Friday, May 4, 2012

Everyone is always looking for a good value in their wine purchase, and for those who appreciate wines from Bordeaux, the appellation of the "CĂ´tes de Bourg" is a great place to start. Lesser known than many of the other known appellations in Bordeaux (like Margaux), this small appellation is host to a number of very good producers. One of whom I had the great fortune to meet many years ago. His name is Jacques Rodet and he and his wife Martine live and make wine on the property known as Chateau Brulesecaille. I was very impressed when I first met him and tasted his wines back in 1996, and remain so as I bring his 2009 vintage to market. Good value? His premium wine sells for less than $20 on the retail shelf.

After working with these folks for 16 years, a visit to the property is a relaxed dinner among friends,

 but we always start with a visit to the winery to taste wines from the barrel:

The wine is aged in barrels that are new, 1 wine (used once) 2 wines (used twice) to help in the maturation of the wine, without making the wine oaky, just adding the touch of wood to make the wine more appealing and balanced.

Smaller wineries in Bordeaux sometimes use the barrel aging room to store wine in bottle that is not yet prepared for shipment, as seen in these stainless steel cages that store 600 bottles each:

I always follow the lead of the "Maitre du chai", Cellar master in English,

as he guides me through the tasting of wines from selected barrels that he feels best represents the vintage, in this case the 2011, and what the wine will be when finished.

The 2011 vintage has been in barrel for a little over 3 months. Contrary to what many wine enthusiasts think, tasting wine from the barrel is not easy as the wine is quite rough around the edges. Wine from the new oak barrels has the taste dominated by the wood, which will soften in time and with blending from wine from older barrels. Even professionals have difficulty saying what the wine will be from tasting from the barrel. Only an extended history with a property and its master (Jacques Rodet) will provide the ability to judge the nature and quality of the finished wine, after many cycles of tasting the wine from the barrel, to the final blend, and finally bottled.

Yes, I know, its a dirty job, but someone has to do it!

Wines from Chateau Brulesecaille are available at many of the Binny's Depot locations, and I will be pouring this wonderful wine, among others, in the near future. Stay in touch to find out when.

No comments:

Post a Comment