Wednesday, 8 May 2013

Not Just Cork Porn - "Fuse" 2012 from WMD

Say what you want about twitter; it's 99% bullshit and selfies but it does have it's uses.

It was through Twitter that I came across "Birds & Bats" and their "Wines of Momentary Destination". Wines of MD is basically a wine making version of a pop-up restaurant, headed up by Leah de Felice Renton aka ‘Birds’ and Nick ‘Bats’ Jones who are viticulture and oenology degree grads from our fair British Isles. Their Motto 'One wine, one place, one year' says it all - they will be making a different wine each year, from a different part of the world.

In 2012, 'Fuse' IGP Cotes Catalanes became their first creation, 100% Syrah from 7 year old vines grown in Roussillon, the deep south of france.

Loving the whole idea behind Wines of MD, I was desperate to get my hands on a bottle of Fuse, in the hope it could live up to the great story and idea behind it.
So often, when I hear about people who want to do something different and a bit mental, I really hope it works because without people thinking outside the box, the world would be a very boring place. Unless it's hippy bollocks though, in no way do I support that sort of thinking outside the box. Get a grip tree-hugger.

I managed to get a bottle of Fuse from Vinoteca's online wine shop for £13.50 (ex delivery charge) and for that you get a hell of a lot of 'interesting' for your money.

The presentation is spot on, appropriately modern, the label nicely wraps the whole way around the burgundy shaped bottle and there is no foil on the bottle neck over the closure. They even have corks with the Birds and Bats logo on, exactly the sort of attention to detail that turns me on big-time (yes I'm weird).

Cork Porn - The Birds and Bats logo stands out nicely
I was amazed when I poured the wine, its more purple than red, so intensely coloured. Just by looking at it you can tell its a very young and feisty number.

I didn't decant this wine before tasting it and because of that, my first impression was perhaps a bit unfair. There was plenty of perfectly nice dark fruit on the nose, mainly blackcurrant, but to start with there wasn't as much depth as I would have liked. Fuse hasn't spent any time in oak barrels, instead oak chips have been used. Birds and Bats say this is more to prevent crystals forming in bottle than anything. Although the oak chips do give a subtle vanilla hint, I think decanting is needed for the nose to show it's real character.

When I first tasted Fuse, I got a ton of spice and white pepper and lots of acidity. I didn't think there was nearly enough fruit and depth of flavour. I really couldn't get my head around it, so I left it for a bit with the idea of coming back later on. I couldn't make my mind up on this one.

I came back to the wine the next day and I couldn't believe how much it had changed. The nose was showing more depth and the palate had all slotted into place really nicely. The fruit was much more evident and although the spice was still there it wasn't nearly as overpowering as before.
All in all, it's a really interesting wine, really one to sit, enjoy and think about. So much thought has gone into the making of this that it really does deserve your full attention.
Fuse is a bit of a loose cannon, not that that's a bad thing, it's sort of like an über intelligent child with ADHD - once it is reigned in, it will do amazing things (the wine, not the child) but the potential for Wines of Momentary Destination is overwhelming.
My only real criticism would have to be that Fuse could do with a bit more in the way of tannin, with the 14.2% abv it needs a little more structure to just hold it all together and get the balance just right but this didn't hinder my enjoyment of the wine and being the first project for Wines of Momentary Destination, its a hell of a promising start.
Fuse IGP Cotes Catalanes 2012 is available online from Vinoteca for £13.50 - maybe a little steep for some but you get what you pay for and this really is one you have to experience. Decant it and leave it to breathe for a couple of hours before drinking and then drink on it's own, or pair with a tangy bolognese or Chili Con Carne or even a hefty pepperoni pizza.

Let me know what you think of Wines of MD either below or on our twitter and facebook pages.

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