Sunday, January 4, 2009


Le Drunk Rooster Grenache, 2007. Languedoc region, France.

Ever noticed how many animal mascots appear on wine labels? Here's another clever one, this time in Franglais, instantly deflating the drinkers' pretensions to savoir faire. The color is a lovely true purple with laser-red flecks when held to light. I "paired" it with shrimp curry--out of convenience rather than inspiration--but it held up decently against the flavor onslaught. Light-bodied, it had a vaguely soapy taste for the first few minutes before leveling out to easy-going berry and cherry flavors. Drinkable but unremarkable. I got it for about $5.50 after a deep $3 discount. A reasonably tasty, cheap, inoffensive bottle--no need to be ashamed of toting this one to an informal gathering. Still, I can't help but think of the Bluth family's chicken impersonations. . .

back in red!

As predicted, my brother's generosity and expertise in sharing bottles of wine led to a period of mourning while I readjusted to the real world. Thankfully, I've recovered sufficiently to appreciate some more reasonable gems.

Viu Manent Cabernet Sauvignon Reserva, 2005. Valle de Colchagua, Chile.

A former roommate and wine lover gave me this bottle for my birthday. It's his go-to Cabernet, and seeing that his girlfriend lives close to a Total Wine, he's had plenty of opportunities to confirm that judgment. A big, bold cab; thick, dark and savory. It had a bite like a crocodile in the first ten minutes, but mellowed out smoothly within twenty.

Probably best paired with a rich meal, as it was a little too hefty for sipping while marveling at the contortions of Cirque de Soleil on DVD. I'd rather not look up the price of this gift, but I'm reasonably sure this one is in the affordable range. I love the copper sparkle in the icon.