lahonda.jpgFrom winemaker Ken Wornick comes this very confident red wine – Exponent – created of an intriguing blend of syrah, cabernet sauvignon, sangiovese and merlot. At $19 a bottle (@ VinoCruz) and 13.8% alcohol, it has the stuff to take on holiday ham, roast beef, raviolis and pozole (though not, I suspect, all at one sitting).

Big and beefy, even savory along the mid-section, this 2008 vintage is one of the most interesting wines to come down the local Santa Cruz Mountains pike in a long time.

Give it a shot – or give it to someone on your holiday list.