When you have guests who like wine..but don't want to think too much about what's in the glass...then I always take a step back..and serve something fairly simple..that won't 'hurt' anyone.
I had a couple of reds that had been in the cellar a while..mainly because I didn't want to try them on my own.
Laurent Miquel Nord Sud Viognier 2007
Vins de Pays D'Oc, France
This won first prize in a German Magazine..Best Viognier..and one can see why...
Classic Viognier nose..peach & pear..exotic...the nose suggests a touch of oak...a small portion of the grapes see the inside of French Barrique. Lively on the palate..a head turner and a crowd pleaser...medium weighted..no great length...but at around € 9,-- ...a real bargain
Sunshine Bay Pinot Noir 2004
Marlborough, New Zealand
Screw cap....this spends 10 months in used oak barrells...dusty nose..not very dominant..it's main attributes start when you taste..sweet cherry..nice mix of acidity and fruit...ready now...easy drinking..and again..fairly priced at € 13,--
Vita Nova Cabernet Sauvignon 2001
Santa Maria, California, U.S.A.
A winery formed by Jim Clendenen of Au Bon Climat, Bob Lindquist of Qupe, Steve Arcriono, and Doug Margerum......I last tried it a few years ago..and it seemed overdone with jammy fruit..no balance..it's OK now..soft & chewy..with ripe fruit..quite thick..even porty...but not for me.....thank goodness Jim Clendenden makes wonderful Pinot Noir.