2007 Dr. Jebediah Drinkwell’s Meritage

2007 Dr. Jebediah Drinkwell's MeritagePrice: $8.99 @ Trader Joe’s

What They Said:

There is nothing official here. Though the front of the bottle was appealing the back was filled with lyrics I’ve chosen not to retype here. That said feel free to friend up Jebediah Drinkwell’s Meritage on Facebook.

What I Think:

This Jebediah Drinkwell comes from a rich pedigree. It’s producer, Central Coast Wine Warehouse, has been behind many great values such as the Pancake Cellars, the Caretaker Pinot and my personal favorite the Franc Merlot.

This one reminds of the Franc Merlot from the word go. The blend here is 60% Cab Franc, 27% Merlot, 11% Cab and 1% Malbec and Petite Verdot (versus 70% Cabernet Franc, 26% Merlot and 4% Petite Sirah for the Franc Merlot) . The heavy Cab Franc is evident throughout this one starting with a healthy dose of green pepper on the nose. The palate shows blackberries with a dusty chocolate component emerging which leads to a nice spicy, white pepper finish. This one drinks smoothly.

2007 Dr. Jebediah Drinkwell's MeritageThat leaves one question, is it worth $5 more than the Franc Merlot? I don’t think so. In fact, given these come from the same producer, have nearly the same blend and are labeled with successive vintages (2006 Franc Merlot and 2007 Jebediah Drinkwell) a conspiracy theorist may say this is the next vintage of that same wine with a different label at double the cost. The time they individually appeared on the shelf may debunk that theory but either way you can still feel free to buy wines from Central Coast Wine Warehouse on sight. This one makes them 4 for 4, albeit at a bit pricier than I would like…

Rating: Buy It

For a few more takes check out Trader Joe’s Wine Compendium (pro) or The Cab Franco Files (con)

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16 thoughts on “2007 Dr. Jebediah Drinkwell’s Meritage

  1. I personally love Dr. Drinkwell’s. It is a perfect wine to pair with select food or to enjoy with friends while recounting the week’s adventures. Admittedly Drinkwell’s isn’t for everyone…rather for those of us who appreciate a heavy pepper back. Not as earthy as some Cab Francs I’ve had but definitely a great foray into the world of Franc.

    • Thanks for the comment John. I drink quite a few Cab Franc’s and thought the Merlot component here offered a nice change. I thought this would be a good choice for someone looking to try Cab Franc for the first time.

  2. I enjoyed it but I felt it should deliver just a little more at that price point to become part of my rotation. There’s more out there in the $8-$10 range I’d rather drink.

    I guess the CCWW has spoiled me by their previous offerings!

  3. @joshiemac That is fair. Lot’s of good wines out there in that range. I only bought one more bottle which I have yet to drink. Perhaps my opinion will change. BTW, no thoughts on the conspiracy theory… When is the next vintage of the Franc Merlot going to appear…

  4. You could be right on the conspiracy theory. After all, the election/political party concept is very dated to 2008. Knowing them and how they market their wines, it wouldn’t surprise me if they totally changed the label for what is effectively a different vintage of the same wine. Have they done multiple vintages of other wines like Pancake? Or do they mix it up every year?

    I’m happy I still have a few bottles of the Franc/Merlot in my cellar. They will pair well with the stews and braises I’m making now that the weather has changed.

    I was ready to try the 2006 Nerello del Bastardo from TJs ($7) last night but I had a major accident involving hard-to-open childproof drawers, a travertine floor, and said bottle of wine. Moral of the story: do not hold a bottle of wine while trying to open my childproof drawers. Now I need to get another bottle because I liked previous vintages.

  5. Yeah, I’m finding the Cab Francs we have in the store right now are SOOO much better when paired with food. It helps to smooth out any rough edges and tone down the green pepper notes of which I’m not really a fan. The Crew kinda liked this one when we tasted it a few months ago, but yes there’s a lot of other options in this price range.

  6. I wasn’t a big fan of this one. I thought it tasted over-cropped and disjointed, but I haven’t had it with food yet so I probably should give it another chance.

    Joshiemac… You have the ’06 Nerello del Bastardo??? What state are you in? (and what the heck happened to the ’03, ’04 and ’05 vintages I wonder). The ’02 was dreadful, whereas the ’99, ’00 and ’01s were great.

  7. Peter-I live in Northern California. I’ve seen the ’06 Nerello at several TJs location in the East Bay area of late. Still haven’t purchased another bottle.

  8. Bought a bottle of the Doctor this week at a Seattle area TJ for $6.99. Oddly, the Wine Party was always $5.99 up here.

    So, for just a $1 swing I’m glad it’s back in stock!

  9. Peter B-Finally had a chance to try the ’06 Nerelo del bastardo. Smokey & earthy on the nose like a sangiovese. Palate showing a strong rush of red fruit backed by a burst of acidity like a barbera or valpolicella. Not much of a finish. It had flashes of decency but It never came together that well. Fell apart on the second night. Not the worst bottle of wine but I doubt I’ll buy another.

  10. We drank 5 bottles of this in the week we just spent in California. I absolutely loved it, though it does seem to taste better with a meal than on it’s own. Hoping to find it at the Trader Joes in our area.

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