Friday 30 April 2010

I Love Organic Wine - A Bordeaux France Biodynamic Wine

This biodynamic wine comes from a very dynamic Bordeaux wine
producer, Olivier Decelle who started out in frozen foods.
His first day's revenue was 10 francs (about $2.50). By the
time he got into wine he owned some 400 frozen food outlets.
This particular bottle carries the Appelation Fronsac
Controlee, grown in a not very prestigious zone of Bordeaux.
The Fronsac area may have hosted the first vineyards in
Bordeaux. A long time ago its wines ranked better than those
of neighboring Pomerol that are now quite pricey. Fronsac is
considered an up-and-coming region. If you're willing to
spend more, check out neighboring Cotes-Canon-Fronsac AOC
wines. This particular wine is made from Merlot, Cabernet
Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Malbec grapes.

OUR WINE REVIEW POLICY All wines that we taste and review
have been purchased at the full retail price.

Wine Reviewed Chateau Bellevue 2005 13.5% alcohol about $19

Let's start by quoting the marketing materials. Description:
Chateau Bellevue lies just outside of Saint-Michel de Fronsac
in the heart of the Right Bank. Olivier Decelle purchased the
estate in 2000 and his commitment to quality is plain to see,
investing heavily in the vineyard and winery as well as
introducing biodynamic methods of viticulture. Well
structured, with ripe tannins, and beautiful ripe, red
fruit, this wine is clearly part of the new wave of
classically made, affordable Bordeaux coming out of minor
appellations. And now for my review.

At the first sips the wine was powerful and mouth filling,
well balanced, and very slightly sweet. The first pairing
was with barbecued beef ribs, potatoes roasted in chicken
fat, and broccoli and cauliflower in tomato sauce with
basil, onion, cumin, and garlic. With the meat, this
Bordeaux blend was round and presented a fine balance
between its acidity and tannins. It was subtle. It washed
the potatoes' grease away. The veggies brought out the
wine's black cherries and its darkness.

The following meal consisted of chicken legs, chickpeas, and
potatoes in broth with some tomato and onion. This was an old
French-style bouillon meal although I'm not sure how much
they knew about chickpeas then and there. The Cabernet was
quite long and tasted of dark grapes mixed with tobacco.

My final meal was a boxed Eggplant Parmiagana slathered with
grated Parmesan cheese. This wine was long and mouth filling;
the dominant tastes were tobacco and menthol.

I finished tasting this bottle with two local cheeses. When
paired with an Emmenthaler (Swiss) the wine was mouth
filling and dark, but its tannins were of the melt-in-your
mouth variety. It had great balance. With an Asiago cheese
the wine was weaker than in the previous pairing but it was
still fine.

Final verdict. I would buy this wine again. It definitely
was worth the price, ever more so if you are looking for a
biodynamic wine. I think both the producer and the region
are worth watching.

About the Author:

In his younger days Levi Reiss wrote or co-authored ten
computer and Internet books, but he prefers drinking fine
German or other wine with the right foods and the right
people. He teaches computer classes at an Ontario
French-language community college. Visit his global wine
website with a weekly column
reviewing $10 wines and new sections writing about (theory)
and tasting (practice) organic and kosher wines.

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