Yvon Métras Fleurie Le Printemps 2008 - A "Black Swan" Of A Wine...

Frankly, I have always had an ambivalent "relationship" with natural wines.  I am not sure why.  Perhaps it is many of the wines that put me off.  Perhaps it is the type of people who seem to insist on waxing lyrical about wines that are either too volatile or oxidised.  You know the type, a little smug who discard everything that is not "natural" as being rubbish, even though the very example they are using to make their point is actually rubbish...

In any case, at our practice tasting this week, I have had a bit of an awakening of sorts.  We were tasting 8 reds.  Mixed-bags.  Blind.  Difficult and very humbling to taste without context or any other clues.  And so in the flight, there was this wine.  Weird.  Clearly out of place.  Very pale, a little "foggy", dull in color.  The 1st nose was not fresh, but not oxidised either.  It was strange.  And so, it was easy to discard it as either faulty, or poor.  

But there was something about this wine that the other 7 did not have.  It had this kind of energy on the palate.  Difficult to explain.  The after-taste was a true and genuine "queue de paon", a peacock tail.  In fact, the finish never finished.  As if the shy and secretive wines from the nose really did not want to let you go and so teased you as you were making your way out the door by revealing layers and layers of complexity and so keeping you for as long as possible.  

A little bit like some intellectual film, usually french.  Kind of serious, kind of long, kind of complicated.  The end comes and you ask yourself what was this all about?  But then, the whole week afterwards, you can't stop thinking about it...

And so it was with this wine:

Transient

Pale Garnet, cloudy, very wide but a gently fading rim.  Complex nose, if a little difficult to describe. (the whole point perhaps?) Dried pot-pourri, roasted strawberries, dried cherries.  A little forest floor.  Earthy, gamey, floral & fruity.  A little unusual, but integrated.  Supple, silky, soft.  Savoury & succulent at the same time.  With a kind of energy.  A long peacock tail of a finish.  With spices, tobacco, and a delicate but clear intensity.  Suave.  Very good.

And so, a wine to approach without preconceptions.  A wine to be left on its own to surprise you when you least expect it.  

A Black Swan Of A Wine...