The 2014 Terra Santa Île de Beauté Blanc, or Island of Beauty (what a great name to give yourself, huh, though in this case well-justified) white wine, is a blend of vermentino, a thoroughbred Italian grape, and chardonnay, classic French. My first sip felt like being attacked of fruity peaches, but it was immediately followed by bright acidity, palate cleansing. It was incredibly pleasant, not terribly sophisticated, with just a touch of sweetness. I remarked to my wife that this is exactly the type of wine I could see Corsicans drinking on the hot, blustery days that are prevalent there. As the back label stated, and I rarely ever trust a back label, this did pair well with the mixed salad we had for dinner, though quite by happenstance.
The 2013 Esprit de Serrail Cité de Carcassonne Rouge was another simple, pleasant and straightforward wine. A blend of cabernet sauvignon, merlot and malbec, it was well-balanced and drank easy. Not a bad pairing with pesto and fettuccini, but I could see this drinking much better with a burger or pork chop. I remember cassoulet, a rich, beautiful slow-cooked casserole--though it reminded me more of a stew--made with pork sausage, goose fat and duck being a very popular dish in the region when we were there and I could see this being a great pairing as well.
While the wines were perfectly fine, they probably aren’t in my all-time favorites list. But I don’t mind saying that we drank these bottles purely because I thought it would be fun to drink wine from places we’ve been. And that made drinking these wines that much more enjoyable.