Leviathan 2013

A winter storm is poised to pummel the East Coast. That means schools and offices across the country and going through the willtheyorwon’tthey scenario: Will you have to work tomorrow? Or will you get to cozy up at home? Like any winter storm, there is probably a 50-50 chance this one is going to wind up being the real deal, but if it is, I plan to have Leviathan 2013 on hand.

If you’re a regular reader of this column, you may have noticed that in my day-to-day wine-drinking life, I tend to prefer lighter wines that are much lower in alcohol. But if I’m going to be cooped up inside all day with only the internet and streaming Netflix to pass the time, you can bet I am reaching for a warming, full-bodied red.

Wines from California tend to fit this bill perfectly. The warm Cali sun beats down on the grapes to create rich, opulent reds, which are exactly what you need on a cold winter’s day, especially if you don’t have a roaring fire.

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The Leviathan is a red blend that’s Cabernet-dominant, with an entire supporting cast; you’ve got Cab Franc bringing spice, Merlot bringing softness, and Syrah providing the wine’s richness. It’s high in alcohol at 14.5 percent, and that alcohol definitely needs a minute or two to blow off when you first pour it into your glass. But if you’re willing to wait, you’ll be rewarded with aromas of ripe red fruit.

On the palate this wine is brightened and lightened thanks to its balanced acidity. It’s a quaffable red that is sure to be a crowd pleaser, and thanks to its alcohol content, you’re guaranteed to feel warm and cozy.

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