Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Chateau Greysac 2004

Lately I've been on a French wine kick. I've had Pinot Gris from Alsace, Burgundy from the Cotes de Beaune, and plain old table wine from areas like Languedoc. They have all been pretty tasty, but one in particular deserves a little highlight.
Chateau Greysac, which you can get just about anywhere for around $20, was one of the best wines that I've had in quite a while. From the Medoc region in Bordeaux, this Cru Bourgeois wine is a blend of the classic grapes that are allowed to grow in Bordeaux; Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Malbec, and Petit Verdot. The Greysac from 2004 has a large amount of Merlot to it, typical of left bank winery offerings. Left Bank and Right Bank refer to which side of the Gironde Estuary the winery is located within the Bordeaux area. Left Bank is usually Merlot based wines with the other varietals added for flavor and nuance. Right Bank wines are usually heavier on Cabernet Sauvignon. Depending on your wine preferences, it would be in your interest to find out which side your Bordeaux is from. (They won't tell you on the label. The French think you should just know that information.)
Back to Chateau Greysac! My wife had made a lasagna and salad for dinner and I had the desire to complete the Italian theme and go for an Amarone that I remember buying. Unfortunately, I had already drunk that one. I unracked the Greysac and figured France was close enough to Italy. I peeled the foil off the top and handily uncorked the wine. As is my usual custom, I quickly smelled the pent up esters that arose from the bottle. This wine actually smelled smooth. I thought that was a very good sign and poured two glasses. I let the wine aromas fill the glass. I put the glass to my lips and closed my eyes breathing in the fragrances of plums and currants. I took a sip and let it sit on my tongue. The smell of it was only a small hint of what the taste was like. Plums and currants, licorice and smoky oak. I grabbed a plate of dinner and had a wonderful time with it. The wine would have been perfect with a medium-rare steak or some lamb chops. As it was, though, the spicy tomatoes, cheese and sausage enhanced the soft tannins of this wine. I wouldn't hesitate to pair this wine with Italian cuisine again, but I think I'm going to need some roast beast next time.

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