Friday, October 11, 2013
There was heavy sediment clinging to the sides and the bottom of the bottle so the first half of the bottle was decanted through a steel mesh strainer and the second half was put under vacuum immediately. The color was a deep ruby with just the beginning of an orange glow on the edges of the glass. I used the largest glasses for this wine and stuck my nose in. No question that this was a northern Rhone wine just from the aromas of raw, red meat, smoky bacon fat and leather. Intense swirling finally cleared some, but not all, of the smokiness and revealed deep scents of black cherries and black olives. The taste more than reflected those aromas. This is a full bodied wine with grace and elegance and a wonderful mouth feel thanks to both sweet and dry tannin that coated the tongue.
Dinner was a large porterhouse beef steak grilled to the rarer end of medium rare with minimal seasonings of salt and pepper. There was also a baked russet potato with cultured butter and black truffle salt. By the time the potato was baked and the steak had rested the wine changed. The black cherries were now the dominant flavor and there was a slight hit of blackberries thrown into the mix. There were suggestions of both cinnamon and vanilla, but the still present leather, raw meat and black olives added some complexity.
I think this wine was perfectly aged and ready to drink, even though I think it will be a few years before it starts downhill. Try as I might over the course of the meal I could not save the second half of the bottle. The vacuum stopper came out and I poured another glass. I was able to find a half bottle and pour enough for one glass into it. It got the vacuum stopper and I drank what remained in the decanter.
2000 E. Guigal Cote Rotie Brune et Blonde. 13% alcohol and $60.