This is my second article on leftover wine. In the first, I stated:
Most often, I have to admit, when my wife and I open a bottle of wine, it does not make it through the night. My wife does ‘help’, but to say that she is a major contributor in grooming the bottle for its next role in the recycling bin would be disingenuous. A few weeks ago, however, my lovely bride had been away and I was left alone at home to care for our two
monsters angelic little boys. To that end, I thought it best not to drain a bottle each night by myself in anticipation that one of our sweet darlings would club the other over the head with a baseball bat and we would need to rush off to the emergency room. That did not stop me, however, from having a glass or two each night.
I was left with a bevy of wines, all stoppered with a Vacuvin rubber cork. I went to stopper the latest wine, and I realized that I was out of stoppers. The following night I decided to go through the leftovers instead of opening a new bottle.
1997 Beaulieu Vineyards Rutherford Cabernet Sauvignon: Retail ~$20-25. I paid $5.21. As I have mentioned here before, a buddy of mine and I bought out what remained of the cellar of a guy who could no longer drink wine (I pray to Bacchus every night…). This wine was likely never meant to be kept all that long, but it is still hanging in there.
First NIght: It is really surprising how much fruit is still in these. OK, most of the fruit is a bit stewed and even a little tired, but the acidity that remains is trying desperately to hold it together. The finish although short, was ample and interesting. Good to Very Good. 86 points.
Leftovers: As you may imagine, a wine that was ‘struggling’ and a ‘little tired’ would not miraculously become re-invigorated after a couple of nights in the cooler. It still tried really hard to be a party animal, but unless it was a party for 50-somethings, this was not swinging from the rafters. OK to Good. 79-80 points.
2006 Jean Saint Honoré Meursault: Brought over by friends. For those of you not familiar with white Burgundy, Meursault is one of the three (four?) best communes for the production of chardonnay (I am an unabashed HUGE fan of white Burgs, by the way), so when our good friends brought this over, I was all a flitter (or something to that effect).
First Night: Oxidized. Well, even though I am the ‘Wine Guy’ (or maybe because of it), I have come across my bad bottles. I usually find a way to fight through them since I even find wine with flaws interesting. The other night we had dinner with a friend in Paris and had an older red Burgundy that was ever so slightly corked. The thing was, it went better with the cheese (Epoisses) than the first bottle of the same wine that had no cork taint. One of the people at the dinner (who possessed a wine degree of some sort) refused to drink the wine. So I did. This Meursault, however, was badly oxidized. Even I couldn’t drink it which says a LOT.
Second Night: Don’t even know why I gave this wine a second chance. Yikes. Down the drain.
Mmmm leftovers. The winery I work at makes lots of traditional method sparklings. Because we don’t serve bubbles beyond the day they were cracked. I am enjoying a glass of leftovers right now and it is superb – an Okanagan, BC still white blend from the Naramata region (mostly Gew and Pinot Gris) showing as well tonight as yesterday when it was first opened – dry, balanced, fruit (pear – more yestreday, grapefruit and citrus – more of each today) and excellent acidity and complexity.
Bonus! Makes you want to stay until closing, I would think….
A lot of folks poke fun at ‘left-over wine’ as if it’s a sin. A big part of finding out if a wine is cellar worthy is to let some sit for a 2nd day. I’ve had a lot of really great 2nd day wine experiences! So, bring on the left over wine!! Cheers!
Thanks for the comment WE! Looking fabulous as always! I agree, people get way too hung up on things. Relax, it’s wine, not nuclear weapons….
Unfortunately, oxidation is a big issue for Mersault wines in general – there is an ongoing special research to pinpoint the source of the issues – I read about it for the first in the in the article in WSJ: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052702303678704576441883939494642.html
I had couple of totally undrinkable bottles of Mersault myself… A bummer : (
I am not sure how I feel about that article, since it seems to suggest that premox is unique to Meursault. It is a problem with all white burgs, not just Meursault: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052702304723304577365672086983052.html
just to point out two….