20061010

Shiraz razzmatazz: Old world magic comes together for Château Cabrières 2001

Château Cabrières Coteaux-du-Languedoc 2001
I picked up this bottle at a "Solde du directeur" sale virtually sight unseen. Château Cabrières Coteaux du Languedoc (rouge) 2001 possessed three fairly ordinary qualities that when put together create a truly winning combination:


  • Coteaux du Languedoc provenance

  • red blend from the 2001 vintage (great for Midi, especially the Languedoc)

  • 25% off the regular retail price

Château Cabrières corkUnless the bottle turned out to be corked, you would have to be a fairly perverse individual not to love the wine that features each of the above attributes.

I rushed out to buy replacement bottles of this wine. The sale had ended but I didn't care. Because even at $21 (I had discovered it for only $15) this stuff totally turns my crank. In the best words I can muster, here's how that works:

This wine is nearly the end of its design life, but so much the better. There's an orange rim around a very dark purple robe. Deep notes of leather and animal make me want to inhale the aroma of this wine continously. There's even a hint of bacon. Awesome!

Echoes of spice and garrigue pervade. But after greater analysis, I get rust and raisin and chocolate. Château Cabrières Rouge has a generous body on it and after five years, I suspect it is at its most limber. There is integrated and well-proportioned acid and a beautifully soft tannic presence.

I guess if nothing else I would have to call this wine complex. I end up tasting and pondering the stuff all through dinner, which by the way, was a lamb chop -- the magical 4th item to the list above if ever there was one. But back to the wine's complexity: It's got pomegranate and molasses and burnt sugar. And did I mention fruit? Perfectly savoury and delicious fruit -- what you'd expect from any Midi red -- is well represented in this shimmering and multifaceted gem of a wine.

Château Cabrières doesn't need food but if you are at the dinner table I would definitely recommend that you give it the little lamb that it deserves. With some quick grilling, your meat will complement the wine magnificently.

Cave de Cabrières, Cabrières, France. 14%.

1 comment:

g58 said...

I tasted this again last night at a friend's dinner party. It was as good as I remembered though I wonder if it really is a complex as I said it was. In a social setting with lots of distraction and stimulation it went down very smooth with a general note of smoke and blueberry confit. So maybe that's why the leather, bacon, rust and molasses and burnt sugar, among others, I rhymed off last time didn't stick with me. I also had nothing to write down notes with.

In any case, I'll be getting more.