Sunday, April 21, 2013

Bearboat Russian River Pinot Noir, 2008

My preferences in wine have changed a lot over the past 30 years--from big, tannic Napa Valley Cabernets such as Keenan and Conn Creek to Grenache-based Southern Rhones. My tastes have evolved and prices for Napa Cabs have grown faster than my income. A big part of it, though, has to do with changes in my diet. A big, oaky Napa Cab is a great companion for a grilled NY strip or T-bone, but our meals today are more oriented toward vegetables, highly flavored, aromatic and spicy. For this type of diet, Mediterranean wines are perfect. Other wines that match up are Pinot Noir and Barbera--medium to light bodied but very flavorful.

This Bearboat Pinot from the Russian River Valley is a good example. Medium to light ruby. Red cherry, cranberries, flowers and spices--tightly constructed. Nuances of cloves and cinnamon. It goes well with cheesy appetizers but is even better with a main course of pork loin braised in milk. Opens up over the course of the evening.

The $14.99 price I have seen over the past six months at my local grocery store is probably intended to introduce the wine and build a market. It's worth that and more.

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