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Jeff B

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Bordeaux For The Rustic Red Wine Lover : Where Do I Start?

by Jeff B » Wed Jun 05, 2013 1:21 am

It dawned on me that I've never really ventured deeply into Bordeaux and it might be time I did so. But where to start? The only thing I know about my tastes in red wine is that I prefer them on the "rustic" end (lots of chalky tannin and, preferably, with chocolate or leathery tones as opposed to herbs or green flavors - yuck). Which of the major areas should I be exploring? What vintages should I be looking at?

My favorite American wines, when they've avoided the green herbal treatment, have largely been Beringer reds (Private Reserve and Knights Valley).

Jeff
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Re: Bordeaux For The Rustic Red Wine Lover : Where Do I Start?

by Rahsaan » Wed Jun 05, 2013 9:17 am

Jeff B wrote:It dawned on me that I've never really ventured deeply into Bordeaux and it might be time I did so. But where to start? The only thing I know about my tastes in red wine is that I prefer them on the "rustic" end (lots of chalky tannin and, preferably, with chocolate or leathery tones as opposed to herbs or green flavors - yuck). Which of the major areas should I be exploring? What vintages should I be looking at?

My favorite American wines, when they've avoided the green herbal treatment, have largely been Beringer reds (Private Reserve and Knights Valley).

Jeff


I don't follow Bordeaux, but you might want to re-think your use of the word 'rustic' because 'chocolate' usually comes from new oak, at least to me. Which is the opposite of rustic. 'Leathery' could be brett, so that might qualify as rustic. But if you detest herbal elements that often comes in 'rustic' wines. So you want a tannic, oaky, bretty wine with rich sunny fruit?
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Re: Bordeaux For The Rustic Red Wine Lover : Where Do I Start?

by Tim York » Wed Jun 05, 2013 9:35 am

For me traces of noble green and herbal flavours are an essential part of the complexity of fine left-bank Bordeaux and can also be present in good right-bankers.

If you don't like them, I suggest that you start off with modernist producers (e.g. where Michel Rolland consults), right bank appellations (e.g. St.Émilion and Pomerol), and ripe vintages like 2000, 2003, 2005 and 2009.
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Re: Bordeaux For The Rustic Red Wine Lover : Where Do I Start?

by Jeff B » Wed Jun 05, 2013 10:09 am

Rahsaan wrote:
Jeff B wrote:It dawned on me that I've never really ventured deeply into Bordeaux and it might be time I did so. But where to start? The only thing I know about my tastes in red wine is that I prefer them on the "rustic" end (lots of chalky tannin and, preferably, with chocolate or leathery tones as opposed to herbs or green flavors - yuck). Which of the major areas should I be exploring? What vintages should I be looking at?

My favorite American wines, when they've avoided the green herbal treatment, have largely been Beringer reds (Private Reserve and Knights Valley).

Jeff


I don't follow Bordeaux, but you might want to re-think your use of the word 'rustic' because 'chocolate' usually comes from new oak, at least to me. Which is the opposite of rustic. 'Leathery' could be brett, so that might qualify as rustic. But if you detest herbal elements that often comes in 'rustic' wines. So you want a tannic, oaky, bretty wine with rich sunny fruit?


Yes, I definitely like tannic reds that coat the mouth. I guess I was using the term "rustic" loosely to mostly describe the tannins.

Jeff
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Re: Bordeaux For The Rustic Red Wine Lover : Where Do I Start?

by Jeff B » Wed Jun 05, 2013 10:10 am

Tim York wrote:For me traces of noble green and herbal flavours are an essential part of the complexity of fine left-bank Bordeaux and can also be present in good right-bankers.

If you don't like them, I suggest that you start off with modernist producers (e.g. where Michel Rolland consults), right bank appellations (e.g. St.Émilion and Pomerol), and ripe vintages like 2000, 2003, 2005 and 2009.


Thanks Tim. I appreciate it.

Jeff
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Re: Bordeaux For The Rustic Red Wine Lover : Where Do I Start?

by Peter May » Wed Jun 05, 2013 11:15 am

I'd suggest the minor appellations, Bourg and Blaye
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Re: Bordeaux For The Rustic Red Wine Lover : Where Do I Start?

by Bob Parsons Alberta » Wed Jun 05, 2013 11:56 am

Tim York wrote:For me traces of noble green and herbal flavours are an essential part of the complexity of fine left-bank Bordeaux and can also be present in good right-bankers.

If you don't like them, I suggest that you start off with modernist producers (e.g. where Michel Rolland consults), right bank appellations (e.g. St.Émilion and Pomerol), and ripe vintages like 2000, 2003, 2005 and 2009.


Tim, are you a Rolland fan? When was the conversation!!! LOL.
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Re: Bordeaux For The Rustic Red Wine Lover : Where Do I Start?

by Tim York » Wed Jun 05, 2013 2:00 pm

Bob Parsons Alberta wrote:
Tim York wrote:For me traces of noble green and herbal flavours are an essential part of the complexity of fine left-bank Bordeaux and can also be present in good right-bankers.

If you don't like them, I suggest that you start off with modernist producers (e.g. where Michel Rolland consults), right bank appellations (e.g. St.Émilion and Pomerol), and ripe vintages like 2000, 2003, 2005 and 2009.


Tim, are you a Rolland fan? When was the conversation!!! LOL.


As much as everyone else here, Bob :wink: .
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Re: Bordeaux For The Rustic Red Wine Lover : Where Do I Start?

by Ryan M » Wed Jun 05, 2013 4:55 pm

If you like polished Cab Sauv like Beringer Private Reserve but want rustic, dusty tannins, you have no further to look than a good St. Estephe. And the lesser chateaux are generally good values in quality Bordeaux.
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Re: Bordeaux For The Rustic Red Wine Lover : Where Do I Start?

by Shaji M » Wed Jun 05, 2013 8:30 pm

Right Bank as well as some Chilean producers (eg. Montes) might fit your bill! I personally though like a bit of herbal character in my Bordeaux blends.
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Re: Bordeaux For The Rustic Red Wine Lover : Where Do I Start?

by Jenise » Wed Jun 05, 2013 9:10 pm

Peter May wrote:I'd suggest the minor appellations, Bourg and Blaye


Completely agree. For Jeff: they're a little further south, and tend to get riper fruit that shows opulence early on.
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Re: Bordeaux For The Rustic Red Wine Lover : Where Do I Start?

by Jeff B » Thu Jun 06, 2013 12:40 am

Thanks for the suggestions everyone.

Jeff
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Re: Bordeaux For The Rustic Red Wine Lover : Where Do I Start?

by Tim York » Thu Jun 06, 2013 3:44 am

Jenise wrote:
Peter May wrote:I'd suggest the minor appellations, Bourg and Blaye


Completely agree. For Jeff: they're a little further south, and tend to get riper fruit that shows opulence early on.


I agree that there are excellent values in these appellations, also in Fronsac, and Merlot is the dominant variety in all three, but I think that Jeff is more likely to meet herbal flavours here than in the more famous right bank appellations. As for St.Estèphe, herbal flavours are very common and so much the better for those like me who welcome them in moderation.

Jenise: re further south? Than what? Pauillac, St.Julien and St.Estèphe, yes. Margaux and Pessac, no. St.Émilion and Pomerol, no.
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