The early evening of Open That Bottle Night 2010 found us at Poco Piatti, having tapas with friends. To go along with our small plates of hummus, Thai shrimp, falafel, stuffed mushrooms, chicken wraps and risotto we had a bottle of Alamos Malbec. The restaurant was crowded and provided a warm, jovial atmosphere.
Returning to home base, our arrival wine was a wild card, a 2007 Viognier by North Carolina winery RayLen. I had saved this bottle for a side-by-side Viognier tasting that never actually happened. I thought OTBN might be a good time to try something exotic.
This wine is a beautiful honey-gold color with a luxurious silky mouth feel. However, this vintage was done in by oak. Viognier can have a beautiful, delicate slightly herby flavor, but this was swamped by too much oak. The French oak was not complimentary to the fruit flavors. Green Dragon is not an oak fan on a good day, and this combination just didn’t work for her.
We then moved to a bottle that has been aging for a few years, a nice Trius 2004 Cabernet Franc, from Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario. I picked this bottle up when we went to Stratford for the Shakespeare festival last year – one of the benefits of living so close to Canada.
As I poured this into the decanter, I had a blast of aromatic fruit as the cranberry colored wine swirled away. Spiderman and Glorious T enjoyed this wine, GT proclaimed it as stress relief in a bottle – something to be enjoyed while snuggled by the fire. The body is medium with a taste of well blended spices, including pepper on the end. OTBN was now off and running quite well.
To cap the evening, the cork was popped on a Lamoreaux Landing 2007 76 West (Finger Lakes). This is a blend of 55% Cabernet Franc, 35% Merlot and 10% Cabernet Sauvignon. This is a deep, beautiful color, several shades darker than garnet. The approach is silky with the Cab Franc’s pepper being toned down by the Merlot. This is heartier than the Trius, but in a well-balanced way. This has an vanilla bean finish and is a beautiful sipping wine.
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