Burgundy tasting #2 – corked wine

I’ve written before about my wine tasting group.  It is a great group consisting of some core members and others who join in on occasion.  Within the wine group, our organizer Jeremy has created focused wine tasting sessions.   Last month we did our first of what I hope is many double blind wine tastings.  If you haven’t read about it you should.  But things got serious a few months ago when we started a “Burgundy Wine Group” within our wine club/group/clique.

So last night was Burgundy tasting number two.  There are those that say that Burgundy is the holy grail of wine.  Yes, Bordeaux is still Bordeaux and probably more popular, but there is apparently something mythical, magical and even elusive about Burgundy.  So to regularly participate in Burgundy tastings with friends in a comfortable environment is really a great thing.

Last night we focused on a specific region within Burgundy; Morey St. Denis.  If I was a real Burgundy geek (umm – Jeremy) I could tell you about MSD, but I am not (at least not yet), so I can’t.  Sorry.

But I can brag about the lineup.  We tasted 7 wines last night.  Two were village wines, 2 were premier Cru wines and 3 were Grand Cru wines.  These labels are classifications given to specific vineyard sites with village being any vineyard located within Burgundy, Premier (or 1er) Cru being sites within Burgundy with a special status, and “Grand Cru” being the best of Burgundy.  The wines we tasted were as follows:

  1. Domaine Arlaud 2006 Burgundy
  2. Henri (or was it Philippe) Jouan 2006 Burgundy
  3. Domaine Francois Legros “Clos Sorbe” 1999 Premier Cru
  4. Domaine Magniene – Les Millandes “Recolte” 1999 Premier Cru
  5. Clos de la Roche “Virgile Lignier” 2001 Grand Cru
  6. Clos des Lambrays – domaine des Lambrays 1998 Grand Cru
  7. Clos des Lambrays – domaine des Lambrays 1993 Grand Cru

The wines were great.  A lot of what I express as “pukey” smell.  Probably not the most desirable aroma, but something I have come to expect and actually find quite interesting in Burgundys.  But rather than get into tasting notes I want to bring up something I eluded to in the title.  Corked wine.  Yes, one of our wines was corked.  It was one of the Grand Crus (not important which) and the group was pretty disappointed.  I had remembered once before reading that TCA (the abbreviation for the infection “trichloroanisole” in corks that affects the wine and makes it a corked wine) can be removed from a wine with plastic wrap.  Sure enough, as soon as I brought it up two other members chimed in that they had just read the same thing in the NY Times THAT DAY (what a coincidence!!!).  Eager to further enrich my wine related knowledge I went with a fellow member downstairs to a convenience store across the street (a NYC benefit – they are everywhere and open virtually 24 hrs.)  where we picked up a roll of plastic wrap.  The mention of it in the NY Times instructed that the “dank flavor of a “corked” wine, which usually renders it unusable even in cooking, can be removed by pouring the wine into a bowl with a sheet of plastic wrap”.  But I had remembered reading that you could simply crumble up some plastic wrap and throw it into the wine in a decanter – which is exactly what we did…

(thanks to Susan for the pic)

(thanks to Susan for the pic)

And sure enough – IT WORKED!!!  Well, mostly.  We were a bunch of skeptics and while most of us agreed that the cardboardy, dank smell was mostly gone, the wine’s integrity seemed to go with it.  Kind of like the fountain of youth – just a little something unnatural about it.  But pretty DANK cool nonetheless…

Happy TCA-free Burgundy wine tasting!


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