Rex Goliath wines get their name from a 47 pound rooster that was a circus attraction in the late 1800’s, early 1900’s -His Royal Majesty Rex Goliath. The company says the rooster symbolizes their big, bold, “fruit forward”, in their words, style of wines. Not coincidentally, the original parent company, Hahn Family Wines, also uses a rooster as part of their logo, since, as they explain, Hahn, in German, is rooster. Hahn also owns labels Cycles Gladiator, Chilean Copa del Rey (whose Merlot we discussed some time ago), and a half dozen, or so, other labels. They are located in Central Coast, California, near Monterrey. The Rex Goliath label is now part of Constellation Brands, the more than 47 pound giant rooster of the wine industry.
The Store has been featuring the 1.5 liter Rex Goliaths at $9.99, so we picked up this Free Range Red, the newest item in the Rex Goliath lineup, as well as their Pinot Grigio (see next post) to take along on a brief weekend escape.
Free Range Red is a Zinfandel Syrah blend. It is, just as Rex Goliath claims, fruity, smooth and easy to drink. It is not as rich as some noteworthy blends (the Cupcake comes to mind), or as big bodied as most Zins or Syrah/Shiraz/Sirahs. But, I’m guessing, that is exactly what the winemakers had in mind here-a red that will appeal to those who have trouble liking reds. I have many conversations with folks who would like to transition from chilled, light whites to the red end of the shelves. Unfortunately, there is not the sort of stair step progression from dry to sweet among the reds that whites provide. Cabernets, Merlots, Zinfandels, Syrahs, Pinot Noirs are all clustered near the dry end of the scale, then there is the huge step to the Lambrusco/Sweet Reds neighborhood. Here, in this quite user friendly Free Range Red, is a good entry point to the red side, without getting one’s hair blown back by a big, tannic wine. I’m not sure the contents of the bottle are consistent with the fierce looking 47 pound rooster on the label, though. Perhaps they should use a picture of Rex’s 12 pound cousin, Bruce the Chicken. Like the wine, not so scary.