Sunday, November 11, 2012

Magic Mike - Magical Cab

We'd completely intended to take in Magic Mike - the recent movie about male strippers - while it was still playing in the theatres.  Some movies just require that you take advantage of the big screen action. We never did see the movie in the theatres, even though we tried one night.  Turned out that the theatre had already sold out by the time we arrived.

Our miss at the big screen just meant that we got a more intimate showing at home when it came out on DVD.  The screen might not have been as big but watching it at home did mean that we could drink throughout the show - something that never would have happened in the theatre.

1284.  2004 Skillogalee - Trevarrick Single Contour Cabernet Sauvignon (Clare Valley - Australia)

We were expecting big things out the movie (pun intended); so, I grabbed a big Aussie that I figured would go with our lamb chops.  I just have a natural tendency to gravitate to Aussie wines whenever lamb is on the table and this bottle certainly lived up to expectations.  Indeed, I think it even outdid them.

This is one of those bottles that I must have picked up some time ago and then forgot the details about how, when, why or where.  Something tells me that I must have tried it at some tasting or another because it looks like it sells in the $60+ range.  Despite Boo's protestations that I buy way more wine than we need, I can honestly say that I don't lightly buy $60 bottles of wine - especially just to forget about them.

With the provenance of the bottle being hazy, I figured I needed to try and discover a little bit about it.  Skillogalee was established in 1970 in the Clare Valley - one valley beyond the Barossa and North of Adelaide.  With production still limited to approximately 15,000 cases, it's interesting that the winery is even marketed in Vancouver.

I'm glad it was (is?).  This was one extremely expressive Cab - quite reminiscent of the big, fruit forward reds coming out of Australia in the previous decade.  If the wine wasn't labelled as coming from the Clare Valley, I'd have guessed that it was from the Barossa.  I can't claim to know my way around the Clare much, but I generally hear and expect that Clare Valley wines are more restrained as the Clare is a touch more on the cool side than the Barossa is.  I usually think Riesling first when I hear of the Clare.  Riesling is more of a cool climate grape and, for that reason, I would have expected a Clare Cab to be more akin to a BC or French Cab.

The fact that the label says that the Cab vines struggle mightily in the vineyard and harvest is limited to about one ton per acre.  That certainly helps explain the exaggerated profile. I'm not going to hold that change in perception from a Clare Valley wine against this Trevarrick though. The load of dark fruit is pretty much what attracted me to Aussie wines in the first place and it would appear that this wine pleased a number of other folks as well.  The label sported five little gold medals on it and James Halliday - one of Australia's best known wine writers - awarded the wine 95 points.

Too bad I don't have another bottle laying around.  Surprises like this, I like.  And, it seemed to suit the brashness of Magic Mike.

With all the movies coming out in 3-D nowadays, I would have thought it a no-brainer to do up a movie about male strippers in that format.  I'm not so sure that it would have saved the movie but, if nothing else, it would have given the audience a little more something to grab onto.  Indeed, it could have given a whole new meaning to "two thumbs up."

Movie aside, I'm happy to say that the wine was a four-star production.  Two Thumbs up.  Way up.

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