Thursday, October 18, 2012

Drink: Le Jaja de Jau (Review)

 I'm long delayed in posting about le Jaja de Jau. It's a bottle that you have probably seen a million times at the SAQ or some other wine store and just passed over. I know I did.

I have a tendency to gloss over French wines. I know French wine has a great reputation but the labelling and complex classification often confuses me. Historically I haven't been too keen on experimenting with unfamiliar wines when I already know so many wonderful Italian wines. But after our trip to Paris last year, we decided to add a bottle of French wine to every case we buy as a way of learning more about French wines. I'm starting to notice trends; we often go for a VDP (Vins de pays), which is a step above table wine but still really good. The value for the price makes these wines worth the experiment. We have also enjoyed a few GSMs (blend of Grenache, Shiraz a.k.a. Syrah, and Mourvèdre) if and when we can find them. Thanks to this taste test experiment, a bottle of Jaja was added to our cart and the rest is history.

I have since bought two full cases of Jaja. With a 15% discount at the SAQ outlet, the entire case amounts to 123 dollars, a total steal. It's the perfect wine to have in supply. We intersperse drinking the cheaper, every day jaja with some of our favourite (albeit more expensive) wines so that we have some variety. It tends to bring down the overall cost of being an oenophile.

You can read more about Jaja de Jau on the SAQ website here. What I can add is that Jau is a region in France and Jaja is a colloquialism used within that region to describe everyday wines. Mignon, n'est-ce pas? The SAQ indicates that the wine has a slender texture and smooth tannins; I totally concur. Its has this nice full taste but somehow doesn't leave you with a mouthful of tannin after you swallow. SAQ also wrote that it pairs well with dry sausage, pizza and pork. Absolutely it does (but what doesn't go well with pizza and sausage....miam). I'm my opinion, it goes very well with most foods that contain a little fat or savory component. My only word of caution: I have noticed that occasionally, the wine tastes a little off on the second or third day after being opened. Not always, but every now and then it has a taste that I can only describe as 'pruney' if open too long. Normally that's not a problem, I do my best to finish a bottle on the day I open it <insert joke at my expense here>.   But with table wine, the whole point is to have a glass here or there be able to leave a corked bottle on the table for whenever the mood strikes you. Having said that, I've only noticed this a couple times so I'm will to accept this flaw. Please add a comment if you have tried Jaja de Jau, I'd love to hear what other people think about it.

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