2009 Larose de Gruaurd Saint-Julien


This is our first venture into the great red wines of Bordeaux. There is so much information that’s needed to be even semi-educated on the region I am going to dedicate a whole post to it sometime in the near future. For now let’s talk about the basics of this bottle so you can understand where it’s from.

This is the second wine of Chateau Gruaurd-Larose in the Saint-Julien appelation which is located in the Medoc region of Bordeaux. What a mouthful right? Chateau Gruaurd-Larose is classified as a second-growth producer in the Official Classification of 1855. Being from the left bank it is Cabernet dominant blended with Merlot and other red grapes.

With all that being said the best value in Bordeaux is second label wines from classified Chateaus. Unless you’re making serious money you aren’t going to want to spend hundreds and even thousands of dollars on classified wines. Bordeaux is a very complex region and I promise we’ll cover it all in an upcoming post!

We enjoyed this wine with ribeye steaks, grilled potatoes, and steamed broccoli.

colonelgrape: 87. This was a very young wine. Bordeaux is some of the finest wine in the world meant to be aged but I couldn’t wait to try this bottle. Being a second wine it was approachable earlier as was the case here. After decanting it was still tight with dark fruit flavors on the nose and on the palate they came through also with leathery earth taste. Being a Cabernet drinker I could tell I was drinking Cabernet but the blend really nullified a lot of the bite and astringency you’d expect. The tannins were still there but they acted more as a structural aide than a pillar of the wine. If I can find another bottle of this I’m definitely going to cellar it and try it again in a few years, I think it will open up nicely. Looking for a Cabernet-like wine that’s not so “cabby”? Try a Bordeaux.

MobyGrape: 83.  This wine is like the Destiny’s Child to Beyonce as a solo artist.  Having now drank enough straight up cab to swim in, I’m fairly confident in knowing what it can taste like.  This wine (so I’m told) is predominantly a cab, but it’s cut with other grapes, and for once, I think I can actually taste the difference!  It’s not big and bold in your face like a solo act (read: Beyonce, All the Single Ladies) but it’s definitely got some attitude and works well with he other group members (read: Destiny’s Child, Jumpin’, Jumpin’).  It doesn’t smell overly anything, we decanted for about an hour before we drank it, and it went down relatively smooth with a little tannin action, but by no means was this an ass-grabbing cabernet.  OK by itself or with a meal, actually it was quite nice if you were in the mood for something a little heavier but didn’t want to commit to something you had to eat with.  Bordeaux, you’re no Aretha Franklin but you’re on your way to being a solid soul sista.

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