Tasting Notes Blog - Printer-Friendly Version
- November, 2016
by Dick Scheer Updated December 7, 2016
|Use your browser print function to print this page.|
Wednesday, November 30, 2016
WT113016-1. 15 DANCING BULL WINEMAKER’S RESERVE CALIFORNIA SAUVIGNON BLANC - (U.S. WEST COAST) 12.5%. A blurred mix of lemon things./ Better cut and definition. Good sweet-tart, juicy palate. Good balance. Ready for food. 15.0/16.0.
WT113016-2. 15 POUILLY FUME DOMAINE DES FINES CAILLOTTES, JEAN PABIOT - (FRANCE LOIRE) 13%. Fresh and full of Pouilly Fume peach and nectarine and bright citrus. This rocks in 2015./ Lush vintage fruit fleshiness with a wonderful foil of tart, underripe peach and peach peel. Cool and northern. Delicious now. 17.1.
WT113016-3. 14 BANSHEE RICKSHAW CALIFORNIA CHARDONNAY - (U.S. WEST COAST) 14.1%; from North and Central Coast vyds. Mawkish, high pH. No oak. Pleasant enough./ Yes, very high pH. Sweetish. Flabby. Not a patch on the 2013. 15.1.
WT113016-4. 16 BEAUJOLAIS NOUVEAU, DOMAINE PRAL - (FRANCE BURGUNDY) 12%. Oh, juicy, bright, dazzlingly fruity. Is developing good padding already, two weeks after release. Wow./ Yes, fruit, cushion, juice, vigor. Balanced and delish. Chill it down a little. 16.7.
WT113016-5. 15 BEAUJOLAIS VILLAGES CLIMAT LE TRACOT, DOMAINE DUBOST - (FRANCE BURGUNDY) 12.5%. Much fatter, richer, fuller. Padded. Delivers. Spot on balance, plus those Villages and sunny vintage extras./ Closer, tighter, less flavor than aroma. Good acid. Body and light tannin. Age it awhile. 16.8/16.4+.
WT113016-6. 15 COTE DE BROUILLY GRAND CRU CHATEAU THIVIN, CLAUDE GEOFFRAY - (FRANCE BURGUNDY) 13%. Oh, this sings! The purity, the elevation, the class of Cote de Brouilly. Clear cherry and berry, translucent, rich, and penetrating./ Like the above Villages, the palate is tighter and has a narrower aromatic spectrum at present. This is softer, broader, and deeper though. And shows additional class of a Grand Cru. Defines Cote de Brouilly. 17.4+.
WT113016-7. 14 MONTEPULCIANO D’ABRUZZO LA BELLA ADDORMENTATA, GRAN SASSO - (ITALY) 13%. Good dried fruit, nut, and fruitcake aromas. Lovely richness tempered by the cool 2014 vintage, so it’s not a bit over the top. Sweet as a nut./ Balanced, rich, and harmonious both flavor and texture wise. Suave, and ready to enjoy. 16.3.
WT113016-8. 13 LAZIO ROSSO, IF YOU SEE KAY - (ITALY) 13.5%. Mainly cabernet sauvignon, with a little petit verdot and primitivo. Sweet, cunning, and winsome American winemaker style. Warm, savory, ripe fruit confit./ Shades of a Paso Robles cabernet, lush and savory. Fine, modern wine, world wine. 16.8.
WT113016-9. 15 CHATEAU FONTAINE WOODLAND MICHIGAN(?) RED - (U.S. MICHIGAN) Cab sauv, cab franc, merlot, syrah. Notable balance of the varietals, with light oak seasoning. Really well crafted./ Yes, harmony of grape varieties and oak. The winemaker has progressively lightened up on the oak in succeeding vintages; it used to be top-heavy. Now no excesses. A complete, harmonious New World claret. No tartness either. I’m not sure where this was sourced, since the red-grape harvest in NW Michigan was a near wipe-out in 2015. 16.7.
WT113016-10. 14 COTES DU RHONE CUVEE FIGUES, DOMAINE DE LA BASTIDE - (FRANCE MEDITERRANEAN) 13%; 60% shiraz (sic), 20% each grenache, carignan. Oh, a good one! I like this much better than the 2013. Rich and cool both. Nostril filling and etching. Deep seated, ripe black fruits. A winner./ Yes, fruit cremes even. Plus acid and tannin framework containing the rich filling. Balanced and fully satisfying. Yes! 16.5.
WT113016-11. 13 CHATEAU MUSAR MUSAR JEUNE BEKAA VALLEY RED - (LEBANON) 13.5%; 50% cinsault, 30% syrah, 20% cab sauv; unoaked. Rich, stalwart, singed, luxurious. Unmistakably Bekaa cinsault cuvee. Musar nobility./ Full of texture and flavor. Nothing ‘jeune’ about it. Full body, flavor, texture, all. Fine tannin. 17.2+.
WT113016-12. 15 AGUA DE PIEDRA GRAN SELECCION MENDOZA MALBEC - (ARGENTINA) 13.9%; old vines; heavy bottle award. Deep, sweet cherry concentration with oak extras in harmony. Comes on and on. Full power and generosity./ Yes, rich and sweet, and balanced by acid and tannin. Long, red-fruit finish. 16.6.
WT113016-13. 15 WYNCROFT MARLAND LATE HARVEST LAKE MICHIGAN RIESLING - (U.S. MICHIGAN) Sugar at harvest: 21.9%; residual sugar: 3.1%. Deep, rich, cool, aloof, noble, extracted. Its own thing./ Sweetness trumps acid in youth. All about fruit still, especially green melon and peach. Not the jawbreaker extract of a Grosses Gewachs. Again, defies comparisons. Fine potential. 17.0+.
WT113016-14. 15 MOSCATO D’ASTI, AZ. VIN. PATRIZI - (ITALY) 5.5%. Fresh and crisp, with citrus over peach. Medium intense./ Again, not as intense as the best. OK balance if only fair acidity. Decent. 16.0.
WT113016-15. CATALAN VERMUT DE REUS ROJO MIRO, EMILIO MIRO SALVAT liter - (FRANCE MEDITERRANEAN) 15%; est. 1957; contains wormwood. An attractive sweet vermouth with dry extract of botanicals. Balance of sweetness, tonic, amaro, alcohol. Right./ Yes, brown spices, sweets, botanicals. Perfect composition, really. Super. 17.5.
Wednesday, November 21, 2016
WT112116-1. 15 SOAVE CLASSICO, AZ. AGR. PIEROPAN - (ITALY) 12%; est. 1880. Both fresh and rich in 2015. Honey, vanilla, peach–a full, ripe garganega range./ Great, juicy acid. Dry and fruity. Balance of acidity and stone fruit succulence. 17.1
WT112116-2. 14 MORGAN HIGHLAND SANTA LUCIA HIGHLANDS CHARDONNAY - (U.S. WEST COAST) 14.2%. Full but cool. Hidden away and well tempered are alcohol, wood, and SLH mass. Fresh. Everything subtle, everything meshed./ Light oak treacle, malo cream. All subtle, balanced. Delicious food wine. 17.0.
WT112116-3. 13 JASON-STEPHENS SELECT CENTRAL COAST CHARDONNAY - (U.S. WEST COAST) 14.5%. Attractive bouquet. Apple, citrus, nut, grain. Good size./ Great now. Good acid, balance. The right presence and power the accompany poultry. A deal. 16.2.
WT112116-4. 13 LANGHE NEBBIOLO ANGELIN, ANGELO NEGRO - (ITALY) 13.5%. Cool, snappy, crisp, genuine. Tart cherry, tar, sweet dried fruit./ Good glycerol, game, power. Dry and rustic, old time nebbiolo. 16.2+.
WT112116-5. 13 LANGHE NEBBIOLO OCHETTI, RENATO RATTI - (ITALY) 14%. Fresher, fruitier, more modern. Cherry fruit clarity./ Yes, fresh, and clear, and fruity. Good quality as always. Useful now. 16.5.
WT112116-6. 15 TILIA MENDOZA MALBEC - (ARGENTINA) 13.5%. Dry and powerfu startl. Then becomes deep, sweet, spicy. Full./ Cremes and cherries. Good power and dryness too. A value. Wants food. 16.2.
WT112116-9. JASON-STEPHENS ONES AND ZEROS CENTRAL COAST RED - (U.S. WEST COAST) 14.5%. Oh, rich and powerful. In your face. Sweet and strong and black. And balanced./ Appassimento like for its sweetness and power. Spicy. Delivers. 16.9.
WT112116-10. 14 RAMEY SIDEBAR RHONEISH REDWOOD VALLEY RED - (U.S. WEST COAST) 14.5%; 48% mourvedre, 37% grenache, 15% syrah. Bold and powerful. Earthy./ Sweet and soft, especially for mourvedre. The Ramey style. 14.5.
WT112116-12. RUDESHEIMER WEINKELLEREI WINTER SECCO - (GERMANY) 9.5%. Lightly frothy. A fresh, herbal aroma. Unique. Basil./ Lightly sweet and spicy. Basil leads again. Nice enough. What it is. 16.0.
Wednesday, November 16, 2016
WT111616-1. 15 POUILLY FUME VIEILLES VIGNES, DOMAINE REGIS MINET - (FRANCE LOIRE) 13%. Young, fresh, unformed yet in terms of varietal and regional characters. Very crisp for a warm vintage./ Yes, neat, cool, crisp, well poised. Give it a few weeks at least to build aromatic definitions. I like its possibilities. 16.3+.
WT111616-3. 15 VENEZIE PINOT NOIR DUETORRI, CESARI - (ITALY) 12.5%; est. 1936. Fresh, fruity, reductive under screwcap. Cool climate pinot with bright 2015 fruit. Spot on for this series./ Yes, lithe, juicy. Pinot smoothness; ideal. A cool climate pinot value that will lose its reductive nature over the coming weeks and sweeten up nicely. 16.2.+.
WT111616-4. 15 ITALIA ROSSO DI ROCCA, ALBINO ROCCA - (ITALY) 13.5%; 80% nebbiolo (planted 1970), 10% barbera (1970), 10% cab franc (2000). Sings. A combo of richness and elegance with forward pleasures and abundant spiced fruit. Special./ Suave and gentle, with good acid. Some tannin and firmness on the back taste. It’s attractions will wax over the coming weeks. 16.3+.
WT111616-5. 15 DOLCETTO D’ALBA, AZ. AGR. FRATELLI SEGHESIO - (ITALY) 13%. Fresh, young, bright. Good varietal ID. Deep cherry aroma. Good frame, dryness, material./ Medium bodied. Dryness assuaged by the presence of glycerol. A proper young dolcetto with traditional styling. Will appreciate a few weeks/months in the cellar. 16.0+.
WT111616-6. 15 DOLCETTO D’ALBA, AZ. AGR. RENATO CORINO - (ITALY) 13.5%. Blacker, deeper, more significant. Spicier. More focus. Cherry, creme, vanilla./ Yes, more varietal definition. Deep, dark fruit. Suave, and useful already. 16.5+.
WT111616-7. 15 DOLCETTO D’ALBA, AZ. AGR. ALBINO ROCCA - (ITALY) 13.5%. Deep and rich again. Yet another interpretation of dolcetto. Still a bit reductive, as it is under screwcap. Significant cherry richness./ Yes, rich and savory. More tannin than the Corino, less than the Seghesio. Astringent finish points to some aging required. 16.3+.
WT111616-8. 15 DOLCETTO D’ALBA, AZ. AGR. LUIGI PIRA - (ITALY) 14%. Oh, is this rich and plump and forward in the Pira style. Fruit, spice, vigor, padding, all./ Yes, rich and accessible, full of fruit flavor and texture and goodness. Ready to serve. 16.8.
WT111616-9. 15 DOLCETTO D’ALBA, AZ. AGR. FRATELLI REVELLO - (ITALY) 14%. Violets, cherry, tar. Elegant and unique. Fresh and racy. A fifth face of dolcetto./ Racy and cool and floral. Black and beautiful. The finest of tannins. A great food wine. Shows the way. 16.7+.
WT111616-10. 15 BARBERA D’ALBA, AZ. AGR. ALBINO ROCCA - (ITALY) 13.5%. Follows the style of Rocca’s dolcetto, in a barbera vernacular. Stern, young, and reductive under screwcap. Air and age to invite it to blossom forth./ Superior glycerol makes for a lush, rich palate feel. Wow, quite the textural appeal! Great potential here. 16.6+.
WT111616-11. 15 BARBERA D’ALBA, AZ. AGR. RENATO CORINO - (ITALY) 14%. Deep, rustic, old time barbera. Dash of VA that’s not alien to this varietal./ More VA. Likely not an issue and will resolve itself as these are apt to do. Has this been barrel aged? Let this settle from its travels, and try again. 15.4+.
WT111616-12. 15 BARBERA D’ALBA, AZ. AGR. FRATELLI SEGHESIO\ - (ITALY) 14.5%. In the estate style, like the Seghesio dolcetto. Full, real, old time./ Medium bodied. Traditional Piemonte style. Good age potential. 15.9+.
WT111616-13. 15 BARBERA D’ALBA, AZ. AGR. FRATELLI REVELLO - (ITALY) 14.5%. Like the Revello dolcetto, the violets, the romance./ Satin textured and elegant house pattern. Suave textured. A very refined barbera. 16.4.
WT111616-14. 12 JLS CARNEROS MERLOT - (U.S. WEST COAST) 14.2%. Rich, ripe, and mature from the fruit-forward and abundant 2012 vintage. Especially ripe fruit for a Carneros red. The complete 2012 merlot at age four./ Oh, such rich fruit this delivers!/ Well, really full of material. There’s quality Carneros acidity here, and a more than evident sense of Napa class, rare at this price. Just gives and gives. 16.5.
WT111616-15. 14 ARAGON ALTOVINUM, EVODIA - (SPAIN) 14.5%; 100 yr vines in slate at 2400-3000'. Strong and forthright if uncomplicated. These used to have more aromatic range and depth under the Calatayud DO banner./ Yes, smooth and suave and straight forward. Good food wine. 15.8.
Wednesday, November 9, 2016
WT110916-1. 15 MACON CHAINTRE LE CHATEAU DE CHAINTRE, FABRICE LAROCHETTE - (FRANCE BURGUNDY) Full, as usual, with extra oomph and fruit fulfillment this vintage. Probably not barrel aged, but has that aura nonetheless. From lees contact?/ Yes, full bodied indeed. Good ripeness and strength and presence. Dash of astringent relief on the aftertaste. 16.5+.
WT110916-2. 14 GAILLAC BLANC, CHATEAU BASTIDE - (FRANCE BORDEAUX) Nutty-fruity mid age./ Has fruit character toward the sauvignon blanc grapefruit sort. Alert finish. 16.2.
WT110916-3. 12 MERCUREY BLANC, CHATEAU DE CHAMIREY - (FRANCE BURGUNDY) Full oak, still up front and in command./ Yes, prominent oak presence that is encouraging of future complexity. Form, acid, fruit, all. Once the oak settles in, this will be an outstanding Chalonnais chardonnay. 16.7+.
WT110916-4. 15 SANCERRE, LANGLOIS-CHATEAU - (FRANCE LOIRE) Crisp and bright up front, even tingly. Deep and complicated. Shades of Pouilly Fume./ Sweet citrus and peach like a Fume. Love it. 17.2.
WT110916-6. 16 KIM CRAWFORD MARLBOROUGH SAUVIGNON BLANC - (NEW ZEALAND) Sweet, floral, seductive. Honeysuckle./ Honeyed grapefruit, citrus blossom. Best vintage of this I’ve tasted. 17.3.
WT110916-7. 15 SANTA CAROLINA ESTATE RESERVA COLCHAGUA MERLOT - (CHILE) Fresh, dark, woody, sweet-tart, right on./ Yes, Chilean merlot sweet-tart tete a tete, with abundant and balanced fruit and oak. For the table or for the cellar. What a value! List price: $13. 16.3.
WT110916-8. 15 BODEGA NORTON COLECCION MENDOZA MALBEC - (ARGENTINA) Deep, dark, black fruited, sweet. Light reduction./ Medium bodied, dark, sweet, smooth. Easy, simple pleasures. Bitter foil on aftertaste. 15.9.
WT110916-9. 15 GROCHAU COMMUTER CUVEE WILLAMETTE VALLEY PINOT NOIR - (U.S. WEST COAST) NY Times 20 Under $20. Sweet, complete, elegant, perfect picture of 2015 Willamette pinot./ Sweet fruit, good oak. Great acid. Lithe and well tuned and fashioned. On the finish, fine tannin and that great acid reverberation. 16.6.
WT110916-10. 12 BOURGOGNE, A & A DE VILLARD - (FRANCE BURGUNDY) Fuller, darker, and more robust than the 2011. Sweet fruit, light oak./ Racy Burgundian acid. Light tannin. Well liked by the group. 16.0+.
WT110916-11. 12 BOURGOGNE, DOMAINE DES PERDRIX - (FRANCE BURGUNDY) Deep, racy, romantic. Great play of Nuits area pinot plumminess and oak elegance./ Great acid. Still tannic. Tasted the 2010 further along, and it had sweeter fruit development. This will challenge it in a year or so. 17.0+.
WT110916-12. 12 GIVRY, CHATEAU DE LA FERTE - (FRANCE BURGUNDY) Sweet fruit and oak now spewing forth. Not tight and stingy like it was last May. No issues now. Sings, soars, and presents a classic Givry yield./ Fine oak and fruit in balance. Givry facility. There’s a dash of VA as before, now well controlled and positive. Well liked by the group. 17.0+.
WT110916-13. 12 MERCUREY, CHATEAU DE CHAMIREY - (FRANCE BURGUNDY) Big, powerful, deep. Like the white, this shows oak influence, but it’s subtler and more ingrained. Sweet black cherry Mercurey fruit too. Yes./ Yes, indeed, and great acid, wood, form. More to it than the 2011 showed. Well liked by the group. 17.1+.
WT110916-14. 10 MERCUREY CLOS DU ROI 1ER CRU, CHATEAU DE CHAMIREY - (FRANCE BURGUNDY) This has firmed up over the last several months and is not as revealing as before. It’s a logical life cycle. Keep it awhile longer now./ Bold, strong, concentrated fruit and lavish oak. Large scaled Premier Cru with fine potential. 17.1+.
WT110916-15. 12 NUITS SAINT GEORGES AUX PERDRIX 1ER CRU, DOMAINE DES PERDRIX - (FRANCE BURGUNDY) Full, strong, and young, with the oak still in control./ Powerful, young, and loaded Nuits. No fun at all now. Must be cellared. 16.8++.
Wednesday, November 2, 2016
WT110216-1. 11 BOUZERON BLANC CUVEE AXELLE, DOMAINE MICHEL BRIDAY - (FRANCE BURGUNDY) 12%. Rich and suave, mature chardonnay with no grey hairs./ Yes, ideal, well developed Chalon chardonnay. Body, light resin, appealing rusticity. Low to no oak influence. Real Bouzeron blanc. The group was not as impressed. List price: $25. 16.5.
WT110216-4. 14 BEIRA ATLANTICO MARIA GOMES, LUIS PATO - (PORTUGAL) 12.5%. Lightly scented of stone fruit. Plenty vital./ Great acid and texture. Mid age fruit flavor development. Good now. 16.1.
WT110216-5. 14 MINHO ALVARINHO ARCA NOVA, QUINTA DAS ARCAS - (PORTUGAL) 13.5%. Oh, this sings! Special. Fruits and flowers. Totally fresh. Ripe pear and peach./ Great acid and astringency with light glycerol foil. Balanced in both texture and taste. Full varietal character. A classic. 16.9.
WT110216-6. 15 VOUVRAY, DIDIER CHAMPALOU - (FRANCE LOIRE) 12.5%. Tender-sweet and coy and spot on for this early age. Quince and lime. Sec tendre plumpness./ Not so coy after all. In fact, sizzling! Vibrant acid and extract plus sec tendre padding. Perfect pitch, poise, potential. 17.4+.
WT110216-7. 15 BARKER’S MARQUE ESTATE RANGA RANGA MARLBOROUGH SAUVIGNON BLANC - (NEW ZEALAND) 13%. Sweet grapefruit and passion fruit./ Confirmed. Plump and juicy. Perfectly correct for its age and price. 16.3.
WT110216-8. 16 OYSTER BAY MARLBOROUGH SAUVIGNON BLANC - (NEW ZEALAND) 12.5%. Very incisive, even tonic citrus and passion fruit./ Sweetish. Enough cut though. Market-tuned and well priced. 16.3.
WT110216-10. 11 SUMMERS ESTATE RESERVE KNIGHTS VALLEY MERLOT - (U.S. WEST COAST) 14.2%. Brightness of 2011 and warmth of Knights Valley fruit. Good oak too. Nicely managed in 2011. All in balance. Sweet black fruits persist./ Great oak, spice, savor. Rich, ripe black fruits. Good, strong presentation. Great value. List price: $33.
WT110216-11. 13 MAN FAMILY SKAAPVELD COASTAL REGION SHIRAZ - (SOUTH AFRICA) 14%. Warm, savory, roasted fruits. Powerful. Dried fruits and oak./ A warm climate, New World syrah with feral warmth and strength. Dekk-free. 15.8.
WT110216-12. 14 MCMANIS FAMILY CALIFORNIA SYRAH - (U.S. WEST COAST) 13.5%. Full, sweet, and savory fruit and oak that defines the McManis red wine style. Complete, with 2014 cool clarity. Totally open and revealing New World syrah. Total appeal./ Sweet, suave, savory. Warm spices, sweet, fruit, and that McManis potpourri of wood aromatics. 16.4.
WT110216-13. 14 CROZES HERMITAGE DOMAINE DES LISES, MAXIME GRAILLOT - (FRANCE MEDITERRANEAN) 13%. Very bright, black, juicy, pure. Perfectly ripe, cool year wine. Spot on./ Yes, sweet and savory. Some oak and barrel time. Singular northern Rhone syrah statement. Balanced. Ager. 16.7+.
WT110216-14. 14 CHIANTI RUFINA, FATTORIA SELVAPIANA - (ITALY) 13.5%. Oh, yes, Rufina subtlety and Selvapiana class and style. Fine dried cherry aroma and racy acid./ Oh, the 2014 acidity is well balanced by dried fruit glycerol. Perfectly balanced. This is mouthwatering. Fine tannin for texture. For now or later. All the 2014 advantages and none of the drawbacks. 16.9+.
WT110216-15. 15 PUGLIA NEGROAMARO, LUCCARELLI - (ITALY) 13%. Sweet and ripe. A controlled, positive edge of VA./ Very nectarous, black, concentrated extra maturity of the fruit in 2015. Spicy, without oak. Full. Complete negroamaro. 16.6.