No other TV series incorporates wine so thoroughly into the plot like Downton Abbey. In just about every episode, Carson the butler and his staff are decanting and pouring the evening’s wines for Lord Grantham, his family, and guests.
While it’s obvious this show places a high value on wine, until now I haven’t been able to spot the labels or taste what the cast is enjoying. Wines That Rock, the same company that successfully launched Rolling Stones’ Forty Licks Merlot, Pink Floyd’s The Dark Side of the Moon Cabernet Sauvignon, and The Police’s Synchronicity Red Blend, has come to the rescue with a pair of wines made just for Downton Abbey.
Released just two months before the start of Downton Abbey season four, these wines are bordeaux for the simple reason of staying authentic to what was being served during Edwardian England as portrayed in the show.
Priced at $15 each, 2012 Downton Abbey Blanc Bordeaux and a 2012 Downton Abbey Claret Bordeaux are well equipped to satisfy your palate.
The blanc is easy-drinking, low-alcohol blend of 70 percent muscadelle and 30 percent seémillon that starts with an extraordinary blossoming bouquet of clean crisp pear. Tart yet refreshing on the palate with limestone on the mouthfeel. Bracing minerality tempered by a wide flavor profile of spring greens, sweeter fruit nectars, and hints of fresh-squeezed lemons complement a wide range of food pairings.
The claret, a blend of 70 percent merlot, 25 percent cabernet sauvignon, and 5 percent malbec, yields a medium-bodied red with bright fruit and a silky finish with a characteristic firm tannic structure. A touch of rich molasses on the bouquet belies the ripe dense fruit beneath. Deep bramble berry on the nose confirms a mixture of ripe berry and spicy plum on the palate making it perfect with the chocolate indulgence of your choice.
As Wines That Rock founder Ron Roy puts it, "When you go to a Rolling Stones concert you wear a Rolling Stones T-shirt." When Downton Abbey fans watch their show, "Now they can pair the viewing experience with their favorite signature wine."
Available at wine.com and downtonabbeywine.com.