In my last post I mentioned that sometimes I 'gift' myself wine. Over Thanksgiving last year, this was one such occasion; I traveled for the holiday and knew I'd be spending time with a larger group with varying wine tastes and so I brought crowd-friendly wines I thought they would enjoy. For myself, I tucked away one of my favorite wines, the 2006 Kurt Angerer Pinot Noir, and anticipated opening it around the holiday with another friend who is just as enthused about it as I. Suffice to say, life got in the way and Kurt hung out in my wine fridge a little longer than I anticipated - I just pulled the cork last weekend.

This wine hails from the Kamptal region of Austria - a region that is challenged to produce exceptional red wines in any given year because the climate is so demanding. Vintage really matters. I've been sipping on Angerer's 2006 Pinot Noir for more than a year now and have enjoyed it all the while; but today I think it is tasting exceptionally well (though sadly, I fear not only that there may be no more left in the market but also that he did not produce another Pinot in 2007). This is a wine that is enjoyable out of the gates but truly benefits from decanting.  I took a quick taste upon opening it and then after three hours, I enthusiastically grabbed my glass and put my nose back to task.

The wine is so "pretty" I just kept breathing it in: roses, lavender and violets linger over fruit buoyed by aromas of smoked meats. These elements translate to the palate seamlessly, with a hint of mushroom and leather playing a note or two in addition. Its intense core of fruit really fleshes out when given time to aerate, delivering crushed cranberry and a whisper of dried cranberry fruit flavors, plus black raspberries and mascerated cherries, and a blink of tart, earthy rhubarb. Fine black pepper spice and a thread of savory charcuterie really come through on the long finish. An unfiltered wine, the texture is silky with oh-so fine tannins; the slight drying note makes the wine a better companion to food perhaps, but I find it did not at all detract from my enjoyment after the chicken marsala was long gone!

Yum.