Krush! gathered eight members of its Tasting Panel to try the initial release of Karas wines on the East Coast of America. We paired each of the Karas wines with a competitive wine, selected to be in a similar style and price. In choosing our comparison wines, we opted for those that had widespread distribution and were either the category leader, or had strong reputations for quality.
We served the wines in conjunction with a three-course dinner menu, allowing the tasters to evaluate on the wine both with and without food. Here are the results:
|Karas Wine||Comparison Wine||Taster’s Preference|
|N.V. Karas Extra Brut Sparkling Wine $13/btl.||N.V. Korbel Brut Sparkling Wine (California, USA) $14/btl.||Karas 5-3|
|2014 Karas Classic White Blend $13/btl.||2015 Chateau Saint Cosme White Cote du Rhone (Rhone Valley, France) $18/btl.||Tied 4-4|
|2014 Karas Classic Red Blend $13/btl.||2014 LaPosta Tinto Red Blend (Mendoza, Argentina) $14/btl.||Karas 8-0|
|2013 Karas Reserve Red Blend $30/btl.||2013 Hess Collection Block 19 Mountain Cuvee (Napa Valley, USA) $30/btl.||Karas 8-0|
|N.V. Karas Muscat Sparkling Wine “Dyutich” $13/btl.||N.V. Martini & Rossi Asti Spumonte (Asti, Italy) $14/btl.||Tied 4-4|
“ I really liked how the Karas wines complimented the food – that was the deciding factor for me in which wine I preferred for most of the pairings” Sylvia Ansourian Kruizenga
“I was surprised by the overall quality of the Karas wines – they are all well made wines and seemed to have a little more acid than the comparison wines. However, I did not detect any common “Armenian” component in the line-up – their flavor profiles were very similar to their global counterparts” Derek Kruizenga
“I was very surprised that in general the Karas wines held up very favorably to popular wines from well established regions of the world. There’s a lot of really good wines yet to be discovered” Richard Papalian
The entire Karas lineup was well received – we would recommend all of the wines. They certainly represented good values for the price. In terms of value, the Karas Classic Red stood out – it was the third favorite bottle of the night and at $13, a real bargain and a great introduction to Armenian wine for anyone who has not tried one.
The Karas Reserve Red was the favorite wine of the evening – it had every thing the Classic Red offered and added a little deeper fruit, more tannins and some additional sweet oak notes. The Hess Collection Block 19 was the second favorite wine of the tasting – it also had nice complexity on the nose, good structure and well-balanced black fruit. However, but was just a tad muted in comparison to the Karas Reserve Red. For more detailed tasting notes, click here.