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Aging Gracefully

The oldest wine I have ever set eyes on, swirled, and swooned over was 129 years old. For someone who usually raves over the freshness and energy of wine, you wouldn’t think this ol’ vino would have anything for me to write home about, but here I am giving props to old Lucy. That’s right, she has a name. Many do at Domaine de la Coume du Roy in Maury, France, where the vintages in which a child was born carry their namesake and the original wooden barrel with Lucy’s is still right in place. Even with 129 years in the barrel this old gal has life, body, and structure which was truly, truly amazing. This was a once-in-a-lifetime moment for me, but the great news is, there are plenty of other, more recent vintages with just as much if not more pizazz and panache for you to enjoy.

Domaine de la Coume du Roy makes the red Maury fortified wine from 100% black Grenache grapes and a sultry white aperitif of Muscat de Rivesaltes that are both to die for. Even if sweet wine is not your thing, get a little crazy and treat yourself to a taste. It is swimsuit season after all, and either of these makes the perfect pick for a fat- free dessert. Even a girl like me who lives for acidity can’t pass up dessert. Luckily, winemaker Agnes Bachelet knows it’s not all about the sugar and is still pouring up sweet sips complete with acidity and backbone. Enjoy it alone or with a baguette and a hunk of Roquefort for a simply divine culinary indulgence.

La Coume du Roy, Maury, 2004, $29 In an appropriately sized 500ml, bottle this dessert wine rocks with chocolate or cheese and is even fun served with a little chill to it. Serve to your dinner guests with a cheese course or save it for yourself. I can vouch these wines have the stamina to go the distance in the cellar and can deliver even after being opened for up to fourteen months. Go ahead: you deserve it.

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