Tasty Libation of the Week: Chronic Cellars

While the pressure to announce our preferred alcohol drink of the week is pretty high (we always want to give you the best)… this first week was actually a pretty easy selection. For our inaugural booze-dipped write-up of a “tasty libation” your liquor cabinet shouldn’t be without… we are going to the grape. Specifically a winery located just outside of Paso Robles in Central California… one that seems to be cut from the same cloth as all of us at camp White Glossy. Today… it’s all about Chronic Cellars.

Right off the bat I have to say… don’t check these dudes off your list because of the fun and lighthearted style Chronic takes in what is typically a classed-up and refined industry. These guys take a very serious approach to their craft. A craft which has been refined over a lifetime. Founded by two brothers (Jake & Josh Beckett) who grew up on a vineyard (Ma & Pa Beckett own another label), their goal of making amazing blends with a modern approach to image has helped create a new era of wine-making. It seems like wine made in America has been in a constant evolution since it’s inception… but the real quantum leaps of taste and style have taken place over just the past 5-7 years. We’re in the midst of some pretty exciting times if your willing to take some chances.

So, why “Chronic” you ask? Here’s what the Beckett bros have to say about it on their company website:

The concept of Chronic Cellars came about in the midst of harvest in 2004. We had used the term “The Chronic” to describe likable objects before, but we had never considered it a suitable descriptor for wine. We sat alongside the crush pad one evening in our wine stained clothes and wet boots laughing about the idea of a wine that targeted a casual lifestyle.

So why have I personally chosen Chronic Cellars? I was drawn to them because of the label (I think bottle labels are an art-form in itself… I can’t even say how many times I tried a bottle of wine because the label looked cool)… but I 100% became a fan of this particular winery because of the taste! Through a mixture of was has to be Black magic and copious amounts of tasting… the blends you’ll find in a bottle of Chronic is damn-near as addicting as it’s namesake. No joke. I find myself drawn to them every time I’m in the store.

One thing you won’t find on the shelf when shopping Chronic is your standard wine styles (Zinfandel, Merlot, Cabernet, etc.)… these guys work with blends. Perfect example would be my absolute favorite bottle they make, Sofa King Bueno ($22-ish). It’s blended with 71% Syrah, 15% Petite Sirah, 10% Grenache and 4% Mourvedre. 71% Syrah… how in the hell did they figure out that %71 was the perfect amount to make it perfect??? Seriously??? HOW!?!?!?!?! It is probably one of the best damn bottles of wine I’ve ever had. No exaggeration. If it was a chick I’d take it behind the bleachers, get it pregnant and make it marry me so it could never leave.

As for variety… if your a fan of dry whites, sweet whites, reds etc… they have you covered across the board. Here is a current list of their offerings:

2010 Purple Paradise
2011 Sofa King Suite
2011 Stone Fox
2010 Sofa King Bueno
2010 Dead Nuts
2010 Suite Petite
2010 El Perfecto (WIne Club Only)
Tranquilo Late Harvest
2010 Purple Paradise Magnum

Plus, if you’re brave enough to really dig in and change the way you’ll view wine forever… they have a pretty amazing wine club.

What else can I say? The wine revolution is alive and well… and Chronic Cellars is on the front lines, being the change that we all need. Wine is NOT boring!!!! Wine is NOT stuffy and conceited!!!!! Wine CAN finally be bought without feeling all uber-douchey. Best of all… if you’re looking for a gift to buy that dude you know is all about the grape, you’ll successfully be able to keep your man-card in tote while handing him over a bottle of Purple Paradise.

Rock on Beckett brothers!!!! And thank you!!!