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Shopping Like its $19.99

Shopping Like it’s $19.99 with Katie

This week, I’m thinking ahead to warmer weather. The Happy Camper 2006 Chardonnay fits perfectly into this warmer weather mind-set; it also fits into this column priced nicely at $8.99.

This is the perfect wine for an outdoor adventure. It’s even equipped with a screw cap, so there’s no need to pack a corkscrew. The Happy Camper is a California Chardonnay that presents apple and pear on the nose, followed by more apple and pear on the palate. It is crisp and refreshing and I think that it would absolutely be best enjoyed outdoors.

Since it’s February and I do live in a winter-weather climate (a mild one, but we did have some snow on the ground this morning,) I enjoyed it in the comfort of my kitchen, with pasta and fire roasted chicken sausage in a mustard cream sauce with basil. Oh, I used some of the Happy Camper in the sauce, which was delicious. At $8.99, this is a great “excursion” wine; I’ll remember to bring some with me as the weather warms and picnic season arrives.

My second selection this week was a great deal. I found the 2004 Toasted Head Shiraz at my local grocery store for $9.99, $6 off of its regular price of $15.99. I wasn’t planning on purchasing wine on that particular trip to the store, but when a great deal presents itself, I’m all over it.

Toasted Head is a California wine by R. H. Phillips. This Shiraz was fruit forward; I particularly noticed raspberry and cherry flavors, followed by the spice that is such a nice characteristic of the variety. I was thrilled to find this wine at this price — I wouldn’t have been able to address it in this column otherwise. If I see these Toasted Head wines at this price again, I’ll try the other varieties (Chardonnay and Merlot) to see if they’re as impressive. I don’t think I’ll be disappointed.

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