A little late, but better late than never, right?
Hope everyone had a great Easter weekend!
If I learned one thing from last month’s Tour de Vino virtual tasting it is that you people love a good story. I maintain that the woman I describe in the Unboxed review is fictitious, but believe what you want. Pay attention to the wine, please! Haha
March was a tour de France, and what a ride it was as we explored Burgundy, and Coteaux d’Aix-en-Provence. The Chateau des Jacques was quite an exquisite red varietal (Morgon). It was a very complete wine for me; by complete I mean that it had the presence of every regional hallmark that it ought to have.
You get the beautiful tradition in the obvious taste of French oak, and much like the crescendo of spring ripening into summer you find the flavor of this red comes to light as it comes to room temperature. It has an earthy finish which I imagine reflects the topography of the Burgundy region and the Kimmeridgian soil (yeah, so I just learned this over the past week doing some research – it is limestone based and formed from fossilized oyster shells the collected over a couple billion years, apparently.
A glass of this magnificent morgon channels the vibe of sitting on the porch of a chalet in a breezy valley of mid-gradient hills where the wind loves to dance.
Definitely a wine that would benefit from being properly decanted and poured into the appropriate glass – I am pointing at you, Chris!
Chef Ozzie came through and stunted on us a little bit with his menu for March. Ordinarily you’d be expecting me to say that he paired this wine with that dish, right? I am totally conflicted because I don’t know who to give the credit to. Let me just quickly tell you about the Rose and then I’ll spin the block and come back to the food, I think you need that for context.
The Coteaux d’Aix-en-Provence region where I went with the fictitious love of my life (Mrs. Archer, please leave me alone!) is something of a fantasy destination for me. I had actually planned to go there with a former love of mine, but life happened and that never manifested – oh well.
We are here to talk about wine.
A rose will always be a rose, until you taste the Mason Selaya (2019). What is it about the South Western coast of France that gives this rose such character? It’s sexy, it is light on the acid, heavy on the floral and an even swash of goodness in your mouth no matter what your disposition toward roses may be. FYI – and I can’t stress this enough – I still don’t like rose wines 100%, though they are growing on me. I find myself in a very Anakin Skywalker internal conflict. I understand the ways of the red and white wine, yet I find myself being drawn toward the “pink side”…somehow.
This Rose tastes like wealth. It tastes like happiness in drinkable form and has a beautiful flavor arc. I think everyone that participated in the tasting got the strawberry and peach flavors poking through. It is a very light rose, without all of the superfluous acidity you usually find when a Grenache is involved. It is because this wine is a blend. The wine represents life, it is about balance.
There isn’t too much sweet, just enough. There isn’t too much acid, just enough. There isn’t too much strawberry or peach or green apples. It is so balanced, that I can’t believe anyone on the virtual tasting had the audacity to say they tasted ginger. They don’t grow ginger in France, they don’t have ginger anywhere near the winery (to my knowledge) so someone please explain: WHERE DID YOU GET GINGER FROM?
I will die on this hill.
So let’s gingerly stroll back over to the food for a minute. #pauseforthepun
Chef Ozzie meticulously prepared a rustic chicken, duck and pork pate topped with apple, pear and raisin compote, a thin crust supreme seafood pizza, and just to show off he dropped a BBQ sauce made with Angostura single barrel reserve and cocoa bitters which was brushed generously across a chicken breast marinated in buttermilk with lobster mac and cheese bites on the side.
I can’t tell you specifically what to pair with these wines guys. There are no rules with this one. I am new at the tasting and pairing game, so that this is the first time this has happened is probably only remarkable to me, but still unusual somehow. The Morgon and the Rosè quite literally pair well with all of the dishes.
My personal favorite is the combination of the Morgon and the patè. This wine was made for a gamey tasting animal like rabbit, and it cuts down the fatty taste of the pork leaving the chicken's savoriness unimpeached.
The lightness of the rose stabilized the savory flavor of the seafood pizza, and it took on a different character when we tried it with the mac and cheese; I think it is a very playful rose and it would do well with anything that has cheese, seafood or both as ingredients. I can see this rosè next to a buttery pasta dish with cilantro and scallops, and might actually go well with a fire roasted double cut pork-chop.
March’s tasting was one of the funnier ones, and it’s great to see you guys really engaging in the process of tasting wine, and the creativity of your flavor profiles. I don’t think anyone has said anything weird like “smells like the inside of my grandmother’s closet” yet, but we are surely getting there.
For April, nos vamos à Argentina! My favorite chef and arguably the master of outdoor cooking, Francis Mallman hails from Argentina. I am already envisioning grass fed argentinian beef, mollejas, burnt chard and kale, and a jeroboam size bottle of Malbec to wash it all down!
See you on the 29th of April!
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