Wednesday, January 11, 2017

The Sultan Of Savory Puts Freshness In The Mix

Bonny Doon winemaker Randall Grahm points out that the Réserve is "precisely the same wine as the '12 Le Cigare Volant (normale), but texturally quite different, and with possibly a bit more depth and complexity." Doesn't figure, since this one is aged in glass, not oak.  Grahm feels that the Réserve Cigares "are perhaps more 'meditation' than food wines." It retails for $60 and 840 cases were produced.

After a "short tenure in barrel" the wine spent 20 months in glass carboys, which brings a freshness to it that usually disappears after being soaked in oak. The 2012 Le Cigare Volant Réserve is made from 39% Mourvèdre grapes, 33% Grenache, 26% Syrah and 2% Cinsault.

It's a savory wine, the way I like it and the way Grahm usually makes it. Dark and mysterious, it smells of meat and olives and earth, with a little black fruit thrown in just to make it palatable for everybody else. There is, however, a "cleanliness" to it that in other wines is often obscured by oak. It's just the same way on the palate, with flavors mimicking the aromas. The finish lingers comfortably and provides plenty of anticipation for the next sip. Meditate on a piece of dark chocolate while sipping this.

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