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2005 Arthémis Grand Vin de Bordeaux

From the “right bank” of the Bordeaux region, where Merlot dominates over Cabernet Sauvignon in the bottled blends, good values and safe gambles can be found with little risk, especially from this vintage year:  2005, a great year, and drinking towards its peak, this bottle in particular.  We wanted to try a few different Bordeaux wines from 2005, and grabbed this one off the shelf at Total Wines.  It was one of the more expensive wines of the trip at $60.   We decanted this wine for just over an hour.  The initial sip had biting tannins and a big dry finish. These elements mellowed out in no time to a well-balanced, structured wine loaded with dried red stone fruits (cherry & plum), herbal rosemary dust, mocha, and a presence of oak aging that rounded out the rough, tannic edges and gave the wine a more feminine tasting profile.  Lovely and lush.  Delicious overall.   I think that this wine would be okay cellared for another year, but I’m afraid that much longer and the wine’s structure will be lost only to become what some critics call “flabby.”  I love where this wine is at right now with great structure, depth of flavor balanced with food-friendly acidity, and a long finish that doesn’t hurt its drinkability.

We have been trying to get out of our meat rut of beer-can chicken and steak nachos.  So we paired this bottle with grilled lamb skewers drizzled with aged balsamic and rose pepper.  Also, grilled potato vegetable salad tossed with California olive oil and goat cheese.

The downside of this wine?  The pink wax cap over the cork.  I think wines with wax caps are like difficult pageant girls.  They might look nice but they are true pains in the ass.  I’m sure there’s a youtube video that demonstrates the right way to get one off, but who needs it?  This is a particularly bad decision if you ever want to sell your wine in a restaurant, where the service staff has little patience for such an endeavor.  And there is always the risk of wax falling into the wine.  Consider foil?  Because I don’t want to wrestle with the bottle to get to the good great stuff.  http://ei.isnooth.com/multimedia/6/f/d/image_1300264_full.jpeg

 

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