I had dinner at the Legal C-Bar (http://legalcbar.com/site) in Dedham, Massachusetts with several work friends and came away impressed with their wine setup. They have around 30 wines by the glass and give you the option of getting a 2 ounce pour rather than simply offering full glasses. This is the type of wine flexibility that I really get into because you can taste 4 different wines in a sitting without stumbling out of the place.
I started with a glass of the 2010 Licia Albarino, hoping to get my palate going and what seemed like a dream match for seafood (this is an offshoot of the Legal Sea Foods restaurant chain after all). This wine did nothing for me. I like Albarino’s because they awaken your palate and sometime shock you with acidity. This wine was kind of dull, bringing lime and a light floral essence but not enticing me to want more.
Sticking with whites, I switched to the slightly heavier 2011 Ken Forrester Chenin Blanc from South Africa. Chenin Blanc’s from South Africa tend to consistently be good wines and this one was no exception. Apples all day long and a luxurious mouthfeel with a finish that hung out for a bit. This is a wine to seek out as I suspect it is widely available and pretty reasonable at the retail level. We will be diving into Chenin Blanc the grape varietal in greater detail in future posts.
Even though my dinner did not match up that well with a switch to red wines, I went there anyway with two different two ounce pours - the 2007 Markham Merlot and the 2009 La Fleur Terrien Bordeaux, which is primarily a Merlot blend. Merlot gets no respect these days and both of these wines delivered. While different in style and weight, they both were solid. Markham bringing you a full, warm luscious oak and berry palate and the La Fleur livens up the meal with its spicy blackberries and long, dry finish.
All in all this was a good wine experience as I enjoyed 3 out of the 4 wines. I would purchase the Markham Merlot and the Chenin Blanc in a heartbeat if I cross paths with the wines in a store.
This was the first time this year for Albarino, Chenin Blanc and Merlot so the wine total stands at 22 and the grape varietal total is now at 15.