Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Super Mario Galaxy with 2007 Les Vignerones de Tavel Terre des Lauzeraies Côtes du Rhône

After my last post, I wanted to test my theory that there is some kind of red wine that pairs well with Super Mario Galaxy. As I have mentioned, a Ridge Three Valleys Zinfandel was entirely too powerful. Mario games, with the obvious exception of the Lost Levels, offer gleeful, easy-going experiences. They are quite accessible, but are not lacking of complexity in their construction. In short, they are juicy, flavorful, and altogether delicious. They are the chicken of video games. Specifically, the chicken that has been brined overnight and roasted to perfection.
So what do I like with my chicken? A lot of things. But perhaps because of Mario's red suit, or because of my suppressed urge to pair Mario games with Chiantis, I felt the need to try another red with this game. Some of my favorite reds for roasted chicken have been Côtes du Rhônes, so I found a relatively cheap one, a 2007 Les Vignerones de Tavel Terre des Lauzeraies Côtes du Rhône, and tried it out.

I wish I could tell you the blend in this wine, but neither the store where I purchased it nor the internet could provide me with this information. For a $10 bottle, it was as good as one could expect. My guess is that it was largely made up of grenache. Cherry and vanilla flavors dominated, with notes of lemon peel and a hint of plum. It might have benefited from a little less oak.
Overall, the pairing fell a bit short of my expectations. While the relatively simple, enjoyable wine went well with some levels, such as the Rolling Green Galaxy, it failed to enhance the cartoonish seriousness of others, namely the Battlerock Galaxy.

The pairing was by no means offensive, but it did clearly demonstrate that my approach to finding a pairing for Super Mario Galaxy needs to be reconsidered. Maybe a rosé, a white, or a different type of booze altogether would be better.

Next up on The Art of Pairing Video Games with Booze:

Summer is here, and the time is right for Wii Sports. And booze. I'd love to hear suggestions. If you think you know what's up, send your ideas to

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