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Chile,Holiday,Italy,Wine

Scarily great wines for your adult Halloween moments

I love good marketing and that’s primarily what this story is about… Some great marketing that recently came my way, in preparation for this Friday’s Halloween moments and memories.

I’m also one of those people who stays home to take care of the kids that come to my door on Halloween night.  Why? Because someone took care of me way back when. Payback isn’t the wench that it’s made out to be, when it involves children. I adore them.

When asked to taste wines that I’d recommend for that ghoulish day, I thought, “Why not?” Long ago, I began my wine PR and marketing career by going off the wall with my press releases. I gave them a seasonal flare, and I was pretty much alone with that concept. It got my clients a lot of publicity in the process. It was unique at the time, but it was a good concept… taking writers from “I tasted this wine, and here are my notes,” into having more fun with wine… I had fun with wine, why shouldn’t everyone else?

But admittedly, I never capitalized on Halloween, and so those queries now catch my attention. (I can’t mumble to myself, like I can with so many other things I see… “been there, done that.”)… I like the Halloween kitchieness.

I also like that I’ve been there with one particular brand that I find completely amusing. I love a great story, most especially one that delivers a bit of karma in the process, to some deserving soul.

[This mysterious image has been borrowed from the Casillero del Diablo Website. I recommend that you visit the site for some entertaining and fascinating flash.]

Casillero del Diablo

Don Melchor de Concha y Toro, an eminent Chilean Statesman, entrepreneur, and vineyard owner, discovered that his most treasured wines had been pilfered from the “Casillero” (cellar) beneath his ancestral home. To discourage further theft, the enterprising Don spread the rumor that his deepest, darkest cellars were haunted by el Diablo (the devil). Thus was born the Legend of Casillero del Diablo… (from marketing materials, but I added el Diablo, because not everyone everywhere knows Satan’s Spanish name).

I loved the wines. So much so that when I was in Puerto Rico this past March, Jose and I were in a grocery store with a great wine selection. When I spotted a Casillero del Diablo Sauvignon Blanc, I needed to go no further. We also purchased their Cab. If you’re not familiar, this winery has become Chile’s best selling one worldwide, through the Concha y Toro Wine Company. They talk about these wines being stored in hell and made in heaven… I love a good story that scares the pants off a thief in the making and taking, don’t you?

The wines tasted:

  • 2012 Casillero del Diablo Chardonnay, Chile
    • This Chardonnay just knocked me out with flavor, in a great way. It’s just classic Chardonnay in a stainless steel way: bright, crisp, and appley… Begging for something like a cheese appetizer, or just a good friend to have where you both enjoy clinking glasses. What a delight.
  • 2013 Casillero del Diablo Sauvignon Blanc, Chile
    • This is a classic Sauvignon Blanc that never disappoints me. It’s got a claw factor of 3… this means that it’s perfectly balanced, always refreshing, I don’t care what vintage it is, and delivers the Sauvignon Blanc goods. If you ever want a Sauvignon Blanc in a sea of Sauvignon Blancs on the shelf and you can’t make a decision, but spy this one on the shelf, don’t blink... Buy it… You won’t be disappointed, since it’s also got a stelvin closure.
  • 2013 Casillero del Diablo Cabernet Sauvignon, Chile
    • A consistently great crowd pleaser, this Cabernet Sauvignon is as tasty as ever I’ve enjoyed it. We all know that Cab is king, and I’m not a fan of overly ripe, high alcohol Cabernets. I like my red wines softer than those created with big scores in mind. And for it to be in that category, the wines should retail between $40 to $100+. This wine falls into the $11 to $12 category. A great value wine, Casillero del Diablo Cab is a favorite, when I’m enjoying Cabernet.

These wines are very easy to enjoy, almost to the point of being scary… really, really… brahhhhhhhha!

Il Spritz

Il Spritz offered an Orange Spritz for Orange Pumpkin celebrations… As the company states, “Why should kids have all of the fun?”

I have to admit that I was actually game for this one. I’m not big on trendy wine machinations. Too much hard work and thought goes into the process, so removing alcohol for “the ladies,” making wine coolers for “the kids,” that sort of marketing just gets my goat. But, being queried about an Orange spritzer just before Halloween… And, again, being asked to taste something for this holiday… something that I hadn’t yet come up with… okay, I’m in.

The verdict? I loved it and so did Jose. We opened the bottle together, thinking it was possibly going to bomb, but we both went back for seconds. The following day, we had to decide who was going to have the last glass… He’s such a gentleman, he gave it up for me. I didn’t argue, I’m no lady.  The woman inside took over.

This Non Vintage, Il Spritz is very low in alcohol (8 percent). You’ll want to serve it cold. The Italians know how to enjoy aperitifs, while celebrating their lifestyle, and this is a great example of orange deliciousness. It’s a semi-sparkling wine with flavors of blood orange; and it will let you enjoy going to the door and not being tipsy with the kids… unnecessarily scaring them… really. The Mionetto company suggests that you serve it over ice with a slice of orange or a green olive. We skipped the ice part and just went for it. It’s an extremely flavorful and highly recommended for… well… any spirited occasion.

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