I find I don’t like aged reds from Spain, Italy or France as much as those from the New World. To me they tend to taste fine at first but the fruitiness disappears within minutes and the wine becomes earthy and harsh. I’d love to know why.
I would not say your assessment is true of all older European reds, by any means, but I sense where you’re coming from. Old World reds tend to be less fruity to begin with. As they mellow in the bottle, that fruitiness can diminish considerably, giving way to secondary and tertiary characters dominated by such savoury notes as leather, earth, mushroom and meatiness. It generally takes much longer for New World reds to cross that line. Why? Because most vineyards in New World countries are located in consistently sunny regions that produce sweetly ripe fruit. It simply takes longer for that rich fruitiness to surrender ground.
You may just not like the taste of older red wine, period, and that’s perfectly fine. Most wines are not meant to be cellared anyway. So, you’ll save money and frustration by buying and drinking what you like rather than drinking what people say you should like.
Beppi Crosariol will once again be participating as The Globe’s wine expert on the July 2019 Globe and Mail Seine River Cruise. For details on how to reserve your cabin on this voyage down the Seine from Paris to Normandy visit GlobeNormandyCruise.com.