Baha Beauty: A Claret Lookalike from Mexico

Hiro Yoshida, the proprietor of Hiro Sushi in Toronto (416 304-0550) and a cherished friend, came to dinner at our house and brought a remarkable bottle of wine with him: Passion Meritage Ojos Negros 2004.  This Bordeux-blend beauty from Bodegas San Rafael of Ensenada, Baja California, was a gift to Hiro from a Japanese friend who established a lucrative business in the Baja.  It’s blended of about 60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Cabernet Franc, 15% Merlot, 3% Petit Verdot and 2% Malbec.  Current vintages are priced around $100.

In a word, the wine was exceptional.  It was a lovely garnet tinged ruby with a paler garnet edge.  The complex harmonious nose featured a salty iodine minerality with fresh and dried blackcurrant fruit and a sweet spicy floral nuance.  In the mouth it featured plush grippy tannins, fresh acidity, deep mature fruit and a lovely long finish.  You could easily guess that this was a second growth claret, maybe a St. Estephe.  It was the perfect partner for a rack of lamb.Baja beauty image

Many thanks, Hiro San, for the gifts of this wine and of your company.


About iwolkoff

Irvin Wolkoff is a psychiatrist and wine journalist who has been a wine enthusiast and collector since his university days.
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