Here are two wonderful red wines that will amaze you and your guests. If you have not shopped for your Thanksgiving or holiday wines, put these two wines at the top of your list. Matching wines for Thanksgiving in my opinion is overrated. In my house I know that each of our guests will bring a bottle of wine. We will open each and I am sure whoever brought that wine will think it is the best choice for a Turkey dinner. I expect that my nephew will bring a Burgundy, one sister will bring a Zinfandel, my other sister an oaky Chardonnay, and my neighbor a big bold Paso Robles Zinfandel. My choice is a spicy Syrah. There is no perfect wine for the variety of foods served on Thanksgiving.
Chateau d’Aurilhac Haut Medoc 2010 – Costco $15.59
As I was perusing the Costco wine department, I noticed a woman roaring down to the end of wine aisle with her cart. I could easily see by the look in her eyes that nothing in the aisle was going to stop her from her mission. I watched as she reached onto the shelf and pulled out a wooden case of wine. I asked about the wine and she said “This wine is fantastic. You have to try this wine.” I could not pass up her advice, and I am happy to say this wine is a very good Bordeaux value. I see that Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate gave the Chateau d’Aurilhac Haut Medoc a 90-point rating. Let this wine breathe for at least an hour or run it through an aerator. The wine will really open up. I get nice dark fruit flavors, a pleasant mouthfeel, and a generous aftertaste. This wine is nicely balanced, making it a very pleasant drinking wine. It is a very authentic Bordeaux. I give it 89 Points.
Elsa Bianchi Malbec 2012 – K&L Wines $8.99
I like this Malbec wine very much, and I am anxious to compare it with the newly released Pasqual Toso 2012 that is about the same price at Costco. This wine has cherry and other red and dark fruit aromas. In the mouth, this wine is rich but very easy to drink. There are no serious tannins to contend with, just a mellow wine with nice fruit flavors. Previous vintages have received Best Buy ratings and this wine should be in that same category. I give this Malbec 88 Points.
In our travels to Spain in October, one of the most memorable moments was our visit with Rene Barbier. I call him the Robert Mondavi of the Priorat, because he was the single most important figure responsible for bringing this great wine region to the forefront. His wines unfortunately will never make it onto Wine Values and Bargains. His Clos Mogador wines command very expensive prices. If you would like to read about our visit, here is my article that I recently posted on the Wine Travelers.
In case you missed our previous article, I filtered through Wine Spectator Top 100 wines and sorted out the wines under $20 that are available in the greater San Francisco Bay Area. Take a look.
Have a Happy Thanksgiving!