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Time for a visit to Cleavage Creek

I was introduced to Cleavage Creek through the social networking platform Twitter, of whom many of you are very familiar. Now the name of this winery does not make me immediately think about wine and may not illicit thoughts of wine for anyone else either. So yes this makes them quite unique and they also have a unique way to help in the fight against Breast Cancer one bottle at a time.

The owner of Cleavage Creek is Budge Brown who lost his wife of 48 years to breast cancer in 2005, who's is quoted as saying, “My wife died for no damn good reason, it’s time to do something about this,” stresses Brown who is donating 10 percent of the gross profits to help fund research to hopefully find an end to the disease. According to their website, "That’s gross, not net—a huge difference when determining the amount of money that will be contributed." To date, Cleavage Creek and Budge Brown have donated over $70,800 to breast cancer causes. That said this winery has become a revenue raising vehicle for the charity, their cause is the continuing fight against Breast Cancer.

Some Controversy: As with nearly everything in life, there seems to be a study here or there which will state this good for you, then later it's bad for you. So to here comes the rub on drinking wine and a winery that promotes wine consumption as a way to give a charitable donation in the fight against breast cancer. Drinking nightly glass of wine causes cancer , goes the headline, but once you actually read the study, [I know god forbid] it does not specifically indicate "wine" as thee main culprit as it's touted; it actually says more generically "liquor". Now if that had been the headline, it would not have created the kind of buzz that sells ad-space [see the connection?]. That said, wine has far less abv then nearly all other liquors, thus wine is not as problematic as say vodka. Most wine drinkers are not consuming or imbibing to get a buzz, like their Martini sipping counter-parts. So before you run off ranting and raving, take the time to look up the "study" quoted as evidence of how contradictory Cleavage Creek is in regards to how they promote charitable contributions for Breast Cancer Research. I for one think this is a very worthwhile effort and I want to be on the record for commending their efforts, well done!

Get the Facts: Now it took me a just a few moments to find the study read and understand the context [again I know, god forbid] of the study, this is a great practice for anyone in this media saturated society where headline reading is the norm and the assumption of said facts is taken as gospel. Here's the link to the article:

What Science says: The UK Research scientists cited in the article says, "no amount of alcohol is fully safe", but recommends women should drink no more than two to three units [that's a 1/2 bottle of wine] per day on a regular basis to have a lower risk of any harm to health. For men the recommended limit is no more than three to four units per day.

What is a Unit: A unit = half a pint of beer, a small (125ml) glass of wine, a shot or a small (25ml) [which is half of airline mini bottle] measure of spirits. A small glass (125 ml) of 8% abv wine contains one unit of alcohol. As with everything in life moderation is the key to living a long healthy life, while knee-jerk reactions to headlines read on-line maybe helpful for the exercise of "jumping to conclusions" I don't recommend it!

The Line Up: The Cleavage Creek Cellars line-up consists of seventeen different wines: Here's a sampling of the types of wine you will encounter. Reserve Napa Cabernet Sauvignon, a Reserve Napa Petite Sirah, a Cabernet-Syrah, a Merlot, a Merlot-Syrah, a Reserve Chardonnay, the Secret Red and Secret White. Each bottle features a breast cancer survivor whose story is told on the bottle. The wines are in the $18 to $60 range.

Full Disclosure: The Cuvée Corner Wine Blog was sent samples for review.

Wine(s) Reviewed: 2006 Tracy Hills Secret Red

First Swirl: Medium body and light colored garnet core with a watery cranberry colored rim.

First Sniff: Aromas of black fruit and cranberry swirl about nicely, but it's a short if not somewhat flat encounter.

First Sip: Complete but not overly exciting either and a little high in acidity department. Some red fruits present, but not overwhelming, with some excess tart on the short finish.

Treatment: This wine is predominately stainless steel fermented with an aged oak treatment for a subtle oak expression.

Abv and Price: It sells for a SRP of $18 with only 330 cases made and weighs in at 13.7% abv.

Where to find Cleavage Creek Wines : If you live in San Diego like me it appears there's no Brick n Mortar place for you to go, so if you want to purchase some of their wines just Click here to buy online.

Cuvée Corner Wine Blog Score: Hey point seekers here's my score if your interested: I scored this wine 85 on Cuvee Corner 100 point tasting scale. A lower price could have earned it a full point higher.

My Recommendation: Since this is my first encounter with their wine I don't feel comfortable making an absolute recommendation one way or the other. That said, I am not a huge fan of wines which have an obvious absence of oak treatment, thus this palate could not endorse this particular bottle, but they do make so many different wines I'm sure they would have one I could give the thumbs up to, just not this bottle. After reading my notes you may just be estatic about buying some Cleavage Creek Wine and I would encourage you to do so. Until next time cheers everyone!


Miss said…
Yours is a very thorough piece on the health benefits of wine and the good works being done by the Cleavage Creek winery. Hats off to CC for their efforts to stop breast cancer. It is a disease that has touched and taken too many lives.

My husband and I look forward to trying their wines and supporting their efforts.

very best,
Bill Eyer said…
Hi Missy,

I really try to give a little more than a drive-by review of the wines I sample. Yes indeed, hats-off to CC for their continued efforts and I hope you will support them with a purchase, please tell them the CCWB sent you.

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