Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Marsannay 2001, Chateau de Marsannay

What better wine for a rainy London night than a handsome Marsannay? This village is distinguished by its location at the northern tip of the Cote de Nuits and its good rose wines which are unique to the Cote d'Or. There are no premiers crus or grands crus vineyards in Marsannay partly due to the problems in ripening pinot noir grapes. If you have tried the pinot noir wines from Irancy near Chablis or from the Alsace you know what the problems can be: unripe fruit, painfully green tannins, thin colour. Thankfully this 2001 Marsannay from the Chateau de Marsannay suffers none of those ills. Bright, full and very reflective ruby red in colour with a cherry wood nose, toasty and a second nose of fresh strawberry. It offers rustic tannins balanced by tangy red berry fruit with an element of cassis and some heat on the gullet. Think of a stout Burgundian vineyard worker with a slow smile and you think of this wine. In its element with pungent cheeses like Ami de Nuits and Epoisses.

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