No wine better illustrates what American wine drinkers want than the Neprica. And no wine better illustrates how little the wine business understands about what American wine drinkers want.
In the two years I've written this blog, the two Neprica reviews are not only the most popular reviews, but they're the second and seventh most popular posts. And that the review of the 2007, which has only been on the blog for nine months, is seventh is even more amazing. That's just not supposed to happen.
And why do so many people appreciate the Neprica (about $12, sample)? Because it's cheap, it's well-made, it's food friendly, and you can drink it without a PhD in winespeak. It's a red blend of three grapes grown almost only in Italy, and it produces a cherry-ish, low alcohol, balanced wine that pairs with red sauce and a surprising number of non-Italian foods.
Yet, in many parts of the country (including the Dallas area), the Neprica is difficult to find. That must be because it's cheap, well-made, food friendly, and you can drink it without a PhD in winespeak. Heaven forfend retailers carry something people will enjoy drinking.
So find a bottle, pour it for dinner, and be glad that there are still some producers who care more about quality than hype. And, as part of the Wine Curmudgeon's birthday celebration, you can win a bottle of Neprica. Just leave a comment detailing why you like the wine. The best answer, as determined by the Wine Curmudgeon, gets a bottle and a cork screw to open it with.