I was out to dinner the other night with some friends and the issue of what to drink with our meal came up.
Now, I was having a hamburger and my friend was having moules. What one wine would you choose to pair with such an eclectic range of food? I was leaning towards a full bodied white, my thinking being, at least it will go with the moules and if it’s round enough, just might squeak by with the burger.
But then I remembered, hey, this is the sommeliers job – to advise guests on what goes best with their food. So, I called over the very friendly sommelier and began my consultation. I should mention that we were dining at the new Bistro du Vin in Soho and they have a great wine list. It does seem to be a big more expensive then the other Hotel du Vins I have visited but then again, we are in the heart of Central London.
Our sommelier was very helpful, and when I told him our dinner choices he immediately opted for a Chilean red wine. Costing less then £30, I was happy with the selection; and it was from Vina Leyda: a winery that I was familiar with, having had their wines in the past.
Chile is in the process of carving out a niche for itself as a Pinot Noir producer and this was a very New World Pinot Noir. As with most New World Pinots, this one was a deep, dark, almost opaque in colour. The very first thing that hits your palate is fruit, lots and lots of very ripe strawberries. I would almost say it was strawberry jam but it was not cloying or sweet in nature, just full of fruit. There was also a bit of cherry but the predominate flavours and aromas were strawberry. The tannins were smooth as velvet and the wine finished off with a hint of tobacco.
It finished clean; I liked it with my burger and my friend said it worked well with the moules. Very well done to our sommelier at the Bistro du Vin, a good choice all round.
The Leyda Reserva 2010 Pinot Noir is available for about £11 from independent wine merchants and online. A good summer wine, especially for barbecues.