Tasting Notes Blog - Printer-Friendly Version - April, 2013
by Dick Scheer     
 Updated May 15,  2013

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Wednesday, April 24, 2013

WT042413-01. 11 VENEZIE PINOT GRIGIO GREGORIS, GIOVANNI FATTORI - (ITALY) 12.5%. Full and right. Rich apple and melon. Fresh and pulpy./ Yes, pulpy, succulent, lush, flavorful. Honeydew melon. Fattori generosity. 16.6.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $11.99

WT042413-02. 11 VOUVRAY CLOS LE VIGNEAU, ALEXANDRE MONMOUSSEAU - (FRANCE LOIRE) 12.5%. Bright and incisive quince and calcaire./ Sec tendre style. Juicy quince and lime. The proper racy texture and Vouvray chenin flavorset. 16.6.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $18.99

WT042413-03. 12 KEN FORRESTER PETIT STELLENBOSCH - WESTERN CAPE CHENIN BLANC - (SOUTH AFRICA) 13.5%. Lovely, fresh chenin quince. More quince and less melon than is the norm for Cape steen. Brisk fruit, clear and compelling./ Full, crisp, stimulating. Well textured indeed. Vivacious. Aims to please. Fabulous. One of the best vintages. 16.5.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $11.99

WT042413-04. 11 POUILLY FUISSE, LOUIS JADOT - (FRANCE BURGUNDY) 13%. Good, dusty French oak seasoning. The winemaker shows a light touch with it. Not as oaky as the 2010 at the same age./ Pouilly Fuisse stylishness and savor. Just the right oak application 11 combo of 09 softness 10 framing. Delicious. 16.9+.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $24.99

WT042413-06. 12 CALATAYUD ROSADO TRES OJOS, SAN GREGORIO - (SPAIN) 14.5%; half each garnacha, tempranillo. Young, strong, frank, and uncomplicated. Strawberry and raspberry. Ready for prime time. Spanish rose full./ Full and strong and flavorful. Big range of applications. 16.6.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $9.99

WT042413-07. 11 DOGLIANI DOLCETTO SAN LUIGI, PECCHENINO - (ITALY) 13.5%; aged a year in stainless steel; estate bottled. Oh, boy, here it is! Total spice and fruit. Total concentration. Finally! After so many wimpy or warped dolcettos! Cherry and peel and pulp./ Yes, spicy, with great fruit peels extracts. Racy. Sooo cool. Wow! 17.0+.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $15.99

WT042413-08. CAHORS MALBEC CEDRE HERITAGE, CHATEAU LE CEDRE - (FRANCE ) 13.5%. 2010 dark and solid. Tempered by Cedre refinement, grace. Sweet core./ Balance of sweetness, elegance, peel, plump, flow, Cedre grace. Nice future. 16.6+.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $18.99

WT042413-09. 11 TEAL LAKE ESTATE SOUTH EASTERN AUSTRALIA SHIRAZ - (AUSTRALIA) 13.5%; kosher for Passover - mevushal. Zesty oak and good, ripe, savory Aussie shiraz fruit. Deep and well textured./ Open knit, and full. Oak extras. A really good vintage of this. 16.2.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $12.99

WT042413-10. 11 CALATAYUD GARNACHA TRES OJOS, SAN GREGORIO - (SPAIN) 14.5%; 40+ year old vines. Sweet and polished young grenache. Simple pleasures./ Good zest and spice as well as fruit. Best rendition in several years. 16.2.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $8.99

WT042413-11. 12 COTES DU RHONE LA DAME ROUSSE, DOMAINE DE LA MORDOREE - (FRANCE MEDITERRANEAN) 14.5%; 50% grenache, 30% syrah, 20% carignan; from the Lirac area. Reduced to start. Mercaptans. Not the first time. Clears with airing. Lovely Gard fruit elegance under. And silky texture. Sweet fruit./ Oh, clear and elegant indeed. Just right weight and style for the vintage. 16.6+.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $19.99

WT042413-12. 10 RUCHE DI CASTAGNOLE MONFERRATO OSEL, CALAMANDRANA - (ITALY) 13.5%. Spicy incense and sachet as before. Especially vigorous spiciness, with less sweetness than the 09./ Free flowing, spicy, perfumed. Dried flowers, sachet. Dry this vintage. 16.6.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $14.99

WT042413-13. 09 GNAUGHTY VINES OLD VINE DRY CREEK VALLEY ZINFANDEL 09 GNAUGHTY VINES OLD VINE DRY CREEK VALLEY ZINFANDEL - (U.S.) 15%. Sweet, roasted Dry Creek Valley style and old vines concentration. Singed and forceful ripe fruit display./ Spicy oak. Sweet Dry Creek Valley fruit warmth, power, and extract. Large. 16.6.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $18.99

WT042413-14. 07 FONSECA LATE BOTTLED VINTAGE PORTO - (PORTUGAL) 20%; bottled 2012; unfiltered. Good singed and powerful stuff. Not as sweet as usual. More of a Vintage style. Statuesque and forceful./ Dry on entry as Fonsecas go. Now the sweetness comes through. Good balance of power, sweetness, extract. 17.1+.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $22.99

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

WT041713-01. 11 COTES DíAUVERGNE CHARDONNAY, CAVE SAINT VERNY - (FRANCE LOIRE) 13.5%; from Auvergne range near Clermont-Ferrand in the upper reaches of the Loire watershed west of Lyon. Well, if this isnít one of the daintiest of chardonnay wines! Fresh and delicate apple aroma uncomplicated by wood./ Light-hearted, racy, crisp. Quite singular to the zone. Aperitif and luncheon chardonnay. Well liked by the group. 16.0+.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $9.99

WT041713-02. 12 CHASING VENUS MARLBOROUGH SAUVIGNON BLANC - (NEW ZEALAND) 13%; the Ďofficialí purpose of Captain Cookís Pacific voyage was to study the passage of Venus across the sky. Good pink grapefruit nose. Graceful rather than gushy./ Admirably juicy and dry. Discreet. Maintains its decor in a bracket full of tropical fruit bombs. 16.4+.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $14.99

WT041713-03. 12 COTEAUX DU VENDOMOIS LIEU-DIT COCAGNE, CAVE DU VENDOMOIS - (FRANCE LOIRE) 12%; all pineau díaunis from the Loir tributary of the Loire. Fresh, limpid, dainty. Appropriate to the variety and zone. Still some banana fermentation aroma./ Yeah, it was just shipped, and itís a little early to taste it. Mineral, even steel on the aftertaste. Come high rose season, this will be ready to serve. Well liked by the group. 16.1+.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $9.99

WT041713-04. 09 FLEURIE GRAND CRU, HENRY FESSY - (FRANCE BURGUNDY) 13.5%; Wine Spectator 90. Fessyís firm, traditional styling. Fruit-flower Fleurie airs hover over a foundation of 09 compact fruit material and extract./ Typical of many an 09 Grand Cru at this stage, itís in a trough as early aromas have faded away faster than bottle bouquet has built up. Keep it another year or two for the latter to form fully. 16.0+.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $17.99

WT041713-05. 10 CHATEAU DUMAS CENOT, BORDEAUX - (FRANCE BORDEAUX) 14%; in eastern Entre deux Mers; 60% merlot, 40% cabernet sauvignon, vines averaging 25 years; Gold Medal - Bordeaux. Corked. No rating.
  Wine 1 of Spring Mix of Six -- see #10 for price

WT041713-06. 10 CHATEAU FLORIE AUDE CUVEE DES ALBINS, BORDEAUX - (FRANCE BORDEAUX) 15%; between Fronsac and Bourg; 85% merlot, 10% cabernet sauvignon, 5% cabernet franc; Gold Medal - Paris. Initially dry and vinous. Senses of power and fruit richness lurking beneath./ Decidedly powerful for claret, yet far from Ďmoderní. It retains the vintageís firm structure and claretís discreet fruit statement. Will appreciate a couple of yearsí cellar time. 15.9+.
    Wine21 of Spring Mix of Six -- see #10 for price

WT041713-07. 10 CHATEAU LE GRAVY, BORDEAUX SUPERIEUR - (FRANCE BORDEAUX) 12.5%; in eastern Entre deux Mers; 70% merlot, 20% cabernet franc, 10% cabernet sauvignon, vines averaging 25 years; Gold Medal - Bordeaux. Rich and deep. Superior indeed. Plenty of extract./ Dark and full of fruit material. Serious claret with a great future. 16.4+.
  Wine 3 of Spring Mix of Six -- see #10 for price

WT041713-08. 10 CHATEAU ROCHEBERT, GRANDE SELECTION, BORDEAUX SUPERIEUR - (FRANCE BORDEAUX) 14.7%; near Saint Emilion; 100% merlot, vines averaging 25 years; aged 12 months in barrels, 50% new; Gold Medal - Bordeaux. Solid. Lots of material here. Full fledged claret./ Rich in merlot fruit filling within a solid form. Great balance, composition, future. 16.3+.
  Wine 4 of Spring Mix of Six -- see #10 for price

WT041713-09. 10 CHATEAU CLAIRAC, BLAYE COTES DE BORDEAUX - (FRANCE BORDEAUX) 13.5%; 90% merlot, 10% cabernet sauvignon, vines averaging 20 years; Gold Medal - International Wine Challenge. Very bright and inspiring. Full, rich merlot fruit. Merlot loves 2010./ Creamy texture. Some oak? Rich and enticing for a young 2010. 16.7+.
  Wine 5 of Spring Mix of Six -- see #10 for price

WT041713-10. 10 CHATEAU SAUMAN, CUVEE TRADITION, COTES DE BOURG - (FRANCE BORDEAUX) 14.5%; 80% merlot, 15% cabernet sauvignon, 5% malbec, vines averaging 35 years; Gold Medal - Bordeaux. Larger than the regular cuvee. More heft, tannin, dry extract. 2010 firmness./ Powerful, rich, sweet fruited. Large. 16.7+.
   Wine 6 of Spring Mix of Six -- Price at time of tasting) $69.95  for numbers 5-10

WT041713-11. 09 LAGO DI CORBARA TURLO DI SALVIANO, TITIGNANO - (ITALY) 14%; from northern Umbria; 50% sangiovese, 30% cabernet sauvignon, 20% merlot. Full, open expression of black fruits, fine oak, and barrel aging. Great complex of fruit and oak. Sweetness and freshness of 09./ Cedar and spice. Showing some attractive bouquet development. Good power and potential. 16.8+.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $17.99

WT041713-12. 10 CHERRY ON TOP SWEET CALIFORNIA RED - (U.S.) 13.5%; syrah, zinfandel, merlot, tempranillo, grenache. Both vinous and fruity. Rich and full. Not sweet smelling; smells like a table wine./ Sweet, fat, fruity. Light suggestion of oak. Cherry pie aftertaste. 16.0.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $9.99

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

WT041013-01. 11 MUSCADET SEVRE & MAINE SUR LIE, DOMAINE DE LA QUILLA - (FRANCE LOIRE) 12%. Wow! This is zesty and expressive. Neat!/ Yeah, crystalline clarity, classic lines, lots of vitality. Full of good green stuff. Good grip and texture. The lees aging third dimension. Great, juicy acidity. Full length. 16.9.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $11.99

WT041013-02. 11 DOLOMITI PINOT BIANCO, ALOIS LAGEDER - (ITALY) 12.5%. Oh, boy! Rich and rangy. Green apple and peel. Full, padded, deep./ Yes, broad, full, flavorful. Alto Adige core structure and finesse. Really good pinot bianco. 16.6.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $14.99

WT041013-03. 11 MACON VILLAGES CHARDONNAY, LOUIS JADOT - (FRANCE BURGUNDY) 12.5%; unoaked. Close and quiet. With air come apple and walnut husk./ Firm, silent. Not much to offer yet. Give it time. 16.0++.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $14.99

WT041013-05. 12 SANNIO FIANO, TERRA DI BRIGANTI - (ITALY) 13.5%. Wow! Very expressive. Honey, nectar, apricot complex./ Again, the complex of rich, nectarous flavors, now including tropical fruits. Truly dry. Youthful. Needs time for the texture to round out. But oh, the aromatics are so irresistible right now!! 16.8+.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $14.99

WT041013-06. 09 EGRI BIKAVER, VITAVIN - (HUNGARY) 12.5%. Good fruit, vinosity, mid age bouquet development. Not as lush as the 08. Ample enough though./ Dry, rich, balanced. Both vinous and fruity. Right. 16.0.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $8.99

WT041013-07. 10 COTES DU RHONE BASTIDE DE BEAUVERT, FONCALIEU - (FRANCE MEDITERRANEAN) 13.5%; at Saint Victor la Coste; 70% grenache, 30% syrah. Sweet grenache and dry vinosity./ Rather dry and close still. Medium bodied. Not much flavor or texture interest yet. Better with time. 15.7+.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $12.99

WT041013-08. 09 TOSCANA CABURNIO, TENUTA MONTETI - (ITALY) 13.5%; 55% cabernet sauvignon, 25% alicante bouschet, 20% merlot; half aged 12 months in French barriques, 30% new. Oh, boy! A big burst of ripe fruit. Light oak seasoning. Large and broad display of all the varietals./ 09 lush. Fabulous black depths. Full fruit joy. Easier flowing than the 08. Can enjoy now. 16.9.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $16.99

WT041013-09. 12 ALFASI ESTATE VALLE DEL MAULE CABERNET SAUVIGNON - (CHILE) 13%; kosher for passover, mevushal. No wood excesses like the 10 and 11. Fine, ripe, bright fruit. Cabernet blackberry and black currant./ Ripe fruit joy. Chilean cabernet earthy basis. Good acid, fine tannin. 16.1.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $9.99

WT041013-10. 11 APALTAGUA ESTATE RESERVA APALTA VALLEY COLCHAGUA CARMENERE - (CHILE) 14%; 60 year old vines. Good ripe cherry and plum with oak toast and toffee. Has finesse./ Carmenere rich and fruity. Well balanced. Floral elegance. Nice. Fruit and oak spice complement each other well. Medium bodied and elegantly wrought. 16.3+.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $10.99

WT041013-11. 11 DONA PAULA ESTATE VALLE DE UCO MALBEC - (ARGENTINA) 14.1%. Wow! Sweet, full black cherry compote. Complete./ Yes, the ample fruit plus oak and nut. Great richness with fully ripe cherry and butterscotch oak. Popular. 16.7+.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $14.99

WT041013-12. 10 CHATEAU COURONNEAU, BORDEAUX SUPERIEUR - (FRANCE BORDEAUX) 14.5%; EcoCert; all merlot; aged 12 months in oak. Earthy reduction. Sweet merlot cherry rises from under it. Oak creme./ Firmness of 2010. Rich merlot fruit contained within a firm frame and on a solid platform. Dry and tannic after the malbec. Should have been served before it despite the higher alcohol statement. 16.3+.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $17.99

WT041013-13. 10 BRAZIN OLD VINE LODI ZINFANDEL - (U.S.) 15%. Sweet, open Lodi zinfandel. Not as much mass and extract as the 09. Or power./ Lodi sweet. Lacks the punch of the 09. Good though. 16.2.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $15.99

WT041013-14. 10 ALSACE RIESLING THE FURST, VIGNERONS DE KIENTZHEIM-KAYSERBERG - (FRANCE ALSACE) 12%. Dry and refined. Aromatically shy. No bouquet development yet. Good for food and for cellaring./ A nice dash of bouquet development in the mouth. More like yew than spruce. Dry and mealworthy. I like its posture. 16.3+.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $11.99

WT041013-15. GRAHAMíS FINE TAWNY PORTO - (PORTUGAL) 19%. Dry and aged in bottle as well as barrel. Sweetens up with aeration, giving dried fruit, oak, nut./ Grahamís sweet now. Really sweet. A relatively youthful tawny. Good, fruit-filled finish. 16.5.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $15.99

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

WT040313-01. JOEL FALMET ROSE BRUT CHAMPAGNE - (FRANCE CHAMPAGNE) 12.5%. Full body and volume of a southern Champagne rose. Plenty of doughy bottle bouquet as well as pink fruit./ Yes, full fruit statement and bountiful lees autolysis extras. Just the right level of rose brut sweetness. This rocks! 17.3.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $39.99

WT040313-02. 11 CHABLIS VAILLONS 1ER CRU COLLECTION ALAIN CORCIA, MATTHIEU ANTUNES - (FRANCE BURGUNDY) 12.5%. Fresh, fruity, up to date. A lovely take on Chablis. No oak. Fruit over terroir on the nose./ Oh, but the palate weighs in with Premier Cru fullness and significant terroir statement of calcaire. Brilliant acidity and texture. Wow! 17.2+.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $25.99

WT040313-03. 11 AUXEY DURESSES LES VIREUX, RAYMOND DUPONT-FAHN - (FRANCE BURGUNDY) 13%; unfined, unfiltered. Full delivery of barrel fermentation, lees stirring, and toasted French oak extracts. Meursault like body too./ Wow! Body and power. That Auxey degree of restraint next to a Meursault. Great texture, weight, reserve. From a site that is mostly Premier Cru and sits just upslope from Meursault Vireux. 17.5+
    Price each (at time of tasting) $32.99

WT040313-04. 11 BOURGOGNE CHAUMES DES PERRIERES, RAYMOND DUPONT-FAHN - (FRANCE BURGUNDY) 13.5%; unfined, unfiltered; Meursault terroir next to Perrieres Premier Cru excluded from the AC for political reasons; 40+ year old vines. Nutty, full fledged Meursault personality, plus all the barrel extras of the Auxey./ Great, sweet oak assets. A cornucopia of Meursaultís autumnal characteristics: nuts, grains, oatmeal, dried leaves. Gathers weight as it airs in the glass. 17.5+.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $32.99

WT040313-05. 10 SAINT AUBIN MURGERS DES DENTS DE CHIEN 1ER CRU, JEAN CHARTRON - (FRANCE BURGUNDY) 13.5%. A cooler, more ventilating face of Cote de Beaune chardonnay from a site abutting Puligny Montrachet Champ Gain Premier Cru. This shows more limestone than the above pair; itís Puligny like. Different barrel regimen too: firmer oak, less lees influence./ Treacly oak. Grip and material of 2010. Its growth during aeration suggests a long and bright evolution. 17.6+.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $44.99

WT040313-06. 10 LíESPRIT DE DOMAINE DE CHEVALIER GRAND CRU BLANC, PESSAC LEOGNAN - (FRANCE BORDEAUX) 13.5%; 70% sauvignon blanc, 30% semillon; selection made by barrel, not vine age. Well, if this doesnít take Graves blanc to its highest level! Extraordinary sauvignon concentration and character unlike any other. Full semillon earthy basis. New oak extras./ Oh, boy! The full spread sauvignon, semillon, terroir, and barrel inputs. What mass, size, complexity, potential. Seriously Grand Cru stuff. 17.5++.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $42.99

WT040313-07. 11 BERNKASTELER RIESLING KABINETT, JOH. JOS. PRUM - (GERMANY) 10%; from Badstube. The usual reductive nature of a young Prum riesling. Even Wine Spectatorís reviews are beginning to own up to it. These are built to last./ More fruit shines through on the palate. That lovely green grape, apple, peach Bernkasteler fare. Certainly spatlese sweet and concentrated. The acidity is coated, and thereís a little sulphur edge. A classic Prum keeper. 16.5++.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $23.99

WT040313-08. 10 LíESPRIT DE DOMAINE DE CHEVALIER GRAND CRU, PESSAC LEOGNAN - (FRANCE BORDEAUX) 13.5%; 55% cabernet sauvignon, 30% merlot, 10% cabernet franc, 5% petit verdot; selection made by barrel, not vine age. The classic, firm framing of 2010 claret. Aeration coaxes forth a peacockís tail of merlot and the cabernets character plus discreet, already well integrated oak./ Firmness of 2010, claret discretion of DdC, Graves earth and game. Earns complexity with aeration. Aristocratic Grand Cru lineage is clear. 17.7++.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $42.99

WT040313-09. 10 DAVID BRUCE RUSSIAN RIVER VALLEY PINOT NOIR - (U.S.) 14.7%; est. 1964. Very lovely, even romantic. Russian River Valley pinot charm and class. Fine oak. Extra spiciness of ripe pinot peels./ Large scaled Bruce styling. Total RRV expression. Frame, filling, complexity, class, length. Fulfills all expectations. 17.4+.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $34.99

WT040313-10. 07 TERRA DíORO SHR FIELD BLEND AMADOR ZINFANDEL - (U.S.) 14.5%; 80% zinfandel, 13% petite sirah, 7% barbera from the 40-acre Schoolhouse Road Vineyard. Wow! Sweet 07 fruit. Full Amador scale. Nutty bouquet forming. Amador singed fruit, full oak treatment. Complete package./ Yeah, this is well built. Great power. Fine oak. Full ripeness, even some dried fruit. Italianate edge of volatility begs for food. 17.1+.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $24.99

WT040313-11. 02 CHATEAU LES ROQUES, LOUPIAC - (FRANCE BORDEAUX) 13%; 83% semillon, 15% sauvignon blanc, 2% muscadelle; owed by MI importer Jean-Jacques Fertalís relatives. Fully sweet. Surprisingly reticent on the nose for its age./ Oh, but not on the palate! Yikes, ginger, pineapple, peach, oak. Added complexities of botrytis. Astonishing undeveloped at age ten. Loaded. 17.5+.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $23.99

WT040313-12. 07 NIEPOORT LATE BOTTLED VINTAGE PORTO - (PORTUGAL) 20%; bottled 2011; est. 1842. Firm, deep, close Niepoort style Vintage stature./ Big, sweet, dark, deep. Nutty. Has a Vintage Portís grip of the gob. A thorough LBV worthy of its premium price. 17.6+.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $28.99

 

 

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