So here we are, winding down a Washington Wine Weekend and boy are we going out with a bang! Tonight I am enjoying one of the wines I fell in love with on my tasting tour of Walla Walla back in June, the 2010 Maison Bleue "Le Midi" Boushey Vineyard Grenache. I was lucky enough to be visiting during the first week that the new Maison Bleue tasting room was open in Walla Walla, so I had a wonderful chance to taste their wines and order a couple bottles of tonight's wine which happened to arrive at my office last week (Oh thank heaven for cooler weather!).
Unlike it's French cousins, Maison Bleue's Grenache from the Yakima Valley of Washington tends to be a bit more muscular yet complex. Given its youth, I recommend decanting or at least opening this one up to let it breathe a bit before enjoying (I've had this one open about 2 hours now). The wine is a lovely bright ruby in the glass, with exquisite clarity. The nose is a lovely combination of ripe fruit, berries and black cherry, with hints of Asian spice, fresh herbs and black pepper. The wine has an simply wonderful velvety presence, as you are cascaded with ripe fruit at the outset. The fruit smoothly transitions to some wonderful minerality, with layers of dark chocolate mixed in. The finish is supported by some well structured tannins that form a base for a long, smooth and dry finish that seems to last forever while beckoning you to another sip.
Overall I would rate this wine a solid 9, as it's probably the best Grenache currently being produced in Washington state. Given the lovely fruit and mineral flavors, I am enjoying this one tonight with a grilled New York strip, garnished with grilled leeks, along with a baked Bliss' Triumph potato that I got from the farmers' market yesterday and some steamed brussels sprouts. Though you might question it, this Grenache really pairs well with grilled steak and savory vegetables, as the fruit offers nice balance to the savory, and the minerality really stands up to the hearty beef. Cheers!