05 Chateau Dubois Gramont, Bordeaux
Really, it's a country-wide tour of the table wines of France--going beyond its appelation to become a passage from Bordeaux into Beajoulais, Rhone, and the rest of southeastern France. There's little in the way of complexity, but it's an uninhibited merlot that could just as easily be served from a leather cask as it is from bottle. The meaty, crispy beef aroma is a great foil for the pure, simple fruit, much the way baked skin-on plums or apples can bring new life to grilled pork chops. I love its drinkability, vinous with ample acidity and dry tannins that bring an alcoholic kick in the finish--like grape taffy chased with spiked blueberry Kool-Aid.