Sunday, November 7, 2010


Le Cigare Volant T-shirt

Some wines are made to be aged. I have the feeling Le Cigare Volant is one of those wines.  Every time I have a bottle of it, I intend to leave it alone and try it a few years down the road.  "I'll set it aside," I say, "and see what some aging does to it."  I haven't found out yet.  I never make it past six months of cellaring before it starts calling out to me.

We were invited to a dinner at the home of some friends we hadn't seen in quite some time.  It sounded like a special occasion, so I dusted off a bottle of what I know to be a good "special occasion" wine.  Bonny Doon's Le Cigare Volant has been oohed and aahed at every table to which I have taken it.  This was no exception.

Natalie and Michael were both quite receptive to the wine.  They had even paid a visit to the Santa Cruz winery some years earlier.  Natalie disappeared and returned wearing her souvenir of that trip, a vintage - we won't say which vintage - T-shirt depicting the Le Cigare Volant label, flying cigar and all.

I had presented the wine to our host and hostess thinking that I would get the chance to show off and explain the "UFO in the French vineyard" story.  I was beaten to the punchline.  It was a moment to remember.

The 2005 vintage is a blend of Grenache (50%), Mourvèdre (24%), Syrah (22%), Carignane (3%), and Cinsault (1%).  The wine was provided by Bonny Doon as a sample for review.

The '05 Cigare pours deep ruby red and shows very dark and earthy charcteristics on the nose.  Black cherry and a meaty aroma also waft up from the glass.  The palate is simply delicious every time I have it.  This vintage expresses the fruit very darkly.  Black plums and a mushroom aspect flow under a layer of earth and game, with cherry cola appearing on the finish.  The fruit is what the finish wants to show, though, and it does so at a lingering pace.

Maybe my next bottle of Le Cigare Volant will be the one that stays unnoticed in the rack.  It's not likely, though.

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