Wednesday, August 7, 2013


I was doing some casual reading and even though the material had nothing to do with wine the author remarked on the "wonderful aromas of grapes in Santenay."   That immediately caused a 'jonesing' for a red Burgundy so out came a 2003 Santenay Premier Cru, Grand Clos Rousseau from Jean-Claude Boisset.  Dinner was a small rib steak seasoned only with salt and pepper and quickly grilled.  Gnocchi with brown butter and fried sage leaves filled out the plate.

The wine got about half an hour in a decanter while I waited on dinner and out came the balloon glasses for this ten year old wine. The color was beautifully mature but with no browning or fading at the edges.  The aromas of crushed cherries sat on top of a base that smelled like the forest floor in spring just as things begin to grow - some dark earthy aromas highlighted by bit of fresh foliage.  I closed my eyes and stuck my nose in the glass and it was easy to picture myself in late March walking in the woods just as it was coming to life for the spring.

With some constant swirling  the fruit finally came to dominate the earth smells.

The wine had a medium body and plentiful but fine tannins.  The predominant flavor was crushed red cherries with a few of the pits mixed in for good measure.  The earthiness was there as well as was the tiniest bit of spice.  The acid level was strong but matched the wine and kept it from being sweet.  Great length to the finish.

Just wonderful with the beef, and even better a day later with some left over pork ribs.  Classy wine that for two meals made me very happy by transporting my mind to wonderful, imagined places far removed from the reality of the day.  Hard to ask more of a wine than that.

2003 Jean Claude Boisset, Santenay Premier Cru. Grand Clos Rousseau.   13% alcohol and $35 a few years ago.

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