasoned than a Merlot. The 2012 Red Blend Bell Canyon Napa Reserve is probably described by experts as a ‘Bordeaux-style’ red; I think of it more like a Cabernet Sauvignon that has a shallower tone to it. Is it wrong to talk about wine as a tone? I just mean a true Cabernet can have similar accents but is somehow deeper in its profile.

I’d also offer the analogy that the 2012 Red Blend is to (just one recent example) the 2012 Carnivore Cab as a tenor is to a bass. Does that make sense to you now?

Additional context–I’m having the Bell Canyon tonight during the cocktail hour but opened it earlier this week when having ground beef, a cheeeesy macaroni and cheese, and some broccoli. I was caught in some work-related time constraints at that time, but this evening it’s more about relaxing and mulling over this fine red wine from the country’s best known region. More on this bottle in the future!

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