Polar extremes of red wine

Last night we popped around the neighbour’s place with a couple of bottles of wine; they couldn’t have been more different.

[image image_id=”2397″] Morey Saint-Denis 2002, Domaine Dujac

Oh what a ravishing nose, I am instantly smitten by its compelling beauty and charming refinement. There is perfectly ripe fruit which, whilst not lacking intensity, is exquisitely lovely and is enhanced by a subtle jasmine character which tickles my fancy no end. There is certainly earthy complexity here, but I prefer the complexity of the fruit; it is scrummy. On the palate there is a silky tannic structure which has shades of rigour to it, this wine is still bursting with life. The complex, ripe fruit on the palate adds to the impression of this being a svelte little number. The acidity is perfectly balanced and keeps the wine fresh, quaffable and vivacious. This is almost as far from being a huge blockbuster as it is possible to get, it is an elegant little wine of sculpted attractiveness. I’d much rather drink a little beauty like this than a huge alcohol and fruit bomb; you could drink this all day whereas some wines you don’t want to finish off a glass.

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Cotes du Roussillon Villages ‘Cuvee Coume Marie’ 2007, Preceptorie de Centernach

I think I opened a bottle of organic solvent rather than wine, the hot burn that boils off this stuff goes beyond heroic. Indeed, it is distinctly loopy, but sadly loopy in an unattractive way. I don’t like my wines to be inhalation anaesthetics. There is a lot of fruit on the nose, but it is the stewed, jammy fruit of Grenache that has been given a really serious baking in a crazy climate. I’ve only sniffed this ludicrous monstrosity and I already actively dislike it and find it draining. I’ll taste it, though. By the danglers of donkey’s that was a real mistake. This is some harsh, aggressive, contrived facsimile of wine; I find it hard to believe it was made of grapes. The tannins are violently coarse and bitter, giving the impression that my mouth has been given a vigorous roughing up with a Brillo pad. There is severe acidity here as well, quite unforgiving in its ruthlessness. There is also some of that unattractive jammy fruit here as well, but to suggest that this discordant, abrasive palate has any form of balance would be so bonkers it would instantly make one worthy of being sectioned in the local nut-house. This is over-blown filth of the most unremittingly horrendous style; I couldn’t even finish my glass.

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