But first, why I like Cougar Town (bare with me, I do have a point here)
I’m not afraid to admit it; I like the show Cougar Town. There I said it. It’s out there to the world. One of my oldest and closest friends, Allison, got me into the show last year during its first season. She said to me, “Mary you have to watch the show. Courtney Cox’s character reminds me of you, plus they drink wine in every episode”. This is the same friend that told me that my husband and I remind her of Chandler and Monica from Friends (which is actually quite true), but that’s another story… It was enough to get me to tune into an episode. Then I became hooked.
Yes, I’ll admit, I first started watching the show because I loved the fact that they drink red wine in every episode (yes every single episode). How could I not support that? But then I started appreciating it for more reasons. For me the show is just stupid funny. It reminds me of the older sitcoms from the 80’s I grew up on. It’s not a very deep show, nor a really smart or clever modern comedy (like my favorite comedy currently on TV, Modern Family). Instead it is just simple, fun, and silly. Watching the show is a pretty brainless activity. And it always gets a good chuckle out of me.
The show follows the story of Jules, a successful real estate agent, divorcee, and single mother in her 40’s, as she enters the world of dating again. But more than just that it revolves around Jules and her friends and neighbors in a silly comedy about dating, friendship, and family. It’s not a complicated storyline. You don’t have to think too much about it. The characters are lovable and easy to like. To me, it’s just a simple, no-brainer, and likable show perfect for the middle of the week (when it airs). You know what you’re going to get, and if you don’t have really high expectations it won’t disappoint.
This got me thinking. If I were Jules, what wine would I be drinking in every episode? Well I am not Jules, but much like her I do drink a lot of mid-week wines (when I’m not pregnant of course), and for me, the show reminds me of one of my go to everyday wines, Argentinean Malbec.
For me, when shopping for a decent everyday red at a good price Argentinean Malbec is just something of a no-brainer. It’s typically a great value (decent bottles range from $8-$20) so I know I’m not getting ripped off no matter what. Many lower priced Malbecs are usually pretty uncomplicated, yet tasty and satisfying, and I trust that I’ll be picking up something that I’ll probably like. I can simply walk into a wine store check out their options, and even if I have never tried the wine nor heard of the producer I’m not afraid to just pick up a bottle and give it a whirl, because I know it usually won’t disappoint, especially for the price you’re going to pay for it, and if it does you’re barely out a ten spot. No big loss.
Now some people may be offended by comparing the simplicity of Cougar Town to Malbec, but to me they are indeed similar. They are good to get you through a midweek slump, trustworthy, no-brainers that are likeable and uncomplicated. Yes there are many rich, complex, and wonderful Argentinean Malbecs on the market, but for the most part, the majority of the ones you see in the market or wine shops are the ones in the $8-$20 range, and for those ones, they are good, trustworthy, everyday wines that you can’t really go wrong with. They won’t blow you away with their complexity but they will leave you satisfied and you didn’t have to invest much time, energy, or money into the experience.
So if you want to try something new, and don’t want to stress too much about your wine choice, or you just want to drink it without analyzing or thinking too deeply about it, go for an Argentinean Malbec. For the price range of most on the market you really can’t go wrong. Many of the producers you see on the market do a fine job, but ones to keep an eye out for in the value range ($8-$20) are: Gouguenheim, Tomero, Alamos, Ben Marco, Crios De Susana Balbo, Altos Las Hormigas, Trapiche, Doña Paula, Colomé, among many others.
As I’ve been exploring the candy shops (er I mean wine shops) here in my new town I bumped into an old favorite, Tomero. A wine I bought bottle after bottle of last summer in Portland and thought I’d pick it up over a year later to see if I still enjoyed it just the same.
Deep dark cherry and black berry fruit aromas on the nose with some chocolate, figs, vanilla and spice. On the palate, the boldness of the fruit is still there with some additional spice, evident toast, and a lingering juicy and spicy finish. Yup, this is still a great mid-week value wine in my book! Definitely still recommend this one.
Region: Mendoza, Argentina
Grapes: 100% Malbec
Retail: $12-$15 (I used to buy this in Portland for $12, and just found it in CT at Spiritus Wine Store for $14)
Food Pairing: Great for grilled meat dishes (steak, ribs, burgers) or just sipping whilst watching your favorite mid-week TV shows.
Cheers and happy mid-week wine drinking!