“Taking coal to Newcastle” is the classic expression for redundancy and some may say that is like buying me a bottle of wine. Au contraire. Actually, I really appreciate anyone and any gift, because it means that someone has to actually care and be considerate. Yes, we have a decent collection of wine in the cellar and in the wine vault, but this past year, we have seen a considerable amount of wine that has left the comfort of their cradled racks and slight accumulation of dust. We have drunk more bottles of wine at home this year, than we may have in the past twenty-five years, because normally we only drink wine home, when we are entertaining, but that concept has gone out the window and we are enjoying some wonderfully aged wines. I am rambling again, and I just wanted to mention that we received two different wines, from two different couples and they are both accepted graciously and humbly.
The first wine that I will discuss is from a couple that really didn’t like some of the wines that we would pour at parties, because they were too dry, but through another event, they had a chance to try a wine at a restaurant while we were all together and they really enjoyed this wine, and so did we, so they remembered the night and the wine. Meiomi Pinot Noir California 2019 is a very easy wine, even for non-wine drinkers. Meiomi Wines is a California winery that was founded in 2007 by Joe Wagner, the son of Chuck Wagner of Caymus Vineyards. The winery started with Pinot Noir, then a Chardonnay and finally a Rosé. Meiomi means “coast” in the language of the Wappo and Yuki tribes of the region. The Pinot Noir is a blend of three coastal regions; Sonoma County, Monterey County and Santa Barbara County and hence the California AVA. Their first vintage of the Pinot Noir was in 2007 and they produced ninety-thousand cases and quickly became one of the most requested wine labels for restaurants. In 2015, Joe Wagner sold Meiomi Wines to Constellation Brands for $315,000,000, and he stayed on as a consultant for the 2016 and 2017 vintages. The first vintage not overseen by Joe Wagner was the 2018 and the wine was a classic California wine that was jammy and velvety with a good nose and nice finish. I expect the same for this 2019 vintage.
The second bottle that I received was actually on top of a continued subscription of the Cigar Aficionado, that they had begun for me many years ago. That periodical is a sister publication of the Wine Spectator, but besides great information about cigars, it is also a font of information for the latest and greatest toys and “must haves” for people above my pay scale. Couvent (Convent) des Jacobins Saint-Emilion Grand Cru 2010 is a delightful wine that will take me back to my youth, with its full flavor and of course excellent pricing. The Convent has been celebrating seven centuries of winemaking, famed terroir and since 2020 they have been certified “organic farming.” A blend of eighty-five percent Merlot and fifteen percent Cabernet Franc from vines that are ten to fifty years old. The wine had twelve months of aging in a mix of forty-five percent new oak barrels and a production of about twenty-two-hundred cases. There was plenty of black fruit, some vanilla and silky tannins and probably another good ten to twenty years for cellaring. Just a charming wine. The Grand Cru designation began in 1954 and has been updated a couple of times. I have heard some people remark that there is more Grand Cru wine, then there is basic Saint-Emilion wine, but I have never seen it in print. I am really looking forward to it, as it from a great vintage and it is already aged. Decisions, decisions.