Saturday, January 12, 2013

Cave St. Verny Le Pinot Noir, 2007

The packaging for this wine reminds me of an American trying very hard to seem French but not really succeeding. It's an impressive design, though: all-black (noir) label with the words Le Pinot Noir in gold letters; then some attractive orange dots underneath. For information about vintage and appellation, you have to go to the back label. I had serious doubts about the authenticity of this wine, but the price was $9.99 minus 15% because of the sale in progress at D&W Market.

What's in the glass is not at all disappointing. It's definitely not red Burgundy; it comes from the St. Verny cooperative in the Cotes d'Auvergne, a long neglected wine region near the Rhone Valley. Gamay is a major grape there, and I suspect there may be some Gamay in this wine, even though the label proclaims only "le Pinot Noir." The color is medium light ruby. Aromas and flavors are fresh, lively and very Pinot in character. Wild mixed berries with just enough spice and a subtle cracked black peppercorn trait on the finish once the wine aerates and warms. Crisp, chewy tannins countered by ripe fruit. It's definitely French but a face of Pinot Noir that's unique and quite pleasant. At this price, I will certainly be drinking more.

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