Today marks the 67th (!) edition of Wine Blogging Wednesday, and I’m honored to be hosting the event again.
For those playing along at home, the gist of WBW is that it brings together multiple people across the wine blog-o-world to review wines on the same date based on a unifying theme. For #67, we chose “Seeing Red For The First Time” as the clarion call of united wine geekiness (a.k.a., “the theme”). Here’s how this shin-dig goes down:
To participate, you’ll need to pick a red wine that you would use to introduce a white wine drinker to red wines for the first time. Think of a person that only ever drinks white wine, and answer the question: What Red Wine would I use to convince that white-wine-only person that they should also drink reds?
Include a review of the wine, and be sure to tell us why you chose that style of wine, or that wine in particular (or both).
A potentially challenging but fun theme, I hope – and I can’t wait to see what you’ve all come up with to try to tempt white-only drinkers over to the Darker Side, so to speak.
My choice, of course, was picked out quite some time ago since I had some advanced notice of the theme, but I had a trickier time than I’d expected in fulfilling my WBW duties. In fact, while I wouldn’t call my attempt a total failure, I’m pretty sure it ain’t a total success, either.
But before we get into the wine itself (which was not a media sample this time), let me unravel for you the tapestry of my logic on this puppy…
A red to pair with a white-only wine drinker… I really felt that the wine chosen needed to be high quality but really approachable. My guess is that most people who say they dislike red wines simply haven’t had the right red wine to start them off, and that it’s very likely those misfortunate souls are still reeling from heartache (and possible heartburn) of an ill-timed rendezvous with an unbalanced, overly-astringent, tannic monster.
So… we need something balanced, high quality, approachable, short on astringent tannins, and probably food-friendly (it never hurts to ply people with food when you’re trying to win them over, right?)…
We’ve covered this ground before, methinks. In fact, we covered it for a previous WBW!
For my money, this assignment has Cru Beaujolais written all over it. Let’s think about this for a second:
- Approachable – check
- Smooth on the tannins – awwww yeeeah
- Balanced – there’s a reason those areas have the highest-level Cru designation, baby
- Food-friendly – acids to spare!
Cru Beaujolais provides the added bonus of being easy on the wallet (great examples are to be had at the $15 range), so it won’t break the bank which is a major factor when you’re taking on an experiment like this. Hell, you could buy examples from two different Cru areas and still only be out $30.
I’m partial to the Cru Beaujolais wines form the neighboring departments of Fleurie, Moulin-à-Vent, and Morgon. But for this WBW, I thought I’d branch out and go for Fleurie’s slightly more northerly neighbor, Chenas. That’s where things went a bit southerly…
Not that I didn’t thoroughly enjoy my selection (a 2008 Domaine Georges Trichard Chenas) – I did. It was like sniffing a red berry cobbler that had some white & black pepper spilled on it, and it went down smooth as silk – not to mention that it paired really well with Cornish game hen.
The problem was that the 2008 Domaine Georges Trichard Chenas might actually be too complex for a first-time Darker Sider. I could see someone in that state of affairs trying this and thinking, “Smells great, but who put the f—king pepper on my strawberries?!??”
So, we live and, as ever, we learn. If we could do it all over again, I’d stick with a Fleurie, which is less berry-cobbler-with-spilled-pepper, and more wearing-some-kind-of-tasty-satin-underoos-for-your-tongue.