2005 Château Greysac Cru Bourgeois Medoc

French fries, French dressing, French bread...French wine?

Rating: A decent introduction to bargain Bordeaux.  Definitely a food wine.  Good for a change of pace if you're willing to explore beyond your American palate.

The rest of the story:
In the latest of a long string of "Vintages of The Century", 2005 Bordeaux was lauded - and priced - into the stratosphere.  So, when we saw the price on this Cru Bourgeois drop to $10.99 (normally $14.99), we thought it'd be worth a try.

And it was.

After tasting it at opening, we gave it a good 3-4 hours to breathe since so many old world wines in their youth need that time to settle into their groove.  The time breathing was good for it - the sharpness common to less expensive Bordeaux abated.  This is not a complex wine to be sure, but it's got some nice attributes that help make it reasonably drinkable.

Its super fine tannins are nicely integrated.  As with most Bordeaux, the oak tastes old and used - no surprise, only 20% new oak is introduced for the 12 month barrel aging time each year for this wine.  (Or is that the terroir coming through?)

Seriously though, it's a food wine to be sure, but even this little Frenchie has the fruit to play well with pizza or pasta.  A pleasing enough wine that will likely reward a few years downstairs.  And on sale, it's a good change of pace to reach for.

NOTE:  This wine is not an easy detour for many comfortably stuck in a California rut.

Made from the classic Bordeaux combo, the Chateau Greysac is 50% merlot, 40% cabernet sauvignon, 8% cabernet franc, 2% petit verdot.   According to the Chateau's website, the average age of the vines is 25 years old and the wine spends 20-25 days macerating in stainless steel, concrete, wood.  No high-faluttin' methods being used here.

With an average production of half a million bottles, this should be pretty easy to find.