SOLD OUT! The 2018 French Belle Bordeaux Rouge comes to us from the same folks who make the Southern Belle wines. Yep, and just like the Southern Belle wines, this one is aged in older Pappy Van Winkle bourbon barrels!
While I’m usually not a big fan of wines aged in Bourbon barrels, this one really knocked my socks off. A blend of Merlot and Cabernet Franc from Right Bank vineyards, this is suave and silky yet rich and flavorful. Table Wine is the only retailer in Asheville with this one, and we’ve only got 10 cases available.
2018 Southern Belle Bordeaux Rouge
The perfect gift for the Bordeaux and/or Bourbon Lover in your life!
Some of you all are probably shaking your heads and wondering if I’ve lost my mind. I can assure you I haven’t! When my rep brought this one for me to taste, I expected this to be a big, sloppy, over-oaked mess of a wine. I was totally wrong. This stuff is certainly plump and ripe, but there’s wonderful polish here too. Hailing from the vineyards of Castillon, adjacent to Saint Emilion, this is a ton of Bordeaux for the money.
The blend here is 80% Merlot and 20% Cabernet Franc, a combination I absolutely love. The Merlot contributes notes of cassis, ripe plum, and supple texture while the Cab Franc adds notes of tobacco, darker fruit, and spice. And the 8 months of aging in those Pappy barrels adds attractive notes of molasses, brown spice, and carmelized sugar. When you put it all together, you get a wine that drinks more like a Pomerol or Saint Emilion but doesn’t cost $50+.
It is worth mentioning that the original bourbon barrel-aged wine was pioneered in 2000 by Dan Philips of the Grateful Palate and Julian Van Winkle. The two met at a dinner at Blackberry Farm, hit it off, and decided to try something new and different. The rest, as they say, is history. Many others have copied them, but I think so many of the copycats are using artificial flavoring agents in their wines. That is not the case here. The “bourbon element” of the wine adds subtle complexity and nuance as opposed to being the dominant aroma and flavor.
Those 10 cases are going to go fast. If you love Bordeaux and/or bourbon, do yourself a favor and get some of this. Alternatively, if you just love big, full, ripe, and opulent reds, you’ll love this. Cheers to happy drinking and eating in Asheville!
Owner, Operator, Wine Monger
Table Wine Asheville