Tuesday, March 30, 2010

1999 Domaine de Fauterie Cotes du Rhone Blanc

So, going old again, I found this gem in my sample box a few weeks ago and seeing that I was having pork chop with a balsamic/caper reduction, I thought this might be the perfect accompaniment. I was right but also wrong.

1999 Domaine de Fauterie Cote du Rhone is 70% Marsanne and 30% Rousanne and as you can see from the picture a nice golden color in the glass (in the decanter it looks more aged and amber than it really is, always appears that way) and it is clear and bright.

The first thing that jumped out at me when I opened it up was the smell of apples and pears that jumped out of the glass. I could smell it from a few feet away. After more in-depth snuffling, I could also smell the waxy lanolin of older white wines, chamomile and white tea and just a touch of jasmine.

In the mouth the wine is full and rich but with bracing acidity so it must have been a monster of acid in its youth and sadly, the wine is pretty short in the finish showing a little hot and harsh even though it is 11 years old. I was surprised at how fresh the wine is and how well it is holding up. The flavors of pears continued in the mouth along with some nutty, slightly Manzanilla di Sanlucar de Barrameda (Sherry) like flavors (salty apples, almost briney).

With the food, the red onion, golden raisin, red swiss chard and pine nuts all sautéed together went well and would the pork chop, but the balsamic/caper sauce kind of overpowered the wine and the saltiness in the wine was amplified by the saltiness of the capers in the sauce. Nice try but no cigar.

Overall, I thought the wine was tasting great and it probably originally only cost what, say $15 at the most or maybe $20 at the outside? A deal by far.

Of course, there is none to be had anymore, but it has been fun to taste a little bit of the past . . .





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