Sunday, November 25, 2007
Pepper bomb (ugh!)
Casa Silva 2005 Carmenere from the Colchagua Valley.
I bought this from one of our competitors for $12 since we were out of Carmenere at our store (and I like Carmenere). We recently began to carry this (same price), so I thought I would give it a try.
On the nose... Black pepper and green bell peppers. If you haven't tried it before... Carmenere tastes similar to Cabernet Sauvignon (except not as tannic) and Merlot. Carmenere was one of the six grapes used in making Bordeaux by the French until the 1860s when phylloxera became rampant and affected the Carmenere vines quite badly. After that, Carmenere was cast out of France (many thought it to be extinct) and was exiled to Chile (where it was thought to be Merlot for over a century, until 1994 when DNA evidence proved otherwise). But just like Donna Summer sang, "I Will Survive!"... the grape is back and better than ever.
When it's done right...it's great.. you get focused cherry flavor, some smoke, and tons of mocha. When Carmenere is picked too early, you get the vegetal aspects... such as bell pepper. I tasted tons of black pepper, too, which just overwhelmed all the other fruit. Sad.
To make up for it, I tasted the 2005 Hiedler Gruner Veltliner "Thal" a lovely aromatic white from Austria with great body resembling gewurztraminer and riesling. Pineapple and peaches on the nose. Good stuff! :)