Cape Gazette
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Wine

Aging is built into the better product to smooth it up

By John McDonald | Jun 09, 2014

This week my brother Lew referred me to a writer, I have long treasured, but left on the shelf. Lew’s email prompted me to revisit some of Anthony Trollope’s writings. I propose you visit your local library, pick up a copy of his pearls or go on line to: http://www.anthonytrollope.com/books/quotes_library/anthony_trollope/ to print out a fairly comprehensive compendium of his writing, Next latch on to a bottle of one of these recommendations; then find a well lit area with an easy chair, perhaps a porch would be nice this time of year, and start reading. You will probably be amused and confused. The reach of a guy writing in the Victorian era is remarkable. Most of the women who read this column, particularly those who enjoy the playlets, movies and TV offerings set in that era, will be refreshed to read a completely different and far more appreciative point of view regarding Victorian women. The guys, as well as the gals, will enjoy his narratives, essays and expository writing. I’m amazed so many of his observations still hold true in today’s world.

I like Loire Valley Sancerre, but recent vintages aren’t much. The 2010 and 11 are on the money, priced under $30, 91 points. 2010 drink right now! Mineral, apple, citrus, toast and gooseberry aromas emerging from the glass; lemon-lime, apple, toast and mineral notes. Dry, with a crisp acidity supporting lemongrass and lemon zest flavors.

Louis Jadot Chateau des Jacques (CdJ) Moulin a Vent 2011 are one of the few Grand Cru Beaujolais I have recommended. Most new wine folks gravitate toward the Noveau Beaujolais and are lead to believe that with Beau Julius the fresher the better. As with most top quality wine, aging is built into the better product to smooth it up. Grand Crus Beaujolais, of which there are seven, are no exception. The 2009, driven by the excellence of the vintage year in France in general, drove CdJ prices through the roof and early buyers took a bath. The 2010 were rated 85 but 2011 came on at 90 points by the many writers who rarely met a Beaujolais Grand Cru not named Morgon, Fleurie or Chiroubles worth a good rating. CdJ is a great buy under $22. There are cases out there for $240 and ready to drink now through 2017. Ripe cherry, plum, cassis, roast meat bouquet with mineral, mocha and roast nut flavors. For those who wish to buy a tasty Pinot from the USA, Boedecker Cellars on line shows a large selection. Go there, shop, then ask your friendly local store to bring some in. Many are boutique, but they can be had. I really enjoyed the Cherry Grove 2010, a friend brought back from a trip to Portland. Lots of cherry, tea and forest floor notes, juicy, finishes smoky with berry notes.

Another 2010 Barolo is on the market cheap. Vietti Castiglione was rated 94 points by Tony Galloni and the price spiked. It has backslid to $41 delivered, provided you order six or more. Tanzer gave it 91-plus; rare praise indeed. When my two favorite gurus heap on this type of rating you can bet I’ll be sampling it.

I advise you not to wait though. Here’s what Tanzer wrote. “Captivating nose combines raspberry, truffle, earth, coffee, tobacco and a positive herbaceous note. Dense and rich, but youthfully imploded, with bright acidity energizing the flavors of minerals, mocha and humus. The long, echoing finish features building ripe tannins and considerable incipient complexity.” Truncated Galloni, "freshly cut flowers, mint, sweet spices, anise and red berries are all woven together nicely in the glass, blossoms with exquisite finesse, floral aromatics and exquisite overall balance. Ripe, silky tannins support the exquisite finish. An insanely beautiful wine. I wonder if they sampled the same wine. One caveat: you will need to be patient until 2017 for optimum performance.

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