Cellar of the Devil

Luke’s birthday present from my parents, much to his delight consisted of a case of 6 bottles of his fail- safe favourite red wine; Cassilero del Diablo Cabernet Sauvignon 2009, produce of Chile.

For someone who isn’t much of a wine drinker (often to be found with a bottle of Corona in hand post- 6pm), I would have thought going for a grape variety which produces, what I have always considered, quite bold tannin flavours would be quite ambitious. Having said that, I am slightly suspicious that the child within him took a liking to this story printed on the front of every bottle:

‘More than 100 hundred years ago Don Melchor de Concha y Toro reserved for himself an exclusive batch of the best wines he produced. And, to keep strangers away from his private reserve, he spread the rumour that the Devil lived in that place. Hence the name: Casillero del Diablo or Cellar of the Devil’.

While I have had Casillero del Diablo before, and I can quite confidently say it has always gone down well in the past (I recommend the Sauvignon Blanc), I wanted to have a go at being a tad more critical than ‘mmm it’s nice’.

The particular bottles we have are labelled as ‘Reserva’, which I learnt from a day- long wine tasting course means that it has been aged two years longer than necessary, and is very good quality. Needless to say, I eagerly poured myself a glass in one of my sister’s impressive fish bowl glasses (connoisseurs, yes I gave it time to breathe first).

Price- In the wine aisle at Tesco and Sainsburys this comes in at a rather reasonable £7.29. Whilst this isn’t the cheapest you can get a good red, you can save by buying this in bulk from Tesco wine by the case (6 bottles for £27 which is less that £5 per bottle!)

Appearance – This wine is a beautiful ruby red; very rich and deep in colour.

Smell and taste- The bottle claims that this is a ‘smooth, full- bodied Cabernet Sauvignon with cassis and black cherry flavours, complemented by hints of coffee and dark chocolate’.

The smell definitely offers a cherry flavour, with a subtle hint of dark chocolate as the label suggests, however both myself and Luke failed to pick out any coffee.

Upon tasting the wine, the initial flavours offered from the smell are joined by a wonderfully intense woody, almost nutty flavour. Surprisingly, I didn’t find there to be any strong tannin notes in this wine which makes for easy drinking so we might have to ration the bottles!

Food matching-  The bottle itself recommends matching this wine with red meats, herby dishes or mature cheeses and I couldn’t agree more- it would go down a treat with spag bol! I would also like to try it with a good quality dark chocolate such as Lindt 80% cocoa.

We will be enjoying the second of the six bottles tonight with a selection of cheeses, fruit and crackers… delicious!


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