An exploration of wine

254. Charles Back, Goats do Roam Paarl, 2004

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Book 2 Wine 254

€7.50; 14%

When I first heard of Charles Back’s “homage” to the Rhône I laughed. When it was followed by stablemates “Goats do Roam in Villages” and “Goat Rôtie”, I laughed even more. When I heard that the French had tried to sue him for copying their AOCs I pissed myself. Well you would, wouldn’t you. A Rhône ranger in the vein of Randall Grahm, I reckon… But I didn’t actually try it for years – I guess I was worried that it wouldn’t live up to expectations. I was unnecessarily nervous: this is more than a match for most Côtes du Rhône: medium ruby-garnet core and narrow pink-ruby rim. Medium intensity nose of plum, ?tobacco? and cocoa, with maybe some slatiness. Sweet, raspberry jam fruit flavour interwoven with sweet spice notes. Smooth tannin and moderate acidity yielded a nicely balanced wine with medium length. Good, easy drinking

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