Testarossa Palazzio 2004 Pinot Noir, Central Coast, 14.2% ABV, $29.99: This was one of those things. Zari brought this bottle over unaware of what I was making for dinner. She had received it as a gift and didn't know what it cost. I simply looked the wine and its price up on the local BevMo site.
Before I knew the price, I said to myself, "Nice pinot noir, the nose betrays earth, forest floor, a little barnyard, readily identifiable. There was a touch of fruit, maybe cherry, and perhaps a little leather and spice on the tongue. Very light mouthfeel. Not a very long finish, but still a great dinner wine with genuine varietal character. Hey, for ten or twelve bucks ..." And a few moments ago I saw the price and went, "Hmmm."
Now, I may have overwhelmed this wine with dinner. I made a kind of chicken-rice-lentil-all-the-old-veggies-in-the fridge gumbo-oid thingy. It had a wonderfully dark roux in it into which I had grated some fresh nutmeg ... a kind of toasty bechamel. Besides the nutmeggy roux, there was cumin, cayenne pepper, and chile flake in there. I had been cooking most of the afternoon and, of course, tasting. My tongue may not have been predisposed to a subtle pinot noir.
Has anyone else tried this one under, let's say, circumstances fairer to the wine?