Some of you know that I'm the youngest of four children - I've got three older brothers, all of whom went into the US Armed Services after high school. My dad and grandfather were in the Navy - the list goes on. Suffice to say, I've got a lot of family members who have served or are currently serving in the US Armed Services.
Our family has been pretty fortunate in that my relatives have all made it back safely from active duty deployments. Not all families can say the same - lost loved ones, family members who return with serious injury, veterans experiencing difficulties adjusting to civilian life following deployment - even families that can say that their loved ones returned "safe and sound" can't say that their lives weren't forever changed. You're probably wondering what this has to do with wine...
An American family-owned and operated winery in Napa Valley, CK Mondavi is an extremely active supporter of veterans of the US Armed Services - the winery is run by Peter Mondavi Sr, a veteran himself (WWII - he's 99 years young and still involved in the day-to-day operations of the winery)!
CK Mondavi partnered with the Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund (IFHF) - an organization that supports the men and women of the Armed Forces and their families - in 2012 and evey year they run a promotion to raise money and awareness of the organization. As such, a percentage of each and every bottle sold between May and August will be donated to the IFHF. How awesome is that? If you're reading this, please go out and buy a bottle. Even if you don't like wine - it makes a great gift, and I'm sure SOMEONE you know likes wine. And priced at under $10 per bottle, it's a bargain for what you get (and give)!
I had the opportunity to try two of the wines offered by CK Mondavi - a Cabernet Sauvignon and a Chardonnay - and I was pleasantly surprised! As you know, I'm a bit of a wine snob and most red wines in this price point have left me a bit underwhelmed in terms of depth of flavor. Not so with the Cabernet. In the interest of full disclosure, I used my Vinturi Wine Aerator, as I do with all red wines consumed at home, so if you're just pouring directly from bottle to glass, your tasting notes may differ. I highly recommend investing in a Vinturi, but if you don't want to do that, at least let your red wine decant for a bit before drinking.
The Cabernet was not too sweet, but definitely not dry with notes of blackberries and cherries. It finished nicely with a hint of oakiness. An "every day red" wine, I could see this pairing well with anything from burgers on the grill to roasted chicken or fish. It clocked in at 13.6% ABV. I'd definitely pick this one up again if I saw it at the grocery store (which is likely, since CK Mondavi is sold in every single US state)!
I'm not usually one for Chardonnay, since they're usually more buttery and sweet than I prefer, but the CK Mondavi Chardonnay was not bad. It was a little more crisp than most Chardonnays I've had in the past, with hints of lemon, apple and a light oakiness in the finish. It was still more buttery than I tend toward, but that's personal preference. Slightly less potent at 13.4%, I think this wine would be great with fondue or pasta.
I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls Collective and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.