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Curious Beasts - Food Gypsy

Wino Wednesday – Curious Beasts, Blood Red Wine

Curious Beasts, Blood Red Wine an entertaining little Californian long on goth packaging, with a smooth plum finish.  Branded with flare, right down to the cork, it makes a sassy (already wrapped) gift for the vampire fans in your life, and it’s our pick for this Wino Wednesday as Halloween draws near.

Ghoulish and blood drippingly sophisticated, it’s red wrapper features boozy skeletons and mischievous devils, it reminds me of Day of the Dead celebrations in Mexico and The Nightmare Before Christmas.  If Tim Burton were a wine maker, this would be his label.

Believe it or not it was the Chef in my life (Benoit Gelinotte), who dragged this baby home from the liquor store.  It’s usually me that falls pray to marketing gimmicks and smooth, matte paper wrappers.   “Oooooooooo… what is THIS?!” I declared as it emerged from the bag “yeah, I thought you might like that” he smiled.

Curious Beasts, packaging - Food Gypsy

The nose is ripe with black fruits a hint of chocolate and the lightest touch of leather, yet Curious Beasts 2012 is plummy and surprisingly fresh.  It’s colour and taste rings of black cherry, and plum flavoured chocolate and a lingering blackberry finish.  Pair it with grilled meats (preferably rare), a spicy sausage dish or a good molé.

At 13.5%, with a tantalizing nose, a juicy taste and a price-point of $18.95, Curious Beasts is worth your curiosity.  A blend of Merlot, Petite sirah, Syrah & Zinfandel from the San Luis Obispo, Paso Robles regions of California, it’s sure to raise a eyebrow or two at your next social function. Gypsy Scorecard 85/100.


Curious Beasts, drinking - Food Gypsy

Cooking in her home kitchen just outside Ottawa, Canada; Cori Horton is a food photographer and recipe blogger. A Cordon Bleu-trained Chef, Cori spent five years as the owner of Nova Scotia's Dragonfly Inn and has been sharing all things delicious - right here - since 2010.

This Post Has 11 Comments

    1. Dear Benita,
      Let’s do a little background for you, shall we? This review was written in 2013 based on a 2012 vintage. The following text comes straight from the LCBO (Liquor Control Board of Ontario) website, which distributes this vintage in my region, the listing clearly states the alcohol content at 13.5%, as did the label on the bottle at the time of publishing.

      “750 mL bottle, Alcohol/Vol 13.5%, Made in:California, USA, By: Hdd, Llc Dba Truett Hurst Winery, Sugar Content:11 g/L, Sweetness Descriptor:D – Dry, Varietal:Blend”


      Further, unless a wine is mass produced (like say a Wolf Blass Yellow Label) the alcohol content will change from vintage to vintage, as will many factors including taste notes, bouquet and tannin levels. I have seen Curious Beasts listed at 14.5%, 14% and (as sited above) 13.5%. Many variables can affect a wine (weather, aging, barrels, blend & process, just to name a few) and that’s what makes it such a changeable, living, breathing entity.

      Have a nice day and Happy Holidays to you too, Genius.
      Thank you,

        1. LOL, thanks Chad. Sometimes you’ve just got to stand up and say “actually, I DO know what I’m talking about, thank you very much”. Don’t you think?! Thanks for reading. ;-)

          1. Love the wine and I can’t find it anywhere in Ontario anymore. :(

            And way to go by putting B in his place.

          2. Hi Shawn –
            Hahahaha, sometimes one must shut down the tolls with what I call “actual facts”. You know I haven’t seen Curious Beasts in a while at LCBO either, but their website says it still carries it. I see it all teh time at the SAQ (I live just across teh river from Ottawa in Quebec so SAQ is a regular stop). Next time you’re near one…

            Thanks for reading and CHEERS!

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