For the sake of all that is holy, if you are curious about our house wines do not go to their website. Pretentious at first, useless from there on out. You get nothing other than attitude and pictures of how happy and carefree the owners of the winery are. There’s also, at least as of this writing, a picture of a hamburger. That makes as much sense as you let it.
If you want to know about Mondavi CK wines, don’t talk to them. Talk to me. The only bit of useful info I got from their site is that the wine maker has the same name as my middle school friend’s dad. That guy was fun. He’d drive us around in a cherry red Miata and we’d get ice cream. Great guy.
I’ve never had an issue describing a wine if you accept that the disclaimer “Your experience may differ” applies. Years of working as a sommelier taught me many things, but chief among them is that my palate is very specialized. I can spot flaws a mile away but I miss out on some of the subtle pleasant notes. It’s kind of a curse. I’ll be with a group of friends or even wine professionals and they are all enjoying a bottle that has the slightest almost imperceptible imperfection but I catch it. They have a good time. I stew, not complaining because I don’t want to ruin the happy vibe. I’ve gravitated toward middle priced wines for that reason. A slight flaw isn’t a big deal and a brilliant aspect is not likely. It’s kinda my wheelhouse.
Our house wines are solid. Get the add guys out of it. These are what we called Tuesday night wines back when I was working for a wine distributor. Affordable not special occasion wines that are a background rather than a feature.
The CK Pinot Grigio has a bit of minerality up front, a dash of fruit – maybe peach or melon – and then a crisp finish. With the Fettuccini DeVinci it’s da bomb. Anything with an olive oil based sauce. Alfredo would overwhelm it. Better a Chardonnay with that. But as a sipping drink, you’ll be hard pressed to do better.
The CK Cabernet Sauvignon is advertised as “Rich & Velvety.” Maybe. It’s cherry up front and then… well, it’s cherry up front. Enjoyable. All these wine and restaurant folks want to overexplain. No need for all that. It’s a good wine. Straight forward. Six bucks.
I’d love to wax poetic like they do on the Mondavi site about friendly connections and family and tenuously link that to an intoxicant, but that’s a bunch of drivel.
These are good wines. Inexpensive and proper for bonding with friends and family (see what I did there?)