Wine Review: 2020 Yellow Tail Whiskey Barrel Aged Red Blend


2020 [yellow tail] Whiskey Barrel Aged Red Blend

     Way back in 2016, I remember being very excited when I saw the first bottle of Apothic Inferno hit the shelves of my local wine shop. Since then I've noticed some other winemakers following suit with their own whiskey barrel fermentations, including this one from the Australian winemaker, [yellow tail].
     I found this bottle on sale for $8.99 at the grocery store, which brings it in at almost half the price of Apothic Inferno, but at almost double the cost of the average bottle of [yellow tail] wine. Well friends, you can really see where the extra money went. Not only is the special edition label beautiful, but the wine inside is delectable to say the least.
     This limited batch red blend is aged in whiskey barrels for 30 days allowing the whiskey goodness to commingle with the grapes. I mean quite literally, if the best qualities of whiskey and red wine had a baby, it would be this.
     For once, I think the description on the bottle is pretty accurate, which is to say that it tastes like malt and honey with blueberry and peppery spice. Wine labels tend to say a lot of things but this one actually means it. With a pleasantly long and smooth finish, this red blend is in a class far above anything else from [yellow tail] that I have ever tasted. If all of their wines were this good, I truly believe that [yellow tail] would rule the world. 
     The next most similar wine that [yellow tail] makes is Big Bold Red but there is really no comparison. On its own, Big Bold Red is not bad but it is noticeably clumsy and heavy handed when presented in a Pepsi challenge against its whiskey barrel aged counterpart.
     As for how 2020 [yellow tail] Whiskey Barrel Aged Red Blend compares to Apothic Inferno, it's a close race but I think I like the [yellow tail] better. The [yellow tail] is less expensive and also a little less potent. Inferno is 15.9% Alc/Vol while the [yellow tail] is 14.5%. That might not sound like a big difference but I find the [yellow tail] to be more mellow and refined making it more enjoyable in general. 


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