Bordeaux 2013 at Ten Years

I had an hour or so to kill before my flight departed Stansted Airport for Edinburgh. It had been a long day – I had only arrived in London that morning, on a red-eye from Scotland’s capital, for a tasting of the Bordeaux 2013 vintage at ten years of age – and I was in need of a little pick-me-up to carry me home. I sauntered into a sandwich and coffee bar for an evening cappuccino (I know, I know, it was well past the cappuccino hour, but I stand ready to weather the ire of the coffee police on this occasion).

Behind the counter three baristas were working the machines, grinding the beans and frothing the milk. Without exception as they worked they bopped in time with Justin Timberlake’s Like I Love You, which was beating out across the coffee bar. It was a captivating sight – not one of them was even half my age, all had three times the level of cool, and at least six times my energy-level – nevertheless it wasn’t long before I was re-energised, bopping in time with them, with a smile on my face.

The lead barista and I made eye contact across the counter. I held her gaze. Wordlessly, we knew; we were committed to this.

Bordeaux 2013

We continued to sway in silence to JT’s first ever release as a solo artist, which dates from 2002. With a staccato backing track produced by The Neptunes, and supporting vocals from hip-hop duo Clipse, better known for their ‘coke rap’ (which they presumably toned down a little for JT’s ex-Disney, ex-NSYNC fan-base), it is perhaps the best thing to come out of 2002 (apart from some quite brilliant wines in Vouvray of course – Philippe Foreau and I are both fans of this vintage). Whatever your musical preferences, the barista and I were clearly on the same wavelength, and it wasn’t long before her two colleagues joined in, so now there were three baristas and one potential coffee drinker all bopping in time. And not a word had been exchanged.

And that’s when, just at the moment Clipse normally come in, to a surprisingly positive reception, I began to rap my coffee order.

And why do I mention this brief human interaction, a fleeting moment passed on yet another post-dégustation journey home? I think I will come to that further down the page. First let’s look a little more closely at the vintage in question.

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