Monday, October 26, 2009

Viognier Rhymes With Sunday

What do you do on the perfect fall afternoon in Corona Del Mar?

1. Plant yourself with a friend on the Gulfstream patio (...may want to bring your own stems if you're sensitive to glassware)

2. Pop a bottle of chilled white wine and a red, pouring no more than two ounces at a time

3. Snack on peel-n-eat shrimp, ahi with ponzu, and roasted beets with fresh oranges, mint, and walnuts

4. Meet their cool GM, Natalia, and friendly server, Cindy, and invite them to taste the wines

5. Talk about why French wine rocks your world

6. Share a tale or two from the past week

7. Talk about candidates (white and red) for next Sunday afternoon

8. Make it home in time for a lovely fall sunset

(I had the pleasure of enjoying the first 2 last Sunday and the last 2 yesterday)

Bonneau du Martray (chardonnay)
2006, 13.5% abv
A BIG Sunday wine. Excellent balance and precision. Commanding nose and palate. More oak and butter on the nose than I anticipated. Stimulating minerality and acidity. Citrus and green apple notes. Lemon meringue too. Grand Cru finish that just can't be beat.

Janasse, Vieilles Vignes (grenache)
Chateauneuf du Pape, Southern Rhone, FR
2003, 14.5% abv
Another BIG Sunday wine that pulled a 180 on us after the militant Charlie. We jumped to liquid dark fruits - silky raspberry, blackberry, and boysenberry. Creamy texture and bakery (and a touch of savory) spices coast along the palate. Opaque purple color. Zero green. Ultra fine tannin. A dichotomy of innocent fruit purity and sinful decadence.

Mathilde et Yves Gangloff (viognier)
Condrieu, Northern Rhone, FR
2005, 15% abv
Integrated alcohol. Beautiful summer sipping wine. Developed aromatic nose with notes of honey and white flowers. Smoothe medium body white. Fun flavors of key lime, peaches, and cream soda.

Vincent Giradin (pinot noir)
Bonnes Marres Grand Cru,
Côte de Nuits, Burgundy, FR
Guttural, authenic, disciplined. Subtle fruit, more secondary and tertiary notes of spice, herbs, and tea. In no way aggressive on the palate though. A very sophisticated Bonnes Mare. Like a New York woman who always wear black couture with no visible label. Witty too. Maybe I'll be her one day ;)

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