Saturday, June 25, 2011

A Little Bordeaux to Perk Up With

Admittedly, my postings have dropped off a bit since the Canucks lost that Game 7 in the Stanley Cup finals to Boston. I guess the good news about the lack of writing isn't a direct result of my falling into a deep, alcoholic funk. Likewise, it's not because I've been out golfing with the Canucks. Just been a bit busy is all.

Finishing off a couple of bottles, where that vintage is already on The List, helps a little bit as well. Turns out two bottles that we had this week are already consumed, counted and, so it would seem, simply around for the drinking. I'd already added a 2002 Golden Mile Meritage and the 2005 Golden Mile Black Arts Chardonnay at numbers 24 and 294. So, that relieves a little pressure on my catching up. Which brings me to...

834. 2005 Chateau de Parenchère (AOC Bordeaux Supérieur - France)

Encyclopedic books get written on the topic of and countless wine careers concentrate solely on Bordeaux wines; so, there's no chance I'm going to try and explain my way around this wine in anything more than a cursory way. Not that I'm cursing the wine at all.

There are 60 different appellations in the Bordeaux region - from very specific sub-regions that produce the spectacular wines that you might first think of when you hear someone mention "Bordeaux" to more generic and accessible wines. Being a Bordeaux Supérieur, the grapes for this wine can come from anywhere in the entire region, although wineries do face stricter production requirements than those making a general Bordeaux AOC wine would encounter. The wines are generally seen as being more concentrated and complex, with more structured tannins, than a generic Bordeaux.

Although the winery could source its grapes from anywhere in the region, Chateau de Parenchère produces its wines on an estate only basis, the estate consisting of approximately 156 acres that are located on the far eastern edge of the Bordeaux region.

The winery also produces a white wine, a rosé and a slightly more premium version of the Bordeaux Supérieur but the wine we're trying counts for more than half of the winery's total production. The wine is traditional in its approach to the varietals used, with almost equal percentages of Merlot and Cab Sauv making up the bulk of the blend. Up to 10% of the blend consists of Cab Franc (mostly) and Malbec.

We don't tend to drink a lot of French wines at our house and I don't know that this bottle did a whole lot to make us change our drinking habits. Chateau de Parenchère is consistently identified as being one of the better Bordeaux Supérieur producers out there though. The wine definitely drank better with dinner than it did on its own, but maybe that's just the whole Old World vs. New World approach. The fruit just didn't come through enough on the palate to sing out to me.

With 2005 supposedly being a marvelous vintage for Bordeaux wines, I guess I was just hoping for a little more excitement in my glass.

Or maybe I'm just still depressed over the Canucks and nothing is going to taste good for awhile.

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