I actually tasted chocolate in a wine for the first time!

My Wine Epiphany


1995 St. Francis Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon $99, enjoyed 2003

My wife and I were invited to my sister’s house, along with other family members, for Christmas Eve dinner in 2003. We sat down for appetizers and my brother-in-law said he had a big bottle of wine a friend gave him for Christmas. I opened the bottle and poured myself a glass. Delicious!!! I was never too enthralled with all the tasting notes from wine experts, but a few began to enter my head. For the first time I tasted chocolate from a sip of red wine. Each sip was rich and meaty. The flavors exploded in my mouth! The wine had a velvety texture and a long finish. I kept thinking I actually tasted chocolate in a wine for the first time!

I walked into the kitchen and poured myself another glass. I looked at the bottle.  It was a big bottle, a magnum. I read the label: St. Francis Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon, 1995.   poured another glass and brought it to my father.  I said, “Dad, you got to taste this wine.” He took a sip and I watched his eyes close. And he didn’t speak for a few moments. I said, “chocolate.” He said, “chocolate and velvet.” We smiled at each other.
I brought the glasses back to the kitchen for a refill, praying there was enough in the bottle for a few more glasses.  here stood my brother-in-law pouring a few glasses of the Cabernet from the big bottle for himself and my sister. He asked me if I liked the wine. I said “absolutely.” He took a sip and said, “Wow, this is the best wine I’ve ever had.” With his permission, I poured the last two glasses of wine from the bottle. One glass for my father and one for myself. My father and I sat on the couch and tried to make the wine last as long as possible. A very difficult task. A very enjoyable Christmas Eve.
I found a bottle of the same Cabernet in a local wine store.  The price was $99.00.  I’ve been searching for great tasting Cabernets ever since I tasted the big bottle of 1995 St. Francis Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon.

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  • What a wonderful moment. When you find the wine that fits you perfectly. Love that feeling. I also like that you got to share it with your dad.

    Sep 02, 2011 at 6:30 PM

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