Marriage comes to the Cellar

We welcome the return of June as the month with warming days that extend well into the evening and mercifully to their greatest lengths of the year. June also tends to be the time when many choose to extend their hearts in the ceremony of marriage. According to etymology, (apparently, that’s the study of the origin of words – how about wordology?), June is actually named after the Roman goddess Juno, the goddess of marriage.

If Juno was with us now, my guess is she would surely love a seat here at the old oak tasting table because some of the today’s most delicious wines present the wedded bliss of two, three or more grapes.

So this month, marriage comes to the cellar.  We’ll be celebrating three wonderful amalgamations of grapes that make three very tasty, and affordable wines. And great news, there will be no long speeches.

Welcome back to the cellar.  

The first marriage we’re attending takes place between two lovely individual grapes; Syrah and Grenache. What a beautiful couple they make. And they stand together as one in this bottle of Bastide Miraflors 2017.

Bastide Miraflors Syrah/Vieilles Vignes Grenache 2017
750 mL bottle  |   VINTAGES#:  320499


In the glass it’s deep, dark and opaque as night in the French county it comes from; Rousillion, just north of Marseille.

One whiff and you’re enveloped with an earthy minerality, black currants, hints of fennel and black licorice. And on the tongue it’s rich, smooth, full bodied and as cushy as a silk pillow. This union might just bring a tear to the eye but it can certainly brings one’s hand to pour another glass.

While now that we’re in a French state of matrimonial bliss let’s bear witness to a marriage that comes to us from Provence, just south of Roussillion also in the southeast of France. Before us stands the beautiful Domaine de Triennes Rosé. This is a match made in heaven between the blushing bride that is none other than the soft and floral grape, Cinsault (San-Soh) and her three soul mates (okay so it’s a modern marriage) Grenache, Syrah and Merlot.

Domaine de Triennes Rosé 2019
750 mL bottle  |   VINTAGES#:  409771

Putting it to my nose is like taking a turn through a spring garden without knowing at all what the fragrance in the air is, only that it smells damn good.

Tilt it mouthward and you discover it’s refreshing, dry and delicate with inviting flavours of raspberry and strawberry and apple.

One sip and I’m transported to a terrace on the French Riviera and I’m Cary Grant with Catherine Deneuve seated next to me. Okay so that might have been a few sips.

Before I get myself in trouble let’s leave France shall we and get to our third wedding in the south of Australia. This one is quite unique as it sees three grapes getting together in a rare union that makes it my under the radar selection for this month. Shiraz and Cabernet Sauvignon often partner up but here they have surprisingly tied the knot with the thick-skinned, intensity of Mr. Malbec.

Bleasdale The Broad-Side
Shiraz/Cabernet Sauvignon/Malbec 2016
750 mL bottle  |   VINTAGES#:  632091

Bleasdale Vineyards’ The Broad-Side 2016 comes from Australia’s second oldest family owned winery. This interesting triumvirate of grapes is a deep, plummy purple in the glass. In keeping with wedding tradition, it throws a lovely bouquet of black berries and herbs that you can’t help but catch with your nose.

It’s medium bodied and smooth but the Shiraz and Cab here are balanced by the  personality of Malbec. It goes nice with a receiving line of grilled chipotle black bean burgers.

Well, there we are. We’ve experienced three wonderful marriages. I don’t know about you but I’m emotionally spent. And all this confetti and rice down here in the cellar is going to be a bugger to clean up. But before we part for another month, I’d like to tell you about something new in the cellar.

My long-time pal Brian Hickling has designed and set up a website for us cellar- dwellers. So if you’re interested in any back issues of Jim’s Affordable Cellar, or a little background on yours truly, just visit and revisit our times together over the last 15 months. Thanks Brian.

See you back here in July. Until then, keep your glass of wine close and your friends even closer. Especially if they’re in your bubble.


As I mention at this point every month, if you know a lot more about wine than I do, and are finding yourself thinking ‘thanks but no thanks’, please tell me to put a cork in it. I won’t be insulted, and I’ll give you one less email to read each month. On the other hand, if you’re enjoying these wine meanderings, I’m glad. And please let me know what you think. Of course, if you know someone who might like this monthly distraction, they can contact me at:


One thought on “Marriage comes to the Cellar

  1. Hello Jim:

    I enjoy a cold glass of Rose lately with this hot weather we are having. I am excited to try the Domaine de Triennes Rose 2019. Thank you for the recommendation. Cheers! Karen

    Sent from my iPad



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