We can learn a lot about how any given red wine will taste by taking a close look at its color in the glass, since the same compounds that determine color also contribute to wine’s taste, scent, and mouthfeel. As a general rule of thumb, the darkest red wines are often more intense in flavor than paler reds and their fruit flavors can seem more baked or stewed in comparison. Paler red wines tend to be lighter, more brisk, and often drier as well, since many come from Europe where these food-flattering traits are most prized. Meanwhile, the deepest, darkest red wines often hail from the Americas or the southern hemisphere.

This blue-black beauty from California is a perfect example of this decidedly modern flavor profile, one that is lower in acidity and higher in both alcohol and subliminal sweetness than more traditional styles. Grape variety is a key factor in wine color, since some have thicker skins than others or higher levels of key compounds like anthocyanins. Petite sirah may not be as well-known as cabernet sauvignon or malbec, but can produce similarly inky-looking wines, especially when grown in a warm, sunny region. One of the most seductive traits found in high-saturation wines like this one is their texture, which can acquire tremendous richness with skilled winemaking. This wine charms with its dense flavors of blueberry jam and faint whiff of Turkish coffee, but its most hypnotic traits are its midnight color and plush mouthfeel. What better way to celebrate the Halloween weekend than to let this wine cast its spell as it swirls in your glass, before enveloping your palate with black velvet?

Spellbound Petite Sirah California

$11.99 — 13.5% alcohol

PLCB Item #8576

Sale price through 10/31 — regularly $14.99

Also available at:

Joe Canal’s in Marlton and Lawrenceville, N.J. — $11.99, jcanals.com;

Wine Warehouse in Voorhees and Mantua — $12.99, winewarehousenj.com;

Total Wine & More in Claymont, Del. — $13.29, totalwine.com.