Some New York restaurant owners, when confronted about a lack of local wines on their lists, point to price point as the main reason. “There just aren’t any good $15 reds!” they might say.

Now, one could argue that the cheap reds they are pouring aren’t very good either, but that’s another discussion for another day. Today, let me introduce you to the latest vintage of one of New York’s great red wine values — Arrowhead Spring Vineyard 2010 Arrowhead Red ($15) — an incredibly well-priced wine that should be served by the glass in every western New York restaurant that cares at all about wine. Seriously.

This blend of 46% cabernet franc, 29% merlot and 25% cabernet sauvignon is fruity but also complex on the nose, blending black cherry, blackberry and currant aromas with notes of leaf tobacco and spiced blueberry compote.

Dark-but-lively fruit flavors lead the palate with a subtle eucalyptus character and a slightly dusty dark chocolate note. Thought medium-bodied, it leans fuller and has subtle tannins that combine with fresh acidity for structure and table-worthiness. The finish is on the shorter side, but it’s easy to overlook that.

I’ve gone through at least a half case of this wine over the past few months. It’s likely that I’ll go through quite a bit more at this price.

Producer: Arrowhead Spring Vineyards
AVA: Niagara Escarpment
ABV: 13.5%
Price: $15 | Buy Now From Empire State Cellars


(3 out of 5, Very good/Recommended)