Esquive de Franc Maillet 2005

Signs of ageing are mostly self generated and excepting wrinkles, are usually related to the people you socialise with, the places you go, and the material goods you consume.  I discovered what seems like yonks ago that BBC Radio 2 plays better music than Radio 1.  In fact it plays much the same music as Radio 1 did in the years when I used to listen in to Simon Bates and Noel Edmunds.  I swapped my exciting Toyota sports coupé for a boring Mercedes Saloon about the same time (and yes, the interior was beige).  Two cars later I have accelerated through an automatic gearbox, which took me a while to get used to, into full-on middle age – yes, a diesel automatic.

I like to think I have taken all this in my stride, but today I realised that I have just passed an altogether much more serious milestone.  I have never seen anyone under 50 wear Ralph Lauren but I looked in my wardrobe today and found five shirts by this venerable, if ageing, New York designer.  And what is worse, I actually like wearing them.

Timmy Maillet?  Ohhhhhh Nooooooo!

Sometimes being old (even if not wise) is infinitely preferable to being immature and crass.  They say that patience is a virtue, and this adage is my only consolation each time I floor the accelerator of my Flintstonemobile.

Some might argue that a 2005 Bordeaux needs more age.  But I find the right bank, more Merlot based wines, are very approachable in relative youth and have drunk many a 2005 with the comforting feeling of sinking into a bucket seat.  And in any case, I have to leave room for some youthful impatience in my life.

Esquive de Franc Maillet, 2005 came to me en primeur via the Sunday Times Wine Club at about £10 per bottle, and was accompanied by more sediment than the Suez Canal.  Imagine a place somewhere between a bread and butter pudding and a hot summer pudding with some caramelised sugar and a touch of liquorice.  After some air it developed into Autumn fruits and a smoky September bonfire – very evocative.  Tannins?  Yes, but far from over powering.

A stonking steak wine at a great price, and can be worn, or drunk, at any age.

Leave a Reply