Saturday, 22 September 2012

Starlight Express

These wines caught my eye, because of the stylish label and the choice of red grape.
Petit Verdot is usually used in small quantities, with Left Bank Bordeaux's. It tends to be added to give depth and colour, so I was interested to see how it would taste on its own.

I then remembered that I had ridden on the train, pictured on the label. I was travelling around America at the time and had just had a bad nights sleep in Seattle. As the train pulled out, the conductor announced  that there were first class cabins, available at reduced rates.

Jumping at the chance, I had one of the most luxurious train rides of my life. When we reached California, the conductor (who was state proud) kept up a running commentary of all the produce, being grown in the fields we were passing.

It did become tedious, after a while. However,he was so enthusiastic about the diversity of crop, that you had to look out the window at fields of grapes.

The Petit Verdot was fantastic. It was very dark black currant
 red, in colour. The nose is one of dark cherry and ripe Victoria plum. There is a tar and woodiness to it too.

The taste is like a cherry compote, full of plums, apricots and figs. I got stewed strawberries on the end.

The Chardonnay was drunk on a different night. It went perfectly with the Pasta and Smoked Salmon dish, that I cooked. The wine was very gentle and delicate. It didn't have the oaky-ness, that most Chardonnays from California have.

There were elegant notes of peaches, that I could picture on one of the trees I passed, when aboard.
The peach smell flowed to the taste and was joined by clear honey and lemon zests.

A beautiful wine, that brought back such happy memories. 

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