Pig Roast (Solace): Poured next to the franc de pied version, and today this is the more interesting wine, albeit also more rugged owing to its thick tannin. It opens with a meaty, peppery scent that eventually segues to some of the candied fruitiness on the franc de pied. The peppery kick and taut acidity are what make the wine work today, and it's a great example of what's best about 2004 Chinon, tightly structured and not diluted or washed out like some. Vastly improved since two years ago.
This wine is off phylloxera resistant routes and I bought this wine to compare it with the one that is from the same vineyard and vintage but from non-phylloxera resistant roots. This is a typical bottle of Chinon with fragrant notes of cherry, stone, minerals and terrific acidity. The wine was bigger and more wound up than the Franc De Pied when opened. However, as the evening went on the wine opened up quite a bit more while the other actually faded on me a little. I thought the tannins gave the wines good structure and would allow the wine to age some more. Next day the wine cme out of my refrigerator which I think is a mistake with Chinons from non big vintages. These guys are just not big enough to refrigerate. They should be had at one sitting. Anyways, after I allowed the wine to to sit for a couple of hours it tasted a lot better. Overall nice experience and great opportunity to compare. I had a preference for this one over the Franc De Pied
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(Charles Joguet Chinon Les Varennes du Grand Clos) Another chance to taste this wine. Sweet red fruit, dark and meaty depth showing now. It has a good presence on the palate, being round and well knit, not quite seamless but very well held together. Elegant, with a good grip underneath, fresh acidity and a lovely freshness as a result. Still drinking very well today. Very nice indeed.
(Charles Joguet Chinon Les Varennes du Grand Clos) A mixed cuvée, 70% from limestone and clay, 30% from sand and clay. Deep cherry fruit, with a minty style. Elegant, rather approachable, nicely structured, less tannic than the 2005s in comparison. It certainly has appeal though. Firm with good acidity.