[Image: Bunch of Grapes]
Today's Wine Tasting Note

© Copyright 1998 by Robin Garr. All rights reserved.

Les Blageurs Here's another in the strange but affordable and generally enjoyable "Eurodoon" series from California's Bonny Doon, which includes a number of wines bottled in France from French or Spanish appellations, made and labeled specifically for export to the U.S. The labels are drawn by the artist Ralph Steadman, also known for his wacky illustrations of Hunter Thompson's books, and they're thoroughly incomprehensible, but definitely stand out on the shelf. This one resembles the joker from a deck of playing cards, an appropriate title since "Les Blageurs" means, well, "The Jokers."

Bonny Doon 1996 Domaine des Blageurs "Syrah, Sirrah" Vin de Pays du Gard ($9.99)
Inky dark reddish purple, with a forward aroma of blackberry jam and fragrant black pepper. Full and juicy fruit flavors are limned by spicy pepper and lemon-squirt acidity; a soft dose of tannin appears on the back of the palate. It's a little short in the finish, but a decent Syrah and a fair value. U.S. importer: Bonny Doon Vineyard, Santa Cruz, Calif. (April 16, 1998)

FOOD MATCH: Pan-grilled strip steaks with plenty of black pepper, which made a fine "like-with-like" match with the peppery red.

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All my wine-tasting reports are consumer-oriented. In order to maintain objectivity and avoid conflicts of interest, I purchase all the wines I rate at my own expense in retail stores.

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