No Cyrano Here

Light ruby with ambering edges.  Big nutty spicy nose packed with lovely vegetal vegetal nuance–roasted sweet red peppers and mushroom over a bed of minerality, tapenade and cassis-driven smoke.  If you don’t know Bergerac, look it up.  An oft-ignored appell bordering BDX on the East and many MANY lovely wines made from the same varieties as BDX but for a fraction of the price as BDX.  If you visit France–especially France-Sud, there is a TON of Bergerac on shelves and on lists–but rarely does much Bergerac come on to the radar in The United States.  I have always seen it as an incredibly low-priced alternative to BDX and this particular bottle is no exception.  Thin and bright, full of dusty soil nuances and packed with lovely Cabernet flavor.  The packed tobacco, BBQ and beautifully-constructed Cabernet/Merlot composition shine in a raw, bright, and wonderfully acidic blend.  In the mouth, thinner than any CA Cabernet–of course–but therein lies much of the beauty of this region and their wines.  Stunningly bitter and rife with acid and tannin, a fennel, cinnamon, pie-cherry mouth-feel comes on strong, immediately turning to green, Cab-driven structure.  There is no flatulent obesity of typical CA Merlot–even tough it makes up nearly half of the blend.  This is a BDX-blend crafted in classic Bergerac fashion, not ripe or round, but sharp and acid-driven–Left Bank meets Alexander Valley, if I had to place-cast it.  A lovely wine and a stunning *food-wine*.  Not something Californians are going to particularly appreciate around the fire-pit, but a true cook will relish alongside a meal.

2013 CHATEAU BEL-AIR Bergerac ABC Cab/ME/CF 50/42/8   13-0


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