French Wine & Steak Night: Part 2 The Juice

While the fillets were soaking up the olive oil, salt & pepper, we tasted the wines all back to back to back. All three had there own distinct personalites & we enjoyed each one very much.

Just to recap...The Burgundy was an '03 Louis Latour Santenay, the Crozes-Hermitage was an '00 Domaine Pradelle & the Bordeaux was an '01 Chateau Greysac.

We started with the Burgundy, being the lightest of the three. It was a pinot noir of course, which is the only red wine made in Burgundy, besides in Beaujolais, where they use the gamay grape. It possessed a delicate, spicy, strawberry bouquet with a bit of dried leaves & pine needles. This wine was oozing with varietal charecter. With the first wiff & taste it was evident this was a Pinot. The first sip revealed lots of red fruit followed up by some peppery spice. It was light bodied in the mouth with some tasty subtle tannins. The finish was nice with the spice persisting all the way through. This was our choice to drink with the steaks. It suited the meat & frittes perfectly.

Next in the line-up was the Crozes-Hermitage. Being form the Northen Rhone, this wine was all syrah. Most of the Syrah we drink if Shiraz from down under which are usually juicy, fruity high alcoholic concotions. The Crozes was a hemisphere apart in geography & in flavor profiles.

This wine was black as the Marlboro Man's lungs. It had a thick nose of meat, smoke & tar. There was no juicy fruit. In the mouth there was a subtle fruit that yielded almost immediately to an inky, tarry, thick lip smacking treat. There was lots of licorice too. It reminded me of licorice wheels. The ones that are so strong they almost taste salty. The tannins were soft & round. Everything was represented well in the long finish. This was one of the most distinctive wines I have had the pleasure of sipping. I imagine this is a love-hate wine. You are either going to love it or hate it.

Last but definitely not least, we tried the Bordeaux, where they blend their grape varietals. It was comprised of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot & a scosh of Cabernet Franc. I feel we got an unfair representation at first. We let our wine breath in the glass for about 20 minutes before tasting but the Bordeaux needs an hour in the carafe. While we tasted it with the others it was tight & restrained with the tannins taking center stage. After decanting in the carafe....WOW. It was like a flower blooming or a catepillar turning in to a butterfly. Dark fruit, smoke, cigar box, tobacco & anise were all over the nose & palate in this thick teeth staining classic. It was top drawer.

When drinking bargain Bordeaux (this bottle was $20) I usually wonde what the Grand Crus & 1st Growths taste like. Not with this wine. It made me think why someone would spend a fortune on a 1st Growth when you can get a bottle of Chateau Greysac for an Andrew Jackson.

It was an eye opening experience to taste these wines together & we will be experimenting like this more in the future.


  • At 9:26 PM, Anonymous Luiz Horta said…

    Very well written tasting notes, you have the hand for it, I am sorry that I am so busy I can`t actually maintain a real correspondance, just comment once in a while, but I am glad you liked Kermit Lynch`s book. Can`t remember if I`ve send you the link to his store, where you can download all his catalogues, that are as entertaining as the book. Forgive me if I did before. And I do recommend you another book, Jim Harrison`s The Raw and the Cooked, it`s not about wine, but about food and very good. And finally, I loved seeing that Mr.Parker couldn`t destroy Bourgogne completely and young people like you can recognize the real lightness of Pinot Noir and not the dark and alcoholic ones some producers made to please RP. Cheers!

  • At 9:55 AM, Blogger Collin C. said…

    Thanks for your compliments!

    ....& Robert who? *wink, wink*


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