I’m a teetotaler. I don’t like the way alcohol tastes and I like even less the way it makes me feel. I do, however, consider a good red wine an essential ingredient when I’m cooking. I seldom need to buy cooking wine because the occasional gift is enough to replenish my supply. Last week, however, I ran out of my wine supply and there wasn’t a gift bottle in sight.
Girding my loins, I headed off to the wine aisle in Safeway. (In Marin County, Safeway wine aisles are marvels of sophistication and choice. We are, after all, just one county away from Napa and Sonoma.) My approach to buying wine is simple: pick a price range, identify the highest rated wine in that range, and then buy the one with the best looking label. Using that algorithm, I came home with this wine: