August 12, 2009

Tardy wines

I happened to have two French wines in the past week from different producers, both named Tardy. One is from Burgundy, the other from the northern Rhone. Both were exceptionally interesting, making up for power and weight with deep fragrance and subtlety amid complex, rich flavors.

The 2004 Jean Tardy Nuits St. Georges "Bas de Combe" is a village wine from the north end of the Nuits commune, right near Vosne Romanee. The wine was more open than I expected aromatically. It had a nice perfume, with black tea, strawberry and raspberry scents, the oak giving a spicy rather than woody note. There's a hint of green here, as the 2004 red Burgundy vintage is known, but it's not objectionable to me. The flavors were similar, with a deceptive lightness or delicacy to the texture despite some fine tannin. The whole package seemed Oregon like, with a balance of earth, fruit and spice elements that seem typical of better local examples. The acidity though is all Burgundy, giving a freshness and delicacy we can lack.

Then a few nights later I had the 2004 Francois and Charles Tardy "Domaine des Entrefaux" Crozes-Hermitage. What an impressive northern Rhone red wine, with an effusive aroma of flowers, purple syrah fruit, raw meat and all kinds of other savory and sweet scents. This could only be from France. The texture is like a nice Burgundy, silky and medium bodied. The flavors all northern Rhone syrah. There isn't the weight or intensity of good Hermitage, but this makes me think a bit differently about the hit and miss appellation of Crozes Hermitage. Too often wines from this area are merely good enough, but this Tardy was exceptional and more pleasurable even than the nice '04 Tardy Nuit above.

1 comment:

D.L. Roth said...

That's funny, I don't feel tardy.