Well, life's just full of surprises, isn't it? Who'd have thought that a $6.99 screw lid bottle of Pinot Noir could pack such a wallop found in pricier bottles of others Pinots? Not this reviewer.
Bouchard Aine & Fils 2010 Pinot Noir is a steal at $6.99. At first glance nothing seems remotely special about this bottle: the screw lid, the lack of any AOC designation on the label (other than the cryptic "South of France" briefly mentioned in the scant description on the back) and the equally puzzling alcohol by volume that fluctuates with such a broad scale ranging from 11% to 14% will raise a few red flags. Is this bottle really that trustworthy?
Yes. Yes, it is. Once you gather your courage and twist off that metal lid, you're in for a pleasant surprise.
This is a young Pinot, but the color is a rich ruby, a hue usually seen in older varieties. The nose is a light, fruity bouquet of pineapple, apples, banana, white peach, and bubblegum. The palate softly shines with spearmint, cherries, blackberries, and mineral, tinged scantly with alcohol. It has a nice acidic touch, and a bit of wood tannins are present. The finish is long, but it tends to lean towards the bitter end of the spectrum.
This is medium bodied, so it can hold its own against many dishes. Try it with citrus-grilled pork chops.
This wine scores high in many categories, so much in fact that any minor infractions presented by the bitter finish or alcohol under taste can be overlooked, even missed by many people. It's perfect for someone who generally avoids reds due to the sometimes overpowering flavors inherent to the varieties, and even newcomers to the wine world will find it inviting. Try it, and chances are you'll be buying another bottle soon.