Hot town, summer in the city. Back of my neck getting dirty and gritty. So goes a classic summer song by the Lovin’ Spoonful. The weather has recently turned hot here in the Toledo area, but we found a way to cool it way down.
On a hot evening we dropped in to Dégagé Jazz Café in the historic Commercial Building on River Road in Maumee. They feature cool wines and cool jazz. (Red wines too!).
There’s plenty of dining space at Dégagé, but we wanted to hear the music, so we paid the $6 cover and entered the intimate bar area for the show.
The wine list features some solid by the glass offerings and a more interesting reserve list. Since we are planning a trip to South Africa, my scan of the wine list gravitated to this 2011 Mulderbosch Chenin Blanc.
While Skip Turner and his band were laying down a nice groove on stage, we popped open the Chenin Blanc. When the wine came out of the ice bucket, it was a bit too cold. As it warmed up, there were some nice notes of grapefruit and pear. We recently had a Chenin Blanc from Oregon, and this one was a lot less juicy and more restrained.
The wine is aged 20% in oak barrels for five months, but any effect of that was lost on me. The acidity also could have been ratcheted up. We do like a little zing in our whites.
Chenin Blanc, or Steen as its called locally, is a signature grape of South Africa. We found this to be food friendly with a dry and smooth profile – solid, but not remarkable. The flavors did not erupt like a clanging drum, but were more light jazz riff on the piano.
Rating: 2.5 of 5 Value: 2 of 5