After a long and tedious winter, we decided to celebrate the first sunny Sunday in a rather extravagant way: uncorking a bottle of a prestigious Bordeaux for a barbecue! Château Lynch Bages 1999 has been our choice.
Located in the heart of the Médoc in the northwest of Bordeaux, Château Lynch Bages belongs to the Pauillac Appellation, and it received the Fifth Growths (Cinquièmes Crus) rank in the 1855 Bordeaux First Crus Classification. The poverty of its soils makes the richness and grandeur of its wines that..always express great elegance and age potential. Possibly everything has been already written about this estate and its wines, so I prefer to explain how such a complex and prestigious wine can match perfectly with simple lamb cutlets as well as exotic spicy kebabs and even a Greek salad.
The 1999 vintage has a garnet tinge, and an incredible mature bouquet with notes of geranium, tamarind, green pepper and slightly foxy aromas which twist towards balsamic chlorophyll hint, wood spice and pencil shavings. On the palate it has flavours of ripe prune and mineral graphite and a light astringency of still persistent velvety tannins on the finish. This classic vintage is perfectly shown on the body which is not as full or lush as the 2000 but it is still a great Bordeaux.
Our gently spiced kebabs matched perfectly with the sweet spices note displayed from this Bordeaux, and their fresh coriander note found a good companion in the balsamic hint of the wine.
The smoky barbecue aromas of slightly burned lamb cutlets were enhanced by the toasty cedar wood aromas, and in both cases the greasiness of meat has been balanced by the good mineral acidity and the still drying tannins. The Greek salad could have been a challenge, but the chlorophyll note of this 1999 has suited at its best the always difficult flavours of the salad, and soft tannins have not ended in a metallic aromas when matched with the Feta cheese.
No doubt: the best way to celebrate at the best the upcoming summer!
www.noblevines.co.uk at £60/bottle, or other on-line suppliers
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