Tuesday, 27 October 2009
Needs must! With no money for new fancy bottles of vino we staged a smash-and-grab ram-raid on our own well-protected wine cellar that was almost looking respectable for a minute there. With no money for fancy meats and fishes and the like we were prepared a vegetarian feast by Tom 'Dodder' Dodd, who is very modest about his cooking skills but whose slowly roasted veg tray got crazy love from a panel of particular palettes.
Tom's professional cheffery is now on the backburner, but his military-style organisation and finickety attention to detail can be viewed in the guise of an artist management agency herrre.
After the course of rabbit munch came the wine and cheese double act. A wine I'd copped in Lavinia, Château Bas Saint Césaire 2008, from d´Aix-en-Provence. I'd bought it thinking I was in for another type of juice, I think the Lavinia folk weren't too specific, they rarely are if you're paying less than €20 for a bottle and only getting one once a month.
The web told me that it was grenache blanc (which I love) and sauvignon blanc (which I don't get). We poured that out and saw the golden colour of a well-tended young French white. Not too expressive at first, but warm and inviting to smell, we tried that and were getting caramel, honeysuckle, and sour apples; one taster washeard to remark that it tasted exactly like Murray mints, without the mint, which I thought was bang-on. The texture was fine, the taste not too long, especially with stronger cheese, and a late citrix inclusion sealed the deal.
This wine didn't bring the house down but went well with lighter cheese, pears and the like, and reminded us of the difference a few miles can make in the production of wine. Catalan garnatxa can leap out of the glass, but with the French, it seems, you've to really get in there and explore.