BORDEAUX DOESN'T MEAN EXPENSIVE
By Dwight Casimere
NEW YORK--Michael Madrigale has dedicated his attention over the last few years to championing the terrific lesser known, and therefore inexpensive, wines from France's Bordeaux region. When most people think of Bordeaux, their minds automatically turn to the celebrated "first growth" premiere wines from Chateau Haut-Brion, Lafite Rothschild, Latour and Marquaux. These wines command top dollar and the prices at times can reach the stratosphere. A case of Chateau Petrus 1990, for example, sold for more than $45,000 at a recent wine auction at Sotheby's in New York.
As Head Sommelier at midtown Manhattan's Bar Boulud, he's had ample opportunity to compare the relative merits of the finest French Bordeaux's. By way of resume', he was named Food and Wine Magazine and Wine Enthusiast "Top Sommelier of The Year" in 2012 and a 2014 James Beard Award nominee.
"These wines are electric, Madrigale expressed, during a recent intimate tasting with a select group of wine media and buyers. "They have vitality and truly speak for the terroir and the region. They are true Bordeaux in every way. Although the wines aren't aged as long as their more expensive counterparts, the same amount of care goes into creating them."
Michael Rigney of Wineberry America at the Midtown Loft A Goldmine of Planet Bordeaux Wines
That means a significant amount of satisfaction and value for the wine consumer. Madrigale demonstrated the point at a series of events, including tastings at Bar Boulud and sister restaurants Epicerie Boulud and Boulud Sud, where he also serves as Head Sommelier and Wine Buyer, culiminating in a food and wine seminar and walk-around tasting for the A Goldmine of Planet Bordeaux Wines trade event at the scenic Midtown Loft and Terrace in New York City.
A special feature of the event was a live streaming via Skype of the actual crush underway at that very moment in Bordeaux with the winemaker and staff at Chateau Reignac on hand to explain the step-by-step process of harvesting, sorting and fermenting the grapes for the new vintage. It was an exciting edition to an otherwise engrossing tasting experience. Paired with cuisine inspired by the culinary team at Bar Boulud, Madrigale proved that affordable Bordeaux can make your introduction to Fall and its cuisine an unparalleled delight!
From left to right, Chateau Carmarsac Bordeaux Red-$12.99, Chateau Turcaud-$16.95, Chateau L'isle Fort-also $16.95
SOME ADDITIONAL PICKS FOR AFFORDABLE BORDEAUX FROM MICHAEL MADRIGALE