'Barrel Monkeys' is an homage to Australia's cellar rats, the purple-tongued laborers in the mega-wineries of Down Under.
The RedHeads cooperative studio in McLaren Vale has thankfully given 16 such monkeys an outlet to moonlight from their day jobs and let off some winemaking steam. And this aptly named Barrel Monkeys is one impressive result, a full-throttle screwcap shiraz that delivers a dark-fruit blast and licorice spice. A novel fermentation over chardonnay lees lends an extra touch of creaminess to soften the 15.5% alcohol kick.
At $14.99 a bottle, Pennsylvania State Stores also have one of the best prices you'll find on this increasingly sought-after "garage wine." - Craig LaBan