We don't approve of actual wolf traps, but the South African red called the Wolftrap is another matter entirely. The 2011, which has proved to be a big seller, goes for about $10 at wine savvy markets while it lasts.
The Wolftrap, which hails from the Cape of Good Hope region, is a blend of syrah and mourvedre red grapes with a tiny splash of the white grape viognier added to enhance the wine's perfume. It works very nicely. On the nose, this table wine offers juicy grape, a little cocoa and a whiff of white flowers. The dominant flavor on the tongue is lush blackberry abetted by cocoa and a bit of syrah bramble. We smell the viognier rather than taste it. The wine is juicy all the way from first sip through a medium long finish, at the end of which we get a subdued nip of cinnamon.
Pair this robust and fragrant red with braised lamb shanks or maple-glazed salmon, or just sip it on its own when friends drop in.
By Colette and John Bancroft. She is the Times' book editor, and he is a freelance writer specializing in food, wine and travel. For an index and archive of reviews, go to pictograph.com.