Château Bujan 2003 (and Blogger 2.0)

Château Bujan 2004 côtes-de-bourg
In December I will be switching to the new version of Blogger. The switch will necessitate some change in the way I categorize my posts. But change is good, right? Up to now, it's been DIY: I manage the "subhead" categories that are attached my posts (micro-managing is more like it). This means I've got to upload them to the sidebar of my template file manually, html code and all, every time. Currently I am a week behind in updating the template.

I hope I can automate this process with the new version of Blogger. Rethinking my categories is also in order since so many of them have accumulated since I first devised a rather loosely standardized system. In any case, under the Entries listing at left, you can expect a bit of new look and feel soon.


Getting on with it... There's a bit of a new look and feel for the Château Bujan 2003. It's called the Château Bujan 2004, and like Blogger 2.0, I could only speculate broadly on it. The 2003 is still kicking around (click on the bottle image for local stores that stock Bujan). Here's what I noted about that vintage.

Colour is a generous red, going right through to the edges. Nose is not showy -- a restrained whiff of dusty berries is what I get. On the palate this wine has depth and great smoothness. The finish is rather remarkable. It is very very long and lingering.

Bujan produces a dignified well-made wine yet little about this "Grand Vin de Bordeaux" impresses me at the table. The fruit is so austere and musty that for a 75% Merlot this wine seems unnecessarily muted. Minerals and mocha flavours compete for the lead that the fruit has given up on. With some quite profound tannins kicking in, the overall flavour profile of the wine ends up being a bit on the bitter side. And that makes it a chore to match with dinner, especially market cuisine which is what I often prepare.

I would not pair this wine with food, though it does have admirable levels of acidity. I simply find the beginning and middle of this wine very balanced but boring. Why I am looking for zip, I don't know. With its big finish, this wine is likely its own reward. Drink it on its own or with a heavy and hearty loaf of bread.

It could be that this being a past Grappe d'Or mention from Michel Phaneuf I was expecting something more. For about $20, it is a recommendable Bordeaux, no doubt. But at the very least I would say that this experience has opened up my eyes (when I was hoping my other senses would perk up after uncorking this bottle -- even on the second night when I tasted it again).

I think I now know why the gourmets that run La Brunoise would do something as brazen as omit any and all Bordeaux bottles from its lengthy (and self-professed "food-friendly") wine list. They know good red Bordeaux is far from a cheap and easy date. And maybe they've been Bujaned at the dinner table like I was.

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