French Red Trip
Chateau Latour "Le Pauillac de Latour" - $82
3rd label from Bordeaux first growth you might have heard of, mostly from the chateau’s younger vines. About half Merlot, with the balance divided between the two Cabernets. Fruit takes the lead here: cassis, black plum and blackberry, followed by pencil lead, smoke, vanilla and tobacco. Uplifting acid and tame tannins. Drinking well now and for the next decade.
Domaine de Ferrand Chateauneuf-du-Pape - $51
90% Grenache, with Syrah, Mourvedre, and Bourbelenc. "Brilliant ruby. Powerful, mineral-accented aromas of ripe red berries, cherry pit, pot-pourri, and musky rhubarb, backed by a hint of Asian spices. Sweet, concentrated, and seamless in texture, offering intense raspberry, cherry, and lavender pastille flavors and a touch of licorice." - Josh Raynolds, Vinous, 3/17
Chandon de Briailles Pernand-Vergelesses "Ile des Vergelesses" 2014 - $64
Brambly, minerally and a bit gamey, opening up into fresh plums and ripe, sweet/tart cherries. More "heft" than most Cote de Beaune lieu-dits. 40% whole cluster, minimal new oak, biodynamic farming. Best drinking: 2020 and beyond, or decant an hour or so and enjoy with roasted pork.