Tasting Notes Blog - Printer-Friendly Version - JULY 2019
by Dick Scheer Updated August 17, 2019
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Wednesday, July 31, 2019
WT073119-01. CREMANT DE BORDEAUX BRUT, PREMIUS - (SPARKLING) 12%; semillon, cabernet franc, muscadelle; minimum 12 months en tirage; Gold Medal - Lyon. Clear and attractive picture of the varietal spread plus an aura of bottle bouquet. Very fine mousse./ Even more doughy bottle bouquet on the palate. I'm so glad we were finally able to get more of this. It sold out in the blink of an eye last fall. 16.5.
WT073119-02. 18 CHABLIS, DOMAINE PRIEURE SAINT-COME - (FRANCE BURGUNDY) 12.5%. Fruit emphasis. Fully accomplished. No oak, of course./ More about a northern Burgundy take on chardonnay fruit than on calcaire terroir. Just a delightful bargain. 16.6.
WT073119-03. 18 BEAUJOLAIS BLANC CHARDONNAY AU PAYS DES PIERRE DOREES, DOMAINE PRAL - (FRANCE BURGUNDY) 13%. Good and crisp and appley./ Oh, yes, this has racy fruit acidity and a Beaujolais area interpretation of chardonnay, in contrast to the Chablis. You have the northern and southern extremes of Burgundy chardonnay. Begs for food. 16.2.
WT073119-04. 18 ALSACE BLANC, KUENTZ-BAS - (FRANCE ALSACE) 13.5%; dry; 65% sylvaner, 15% muscat, 10% pinot gris, 10% gewurztraminer. Oh, this works. You get the sylvaner earthy basis, the muscat green tropics, the pinot gris body, and the gewurztraminer rose./ Yes, the body and foundation grapes, the aromatic grapes, and the gewurz ring of bitterness at the finale. An accomplished edelzwicker cuvee bound for a wurst assortment 16.6.
WT073119-05. 18 FENN VALLEY VINEYARDS LAKE MICHIGAN SHORE DRY TRAMINETTE - (U.S. MICHIGAN) 12%. Rosy and lovely./ Great acid, glycerol coating, bitter finale. The book on traminette. 17.0.
WT073119-07. 17 BEAUJOLAIS L'ANCIEN VIEILLES VIGNES TERRES DOREES, DOMAINE JEAN-PAUL BRUN - (FRANCE BURGUNDY ) 12%. Oh, sweet, bright, spicy, briary. Perfect./ Cool and dry. 2017 fruity. Old vines varietal intensity, without old vines grip. A wine of joy. 17.0.
WT073119-08. 17 FRANCAIS ROUGE CICADA, CHANTE CIGALE - (FRANCE MEDITERRANEAN) 13%; 80% grenache, 20% carignan. A little tentative. Carignan rustic edge./ Hasn't developed its third dimension yet. May be travel shocked. The 2016 tasted just a couple of months ago was much more accomplished. Give this one its due. 15.8+.
WT073119-09. 17 COTES DU RHONE SIGNATURE, LA FONT DU LOUP - (FRANCE MEDITERRANEAN) 14.5%. half each grenache, syrah. That pure, sweet, understated elegance of a Font du Loup wine. Spot on in maker and vintage style and quality./ Great acid, fruit-power balance. A perfect cuvee of red and black fruits. Very popular with the group. 16.9.
WT073119-10. 16 COTES DU RHONE MACLURA, CHATEAU PEGAU - (FRANCE MEDITERRANEAN) 14%; 50 year old vineyard at Sorgues; 60% grenache, 25% syrah, 10% mourvedre, 5% cinsault. Firm black fruit of Pegau. Deep and serious./ Boy, this is ripe for 2016. More like a 2015. Maybe a little edgy from travel. See it out. 16.5/15.5+.
WT073119-11. 16 COTES DU RHONE VIEILLES VIGNES, DOMAINE CHANTE CIGALE - (FRANCE MEDITERRANEAN) 15%; 70% grenache, 20% carignan, 10% syrah. A joyous aroma set of bramble, peppercorn, and garrIgue./ Even more garrigue, berry, and pepper spread on the palate. In a word, COMPLEX. Body, texture, and fine tannin. Very popular with the group. 16.9+.
WT073119-12. 16 CHIANTI CLASSICO, CASTELLO DI ALBOLA - (ITALY) 13%; at Radda; all sangiovese. Ripe and smoky, especially for 2016./ Ripe fruit plus acid vigor for food. Very fine tannin. Well balanced. And well priced! 16.5.
WT073119-13. 16 RIBERA DEL DUERO CRETA ROBLE, BODEGAS VALDAYA - (PORTUGAL) 14.5%; all tempranillo; 70 year old vines; aged 6 months in seasoned FR and US oak barrels. Big time Eric Solomon style selection. Wood and sweet fruit in spades. Power and give. A deal./ Talkss the Solomon talk. Big presence. Good acid for food. Yes, one of the best vintages of this. 16.9.
WT073119-14. 15 TERRA D'ORO AMADOR AGLIANICO - (U.S. WEST COAST) 13.5%; estate bottled; est. 1970. Oh, flair, oak, varietal concentration and complexity. Vigor, spread, power, depth./ Sweet, and polished to a sheen. Good texture and range. 16.5.
WT073119-15. 14 TABURNO AGLIANICO APOLLO, AZ. AGR. OCONE - (ITALY) 13.5%. Sweet fruited, with bottle bouquet forming./ 2014 acid vigor. Well textured. Some tannin to resolve yet. Well priced. 16.1+.
WT073119-16. 12 BRAMATERRA, TENUTE SELLA - (ITALY) 13%. Good example of a northern Piemonte nebbiolo. Race and concentration together. Young and 2012 tight still./ Yes, a firm laced expression of its vintage and its origin. Full potential. 16.5+.
Wednesday, July 24, 2019
WT072419-01. 18 BIANCO DE VENETO COLLE DEI TIGLI, CANTINE LENOTTI - (ITALY) 12.5%; half each cortese, garganega. Crisp. Subtle aromas of pear and peel. In the formative stage./ More fruit intensity and range on the palate. Well balanced. Just getting started. 16.4+.
WT072419-02. 18 HAY MAKER MARLBOROUGH SAUVIGON BLANC - (NEW ZEALAND) 12.5%. Full and sweet and juicy. Heart on sleeve. Easy appeal./ Yes, this has an appealing citrus sweetness to it. More about tangelo than grapefruit. All around good guy. 16.7.
WT072419-03. 18 PICPOUL DE PINET L'ETANG, DOMAINE DE CASTELNAU - (FRANCE MEDITERRANEAN) 13.5%. Full bodied for a picpoul. Full varietal green fruit./ The palate is less insistent and more in tune with the varietal. Really good acidity for food. 16.3.
WT072419-04. 18 RIOJA BLANCO, BODEGAS MUGA - (SPAIN) 13%; 90% viura, plus malvasia, garnacha blanca. Full young viura yellow fruits, with a malvasia aura of talc. Both rich and racy./ Yes, full indeed. This satisfies. Real body, fruit intensity, volume, and richness. One of the best vintages. 16.6.
WT072419-05. 15 BOURGOGNE CHARDONNAY CHATEAU DE CITEAUX, PHILIPPE BOUZEREAU - (FRANC BURGUNDY) 13%. Pleasing light oak, 2015 fruit sweetness, and a modicum of bottle bouquet development./ Yes, the ripe fruit of 2015 balanced by acid and light oak tannin. At an attractive stage. 16.5.
WT072419-06. 18 PAYS D'OC SYRAH ROSE CLEMENCE, DOMAINE FONT MARS - (FRANCE MEDITERRANEAN) 12.5%. Pink fruit emphasis, with a wisp of sulphur yet under its hermetic screwcap. Give it aeration./ The plump fruit is there, but it's still a bit sulphur suppressed. Decant and stand, or wait a few weeks before opening. 15.5+.
WT072419-07. 18 RIOJA ROSE, BODEGAS MUGA - (SPAIN) 13.5%; 60% garnacha, 30% viura, 10% tempranillo. Full of red fruits and fruit peels. Rich, and balanced./ Palate confirms all. Like the white Muga,, this is broad and full of presence in the mouth. 16.5.
WT072419-08. 18 FENN VALLEY VINEYARDS LAKE MICHIGAN SHORE CHAMBOURCIN - (U.S. MICHIGAN) 12.3%. Generous in varietal character. Sweet fruit and spice. Rhodanienne./ Full fruit, spice, extract, body, texture. Rich and rangy. Always a good bet here. 16.7.
WT072419-09. 18 ALFREDO ROCA FINCAS LA PERSEVERANCIA & SANTA HERMINIA SAN RAFAEL PINOT NOIR - (ARGENTINA) 13%. Soft and sweet pinot of youth and vinosity./ Retains that old time Burgundy pinot styling. Still a little shrill in youth. Or due to recent travel. Visit again in a few weeks. 15.8+.
WT072419-10. 17 GROCHAU CELLARS COMMUTER CUVEE WILLAMETTE VALLEY PINOT NOIR - (U.S. WEST COAST) 13.3%. 17 fruity and forthright. Spot on./ Defines Oregon pinot noir. Nothing flashy. Just good acidity and terrific balance to take to the table. 16.6+.
WT072419-11. 18 GOLAN HEIGHTS WINERY MOUNT HERMON GALILEE RED - (KOSHER) 13.9%; from Bordeaux varieties. Pleasing and clarety indeed. Warm aura of extra fruit ripeness given the relative latitude and growing zone climate versus Bordeaux./ Sweet, suave, and appealing. In tune with this well priced series. Delivers. 16.3.
WT072419-12. 17 CHATEAU SAUMAN, COTES DE BOURG - (FRANCE BORDEAUX) 13.5%; 90% merlot, 10% cabernet sauvignon. Full and luxurious for its vintage. Not the first 17 claret to come across that way. A deep, sweet fruited surprise. Actually, one of the richest and best in the series/ Full body and tannin, warmth and amplitude. 16.6+
WT072419-14. H. SICHEL SOHNE BLUE NUN SCHAUMWEIN WITH 24 KARAT GOLD FLAKES - (SPARKLING) 11%. Pleasing. Reminds me of a Prosecco or a French vin mousseux./ Yes, this takes a pleasant middle course between fruitiness and dryness. A sparkling wine of wide appeal. 15.6.
WT072419-15. TOSTI VERMOUTH DI TORINO ROSSO - (APERITIF) 15%. Very nice aromas of quinine, red wine, and sweet spices./ The correct strength, sweetness, and balance for wide applications. Such a deal! 16.7.
Wednesday, July10 2019
WT071019-01. 18 AUNTSFIELD SINGLE VINEYARD SOUTHERN VALLEYS MARLBOROUGH SAUVIGNON BLANC - (NEW ZEALAND) 13%; est. 1873. Lovely aromas of ripe citrus and passion fruit. A beauty./ Great acid race. Great flavor clarity. Perfect balance. Yow. 17.6.
WT071019-02. 18 PETIT CHABLIS, DOMAINE SEGUINOT-BORDET - (FRANCE BURGUNDY) 12.5%; est. 1590. Pure, composed, young but already coordinated and right./ Rich, right, suave. Ripe acid. Good early. 16.7.
WT071019-03. 18 CHABLIS CHAMPS ROYAUX, WILLIAM FEVRE - (FRANCE BURGUNDY) 13%; 125-acre estate; no new barrels. Fuller. More lees influence. More terroir too. And bulk and texture. Bold./ Yes, full textured, full of material. Still a little gritty tasted brut. Air, age, and food will take care of that. 16.7+.
WT071019-04. 16 COPAIN TOUS ENSEMBLE SONOMA COAST CHARDONNAY - (U.S. WEST COAST) 13%. A little grainy now. Light oak and barrel time. Doesn't sing./ Same–exactly. So-so. 15.3.
WT071019-05. 18 BANDOL ROSE, DOMAINE LA BASTIDE BLANCHE - (FRANCE MEDITERRANEAN) 13.5%. Full, rich, penetrating, pure, precise. Ideal. Deep red-violet mourvedre fruit/ Just as well composed and attractive on the palate. Even more fruit still. Doesn't need to age. Gives its all now. 17.1.
WT071019-06. 17 CHIROUBLES GRAND CRU, DOMAINE D. COQUELET - (FRANCE BURGUNDY) 12%. Cool and fresh. 17 lithe, Chiroubles lithe. Grand Cru rich and spicy as well as fruity. An adventure./ Juicy. Very, very fruity and flavorful, plus the spicy extras again. Wow. One of the best of its genre. 17.1.
WT071019-07. 17 SAINT AMOUR GRAND CRU VIEILLES VIGNES, DOMAINE DES CHERS - (FRANCE BURGUNDY) 13.5%. More backward. Darker disposition. Less give at present. Age it./ Flavorful. Juicy gamay taste. More bulk. Fine acid. See you again in 6 months. 16.6+.
WT071019-08. 17 COTES DE NUITS VILLAGES, DOMAINE GACHOT-MONOT - (FRANCE BURGUNDY) 13%; at Corgoloin, south of Nuits St. Georges. This needs more bottle age. It's presently four-square and vinous. Lacks the third dimension../ The palate reveals more fruit. Still, this is just a bud. 16.0++.
WT071019-09. 17 MARSANNAY CLOS DU ROY, DOMAINE REGIS BOUVIER - (FRANCE BURGUNDY) 13%. This is more like it. Northern racy, cool fruit. 17 flow. Much more revealing./ Yes, juicy, spicy, giving 17 Marsannay. Swells as it airs and warms in the mouth. Classic to vintage and AOC. 16.5+.
WT071019-10. 17 MARSANNAY LES LONGEROIES VIEILLES VIGNES, DOMAINE REGIS BOUVIER - (FRANCE BURGUNDY) 13%. Fuller, richer, rounder. More old vines concentration and aromatic spread./ Seems more barrel influence too. Yow. For the same price, I'll go for this one. 17.1+.
WT071019-11. 17 CHIANTI CLASSICO, PODERI CASTELLARE DI CASTELLINA - (ITALY) 13.5%. As always, this starts out with a big burst of fruit and spice. Total give./ Rich and thorough. Totally forthcoming, eager to please. Yow. 17.5.
WT071019-12. 17 NEBBIOLO D'ALBA, AZ. AGR. RENATO CORINO - (ITALY) 14%. Oh, sweet, elegant, and giving Corino and 2017 styles. A beauty./ Yes, flowing, sweet, friendly, balanced, and thoroughly useful already. 16.7.
WT071019-13. 17 VACQUEYRAS, DOMAINE DE LA TOURADE - (FRANCE MEDITERRANEAN) 14%. Stiff. Full. Needs time./ Again. The material is here, but there's little give. No fun yet. 15.5++.
WT071019-14. 15 CROZES HERMITAGE, DOMAINE BREYTON - 12.5%. Two-dimensional. No northern Rhone syrah set evident./ More fruit, but prosaic in nature. No syrah or Crozes ID signs. 16.2+?
WT071019-15. 15 WINKELER HASENSPRUNG RIESLING BEERENAUSLESE, WEINGUT KRAYER half bottle - (GERMANY) 9%; Goldene Preizmunze - Land Hessen. Medium sweet and intense. Vintage? Youth? I'm looking for more, but maybe it's a stage. After all, it earned a gold medal./ Well, more acid zing, more concentration of honey and flowers flavors than the nose suggested. Balanced and lusty and well posed after all. 17.0
WT071019-16. 13 TOKAJI ASZU 5 PUTTONYOS, KERESKEDOHAZ half liter - (HUNGARY) 11%. Nutty, leesy, chalky, sweet. Pollen and old honey./ Palate sweet and peachy as well as echoing the entire aromatic complex. Sweeter and more powerful than the beerenauslese, so this was definitely the right tasting order. 18.5+.