The X Winery Red X Winemaker’s Blend 2008, North Coast, truly is a blended wine. First, it’s a blend of four grapes: syrah, 55 percent; tempranillo 23 percent; grenache 14 percent; zinfandel 8 percent. Second, it’s a blend of four North Coast regions: Los Carneros, 55 percent; Mendocino County, 23 percent; Suisun Valley (in Solano County, just southeast of Napa County’s Green Valley) 14 percent; Lake County 8 percent. There’s also a blend of French and American oak, 70 percent neutral, 30 percent new.

So, the effort with this wine is not to deliver varietal or geographical integrity but to produce an enjoyable, drinkable red wine that expresses its own character, as this wine certainly does, consistently over the years, and as the blend of grapes may change. X Winery’s Red X 2008 offers a meaty, fleshy, slightly funky and quite attractive bouquet of black currants, red raspberries and plums with quite a bit of spice and black pepper in the background. The wine is ripe and fleshy in the mouth too, with a texture that’s part velvet and part finely grained tannins; it’s robust without being rustic, though the smoothness is roughened a bit from mid-palate back by tannic grit and grip. Pert acidity keep the wine lively, while elements of spice, leather and briers and brambles and hints of dried flowers come up on the finish. A terrific match with burgers, pizzas, hearty pasta dishes and braised short ribs. Drink through 2012. Alcohol content is 14.5 percent. Winemakers were Reed Renaudin and Gina Richmond. Very Good+. About $15, representing Great Value.

Bottled with a screw-cap for easy opening. A sample for review.