We are in the country for a family meal and I am pleased to report this means another helping of my [link2post id=”894″]step-father’s tasty coq[/link2post]. He surpassed himself today with a real quality portions of bird skilfully marinated, plenty of mushrooms and shallots and some top flight bacon all assembled synergistically to create a whole that easily outclassed all previous efforts I have had. Indeed, I would go as far as saying that any Frenchman who had a taste of Douglas’ coq would ruefully admit the superiority of the English meat, that goes for [link2post id=”1160″]Frédéric Menager[/link2post] too. It was quite brilliant and I can only doff my cap to Douglas’ superlative ability handling birds to prepare really serious coq.
As far as coq au vin goes I think red Burgundy is the perfect match, as it is for so many things. I had dragged along a couple of 2002s and I was terribly pleased that they showed themselves to be not only of very high class but also great expressions of their origins. We drank as well as we ate. Many thanks to Bethan and Editor Daniel for modelling the bottles so artfully.[image image_id=”5694″ align=”right” size=”medium”]
Volnay Premier Cru les Taillepieds 2002, Domaine de Montille
I feel I have been mentioning the colour of red wines recently more often than is merited, so I am not going to say that this is really very pale. Oh. The nose has a totally beautiful purity of fruit that is clearly expressive both of classy Pinot in general and highly attractive Volnay specifically. It is suffused with an intricate minerality that is impressively sophisticated whilst being extremely minimalist and elegant in character. This nose is totally exquisite, a real smasher for the lover of sculpted gorgeousness. Cripes this is good. The palate may have a structure that might give a fleeting impression of approaching being imposing, but with its winsome fruit, finely-honed acidity and subtle minerality this tastes really seductive as well. And, by arse, do those winning flavours last and last, with more complexity unfolding for an age after you swallow (there are no circumstances you would want to spit this). This is manifestly breathtaking Volnay and I think the fingerprints of the Domaine of origin are smeared all over it like mush on a baby’s face at feeding time. An inspiring wine that has roused deep feelings in me. Beyond lovely now but I suppose we should be starting to pop them in 5-7 years. Not sure I could wait that long, to be honest.[image image_id=”5698″ size=”medium” align=”left”]
Nuits-Saint-Georges Premier Cru Clos des Forets Saint Georges 2002, Domaine l’Arlot
L’Arlot are often overlooked when people seek quality Nuits, but judging by the lavishly hedonistic glories present on this nose perhaps we are mistaken to do so. I know 2002s are a bit on the ‘tits out for the boys’-end of the Burgundy spectrum in general, but this is a stirringly ravishing nose. It is certainly Nuits, with its dark fruit profile, suggestions of undergrowth and rich earthiness, but its complex, compelling aromas are sybaritic in the extreme. If you wanted to charm a Burgundy neophyte with a bottle of Nuits you’d dream of giving them a wine like this to smell. They’d love to taste it, too. It has enough rigour to the tannins to make it a good example of Nuits, and I think the acid level is perfectly correct, but the ripe, lascivious fruit and powerfully opulent minerality transform the palate into one of joyously profligate dissolution. This is quite brilliant Nuits but definitely for the louche, rakish pleasure seeker – I can manage that and damned well too. It’ll last for a decade-plus but bloody well go for it, boys and girls, then rip some clothes off and growl in the most indelicate manner you can manage.
After the Burgundy and coq we had some apple crumble with custard. I rather like custard.[image image_id=”5702″ size=”medium” align=”center”]