Plo du Maorou vineyard, Vin de Pays de Hauterive, France
36% Syrah, 34% Carignan, 30% Grenache; 14.5% ABV
$7 at the Richmond, CA, store on 9 Apr
I thought this wine, in its tall, heavy bottle, made in France from grapes I like, seemed very promising. At least on the first night open, the wine did not meet my hopes.
On first pour, its decent complex of red fruits was overwhelmed by strong acid. Over the next 2hr 40min in a glass, the wine did darken and add some weight, to show flavors of red and purple cherries, red and black raspberries, and boysenberry. For a while, around 90 minutes of air, it seemed to promise opening into something quite subtly complex, but it never delivered on that promise. Instead, it stayed fairly simple and sharply acid, even with dinner of fatty pork sausages.
I’ve saved half of this bottle in a 375ml bottle with a stopper and very little air. I’ll update this post or comment after I open the second half, but I wanted to get this out quickly. Any other opinions?
Update next day: The second half, with a little more air in the glass, is indeed quite good: The wine’s closed nature has opened to show rich, complex, tangy, dark fruits of plum, cherry, blackberry, raspberry, with earth and a little lighter prune and tobacco. The fruit is still sort of hard, and the wine is still sort of acid, but it’s very good and a very good wine with food. Upgrade to Thumbs Up, especially at the sale price.
So, how do you get this effect at home? Maybe four hours of air in a covered decanter? More research is required. 🙂
Update 22 May: “More research” indicates that the solution is to put this wine in a covered decanter for a day before you want to drink it. See below for details.