|Weingut Huber 2004 Traisenstal Gruner Veltliner ďHugo,Ē $8|
This has a nice nose mixing citrus fruits (lemon and maybe some pineapple), vegetal notes (that I donít find unpleasant), flinty minerals and herbs. The palate follows almost precisely. There is a slight amount of petillance but not enough to detract. This is fairly dry and minerally, but a good amount of fruit gives a slight impression of sweetness. (1.5 g of residual sugar according to importerís website). It goes quite nicely with takeout Chinese food. Three days later, the fruit is distinct lemon/lime/citrus and there are plenty of minerals. The petillance is gone. The next day, the fruit now smells and tastes like grapefruit and it shares equal billing with minerals and flint. I think it like it best now. At under $10, it's a great value. Importer: Loest & McNamee.
Domaine Peyra 2002 Vin de Table de France ďLe Cor en Continu,Ē $16
When I bought this wine from Chambers Street, owner David Lillie warned me several times to give this wine lots of air before drinking. Sure enough, when I opened it, a fetid mix of high-toned volatility and raw sewage wafted out of the bottle. Fortunately, I had followed Davidís advice and dinner was four hours away. When it came time to actually drink the wine, the stink had diminished to tolerable levels and was partially hidden by intense strawberry and freshly-turned dirt. The palate started out with pretty strong, very tart strawberry and cranberry fruit, followed by plenty of earth and maybe a little white pepper. The wine is pretty smooth but very acidic and it has some noticeable tannins, too. Overall, I like it, itís a good food wine that goes great with salade nicoise made with pink salmon instead of tuna. Two days later, slight barnyard remains on the nose at first but swiftly disappears. The aromas are a nice mix of strawberry, minerals and earth with some slight floral and herbal accents. On the palate there is more tart strawberry, but now a mix of crunchy minerals and rich, slightly bitter earth dominate. The next day itís similar but crunchy minerals are even more dominant. I love this quality in a wine and found it even more enjoyable. Importer: World Wide Wines.
Cambon la Pelouse 1999 Haut Medoc Cru Bourgeois, $16
This wine has typical Bordeaux aromas and flavors of black currant, cedar, earth and gravel with decent acidity, good structure, and somewhat grainy but fairly smooth tannins. It makes an excellent match with hot mesquite smoked pork loin marinated in Middle Eastern spices spices. Two days later, itís similar but in addition, thereís a floral, perfumy element on the nose. Two more days later, itís still going strong. Importer: Monsieur Touton.
McKenzie-Mueller 1999 Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon
This Napa Cab (a gift so I donít know the price) has black currant, oak and herbs on the nose and palate. It has more oak, more fruit and less acidity than Iíd like, but in the context of California Cabernets, this seems relatively restrained and balanced; itís not over the top. Itís also very smooth. It goes quite nicely with appetizers of Dubliner cheese and green olive tapenade on crackers.
|David Lillie warned me to give this wine lots of air...Sure enough, when I opened it, a fetid mix of high-toned volatility and raw sewage wafted out of the bottle...When it came time to actually drink the wine, the stink had diminished to tolerable levels and was partially hidden by intense strawberry and freshly-turned dirt...|
I'm of mixed minds about this stuff, because I've had plenty of wonderful experiences with Peyra, but they've never been bottles that exhibited this sewage funk. When the sewage funk appears, the wine ceases to be good for me, and while I can often tolerate the beginning of the sip, by the finish when the funk appears, I just can't believe that is an intended component.
To make things even more confusing, I've spoken with several wine clerks here in Paris, who appear decently knowledgable about the Peyra wines, and some recommend aging certain cuvees, while others warn against too much aeration before the oxidation takes over.
All that to say, great wines when they're on, not the most stable, and I have a hard time believing that sewage funk is a good part of the wine.
|I had been intrigued by descriptions of Peyra and that's why I tried this -- it was my first bottle from the producer. But I'm not sure I'll buy more. While I enjoyed it very much, especially by the second and third days, there are other wines out there -- a number of Touraine Gamays, for example -- that can provide similar pleasure with less risk of stink and less need for long aeration.|