Tasting Notes Blog - Printer-Friendly Version
- November, 2013
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"Wednesday", November 25, 2013 Thanksgiving Party day
WT112513-01. 12 VENETO SAN VINCENZO, ANSELMI - (ITALY) 12.7%; 80% garganega, 10% each chardonnay, sauvignon blanc. Whoa! Very grassy. Sauvignon blanc talks load and clear. Or is this an aspect of garganega also? That other winemakers suppress? Certainly not the garganega nose I’m used to./ Rich garganega assets come out on the palate. Tonic,
bay, laurel. Was there sauvignon blanc in previous vintages? Certainly didn’t show. 16.6.
WT112513-02. 12 COSTIERES DE NIMES NOSTRE PAIS, MICHEL GASSIER - (FRANCE MEDITERRANEAN) 13.5%. 53% grenache blanc, 38% roussanne, 6% viognier, 3% bourboulenc. Oh, boy! Full bodied grenache blanc and roussanne bases. Thick underlayment. Viognier airs hover above. Perfect composition./ Rich and full, with a good measure of bourboulenc acidity. Total craftsmanship. 17.1.
WT112513-03. 12 RUTHERFORD RANCH NAPA VALLEY CHARDONNAY - (U.S.) 13.5%; 3-generation family winegrower. Young. A dusty aura. Lots of grape pulp and peel concentration. Good oak measure too./ Always good, this is really special in 2012. Full acid etch and smooth oak vanillin complement. Still getting its act together in bottle, it will come into harmony a few months on. 16.3+.
WT112513-04. 12 ALFREDO ROCA FINCAS LA PERSERVERANCIA & SANTA HERMINIA SAN RAFAEL PINOT NOIR - (ARGENTINA) 13.4%; 4-generation family winegrowers in the southernmost sector of Mendoza province. Rich and right, with Burgundy frame and acid as usual. Black tea, cherry, spice. Depth. Pinot sweetness./ Good Burgundian gaminess. New World sweet fruit core plus Euro framing and grip, acid, tannin, length. One of the best in this
intriguing series. 16.6+.
WT112513-05. 12 MARK WEST CALIFORNIA PINOT NOIR - (U.S.) 13.5%; est. 1978; primarily coastal sources. Sweet and wholesome 2012 fruit. Good pinot cherry and tea, pulp and peels. Coastal form and dryness. Good value./ Medium body, texture, flavor intensity. Good for the money. 16.0+.
WT112513-06. 12 CARINENA GARNACHA-SYRAH, BODEGAS ESTEBAN MARTIN - (SPAIN) 13.5%; 70-30. Big and full textured, with inviting fruit immediacy. Some toasty stuff too. Ideal Carinena warmth and toastiness./ Oh, boy, a burst of potpourri aromatics. Sweet, spicy, toasty, all. 16.8.
WT112513-07. 07 CARINENA GARNACHA OLD VINES, CASTILLO DE MONSERAN - (SPAIN) 13%; barrel aged on its lees for 6 months. Fully developed bouquet. Dried fruit and nut savors. Ready to please./ Full texture suavity and flavor development. Full bodied for winter fare like roasts, stews, game. 16.3.
WT112513-08. 12 COTES DU RHONE CUVEE DES CAPUCINES, DOMAINE DU VIEUX CHENE - (FRANCE MEDITERRANEAN) 14.5%; 90% grenache, 10% syrah. Oh, this is so sweet, immediate, and creme like after the perplexing 2011. Smooth rather than raspy. Several 2012s tasted to date share this appeal./ Again, rich, red berry fruit and a peacock’s tail of garrigue and peppercorn inflections. Breathless! 17.0.
WT112513-09. 11 CUVELIER LOS ANDES MENDOZA MALBEC - (ARGENTINA) 15.5%; owned by the Cuveliers of Ch Leoville Poyferre; 60% aged 11 months in French oak barrels. Oh, boy! Powerful! With sorghum like sweet concentration of fruit. The ultimate in ripe red fruit aromatics./ Full concentration of fruit and oak. Total culmination of the Cuveliers’ Leoville Poyferre style. Saturated. 17.5+.
WT112513-10. 12 OAK RIDGE OLD VINE LODI ZINFANDEL - (U.S.) 13.95%. Sweet, concentrated, intense Lodi old vines zin style. Not jammy; just super ripe and pure, peppery, spicy sur maturite. Oak extras too./ Whoa! Raspberry jam, including the seeds. Unique and fine oak savors. 16.8
WT112513-11. 10 WILDHURST RESERVE LAKE COUNTY ZINFANDEL - (U.S.) 16.1%; vineyards planted 1966. Way ripe, especially for 2010 and Lake County. Uber ripe, powerful, late harvest style of zinfandel/ Wow! Really is port like for its power, grip, extract, length. Traditional, highly desirable, rarely seen late harvest zinfandel at a bargain price. 17.8.
WT112513-12. BLANDY’S RAINWATER MEDIUM DRY MADEIRA - (FORTIFIED) 18%; est 1811. Lovely take on rainwater. Good maturity and dried fruits. Sultana, date, spices. Fruit cake./ Complete rainwater fulfillment. A 2-3 year old madeira that has achieved balance and complexity. After so many disappointing rainwaters, this one shows the way. 16.8.
Wednesday, November 20, 2013
WT112013-01. 12 TOKAJ FURMINT EVOLUCIO, LOVE OVER MONEY - (HUNGARY) 12%. Fresh and fine. Crisp, delicate apple, pear, melon. Chenin like./ Wow! Great furmint acid! Soo stinging! Hurts so good! 16.8.
WT112013-02. 11 OC TERRET, MARC ROMAN - (FRANCE MEDITERRANEAN) 12.5%. Attractive maturity. Nut, dried fruit. Useful./ Full flavor and texture. Body, volume, flavor, extract. Really delivers for mealtime service. 16.2.
WT112013-03. 12 ALTO ADIGE PINOT GRIGIO, CANTINA TERLAN - (ITALY) 13.5%. Whoa! Full! Apple, wax, nut. Power./ Yes, paraffin, glycerol. Intense flavor, texture, power. Long. Complete. 17.0.
WT112013-04. 12 IRPINIA FALANGHINA, TERREDORA DI PAOLO - (ITALY) 14%; falanghina has grown in Campania since Roman times. Sweet honey and lemon and apple. Still a little shy in youth./ Not on the palate though. Now the full citrus and blossom set. Honeysuckle. Orange blossom. Mum. Dry and smooth. An exceptionally good vintage. 16.7+.
WT112013-05. 12 PALI CHARM ACRES SONOMA COAST CHARDONNAY - (U.S.) 14.5%; fermented and aged in barrels, 25% new. Fresh and crisp Sonoma Coast chardonnay fruit. Oaky too; the oak is still a little ahead of the fruit. Full and broad./ Good sweet oak and barrel ferment savors. Plumpness of ripe 2012 fruit. Will improve as the oak settles in. 16.6+.
WT112013-06. 12 ARGYLE WILLAMETTE VALLEY PINOT NOIR - (U.S.) 13.5%. Light violet color./ Lovely, lilting, and delicately sweet. 2012 Oregon pinot sweet cherry and toast. Spot on form, poise./ Yes, nice and sweet and fruity in 2012 style. Light gaminess and toastiness. Great acid, light glycerol. Juicy. Balanced. Good future too. 16.9+.
WT112013-07. 10 CAHORS MALBEC LA CHAPELLE DU CLOS TRIGUEDINA, JEAN-LUC BALDES - (FRANCE BORDEAUX) 13%; 85% malbec, 15% merlot. Full, rustic, ripe, gamy, traditional style. Sweet, deep, open knit, and loaded. The edge of full ripeness and even a dash of VA./ Light oak treacle. Good acid. Black fruit of Cahors. Palate more compact and controlled, well framed. Daring Cahors. 16.6+.
WT112013-08. 08 PENINSULA DE SETUBAL RESERVA PERIQUITA, JOSE MARIA DA FONSECA - (PORTUGAL) 13%; aged 8 months in oak; unfiltered. Red-brown color./ Ruddy, old time, long in wood. Ripe. Some VA. Mature aromas of dried fruit and jerky./ Lots of glycerol. Mature and smooth. For winter fare: roasts and game. 16.7.
WT112013-09. 12 CASTILLA TEMPRANILLO VENTA MORALES, FINCA LAS CRUCES - (SPAIN) 14%. Dark maroon./ Young, fresh, whole bunch fermentation. Positive form of reduction. Rich, sweet fruit./ Sweet, ripe, savory, southern tempranillo. Fully revealing. Good acid. Good value. 15.9.
WT112013-10. 12 TERRE SICILIANE NERO D’AVOLA, CUSUMANO - (ITALY) 14%. Lovely. One of the best vintages of this. Ripe, with both sweet and crisp notes of red cherry, anise. Round, full, intense./ Yow! Violets too! Great sweet-tart spiel. Zero tannin. Seductive. I want it now. 16.8.
WT112013-11. 09 OC CABERNET-SYRAH LE MAZET DE SALLELES, DOMAINE DE NIZAS - (FRANCE MEDITERRANEAN) 14%; 60% cabernet sauvignon, 40% syrah. At mid age, the fruit is fading while little bottle bouquet has yet formed. Not at its most flattering stage of development./ Rallies on the palate though. Good, juicy acid. Fresh palate. Recovers. Good vitality. Palate restores my faith in its future. 15.9+.
WT112013-12. 11 COTES DU RHONE PAROLES DE FEMME, DOMAINE GALEVAN - (FRANCE MEDITERRANEAN) 14.5%; 60% grenache, 20% mourvedre, 10% each cinsault, carignan. Warm and toasty for 2011. The 2010 was cooler and racier. A surprising turnabout. Very ripe and toasty grenache nose./ Well, never mind. It recovers its cool disposition on the palate. Great garrigue race and cool acidity. Juicy, mouth-filling, mouth-watering. Total
food wine. 16.7+.
WT112013-13. 12 SEGHESIO FAMILY SONOMA ZINFANDEL - (U.S.) 14.8%; since 1895. Oh, boy, all the right elements of this cuvee on display in 2012. Sweet Alexander Valley fruit with fine oak elements in tune. Dry Creek Valley ripe cran-raspberry. Total 2012 fruit wholesomeness, accomplishment./ A beauty, with racy acid and round, sweet, just-right fruit ripeness and juiciness. Oak in balance; it’s a seasoning. Fruit creme
WT112013-14. 11 RHEINHESSEN RIESLING KABINETT SOIL TO SOUL, WEINGUT J&H-A STRUB - (GERMANY) 10.5%. Oh, intense, walnut husk like extract saturation./ Full extract overwhelms its sweetness. Good acid. A Hessia Grosses Gewachs style. 17.0.
WT112013-15. 02 CHATEAU DU ROY, SAINTE CROIX DU MONT - (FRANCE MEDITERRANEAN) 13.5%. Nutty, tawny, dried fruits. Sweet. Dusty botrytis./ Botrytis almond. Nice and sweet. Amaretto notions. 16.2.
Wednesday, November 13, 2013
WT111313-01. CHARLES ELLNER RESERVE BRUT CHAMPAGNE half bottle - (FRANCE SPARKLING) 12%; 60% chardonnay, 40% pinot noir. Whoa! Very toasty and well developed. A reserve indeed. Much longer on the lees than your basic non vintage brut./ Yes, a lot of dough and pastry from long duration en tirage. The mousse is fine beaded and thoroughly integrated. All the benefits of aging a non-vintage brut cuvee. Well liked by the
WT111313-02. 11 VERDICCHIO DEI CASTELLI DI JESI CLASSICO, AZ AGR MARCHETTI - (ITALY) 12.5%. Bright, fresh, full, special. Total verdicchio concentration. This guy gets as little as half a bottle per vine yield. It shows. For all the intensity, it retains a lot of dash./ Mmm. The depth that comes with aging. Good verdicchio, like muscadet, needn’t be drunk at first blush. Yin yang of smoothness and astringency. Well
liked by the group. 16.4.
WT111313-04. 11 CHABLIS, SIMONNET-FEBVRE - (FRANCE BURGUNDY) 12.5%. Fine apple and calcaire aromas. Dry and unwooded. Traditional, even classic. One of the best in this series./ Yes, apple, lemon, full extract. Good grip, and nut husks, especially walnut. Still somewhat enclosed in youth. Will go and grow. 16.8+.
WT111313-10. 11 MONTEPULCIANO D’ABRUZZO CAPESTRANO, PEPERONCINO - (ITALY) 13.5%. Delicious aromas of fruit cremes and violet pastille. Just what I’m looking for in a monte at this price./ Floral, clear headed, elegant, bright. Great acid. Loveable. 16.7.
WT111313-11. 10 COTES DU RHONE LES DENTELLES, YVES CHERON - (FRANCE MEDITERRANEAN) 13.5%. Classic ripe grenache basis plus fine garrigue raciness. Traditional. Cool, dark, and clear 2010 ID./ Yes, plump grenache plus garrigue Provencal herbs and peppercorn seasonings. Full flavored. Good, ripe acidity. Great balance. Lovely texture. A 2010 you can enjoy now. 16.8.
WT111313-12. 10 PENINSULA DE SETUBAL PERIQUITA, JOSE MARIA DA FONSECA - (PORTUGAL) 13%; 74% castelao, 14% trincadeira, 12% aragonez. Ripe, dark Portuguese variety fruit filling, well framed. Spicy, racy, peppery. Perfect image of 2010./ Yes, rich and spicy play. Light dash of 2010 peels extract and tannin with sweet fruit coating. Full and impressive. 16.7+.
WT111313-13. 07 TEJO RESERVA CABECA DE TOIRO, CAVES VELHAS - (PORTUGAL) 13.5%; half each touriga nacional, castelao; aged 6 months in French oak barrels. Round and mellow bouquet development. Woody and nutty impressions, plus dried fruits. Coming along nicely, with more in reserve./ Delicious, ripe, warm fruit. Lovely oak elegance. Fine tannins. 16.9+.
WT111313-15. 12 MOSCATO D’ASTI, BOSIO - (ITALY) 5.5%. Ideal aromatic set featuring orange blossom, peach, and jasmine./ Racy and flavorful Lovely balance of sweetness and acidity. 17.0.
Wednesday, November 6, 2013
WT110613-01. 12 PAVIA PINOT GRIGIO, CA’ DI PONTI - (ITALY) Full and appley. Right./ Medium bodied. Good fruit expression. Sets a proper standard for Pavia grigio. 16.1.
WT110613-02. 12 OC VIOGNIER, DOMAINE FERRANDIERE - (FRANCE MEDITERRANEAN) Crisp, fresh, bright./ Tingly acid. Viognier peach and honeysuckle flavors. 16.7.
WT110613-03. 12 DOLCETTO D’ALBA DEI GRASSI, ELIO GRASSO - (ITALY) Sweet fruited. Polished. Fresh and good./ Good varietal and regional character. I’d appreciate a bit more flair and depth.. 16.0+.
WT110613-04. 11 COTES DU RHONE, DOMAINE BOISSON - (FRANCE MEDITERRANEAN) Dark, firm, dry, and black. Good and spicy./ Deep and spicy indeed. 2011 open and expressive. 16.5+.
WT110613-05. 11 PLAN DE DIEU COTES DU RHONE VILLAGES, DOMAINE DE L’ESPIGOUETTE - (FRANCE MEDITERRANEAN) Very spicy and garrigue laden. In style. Positive aura of reduction. Purple and racy. Fine 2011 attributes./ Sweet berry fruit and garrigue flavors. Great acid. Peppery and vital, perfumed 2011. 16.8+.
WT110613-07. 10 DASHE DRY CREEK VALLEY ZINFANDEL - (U.S.) Full of sweet raspberry fruit and black peppercorn. Fine oak toast. This scores./ Firmness of youth and the vintage. Pleasing body. Cranberry aspect of a DCV zinfandel in a cooler vintage. Good stuff. 16.7+.
WT110613-08. 09 CHATEAU MERLET, BORDEAUX SUPERIEUR - (FRANCE BORDEAUX) Has some sulphur on the nose. Wholesome 09 fruit apparent./ Sulphur masks much of the fruit on the palate too. Give it air and age. 15.5+.
WT110613-09. 09 CHATEAU LES FEURIES, BORDEAUX SUPERIEUR - (FRANCE BORDEAUX) More ripeness, spice, fulfillment. Rich and lovely, racy./ The right claret weight and style. Works at the price for sure. 16.3.
WT110613-10. 09 CHATEAU MAILLARD CUVEE VIEUX CHENE, GRAVES - (FRANCE BORDEAUX) Fine characteristics of southern Graves rouge. Purple flowers, black earth. Trim and elegant. Ideal, really./ Good body and style. Well balanced. A winner. 16.6+.
WT110613-11. 11 SUR DE LOS ANDES RESERVA MENDOZA MALBEC - (ARGENTINA) Ripe. Well developed bouquet from barrel aging. Sweet, roasted raspberry./ Full tannin and texture. Fruit still hidden on the palate. Good future. 16.4+.
WT110613-12. 12 VALENCIA TEMPRANILLO, RADIO BOCA - (SPAIN) Fresh, primary, warm, black fruits. Nice take on southern tempranillo./ Good fruit flavor, texture, intensity. Smooth and attractive already. 16.3.
WT110613-13. 12 BARBERA D’ASTI SURI AZ AGR VILLA GIADA, ANDREA FACCIO - (ITALY) Solid, young barbera with some peels extract grip as well as a core of sweet cherry fruit contributing polish./ Sweet cherry, licorice snap, and peppercorn flavors. Racy, young, and right. 16.3+.
WT110613-14. 12 MOSCATO D’ASTI DULCIS, SAN SILVESTRO - (ITALY) Perfumed of rose and peony./ Sweet and sassy. Smooth. Fine mousse. Cold cream allure. Racy follow through. 17.2.
WT110613-15. BLANDY’S 5 YEAR OLD MALMSEY MADEIRA - (FORTIFIED) Full sweetness and acidity. Intense, powerful, baked, well balanced. Nuts, baked and dried fruits./ Yes, sweet, spicy, nutty, toasty. Couldn’t ask more of a 5 year old malmsey. 18.5.