Jim Beauregard's Tasting Notes: Sampling the wines of Bordeaux, part deux: a white and two reds
Last week, we looked at two Bordeaux reds — Chateau Paillet-Quancard and Chateau de Cruzeau — good representatives of the very good wine that is produced in that region. Let's continue this week:
Saint Glinglin 2012 Sauvignon Blanc, Grand Vin de Bordeaux, 12.5% alcohol by volume. Sauvignon Blanc is a signature wine of Bordeaux that has found a home in many other parts of the world, most notably in New Zealand. Whites like this often nowadays eschew oak aging, and are fermented in stainless steel tanks to help preserve fruit.
Here we have a white wine, of lemon-gold hue, with a striking nose of white fruit including the gooseberry aromas classic to this varietal. There are some green apple notes hiding behind it as well as some hints of pear. The palate is a dry one with medium acidity, and medium tannin, in this case giving a hint of dryness and bitterness that adds flavor to the wine.
It is of medium body with well-integrated alcohol and pronounced flavor intensity of the above-mentioned gooseberry, with green apple, pear and some citrus hints at it in to the palate as well. Lots going on here. The finish is very long, holding the fruit right through to the end. Good balance, good concentration, with complexity, great length and typicity. 92 points.
Chateau La Grave, Medoc, 2010, 14% ABV, $13. We are back to the red blends now, in this case 60 percent Cabernet Sauvignon, 30 percent Merlot, and 10 percent Cabernet Franc, from vines grown in gravelly clay. With a high percentage of Cabernet Sauvignon, this is a wine with a deep dark core, lighter at the rim, almost clear at the very edge. Good legs and tears. It is the herbal/earth notes that come to the fore on the nose, with black fruit and some hints of red fruit taking up the background. It is bone dry on the palate with balanced acidity, high tannin, balanced alcohol and medium body with flavors of herbal and earth, some smoky notes, black currant and plum. 88 points.
As is often the case with Bordeaux, this is also a food wine. The recommended pairings are Beef Wellington, heavier cheeses, duck, pork, prime rib, rack of lamb.
I don't know that I would try it with a prime rib (it would overwhelm the beef) but I can agree with the other bearings.
Saint Glinglin Saint-Emilion Grand Cru, 2010, 14% ABV, $34.99.
The grapes here are Merlot and Cabernet Franc, though the percentages are not listed. The wine also has a dark core with a lighter purple and finally clear rim. The tears are thick but move quickly down the glass. The palate is very dry, with medium-high tannin, tooth coating, medium-plus body, medium-plus flavor intensity where the earthiness comes to the fore while the black currant, blackberry and hints of bramble fruit remain in the background. Good quality, ready to drink now. Note that aging this wine would put the herbal notes forward to a much greater extent and any fruit further into the background. I have to say the price point on this one is a bit high. 85 points.
The recommended pairings are beef Bourguignon, coq au vin, pasta with meat sauce, roast poultry and sirloin. I would pass on the pasta, but a pizza with meat topping would work.
Contact local beer and wine writer Jim Beauregard at firstname.lastname@example.org.