Wine: Excellence In October
By Kay Pfaltz
Excellence comes in many forms, even seasonal. I know I’m not alone in loving the month of October, so I think few will dispute the idea of October’s excellence—a month exemplifying transcendent qualities like clarity of light, beautiful lowering temperatures at night, and then, those fall colors, for who can resist blazing orange, yellow and red trees? To many, the shortening days mean death and decay, but to me they signify life; they feel invigorating and seem to offer a return to what I’ve needed: log fires, long novels, and… rich full-bodied glasses of red wine.
Château Musar, 2005 – Musar is excellence personified (vinified?) My love affair with Château Musar began many years ago in Paris, and I probably write more about this one wine than any other. Capable of aging for decades, Musar, both the red and the white, is at its best when drunk older, but the 2005 is luminous now. Dried figs, berries, leather and smoky notes. If anyone tells you Lebanon can’t make good wine, take a short trip to the Levant as you open a bottle of Château Musar and let that someone in for a delicious surprise. $49
Foradori Teroldego Rotaliano 2009 – This is the epitome of what I look for in a wine: small production, well–made, biodynamic, and a committed, understated woman winemaker, Elisabetta Foradori, quietly producing some of Italy’s most exciting reds, at the helm. An extra bonus is a unique grape variety: Teroldego, which is genetically related to Syrah and equally rich and dark with the same cracked black pepper and dark fruit notes. This wine’s rustic, earthiness is Italy (Trentino-Alto Adige) at its best. $28
La Bastide St. Dominique, vieilles vignes, Grenache, 2011 – Excellence doesn’t need to wear an expensive price tag. From Eric Bonnet’s deft hand comes a little wine, from old vines (vieilles vignes) with a big taste. I love old-vine wine because it implies the winemaker is more concerned with quality than quantity. Rich, smooth and full-bodied, with notes of plums and blackberries. All for $12.
Like a taste of adventure? Taste wine in Argentina! October 2013. For details: [email protected].
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