Domaine Tempier Bandol & Smoked Pulled Pork | Beverage Today Magazine
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Domaine Tempier Bandol & Smoked Pulled Pork
Collette wrote of Frances Jurançon: when I was a young girl, I was introduced to a passionate Prince, domineering and two-timing like all great seducers
y lifelong affair has been with Domaine Tempier Bandol rouge, which began in the early 1980s, when I was first introduced to the French imports of Kermit Lynch. In the beginning, I did not understand the compulsion: it was a red wine that always seem to have a spirit whether it was in the mysterious, earthy, scrubby, leathery notes that often seem to engulf the aromas of berry liqueurs in the nose, or the slightly sparkly, lively, lilting quality in the texture of the wine itself, almost belying a meatiness of tannin and dried grape skin flavor.
Whatever the case, it was like my first love, which happened to be a girl from a Hawaiian plantation a black maned mestiza, first sighted bouncing up onto the back of a truck, work gloves belted at the waist, jeans snug around the thighs and tucked into dusty leather, steel tip work boots, and (like me) 15 years old going on whatevah. I was tongue tied and discombobulated for weeks; and even long after, incapable of understanding exactly why ordinary conversation seemed as strenuous as swimming in mud.
But conversation with the maddening mestiza did continue for some time, thank you; but with Bandol, the conversation has been going for much longer. It is, after all is said and done, a wine that never seems light nor heavy, lean nor fat, zesty but never sharp, delicious with a stew of meat, and delicious with a stew of fish. In short, the perfect lifelong companion.
Many years later, reading the chapter devoted to Domaine Tempier in Kermit Lynchs classic book, Adventures on the Wine Route, I came to understand why this wine, of all wines, retains its eternal, dusty leathered youth: particularly the fact that it comes from a magnificent vineyard in Provences Le Plan de Castellet, close enough to the Mediterranean where the air is pungent with the smell of the ocean mixed with scrubby herbs of the chalky hillsides. How François Peyraud plowed and hoed the field by hand rather resort to herbicides, and fought mildew by spraying the vines (mostly Mourvèdre, with some grapes of the Grenache) only with natural sulfur from the soil of a nearby region so that the terroir could remain pristine and protected from artificial intrusion.
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