Tonight, an older wine to pair with some steak and the big college football game between Oregon and Oregon State. The winner goes to the Rose Bowl, and wouldn't this be a fitting wine. The color of the 1999 Eric Texier Chateauneuf du Pape Vieilles Vignes is rusting a bit but still fresh. Then there's an almost rose-like floral perfume on top of deep, intense game, raspberry and old wood aromas. Did this see some barrique? Any fresh wood notes have integrated nicely. Those more sensitive to brett will notice some mild leather and band aid notes in there. Overall, this is unusual Chateauneuf, more northern Rhone in character than the stony, grenache-dominated cherry and herb infused wines we see most often.
In the mouth this wine is less impressive. It has nice raspberry and spice notes with some drying tannin but good length. There is more brett on the finish in the form of cheese rind and horse blanket flavors. They stand out a bit when you taste without food, but with a steak, potatoes and broccoli meal this is nice if not spectacular wine. The brett averse might hate it, and I'm less and less tolerant of brett. Still, I like this, especially aromatically and with a nice, warm meal on a cold December night.