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Ave color vini clari, Ave sapor sine pari. - Latin proverb

This was the September meeting of Arnaud's Wine Club and the theme was a selection of Arnaud's favorite wines from around the world. We tasted 3 whites and 4 reds from regions as diverse as Champagne, Kremstal, Languedoc, Piemonte, Bordeaux and California.

The white wines

The first wine served was the Champagne Tarlant Brut Zero. This champagne surprised more than one person. With no residual sugar, the wine is bone dry with a distinct but slightly austere mineral taste.

The next wine was the perfect transition between the Tarlant and the Mas des Bressades that would come next. From Kremstal, one of the Austrian regions that make the finest Grüner Veltliner, we tasted the 2001 Felsner Grüner Veltliner Kabinett Gedersdorger Lössterrassen, an aromatic full-bodied wine yet fresh and crisp, the best match of the evening for the sushis and small wraps we were snacking on.

The last of the white wines was the 2002 Mas des Bressades Roussanne-Viognier from the Costières de Nimes appellation. This wine is a blend of two white Rhône varietals, Roussanne and Viognier. The nose offered intense aromas of exotic fruits. On the palate, it had a fat mouthfeel and a long finish.

The red wines

With the first of the red wines, we were back to a lighter style. From the Dolcetto d'Alba appellation, and the Dolcetto varietal, we tasted the 2002 Dolcetto d'Alba Virna. The wine had a fruity nose, a lively acidity and a smooth, round mouthfeel.

The second red wine was the most elegant (and also the most expensive) wine of the evening. The Pessac-Léognan 1998 Domaine de Chevalier is a typical Bordeaux blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Cabernet Franc. The wine had a complex racy nose offering earthy and berry aromas that lingered on the palate with a long and tasty finish. Simply delicious!

The next wine was my least favorite. The California 2001 Folie a Deux Menage a Trois is a blend of Zinfandel, Merlot and Cabernet Franc. It had a sweet candied nose and a sweet jammy mouthfeel that make me regret my glass of Domaine de Chevalier.

The last wine was from Santa Barbara County. A Southern Rhône varietals blend of Syrah, Grenache and Counoise, the 2002 Beckmen Cuvee le Bec had a spicy nose, a warm mouthfeel and a nice finish.

See our other tasting reports.