MythologyOne of the great things about fermented grape juice is that no matter how much you know or how much you think you know, you never know everything.

Wine can and will surprise you.

Take this Pindar Vineyards 2001 Mythology ($30), for instance. I don't think anyone would argue that Pindar is one of Long Island's top, quality-focused producers. They aren't, but they are great at introducing people to wine with their sweeter, simpler wines. Every wine region has their Pindar. And it could be said that every region needs their Pindar.

Regardless of Pindar's place in the local industry, I've enjoyed several of their wines in the past. But none as much as I enjoyed this wine.

Made with 33% cabernet franc, 21% cabernet sauvignon, 20% merlot, 20% petite verdot and 6% malbec, this is proof that, when Pindar wants to, it is capable of making excellent wine.

The extremely expressive nose is very Old World, with black raspberry, tobacco, fresh and dried cherries and pencil lead aromas. The palate is medium bodied dry, complex and extremely well balanced. Dark cherry flavors dominate at first, with hints of vanilla and tobacco, but as the wine opens up in the glass, plummy flavors emerge along with dried leaves, more pencil lead and a light sprinkling of black pepper. The finish is medium-long and earthy, with just a little spice. 

Lovers of big fruit may not like this as much, but those (like myself) who like the earthy secondary flavors should.

Producer: Pindar Vineyards
Rating: 35 (3.5 out of 5 | Very good-to-Delicious).

(Ratings Guide)