Corned Beef wine or better yet what to serve with…./ Grenache, Rose, Beaujolais
Food pairing can always be exciting, traumatizing or best a learning experience. I chalked this one up to an exciting learning experience. Thank the powers that be for the internet and well-informed wine rep’s or salespeople.
My research prior to our recent 2012 St. Patrick’s Day supper led me to three varietals for our corned beef, cabbage and potatoes au gratin casserole: Grenache, Rose, Beaujolais. Our choices were:
Domaine Fontanyl Rose de Provence, Les Halos de Jupiter (Cambie) Côtes-du-Rhône 2009 [Grenache], Debeaune Morgon Belles Grives, 2009 [Beaujolais].
All three wines were easily attained through local retailers and were either a “featured wine” or an “employee recommendation”. More importantly all were less than $15.00 each. Unplanned was the fact that all 3 turned out to be French wines.
Our original plan was to pick one varietal and go with it. But once in the store and intrigued by how each would taste with our main entrée it was decided we would pick one of each and have our very own First Annual St. Patrick’s Day wine tasting! I’m not sure our recently visited family members in Ireland would approve but they seemed to be pretty understanding when it came to drinking any type of beverage.
Luckily for me and our party of 7 none of the wines was a bust. We had 2 standouts and one probably described as not robust enough to meld with all the different meal flavors involved. Not being a big “Rose” fan I was pleasantly surprised to see how well this dry Rose in particular paired with our meal. This easily could have been the winner of the evening with 6 out of 7 of the group favoring it but then came the mostly Grenache blend. This turned out to be the true hit of the night; robust, peppery with very nice fruit aromas on the nose such as strawberry. It was close but the 2009 Les Halos de Jupiter gets our Shamrock Trophy for 2012.
I am looking forward to the next challenge, SALUD!
LES HALOS DE JUPITER 2009;
90 points Wine Spectator: “[$23 list] Sleek but concentrated, with delicious dark cherry confiture, Linzer torte and blackberry notes backed by a graphite- and black tea-filled finish. Sneakily long. Drink now through 2012. 2,000 cases made. (6/15/11)”
88-90 points Robert Parker: “An outrageous wine sourced from Visan, Cairanne and Rasteau is the 2009 Cotes du Rhone. Dominated by Grenache, it comes across like a mini-Chateauneuf du Pape. Its dark ruby/purple color is followed by boisterous kirsch, sandy, loamy soil, tobacco leaf, pepper and spice notes. Generously endowed, round, silky textured and explosively fruity, it is an enormously satisfying wine to drink over the next 3-4 years. (Oct 2010)”.
Domaine Fontanyl Rose de Provence
Crisp, Berry, Strawberry, Cherry, Light-bodied
France- Lively and fragrant, this beautiful Rose from Provence shows alluring aromas of ripe berries and dark flowers. The flavors of ripe strawberry and wild cherry are presented in a sophisticated manner that preserves the character of the fruit, but in a dry, straightforward style.
Debeaune Morgon Belles Grives, 2009
90 Wine Advocate:
Wine Advocate – Beaujolais, France – “On the nose aromas of strawberry and cherry preserve, Infectiously juicy and bright, it finishes invigoratingly and mouth watering with tart berry and salt, yet an undertone of meatiness also persists that is apt to become more prominent as the wine evolves.”
Beaujolais is a wonderful wine. Interesting thought of pairing it with corned beef. On the other hand, I try many different reds, but I admit that (generally speaking) that grenache is my least favorite … but not all of them. The green vegetable taste in many of them I don’t like (put I do finish the glass). 🙂 … but that taste may be more typical for a younger grenache.
Thank you for the visit and for commenting on my post. I must admit that I believe my dinner crowd appreciated the “robust” Grenache over the delicate Beaujolais due to their lack of wine experience and the thought that bigger bolder is automatically better. This is in no way a put down but I think as we develop our palate we come to appreciate the subtlety of flavors.
After reading about and reviewing in class the use of Grenache in Rhone wines I was intrigued to try a 100% non blend. I was lead to the Spanish Garnacha’s [Evodia Old Vine Garnacha]. A fruitier wine with less of the black and green pepper in the nose and taste. It was the first time I truly tasted strawberry in a wine. I guess now I’ll have to research and try the California and Australia versions. The things I must do….LOL
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