Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Review: Matrasa by Ganja Sharab from Azerbaijan

Matrasa by Ganja Sharab of Azerbaijan
Wine: I sampled a Matrasa, a red wine from Azerbaijan, from Ganja Sharab, a well known Azeri vineyard. There was no vintage on the bottle but a date stamp of May 2010. I purchased the wine in a market in the downtown section of Baku, Azerbaijan's capital. Baku is a beautiful city and the downtown area is modern yet retains an oriental feel. I carried the wine back to the US in my luggage. I really wanted to like this wine because Azeri wines are not common in the West and it comes in a really cool looking ceramic bottle. Besides, I schlepped it 5000 miles. Unfortunately, I did not find the wine appealing.

Tasting Details: We drank the Matrasa with dinner at home-- pasta with marinara sauce, roasted brussel sprouts, feta cheese and salad. My wife also tasted the wine.

Results: Neither Debbie nor I enjoyed the Matrasa. The aroma had a faint rubbing alcohol smell. The wine had little fruit and no complexity. It had an alkaline taste with a strong aftertaste. In short, a basic red wine that seemed antiseptic. The color was a dark red but seemed a little light. We did not finish the bottle and used a vacuum stopper to store the wine for future drinking. On the third day, the wine actually tasted significantly better. So, if you have a bottle of Matrasa by Ganja Sharab, make sure to decant or open the bottle well in advance of drinking the wine.

Overall rating: Drinkable- (minus)

Price value: You can have better Azeri wines at the same price - around $8 per bottle.
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