You know when you loose track of a friend? Living a distance apart, having kids, a job, their wife, their kids.
These are just some of the reasons, why people slip out of your address book. However, there are some people who slip right back in.
There are some people, who were very good friends, but second time round, you don't quite know what to expect. Chateau Patache d'Aux, 1997 is one such friend.
I had one round for dinner the other night, we had fun and reminisced, but things were getting tired and soon we both knew we would be parting for good.
Chateau Patache d'Aux is a wonderful chateau, on the left bank, in the appellation of Medoc. I had the fortune to visit and indeed have a private
tasting there. The wines are predominantly made with Cabernet Sauvignon, the blend varies. Merlot makes up the next 20-30%, with the last 10% being Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot.
The wine goes into 1/3 new oak each year, this gives it plenty of vanilla. The vineyard was well run, yet friendly, homely even. The middle section of each barrel had been stained, this seemed to make the cellar look neat and tidy.
The 1997 was a good year for the region and for the vineyard.
Back to the wine in hand, I brought the bottle up to room temperature and then decanted it. I noticed the wine has a rusty red edge, showing maturity. The colour reminded me of caramelised sugar, with maybe just a reddish hue. The wine exhibited slow legs, showing it to be only 12.5% volume. Sandal-wood and cherry are joined with warm vanilla and honey, on the nose. The taste starts with a toasted blackcurrant and the feeling of cough syrup or tar. The red fruits start coming through, as does a worn leather chesterfield feeling.
Going back over my notes, it seems that Chateau Patache d'Aux, 1997 was more jammy and casis juicy.
It felt tired now though and so the best thing was to put it to bed. I do have to say that, year on year, I have bought cases of their wine and they remain a favourite dinner guest.