It has been a very dry month for the Beanie Queen because whenever I've had a glass of wine (white particularly) I've started sneezing worse than a pepper-sniffing schnauzer. I blame James Boag when this happens. There's something about too many cleansing Boag Premium Lights that sets my sinuses running, and once that happens, my palate for anything alcoholic (except, surprisingly, very expensive bubbles) is shot to pieces. Alas, the only cure I've found for this problem is abstinence. Something of which I am not overly fond.
So. Makes it damn hard to twiddle off a wine column, but I have come through worse tragedies in my life, and I shall soldier on *sighs*.
Grenache was my go-to Friday night red wine of 2013. If you've never tried it, it is lighter and more elegant than the robust, 'big' reds of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Shiraz. In hero terms, Grenache is endearing and yet shy, possibly a bit favourite-uncle geeky, like an architect or jazz guitarist in the mould of a brylcreemed George Clooney. Yes, there's lots going on in Grenache, but it takes a bit of sipping and sifting to discover, and if you’re the type of wine drinker who enjoys being hit over the head by a modern look-at-me fruit bomb (think Henry Cavill in blue tights), then Grenache may be too subtle for you.
Hubby discovered old bush-vine Grenache from McLaren Vale in South Australia a few years back and he bought it by the case.
There are three Grenache wines we've been enjoying but for reasons all my own, I will only tell you about two of them.
The first is Penny's Hill Grenache. Extremely yum at about $30 a bottle (but better deals by the carton), with so much going on it takes a bit to wrap your mouth around (try that on your #ninjadiscostick). What I really like about this wine is all the layers you get beyond that first 'rich red wine' taste.
Second is Kay Brothers Basket Pressed Grenache. I'd describe this as elegant. Basket-pressed anything is going to be pretty special, as a wine goes.
Third is an amazing Grenache that I will not name. Years ago, in another life, the winemaker at this particular winery was particularly rude to this Beanie Queen, and under this hat I have a memory like an elephant. So no free plugs for you South-Australian-winery-with-winemaker-who-needs-a-lesson-in-humility, your wine is lovely, but you suck. And hubby is banned from buying you again. Ever. I don't care how much your Grenache reminds me of George Clooney and his brylcreemed hair.
Stay classy, ninjas!