In my own Wine 101 blog I routinely dedicate an entire column to a review of one bottle of wine. I find it only fair as one winemaker, one winery and one nod from Mother Nature did as well. So today I give you my reflections on:
2000 Chateau Moulin de Sales
AOC Lalande de Pomerol (This is the area, also known as the appellation, of Bordeaux that the grapes comes from.)
80% Merlot, 10% Cabernet and 10% Cabernet Franc (It’s rare to have the grape varietals listed on a Bordeaux. You usually just know the region – Bordeaux – and presume that it’s a Merlot and/or Cabernet.)
Purchased at Valencia Wine Company’s Holiday Tasting.
Color: Clear, garnet, with a slight burnt orange edge indicating age. (Sometimes this can mean that the wine has been aged for too long. It was not the case for this bottle. To see the edge of color on a wine for yourself, slightly tilt your glass over a white sheet of paper.)
Aroma: Bright cherries, mushroom, wet wood, with a slight mustiness that blew off within a minute or two.
Taste: Dry, high tannins that lessened quickly as expected, rich, developed fruit.
Pairing: I paired this red wine with chicken only because my What to Drink with What you Eat book, by Andrew Dornenburg and Karen Page, said that I could match the curry spices my chicken was seasoned with effectively was with a Merlot.
(Truth be told, the book gave a laundry list of many wines and beers, but I wanted a Merlot and was lucky enough to find it on their list too.)
The book’s suggestion proved right! The cherry notes burst open, the tannins defused, and I was thrilled. It also proved the case that it’s not necessarily the meat or poultry or even the seafood, but the sauce that will dictate the pairing.
Last note on pairing: I hope wine drinkers spend as much time evaluating their wine with, and without, food. Just as a wine can taste different in the right vessel – take a Riedel class to learn all about that – your wine will taste different with food. You just have to take the time to reflect on it.
Score: 96 Eve points, drink now.
Price: $60 at event.