In another tasting with Domaines Barons de Rothschild (Lafite) wines (see my previous tasting here), I tried five of the Legende wine collection, meant to be ready-to-drink and affordable. These were started in the 1990s by the great Lafite company and are still made with French grapes that spotlight the terrific varietals offered by this winery.
All are available locally and range from $19 to $55 a bottle. Those are very good prices for this top-quality vino. The tasting was held with Diane Flamand in France, the winemaker of Legende. As she says, “Wine is not made to be tasted alone, but finished with friends.”
- The Legende Bordeaux Blanc 2019 ($19) is 85 percent sauvignon blanc, 15 percent Semillon, making it a dry white wine that would pair well with goat cheese, oysters, etc. It’s crisp and refreshing – and it’s the only white wine in this collection.
- Legende Bordeaux Rouge 2017 ($19) is 60 percent cabernet sauvignon and 40 percent merlot, and a nice, elegant red wine perfect for your holiday table. It would also pair well with pizza, pasta, burgers; the price means it’s not out of range for daily drinking. It has a fruity taste, a bit of spice and dark blackberry.
- Legende Saint-Emilion 2016 ($40) is 85 percent merlot and 15 percent cabernet franc. It should probably be decanted about an hour before you drink it. It’s a complex wine that’s deep purple; a big wine that would go well with roasts, or even chocolate.
- Legende Medoc 2016 ($26) is 60 percent cabernet sauvignon, 40 percent merlot. It’s also better with decanting, and perfect with lamb and big meat dishes. It has a wonderful nose that’s big and jammy, and a long, spicy finish. What I call a sigh-worthy wine.
- Legende Pauillac 2016 ($55) is made from 75 percent cabernet sauvignon, 25 percent merlot, so the same two varietals as two of the previous wines, but it’s aged in bottled for 12 months and can be stored for five years or more without a problem. It can also be, of course, opened now (decant this one) and served with grilled meats or strong cheeses.