Wednesday, September 9, 2009

2006 Twenty Mile Bench

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2006 Le Clos Jordanne Claystone Terrace Pinot Noir, VQA Twenty Mile Bench

It's undeniable, my love is absolute - this is the finest wine of Niagara. The most heart-wrenching, emotional wine I've tasted in a long time.

Sometimes you see a restaurant list and you just fear the markup. It's not uncommon to see prices that are 250%-300% of what you would pay retail for. But then I saw this wine on the list, and well, I had to have a taste. I have a few bottles of this cuvée in the cellar, but I wanted to taste.

As is the case with most reds served, the wine came out too warm. I asked for an ice bucket, which the server brought out without hesitation - what a nice surprise. Big glasses. This wine needs a bit of chill, to bring everything into focus. Now, if I hadn't looked carefully, we would have been served the Village Reserve, instead of the single vineyard Claystone Terrace. I'm not accusing him of anything, but.......

Look at the colour. Absolutely, gorgeously pale red, with a mischievous glint. And the nose! Mon Dieu, what a nose! Intense, ripe, fresh rose petals just fluttering across lots of red fruits - cranberry, cherry, raspberry. Very earthy, with a hint of minerality beginning to show. My goodness. The perfume of Niagara.

On the palate, this is stunning. Incredibly silky texture, but with a weight and creaminess in the midpalate. Lots of red fruits, but the freshness of the rose petals really shine. Lots of length, on a lingering, whispering finish. Very, very complex, with all the mystery and tension of a profound pinot noir.

I'm speechless. Amazing. And too much of a good thing. I polished off most of the bottle, and I didn't feel its full effects until the next morning. Hungover for 3 days, but not from the alcohol - it was the essence of pinot noir. The perfume of this pinot noir, the seductiveness, and the aggressiveness - I'll never forget it.

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