Couple a fun wines last night with friends. Not exactly related in profile, but for sure not clashing. I know food-pairing is all anyone talks about, but have you ever had wines together that did not complement each other? I have had this happen MANY times. Sometimes two wines can flat-out abrade on each other, but usually it is a situation where one of the wines just can’t *show* well with the other alongside, or one offers obtuse or acute polarities with another bottle in the room. This is not, of course, indicting comparative tastings–verticals, horizontals, varietal line-ups and the like–this is exactly THE POINT of those tastings. I’m talking about sitting down at a table with a couple wines and either they are too similar in style or awkwardly opposed and you think to yourself: Man, this would show a lot better by itself, or: (more often) This poor thing just ISN’T being the wonderful wine I KNOW it is with this thing alongside. OK, sorry for the ramble… that’s actually NOT where I was going when I started pecking, but it has happened to me hundreds of times and I am sure a good chunk of you as well. What I MEANT to say was: These two wines, opposites in variety climate, *clinically* opposite in nuance, opposite corners of the world, opposite production style, level, and marketing but *about* the same PP, were very charming on the table together. One could almost say they “paired well” together.
The Temp churns with bold burnt warm-weather concentration and earthy funk, a dirty steely core tot he nose around which is wrapped the BLACKEST of fruit. You try to guess the alcohol, and are torn by the huge cozy hug of the fruit and the green, briary petrichor that never goes away. You WANT to say a big, chubby, American-palate-friendly 14-5+, but the sheer grip of the wine plays with my sub-14 heartstrings. A nice chunk of uric barnyard keeps the typicity honest. Dense and packed with dirty ripe things when you taste it, the black fruit concedes nicely to the tall acidity, age influences the tannin, and the middle clean cherry brilliance. A ridiculous value and an absolute BTG no-brainer. Gorgeous little wine. Find it and it won’t hurt your wallet.
2018 BODEGAS EMILIO MORO ‘Finca Resalso’ Tempranillo Ribera Del Duero Spain 14.0
Hard to believe the 2013’s are 7 years old, but here we are. This is John Holdredge’s entry level and cheapest Pinot, but no slouch in reflecting what the winery is about. This one is *pretty*. A streak of delicious funk runs cautiously “Pinot” through it, but nothing gets in the way of the lollipop cherry and sweetened bramble pie this little thing has settled out into. Nary a tannin visible, acid soft and absorbed, it is just plain delicious, the absolute POSTER CHILD of a $30 RRV headed quickly towards its teenage years.
2013 HOLDREDGE Pinot Noir RRV Sonoma 14.5