Saturday, September 13, 2008

Where the Rubber Hits the Glass: d'Arenberg 2005 'The Custodian' Grenache

OK, so technically this one is an 88 (Wine Spectator). So sue me - it's close enough. And to make it even more intriguing... Stephen Tanzer of the International Wine Cellar gave it a... 90!

d'Arenberg 2005 'The Custodian' Grenache (McLaren Vale, Australia):

I'm gonna have to go ahead and disagree with the tasting notes on this one...

This wine is more full bodied, as you'd expect from Grenache it packs a buttload of booze (14.5% abv). Yes, it's got jammy fruit, along with lots and lots of berries (strawberry, cranberry...). But it feels a little 'hot', and gives the impression that this vintage is not fully representative of the big, explosive fruit that McLaren can deliver in warm years (2005 was a bit on the cool side for them).

Now, while technically I agree with WS on their sub-90 ruling, I don't agree with them on the core reasons for that ruling.

That's because I get something out of this wine that I think I shouldn't. It's floating just above the fruit after the mid-palate and it's seriously disrupting my enjoyment of the finish on this otherwise tasty sucker.

Rubber. Sniff-sniff. Damn! There is it again.

I confirmed this with some dinner guests who shared the wine (and no, we did not eat tire for dinner). They're not wine geeks, but once I pointed it out to them, there was no mistaking it.

My verdict: overall point reduction due to, well, Reduction.


1 comment:

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Planted grape varieties in Burgundy

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