These labels with doodled chemistry formulas, a brand name like Educated Guess wine made by a winery named Roots Run Deep might make you pick up a bottle and examine it.
Don’t stop there; the wine is surprising: Napa quality at un-Napa prices.
Getting marketing right is one thing, but getting the quality right is another. And Mark Albrecht, who founded Roots Run Deep in 2005, seems to have scored on both.
EDUCATED GUESS WINE
The theory: Sign contracts with great growers in Napa Valley, hire a terrific winemaker, don’t invest a cent in a fancy cellar and sell those babies at affordable prices all over the country.
In the beginning, he sold off his house and most of his possessions to fund the project.
The name Educated Guess seemed to fit the leap of faith he would take to create a new, delicious, affordable brand in Napa.
You can bet a bottle will stir up conversation at the table — especially if any chemistry majors are present. Those formulas, by the way, are winemaking chemistry formula
Wine is basically chemistry, as shown on the label: those are real winemaking formulas
The wine, however, needs no explanation. From Napa Valley, this wine is a Bordeaux style blend of cabernet, merlot, petit verdot and cabernet franc, aged in French oak barrels for 12 months. The result is a rich, ripe, delicious wine with notes of vanilla, blackberry and cherry. For a $22 bottle, there’s a lot of bang for the buck.
The concept: Like chalk scratchings on a blackboard, the white graphs and chemical formulas stand out on the black label of Educated Guess, which lists the appellation (Napa Valley) and vintage (2005) as the numerator of a fraction, with the varietal (Cabernet Sauvignon) as the denominator.
The wine’s clever name refers to the process by which people occasionally select wine from a store shelf or restaurant list. The winery contends it has done all the guesswork by making the best possible decisions to produce their wine.
The company: Proprietor Mark Albrecht produces this wine via Roots Run Deep Winery, which is one of the Wimbledon Wine Co.’s dozen brands.
A rich, ripe and focused Cabernet Sauvignon with juicy blackberry and cherry fruit, cocoa and hints of mint all tied together with a creamy french vanilla middle and a finish that in a word lingering.