French wine intimidates me. Today my eyes were opened to how approachable they can be, even for a novice. Bordeaux is a region in Western France that is known for beautiful (and very expensive) wines, but there are some very affordable and delicious wines available for everyday drinking. The six allowable red grapes in Bordeaux are Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Malbec, Petit Verdot, and Carmenere. The white grapes from this region are Sauvignon Blanc, Semillon, and Muscadelle.
This afternoon, I had a delicious 2009 Chateau Le Pey Medoc wine out of the Bordeaux region of France. The dominant grapes in this bottle were Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. Not a fan of big tannins? Fear not, because this bottle didn’t have them. The wine was very well-balanced and ready to drink. The bottle retails for under $20 and is easy to find in Denver.
The wine was inky purple in the glass and smelled like vanilla and rose petals. Vanilla is a characteristic note of French Oak. It was smooth and silky on the tongue with vanilla, plum, and ripe dark berries. The bright acid was a nice surprise and made it very satisfying to drink on a hot day in the city. I enjoyed the wine with dark chocolate and it was magnifique.
The controversial subject of the importance of terroir is unending- but I tasted France today.