Tasting Notes Blog - Printer-Friendly Version
- February, 2012
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Wednesday, February 22, 2012
WT022212-01. 09 CHABLIS VAULIGNOT 1ER CRU, LOUIS MOREAU - (FRANCE) 12.5%. Deep and firm./ Lots of grip and mineral in the Moreau style. Begs for more bottle age. 16.6++.
WT022212-02. 09 BANROCK STATION SE AUSTRALIA CHARDONNAY - (AUSTRALIA) 13.5%; less 30% = $4.54; citrus & tropical fruits, light oak. Good acid. Good grain and dried peel./ The fruit is sweet still. Well balanced taste. At a good stage. 16.2.
WT022212-03. 08 BICKENSOHLER STEINFELSEN SPATBURGUNDER ROTWEIN, WINZ. BICKENSOHL - (GERMANY) 13%. Cool and herbal. Right for its type. Ventilating./ Sweet and breezy. Some pinot gaminess. Will improve 14.8+
WT022212-04. 10 CHIANTI POGGIO VIGNOSO, PUGLIANO - (ITALY) 13.5%; 85% sangiovese, 10% canaiolo, 5% malvasia. Oh, another winning vintage here! Sweet fruit, with 10 raciness too. Canaiolo and malvasia add extra lift./ Combines sweetness with raciness. Lovely. The minority varieties make a difference. 16.3.
WT022212-05. 10 TOSCANA DOGAJOLO, CARPINETO - (ITALY) 13.5%; 80% sangiovese, 20% cabernet sauvignon; berries, coffee, vanilla, spice. Full, with a nice perfume of black fruits. Bigger and more extracted than usual. Retains its usual brightness and vigor all the same./ Fresh and juicy. Great acidity. Best vintage yet. 16.4.
WT022212-06. 09 CHIANTI CLASSICO, QUERCETO - (ITALY) 12.5%. Tight but bright. Nice oak seasonings. Time in barrel breadth and depth too./ Great acid. Fine tannin. Dried fruit and accompanying glycerol. Just the right oak influence. Spot on. 16.7+.
WT022212-07. 08 TOSCANA VILLA ANTINORI, MARCHESI ANTINORI - (ITALY) 13.5%; 12 months in oak, 8 months in bottle before release. Plenty of wood. Lots of brett too. 08 surly, black./ Good balance of oak and sweet fruit. The oak and barrel aging makes positive influences that fill out the otherwise constrained 08 fruit nature. Taste of toffee. Well crafted. 16.8+.
WT022212-08. 08 BARBARESCO, COL DEI VENTI - (ITALY) 14%. Sweet oak and sweet black fruit aromas in harmony. Very charming, as a proper Barbaresco should be. An ideal take on what 08 has to give. The oak has a whisky barrel tone that is unique and attractive./ Wow! Big, sweet, and enveloping nebbiolo fruit that comes as a surprise this vintage. Maybe it’s got to do with the house style. I imagine critics will be lapping it up.
The oak contribution gives the mild woody tone of Canadian whisky. Certainly a unique take on Barbaresco. Surely not traditional; nonetheless, it entices, entertains, and fascinates me. 17.0+.
WT022212-09. 07 DOURO CHARAMBA, AVELEDA - (PORTUGAL) 13%; named after a traditional Portuguese dance. Sweet and neatly proportioned compact, black Douro fruit and subtle oak./ Yes, nice and tight formed, giving the impression it will age well. Confirms previous opinions. Always nice to find an age-worthy wine in this price range. 16.2+.
WT022212-10. 08 NAVARRA CRIANZA, MARQUES DE LA REAL DEFENSA - (SPAIN) 13.5%; 50% tempranillo, 25% each cabernet, merlot. Good, full fruit and oak. A dark and accomplished 08./ Plenty of depth and crianza breadth and complexity. Ideal crianza balance of oak and fruit. Fabulous, really. 16.9+.
WT022212-11. 10 PRIORAT, BODEGAS LA CARTUJA - (SPAIN) 14.5%; 50% garnacha, 30% mazuelo, 10% each cabernet, syrah; 8 months in French oak barrels. Oh, wow! Fresh, upbeat, sweet. A total value. Sooo creamy and dreamy./ Again the beautiful fruit sweetness. And also that high elevation Priorat lift, form, and grip. Significant. Yikes! 17.1+.
WT022212-12. 10 CLINE ANCIENT VINES CONTRA COSTA MOURVEDRE - (US) 14.5%; dark plum, chocolate, oak. Deep and black, with 10 coolness. Total, thorough, purple, real, sweet. A grand varietal for a cool vintage./ Sweet and smooth, with surprisingly well measured acidity for a cool year. High pitched, floral perfume on the finish. 16.7+.
WT022212-13. 09 PETER LEHMANN ART SERIES BAROSSA SHIRAZ - (AUSTRALIA) 14.5%; vegan friendly; plum, chocolate. Good and sweet Barossa fruit, with oak and good framing./ Very oaky. Too oaky at this stage. Sweet fruit, but not enough to challenge the oak yet. Give it time to meld. 15.5+.
WT022212-14. MARIETTA OLD VINE LOT NUMBER 56 CALIFORNIA RED - (US) 13.5%; since 1978; mostly zinfandel. If sweet, it’s nonetheless weedy. Poor rendition of this. No. 55 was much better./ Sweet and plain. At least it’s not juggy. Too much press wine? Camphor overtone. 14.2.
WT022212-16. 10 MOSCATO D’ASTI BRICCO RIELLA, VALTER BARBERO - (ITALY) 7%. Good lift and elegance. It’s back after a letdown in 09. Orange blossom, peach./ Sweet, and with great acidity. Balanced thus. So glad to be able to recommend it again. 17.5.
WT022212-17. PELLEGRINO SUPERIORE SWEET MARSALA - (ITALY) 18%; since 1880; aged over 2 years in oak barrels. Sweet and nutty and rightly strong./ Yes, balance of all the elements. Lots of date flavor. Well done. 17.5+.
Wednesday, February 15, 2012
WT021512-01. 10 CANKAYA EMIR DE NEVSEHIR, KAVAKLIDERE - (TURKEY) 13%. Pleasing nose of apple, pear, fruit peels, and some clay. Burgundy like./ Soft fruit, good acidity, well balanced. Marl, fruit peels, vinosity. A pleasant dinner wine. 15.2.
WT021512-02. 10 CONO SUR VALLE CENTRAL CHARDONNAY. - (CHILE) 13.5%; lemon zest, mango, pineapple. Open, citrusy, New World. Orange and lemon./ Soft, with a nice mango flavor burst. OK acid, some RS. 15.5.
WT021512-03. 10 CALERA CENTRAL COAST CHARDONNAY - (US) 14.4%; 35th anniversary vintage; 8 vineyards in 4 appellations; whole cluster pressed; native yeasts; complete malo; 10 months in French oak, 10% new. This works. Nothing sticks out or dominates. The French oak is a pleasingly light seasoning. Attractive fruit and form. The total malo is not obvious. Fine craftsmanship./ Toasty French oak and malo creaminess. Everything
discreet, harmonious. 16.8
WT021512-04. 10 MAURITSON DRY CREEK VALLEY SAUVIGNON BLANC - (US) 14.1%; 95% Hardie Ranch estate, 5% Coleman-Young (!) vineyard; no oak, no malo. Mercaptans to start. Then comes attractive, sweet DCV fruit with nice 2010 edge./ Medium bodied and concentrated. Well balanced. Leaner than the 09. 16.2+
WT021512-05. 09 PETER LEHMANN LAYERS ADELAIDE WHITE - (AUSTRALIA) 11.5%; unoaked; lemon, peach, dried apricot, green melon; less 30% = $11.19. Mature, well poised and balanced. Lots of citrus plus some apricot./ Yes, full citrus and peel development signature. Good acid. This complex cuvee works. 16.1.
WT021512-06. 10 MORGON GRAND CRU, GEORGES DUBOEUF - (FRANCE) 13%. Still firm and tart. Some Morgon cherry aroma. Give it air and age./ Stiff and tart. A lot of tannin. No fun now. 15.8+
WT021512-07. 09 MOULIN A VENT GRAND CRU, GEORGES DUBOEUF - (FRANCE) 13%. Big and firm MaV. Citrus peel oil–unusual in a red./ Tough. Closed book; impossible to read. 15.0++.
WT021512-08. 10 CONO SUR VALLE CENTRAL PINOT NOIR - (CHILE) 13.5%; cherry, plum, strawberry, spice. Reduced as in several recent vintages. H2S./ Again. Tannic and tart. Time will tell. 12.0++.
WT021512-09. 09 SEBASTIANI SONOMA COAST PINOT NOIR - (US) 13.5%; since 1904. Good pinot aromatic ID, but 09 tightness wins over varietal plushness at this stage. I have faith./ Sweet vanilla oak nicely coats the 09 firm fruit core. I like the possibilities. 16.3+.
WT021512-10. 10 MONTPELLIER CALIFORNIA CABERNET SAUVIGNON - (US) 12.5%. Sharp and stinky sulphur./ Sweet fruit and oak. No sulphur on the palate. That happens often. Air it well. Nose 12.0; palate 16.0
WT021512-11. 09 CASTLE ROCK COLUMBIA VALLEY CABERNET SAUVIGNON - (US) 13.5%; cassis, black cherry, ripe plum, light oak. Cool, firm, fresh, crisp WA cabernet fruit. Still quiet in youth./ Both sweetness and tartness. Nicely padded mouthfeel too. This will keep improving. 16.2+
WT021512-12. 10 YAKUT OKUZGOZU D’ELAZIG, KAVAKLIDERE - (TURKEY) 13%. Dark and surly like a lot of 08 Euro reds. Or Austrian reds./ Not hard on the palate, but a little shy on flavor due to youthfulness. Tight rather than rangy. Give it bottle age. 15.5+.
WT021512-13. 08 CRETE KRETIKOS, BOUTARI - (GREECE) 13.5%; from kotsifali and mantilaria; less 30% = $11.19. Surprisingly, still reduced./ Hard and featureless todeay. 12.0++.
WT021512-14. 09 DANCING BULL WINEMAKER’S RESERVE CALIFORNIA ZINFANDEL - (US) 13.9%; black cherry, raspberry, spice. Sweet and spicy zin fruit and oak. 09 dark fruit. All the right stuff./ Sweet, with raspberry syrup like appeal. A heartthrob. 16.4.
WT021512-15. 09 OPPENHEIMER ESTATE RIESLING KABINETT, DR. HEYDEN - (GERMANY) 13%. Sharp SO2. Rheinhessen riesling fruit hiding under./ Good Hessia sweet corn taste. Plenty of fruit flavor and no sulphur on the palate. 09's mild acidity makes the sweetness stand out. Air off the sulphur and choose the course to match the mouthfeel. 16.1+.
WT021512-16. 10 NIERSTEINER HIPPING RIESLING SPATLESE, GEORG ALBRECHT SCHNEIDER - (GERMANY) 10.5%. This just soars! Classic Hipping tangerine aroma. Perfect posture./ Sweet on entry. The acidity comes through in the back. Will come into balance with a few more months’ bottle age. 16.6+.
WT021512-17. OPERA PRIMA ESPANA ORANGE PLEASURES MIMOSA - (FRUIT) 7%. Bright orange and cream aromas./ Quite dry. Quenching citrus acidity and astringency. Slightly dilute due to lack of sweetness and/or alcohol. Good though. 15.9.
WT021512-18. OPERA PRIMA ESPANA PEACH PLEASURES BELLINI - (FRUIT) 7%. Not much nose./ Or taste. Just a vestige of peach peel. Much prefer the Mimosa. 11.0.
Wednesday, February 8, 2012
WT020812-01. 10 VINHO VERDE LA LILAS, ADEGA PONTE DA BARCA - (PORTUGAL) 10.5%. Very breezy. Light aroma./ Floral flair. Of what variety? Alvarhino?. 15.2.
WT020812-02. 10 CHABLIS VAILLONS 1ER CRU, COLLECTION ALAIN CORCIA - (FRANCE) 12.5%. Cool, clean calcaire. Good apple fruit. A positive bulb flower reduction note./ Rich fruit and some subtle oak savor. Premier Cru extras. Does the job. 16.6.
WT020812-03. 11 ECHEVERRIA UNWOODED CURICO VALLEY CHARDONNAY - (CHILE) 13%; silver medal - best buy bti; pineapple, melon, peach, citrus. Open knit. Citrus with peel. Full./ Cool and clear. Full textured. 15.0.
WT020812-04. 06 MUELLER LB RUSSIAN RIVER VALLEY CHARDONNAY - (US) 14.7%; less 30% = $19.42. Snappy, cool, crisp RRV. Body and fine oak. Not a bit too heavy with age or oak./ Sweet oak gives a brown sugar or rum impression. Elegant balance Fine oak-fruit integration. Kudos
WT020812-05. 10 RUEDA VERDEJO OLD VINES, BODEGAS SHAYA - (SPAIN) 13.5%. Full verdejo burnish. Almost woody but likely unoaked. Wholly revealing./ Full textured for 10. Medium bodied. Is it an ager? The 09 was. 16.2+.
WT020812-06. 09 BOURGOGNE HAUTES COTES DE BEAUNE PINOT NOIR CHATEAU DE MERCEY, ANTONIN RODET - (FRANCE) 11-14%.Good Burgundy combo of fruit and form. Hautes Cotes ruggedness. Right./ Good oak toast taste. Well done. Good acid. Mellow enough for current use. 16.8.
WT020812-07. 10 KENWOOD RUSSIAN RIVER VALLEY PINOT NOIR - (US) 13.5%; aged one year in French oak barrels. Fresh and true pinot. Tea and oak notes. Rich for the vintage./ Sweet and spicy, with RRV texture and definition. Good wood and game flavors. A successful vintage of this. Most are. 16.4.
WT020812-08. 09 CHATEAU MOULIN DE GRENET, LUSSAC SAINT EMILION - (FRANCE) 13.5%; 75% merlot, 25% cabernet; same owners as Saint Emilion Grand Cru Chateau Cantenac. Rich and generous Saint Emilion style of claret. 09 ripe fruit plus good claret form./ Still a bit lean and tart; hopefully, just in youth. Keep it awhile; give it a chance. 15.8+.
WT020812-12. 10 MONTEPULCIANO D’ABRUZZO PIANE DI MAGGIO, AGRIVERDE - (ITALY) 13%. Dark and close and tart./ But rallies on the palate with volume and ripeness. And goodness. Good palate. 15.8+.
WT020812-13. 10 PUGLIA NEPRICA, TORMARESCA - (ITALY) 13.5%; 40% negroamaro, 30% each primitivo, cabernet sauvignon; neprica is a condensation of the grape varieties. Cool, snappy. Licorice and spice. Good darkness./ Dry but adequately padded. Properly balanced but not yielding a lot yet. Higher acid than the 09. Young and perhaps travel-weary. 15.4+.
WT020812-14. 10 GUENOC LAKE COUNTY PETITE SIRAH - (US) 13.5%; aged in French and American oak; blackberry, plum, violets, roses. Firm, lean, dark 2010. Unyielding./ Vanilla creme oak contribution saves the day. Good winemaking here. With bottle age, more varietal character will likely be forthcoming. 15.8+.
WT020812-15. 09 JOEL GOTT CALIFORNIA ZINFANDEL - (US) 14.5%. Strong, sweet zinfandel nose. Amador like dark fruit, not rustic. Poised./ Nice and sweet and strong. Well balanced. Good terroir, selection, and craftsmanship. Sweet finish. 16.4+.
WT020812-17. 09 ALSACE RIESLING SCHLOSSBERG GRAND CRU THE FURST, VIGNERONS DE KIENTZHEIM-KAYSERSBERG - (FRANCE) 13%; Alsace’s first grand cru; gold medal - Strasbourg. Poised, full, statuesque. Plus the elegance of Schlossberg. Mineral vein. So right, so regal./ Lime and calcaire tastes. Really great acidity for 09. And extract. Has it all. 17.8+.
WT020812-18. DE KUYPER CHOCO VINE WHIPPED CREAM - (FRUIT) 13.9%; dutch chocolate, whipped cream, and red wine. The real deal. Hot cocoa with whipped cream aroma./ Yeah! Cocoa, cream, alcohol, all. Like hot cocoa with a dollop of schnapps. Right. 16.5.
Wednesday, February 1, 2012
WT020112-01. 10 VINHO VERDE ARCA NOVA, QUINTA DAS ARCAS - 11%. Quince and modeling clay. Not as earthy as some years./ A little spritz. Brighter than usual. More fruit aroma and flavor to come?. 15.0
WT020112-02. 09 CHABLIS, SIMONNET-FEBVRE - 12.5%. Very clear and crisp and right. Lovely poise./ Love the balance, focus, classicism. 16.9.
WT020112-03. 09 ALSACE PINOT GRIS THE FURST, VIGNERONS DE KIENTZHEIM-KAYSERSBERG - 13%. Crisp and cool, especially for the varietal and vintage. Auxerrois like for its tender richness. Quince aroma./ Full and fat pinot gris on the palate. Padded acidity of varietal and of 09. 16.2+.
WT020112-04. 09 BOURGOGNE PINOT NOIR VIEILLES VIGNES, ALBERT BICHOT - 12.5%. Tight but deep and full of potential./ Yes, tight and crisp for the vintage. Traditional house style. Full acidity. More textural play than the 08. Needs time. 16.1+.
WT020112-05. 09 BOURGOGNE PINOT NOIR, COLLECTION ALAIN CORCIA - 13%; property at Aze in the Maconnais. Maconnais face of pinot, racier than the ones from further north. Fills nicely as it airs./ Bright, racy sweet cherry. Good taste, balance, flair. As it should be. 16.3+.
WT020112-06. 09 CHATEAU MAYNE PARGADE, BORDEAUX - 12.5%; @ Soulignac. Sweet and open and inviting 09 claret nose. Merlot dominates./ Solid claret constitution. Good. 15.6.
WT020112-07. 10 TERRA ANDINA VALLE CENTRAL CABERNET SAUVIGNON - 13.5%. Nice and dark and woody-spicy. Tarter than the 09. Really sweet and well balanced for 10 though. Nice./ Great, sweet brown spices and caramel oak flavors as always. Fabulous value. 16.6
WT020112-08. 10 CASTILLA Y LEON TINTO LENA, BODEGAS VINOS DE LEON liter - 12.5%. Cool and purple Leon style of Spanish red. Tempranillo? Mencia? Richer than usual up front, good astringency behind./ This is a fine vintage of Lena. Grip and tartness and purple fruit properties. Not at all lean or mean. 16.0.
WT020112-09. 10 CARINENA GARNACHA LELIA, BODEGAS MANUEL PIQUER - 13.5%. Warm and sweet. A little singed even, a surprise in 10./ Good and roasted fruit. Some oak toast. Good play of acidity against ripeness. Unique Carinena presentation. 16.2.
WT020112-10. 08 BIERZO MENCIA ROBLE, ABAD DOM BUENO - 13.8%; five months in French and American oak barrels; blackberry, jam, vanilla.
Was said to be reduced when first opened. No issues now. Oh! Intense and purple mencia fruit with lovely oak complex. Love the oak and time in barrel influence as always./ A great oak complement to mencia. Always well integrated, singular and fine. 16.8.
WT020112-11. 10 CRISTOBAL 1492 ESTATE MENDOZA BONARDA - 14%. Fresh, dark, ripe, strong. No flower./ Sweet and strong. Generous. Good with beef and BBQ. 15.3.
WT020112-12. 10 CIGAR BOX RESERVE MENDOZA MALBEC - 14%; plums, violets, vanilla. Flair and fashion as well as warmth. Sweet and forthcoming. And there really is a tobacco note../ Sweet and fresh and well balanced. Good acidity. Delicious. 16.5.
WT020112-13. 10 VAUCLUSE, DOMAINE L’AMEILLAUD - 13.5%. Sweet and concentrated like the Cotes du Rhone, but not as intense, broad, deep, and plush./ Yeah, less easy going.. Not as rangy. Tight and tannic too. Needs time. 15.8+.
WT020112-14. 09 CHATEAUNEUF DU PAPE CUVEE TRADITION, DOMAINE BERTHET-RAYNE - 14.5%; 65% grenache, 20% mourvedre, 10% cinsault, 5% syrah; EcoCert; Provencal herbs, ground pepper, black cherry. Tight like many an 09 at present. Can’t smell any of that stuff in the label description. Chateauneuf broad and powerful. Berthet traditional styling./ Nice 09 sweet fruit. Ah, and here comes some peppercorn. This fills out as
it warms in the mouth. Becomes richer. Good vintage for this cuvee. 16.7+.
WT020112-15. 09 SEXTANT WHEELHOUSE PASO ROBLES ZINFANDEL - 14.6%. Powerful and ripe but not overdone. Monster Truck zinfandel. Oh, man! Deep, roasted berries and black pepper./ Yeah, Mr. Big. Sweet Paso fruit coats the power and grip. Violet pastille note on the aftertaste is special. 17.2.
WT020112-16. 09 RHEINHESSEN RIESLING STIFTSWEIN DRY, LIEBFRAUENSTIFT - 12%; from the vineyard surrounding the Liebfrauenkirche in Worms, the original home of Liebfraumilch. Good zip and acid for site and vintage. Well textured smell./ Rheinhessen full. Uniquely brisk for Rheinhessen. Good stuff. 16.2.
WT020112-17. HENRI MAIRE VIN FOU CUVEE DU CENTENAIRE BLANC DE BLANCS BRUT - 12%. Good blanc de blancs lift with floral fermentation overtones./ Flowers and candied fruits flavors. Savignin? Unique. 15.0.
WT020112-18. HENRI MAIRE VIN FOU CUVEE DU CENTENAIRE ROSE TENDRE DEMI-SEC - 12%. Nice berry scent. Good red fruit qualities. Sings. Vigorous mousse./ Yes, rich in creamy red fruits. Well balanced demi-sec. 16.3