Friday, June 21, 2013

My Rendezvous With Bordeleau Vineyards – The Sexy Friend I Keep Running Into

You know the one - that attractive other who always draws your eye no matter what. You’re at a wedding, a funeral, a 4th of July picnic, a New Year’s Eve party, or some other event, and there they are – the distraction. Well dressed and dazzling. You can’t stop looking at them. Stop staring. Stop staring. First you sneak a peek, then the next thing you know, someone else asks you if you know them.
“Is it obvious?” you ask.
“Hello!” they laugh.
We’ve all been there. No word has ever been passed. But you can’t help but feel that somehow, some way, they know you’re watching… and they like the attention. That’s kind of the way it is with Bordeleau and me. Each time it has been a wonderful, wonderful event, one that draws a good group, a nice clientele. Bordealeau keeps good company.  And each time I am impressed.
Bordeleau Winery is located just south of Salisbury, Maryland, nestled between the gentle slopes of the Wicomico Creek on the Eastern Shore which is also home to such magnificent birds like the Bald Eagle, the Great Blue Heron, and the Snowy Egret. Bordeleau means "The Water's Edge".  From start to finish, owner and winemaker Tom Shelton is involved in creating and perfecting all that it takes to make award-winning wines. He is particular about everything, from pruning vines to the operation of the bottling line. With an early interest in agriculture and using management skills developed in the poultry industry, Tom followed an interest spawned when he started making fruit wines while still in his teens.  After purchasing a farm in Allen, Maryland in 1998, he planted his first grape vines in 1999.  Early plantings were Chardonnay, Vidal Blanc and Chambourcin, and he continued planting additional grape vines each year through 2003, including Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, and Sauvignon Blanc. He decided to seek his commercial license in the summer of 2006.  With the renewed commitment, eight and one half acres of plantings were added from 2007 to 2011, including new varieties such as Malbec, Petite Verdot, Pinot Grigio, Viognier, and Muscat.
The first time I came across Bordeleau was at the Grand Tasting at Eastern Wineries Exposition. I was searching for something new to try. The room was dark, people were well dressed. And there on the table, the Bordeleau Merlot caught my eye. I ran into this same wine several month later at the luncheon served on the second day at Drink Local Wine 2013.
This wine has had some early success. It won Gold at 2013 Tasters Guild's and 2013 World Wine Championships and Silver at the 2013 Florida State Fair International Wine Competition and 2013 Finger Lakes International Wine Competition. I have to admit, the buzz at EWE 2013 was interesting, with people nodding in agreement that the wine was impressive.
This is a medium to full bodied wine exploding with stewed plums, and bright raspberries and cherries.. Lots of spices on the nose. red fruits and spices. Nice whiff of vanilla and cobbler. This has low acidity, and low-to-medium tannins, which make this an easy drinking Merlot.  Nice long finish. Very nice.  

A little more than a month later, I had another rendezvous with Bordeleau. The next time was at the Drink Local Wine 2013 Reception dinner down at The Waterfront Kitchen out on Fells Point. Bordeleau Vineyards Blanc de Blanc was my seductress that evening.
This 100% Chardonnay based sparkler was a very nice surprise. The nose was yeasty, with accompanying notes of green apple and citrus. It had a lovely, long finish. A great accompaniment with food!
The last time we met, was in the revived warehouse buildings behind the right field bleachers of Camden Yards at the Grand Tasting/Tweet-off. Bordeleau 2012 Pinot Grigio my last fond remembrance. Lovely tropical fruits on the nose and hints of honeysuckle, melon, peach and green apples. On the palate the green apple came across with hints of lemon and grapefruit. A lovely, lovely white wine, with great acidity and very, very refreshing. Fantastic!
It almost feels illicit, like I have been having an affair. It’s exciting. And different. And fun. Have a little affair – with Bordeleau. You won’t be sorry. And the truth is, you’re significant other will get a thrill out of it too!