Lab Rat Right Before Bed
When I got the email letting me know I was a rat on Wednesday I was absolutely thrilled and more than a little terrified. What if my darling neighbor, who signs for my wine and mocks me when she thinks I'm ordering too much, isn't home to receive it? What if I get something I utterly hate? What if I utterly FAIL at giving an accurate description?! It's enough for Rat to need a glass of wine just to cope.
Fortunately at least on the first and second points, I was safe ... my neighbor signed with only minimal mockery and the wine was the 2004 Truchard Tempranillo. I haven't had a TON of Tempranillos, but I've enjoyed most of those that I've had, so I was very pleased.
It's been ridiculously hot, so when I got home, I put the bottle in the fridge for a short while, taking it out when it hit 66 degrees. I popped and poured. The first thing I noticed was it smelled absolutely delicious - a lot of red fruit on the nose, a hint of spice and cedar. Very heart-warming smelling to me, it made me think of Christmas. The wine's also a really gorgeous color, a deep red with a hint of purple.
I let it sit for about 15 minutes before trying it, mostly because I was sniffing it and typing up the above description before I tasted it and lost track of my impressions! The aromas faded over that time, still nice, but just a ghost of themselves.
On the first sip, I could taste a little vanilla, some red fruit (less than I expected, actually) There's very little heat in this wine, too, it's medium bodied and fairly smooth - the tannins are pleasantly mouth puckering at the finish but nothing overwhelming that suggests it needs a long decant or cellar time. Good, since I don't have that option!
Deceptively easy to drink, actually, because as I take a sip of it I am realizing it's the sort of wine I could keep refilling my glass with and next thing I know, the glass is empty. It's not a complicated wine, but it's balanced.
I had a couple of glasses over the space of the evening. With dinner - roasted chicken and vegetables - it was fine, but nothing exceptional. It didn't overwhelm the food and the food didn't overwhelm it.
An hour or two later on its own, it had really mellowed out and the fruit came forward, so it felt sweeter and slightly richer.
Drinking it toward the end of the evening, I'd basically decided that even though I was informally trying to avoid buying anything during summer shipping, if it ended up around 10 dollars a bottle, I'd seriously consider it. I figured it would be a great wine to drink when I didn't have anything particular in mind.
So I was pretty much shocked when it showed up for less than 7 w/shipping and snagged my case instantly. The other years would have to be *significantly* off for it not to be an amazing deal.
I have just under half the bottle left and I'll finish it up tomorrow - if there's any major change, I shall report back! I hope that helps *somebody*