Monday, July 27, 2009

Un Peu Plus de Vin S'il Vous Plais

Tyrant was back in town and we got together for a bit of a splash 'n nosh. The heat's just kept on coming, so we just kept up with the rose. Two in a week. Must be summer.

122. 2007 Domaine du Joncier Le Rose (AOC Lirac - France)

I couldn't find anything about this winery specifically. Sometimes even internet technology isn't enough.

The Lirac region is a neighbour of Chateauneuf-du-Pape in the South-East part of France and is also known primarily for its red wines. Rose composes about 15% of total production and will be a blend of Grenache, Syrah and Cinsault when it has an AOC designation.

After a quick cocktail, the plan was to head out for a bite to eat and none of us had been to Au Petit Chavignol, the cheese and wine bar that was opened back in the Spring by our favourite cheese gals, Alice and Allison Spurrell. Located next door to the new store for Les Amis du Fromages, I'd been wanting to go for some time. Cheese and wine - that is just so up my alley!!

123. 2006 Domaine le Pallus - Les Pensees de Pallus (AOC Chinon)

I could lie and say that this wine was Boo's choice because he mis-read the menu and got all excited about a wine that referred to a "phallus" in its name. But I won't.

Truth is, we'd never heard of this producer but one of the foodie points I learned from les dames Spurrell is that a majority of cheeses tend to match up with white wines better than they do with reds. So, we decided to keep our red on the lighter side and opted for the Cabernet Franc that is Chinon.

Seeing as how Mlles. Spurrell have been featured annually at a wine and cheese tasting for the Australian Wine Appreciation Society, it only makes sense that the wines on their menu would match nicely with their menu items. We quite enjoyed the Pallus.

I found out a bit about this family estate winery from the Eastern end of the Loire Valley. The current winemaker, Bertrand Sourdais was learning his licks with apprenticeships in France, Chile and Spain when he planned his return to take his father's place when son pere decided to retire. With his foreign experience in hand, he looked to improve on some the Loire's traditional approaches to winemaking and to Cab Franc. The vineyards are biodynamicly tended and M. Sourdais uses extended maceration (the steeping of crushed juice with the skins and grape solids to extract additional colour, tannin and flavour during the fermentation process) and aging to produce a better wine.

Les Pensees de Pallus is the winery's higher end wine which is nice to see because we usually find ourselves drinking the entry level wines from most French regions due to the cost. This was reasonable for restaurant prices. I'd look for it again.

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