The Imbibe Wine Club met for the second time last night, with four in attendance–Kelleigh, Caitlin, Jenn, and myself, to sample some Chablis. I chose this wine because it’s August, and because I wanted an excuse to visit Burgundy Wine Company, on West 26th Street, where I raised the bar on our $20 limit, because Chablis isn’t cheap. After experiencing the essence of garbage juice, Chablis remains a bit of a mystery. I know I have loved this wine in the past. Perhaps we should have done the tasting differently by pooling our sources and buying a more expensive bottle, because after last night, I am left wanting…even questioning the future of my relationship with Chablis.
First we uncorked the 2006 William Fevre Champs Royaux Chablis, made from 100% Chardonnay, which Caitlin and I found to be surprisingly thick. Golden pale straw, with a touch of fennel on the nose and palate, the William Fevre was a little tart (sour peach) at the beginning before the flavor petered out. Everyone considered this selection dull and lacking in complexity. Perhaps it would fare better with food.
The next bottle, Christian Moreau Pére & Fils, Chablis 2006, was the best of the lot. Purchased for $25 from Burgundy Wine Company, this wine was the color of pale straw with a bright and lively bouquet, that for me was reminiscent of riesling. (Caitlin and Kelleigh detected riesling on the palate.) Full of citrus (the consensus was grapefruit) and minerality with a touch of pear, the Christian Moreau possessed a balanced acidity and finished smooth. Not yet amazing, but still, an enjoyable wine.
Now for the highlight of today’s post: garbage juice. This unfortunate bottle of Gilbert Picq et ses Fils Chablis 2005, (an artisan wine produced by the Picq family) had a bit of mold beneath the foil and atop the cork. After the cork broke in two, we knew we were in for a trip. Quite a disappointment too, as Caitlin and I both like the shop from which this bottle was purchased, though we’re sure the folks at Bottlerocket are unaware. As soon as I brought the glass to my nose, I got a whiff of garbage juice. Garbage juice! the others laughed. What the hell do you mean? Though the description needs no other words, I laughed off my initial reaction, and second guessed that it simply couldn’t be true. As we stood around Kelleigh’s kitchen counter, swirling, sniffing, and sipping, one-by-one like toppling dominos, the ladies began to exclaim-Garbage juice, yes! And into the bucket we dumped.
For a vertical tasting we had a bottle of the Gilbert Picq & ses Fils Chablis, 2006, purchased for $21 at Morrell Wine. More golden in color than the others, with a bouquet of mineral and ocean spray, this Chablis continued with the briny mineral essence on the palate and finished dry. Though much better than the damaged 2005, this wine was pleasant enough, but still without a dedicated admirer or fan.
To salvage the night Kelleigh pulled a wild card from her fridge–the 2005 Winninger Hamm Riesling Kabinett feinherb.
What smiles inspired by such a delectable wine. From the Mosel-Saar-Ruwer region, this off-dry (fruity but not sweet) riesling is full of petrol and tropical fruit (mango and star fruit). And though too pricey ($22) for a daily wine, it was an excellent way to end the night.