When I walked into Trader Joe’s last week, I found that I could not resist the offer of cheap wine. They were selling bottles of 2007 Charles Shaw merlot for just $2.99. I was too curious not to bring a bottle home with me.
A couple nights ago, I opened the bottle, let it sit for an hour, and gave it a try. I couldn’t swallow more than a sip. It was practically vinegar.
I couldn’t bring myself to pour the wine down the drain, though. I kept it on the counter, open, for the next couple of days, with the idea that I might use the wine in a recipe with something meaty.
An occasion to cook with the bad wine didn’t come up, though, and so, this afternoon, I prepared to dump the merlot. I took another sip first, just to check with myself that the wine was as bad as I remembered. It wasn’t.
After two days of airing, the Charles Shaw merlot mellows considerably. It’s still not the best merlot in this condition, but it’s perfectly acceptable as a table wine. My recommendation is to buy the Charles Shaw merlot. Save a few dollars, but be patient. Uncork it. Wait. Then enjoy.