Tasting Notes Blog - Printer-Friendly Version
- October, 2015
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Wednesday, October 28, 2015
WT102815-1. 14 WACHAU TERRASSEN GRUNER VELTLINER FEDERSPIEL, DOMANE WACHAU - (AUSTRIA) 12%. Good, full aroma of quince and legume Ideal./ Yeah, great volume, flavor intensity, texture, balance. All you could want. 17.0.
WT102815-2. 13 BOURGOGNE CHARDONNAY, DOMAINE MOUTARD-DILIGENT - (FRANCE BURGUNDY) 12.5%. Crisp apple plus meal. No oak. Northern chardonnay. Full./ Full texture and mealiness. Apple and pulp. Long and full finish. 17.0+.
WT102815-3. 14 BARNARD GRIFFIN COLUMBIA VALLEY SANGIOVESE ROSE - (U.S.) 12.9%. Full red fruit. Sweet cherry. Lots of appeal./ Some apple and acetate. Dry and astringent. 16.1.
WT102815-4. 13 BARBERA D’ASTI TRE VIGNE, VIETTI - (ITALY) 14%; estate bottled; unfiltered. Bright and spicy cherry, orange zest, peppercorn. Sweet fruit core. Anise note./ Dry and peppery. Tannin and astringency. For food or cellaring. House style. 16.3+.
WT102815-5. 11 CANNONAU DI SARDEGNA CAPO FERRATO REI, CANTINA CASTIADAS - (ITALY) 14%. Dark, southern, singed. Light tar and licorice lacings. Very concentrated./ Clear and intense cherry-raspberry and pitch. Vigorous. Unique. No grenache from France or Spain quite like this. Wow! Chewy. A taste adventure. 17.0+.
WT102815-6. 11 COTES DU RHONE LES DENTELLES, YVES CHERON - (FRANCE MEDITERRANEAN) 14.5%. Sulphury to start. Clears to reveal plummy fruit under./ Palate is 2011 elegant and revealing. Yes, juicy and inviting. Alcohol and extract presence forms a substantial foundation. Lots to offer. 16.4.
WT102815-7. 13 DONA PAULA ESTATE ALLUVIA VINEYARD VALLE DU UCO MALBEC - (ARGENTINA) 14.3%; vyd at 4430' elevation. Deep, rich, even syrupy like a Barossa shiraz. Fully extracted./ The palate offers good oak extras and dryness, so the rich fruit substance is not syrupy after all. Really fabulous composition on the palate.16.2+.
WT102815-8. 12 COLUMBIA CREST LES CHEVAUX HORSE HEAVEN HILLS RED - (U.S.) 14.5%. Firm, dry, quiet. Plenty of oak evident, offering aromatics and framing. Dark, austere Washington claret style./ Rich, caramelly oak. Gross oak tannins. Needs time to soften, for the fruit to well up and balance the oak. 2010 was more enjoyable at about the same age. 16.3+.
WT102815-9. 13 CAMPO DE BORJA GARNACHA OLD VINES TRES PICOS, BODEGAS BORSAO - (SPAIN) 15%; yields under 2 tons per acre. Sweet, ripe fruit and plenty of power to meet it head-on. Woody too. Always a large wine./ Sweet fruit and treacly oak. Well structured. Good acid. The usual style and quality here in 2013. 16.6+.
WT102815-10. 10 PRIORAT CRIANZA MONTEBRO, MAS D’EN COSME - (SPAIN) 14.5%; 50% grenache, 30% carignan, 20% cab sauv. Strong, sweet, singed, tarry. Great power and grip. A big boy./ Big-time extract but a sense of suavity too. Glycerol coated. Ripe fruit. A giant; has it all. 17.2.
WT102815-11. 14 MONTINORE ESTATE SWEET RESERVE WILLAMETTE VALLEY RIESLING - (U.S.) 10%. Great race and acid. Smells very fresh. No sense of sweetness./ Sweetness on the palate balanced by racy acidity and also by dry extract. Young and succulent. 16.6.
WT102815-12. GALLO EXTRA DRY VERMOUTH - (APERITIF) 16%; Grand Gold Cup - Trophy of Honor - Rome Fair 1962. Unusual vermouth nose features menthol at first, followed by green herbs, botanicals, apple and peel./ Good vermouth botanicals on the palate. Racy, texture, grip. Lots of personality. 16.2.
Wednesday, October 21, 2015
WT102115-1. 14 COTES DE GASCOGNE, DOMAINE DES CASSAGNOLES - (FRANCE BORDEAUX) 12%. Half colombard, a quarter each gros manseng, ugni blanc. Fresh and classic. The crisp colombard and ugni play against the plump manseng./ Yes, this gives a green fruit-stone fruit yin-yang. And crisp-plush exchange. Very bright. Quite the taste adventure. 16.4.
WT102115-2. 14 ALSACE PINOT GRIS, DOMAINE ZINCK - (FRANCE ALSACE) 13%; 2/8 on the dry/sweet scale. Initial sulphur under screwcap. Fat and waxy beneath./ Fat, with light, sec tendre sweetness. Young. Coated acid. Sulphur clears with aeration. Will build up more bulk with additional bottle age. 16.2+.
WT102115-3. 13 BOURGOGNE CHARDONNAY, FRANCOIS CARILLON - (FRANCE BURGUNDY) 13%. Very attractive cake frosting, creme brulee aromas. Oak toast and chardonnay lemon./ The palate is not as expressive at present. Firm, contained. Not yielding much flavor or texture. I suspect it will reveal more over the coming months. 16.0++.
WT102115-4. 14 TERRE SICILIANE BIANCO SP68, AZ. AGR. ARIANNA OCCHIPINTI - (ITALY) 12%. Light SO2, which blows off quickly. Muscat florals. Dry. Talc./ Yes, dry and talcy. Unique and food-worthy interpretation of muscat. For Pac Rim cuisine. 16.7.
WT102115-5. 14 COSTIERES DE NIMES ROSE GALETS ROSES, CHATEAU MOURGUE DU GRES - (FRANCE MEDITERRANEAN) 13.5%. Full and vital. Food- and winter-worthy. Classic Med set of varietals. Penetrates and tingles./ Dry, full. Good flavor than aroma intensity. Bulk and power. For the dinner table. 16.8.
WT102115-6. 13 RIOJA SELECCION, SIERRA CANTABRIA - (SPAIN) 13.5%; all tempranillo. Fresh, young, fruity, lovely tempranillo character. Sweet fruit dominates the nose, hiding any oak character./ Well, now a nice, light oak toastiness comes out on the palate, adding complexity. Great flavor and texture ranges. Balanced. Even more to come. 16.6+.
WT102115-7. 13 CHIANTI POGGIO VIGNOSO, AZ. AGR. PUGLIANO - (ITALY) 13.5%; 85% sangiovese, 10% canaiolo, 5% malvasia. Lovely, sweet and dried fruits aromas, singed fruit, glycerol, light oak. Wow!/ Fruit cake, dried cherry, nut, citron./ Pleasing body. Glycerol, dried fruit, fine sweet-acid balance. Long, complex finish. 16.9.
WT102115-8. 13 FOREFRONT SAN LUIS OBISPO - MONTEREY PINOT NOIR - (U.S.) 13.8%; 94/6. Very bright Central Coast cool cherry take on pinot. Pungent, crisp, penetrating, rich, pure./ Good body and flavor concentration. Very lovely, focused pinot flavors. All fruit, no herb or tea. Burgundian form that won over the Europhiles on the tasting panel. 16.7.
WT102115-9. 13 SHANNON RIDGE LAKE COUNTY CABERNET SAUVIGNON - (U.S.) 13.9%. Full, black fruited, spicy. 13 frame. No Lake County tameness. Power. Give./ Satisfying body. Sweet oak. Good vinosity, length. 16.4.
WT102115-10. 12 ANCIENT PEAKS PASO ROBLES ZINFANDEL - (U.S.) 14.2%. Medium intense and lightly sweetish Paso. Even, disciplined./ Yes, this is Paso zin under control. Good acid, juice. No Paso Dr. Pepper. 16.0+.
WT102115-11. 12 BARBERA D’ASTI ALBERA, ARALDICA - (ITALY) 14.5%. Sweet fruit aroma for this series, less dark and raspy in youth. Wears its power well (14%). Intense, sweet black cherry core. Pink peppercorn zestiness./ The glycerol and alcohol contribute a smoothness that is foiled by great acidity and fine tannin. What a super, well balanced dinner wine with wide-ranging possibilities. 16.8.
WT102115-12. 12 FABRE MONTMAYOU GRAN RESERVA MENDOZA MALBEC - (ARGENTINA) 14.5%. Reduced, stinky. Dark and deep./ Grip of sulphur. Hard to judge well. Clears some with aeration. Decant early or age. 13.0++.
WT102115-14. 12 OCKFENER BOCKSTEIN RIESLING, WEINGUT DR. FISCHER - (GERMANY) 11.5%. Full, earthy Bockstein. Tingly, sweet, classic Fischer Ock Bock./ Sweet and well balanced. Again, the Bockstein earthiness. Lovely Fischer styling, acidity. Works. 16.3.
WT102115-15. 09 DOW’S LATE BOTTLED VINTAGE PORTO bottled 2014 - (FORTIFIED) 19.5%. Classic Dow’s dry, full, deep, singed aromatic set. Pure and dense plum and blackberry./ Great balance of sweetness, acidity, and alcohol. That relatively dry, signature taste of Dow’s. 17.3+.
Wednesday, October 14, 2015
WT101415-01. 14 RIAS BAIXAS ALBARINO, BODEGAS LA CANA - (SPAIN) 12.5%. Full. Good stone fruit, yellow fruit. Rich and persistent. Body and aroma. Best Cana and best 14 yet./ Pleasing body. Showing more flavor expression and heft than many 2014s from this zone.. 16.6.
WT101415-02. 14 TERRA D’ORO CLARKSBURG CHENIN BLANC - VIOGNIER - (U.S.) 12.5%; 87/13. Cool, clear, open and revealing 2014. Chenin melon, viognier honeysuckle. Plus lemon./ Good acid. Lots of chenin melon. Well composed. Great acid for chenin. Fresh, floral, vibrant, tangy finish. 16.5.
WT101415-03. 14 COTES DE ROUSSILLON BLANC CUVEE CENTENAIRE, DOMAINE LAFAGE - (FRANCE MEDITERRANEAN) 13.5%; grenache blanc and gris from 100 yr old vines, plus a little roussanne. Fullness of the grenaches. Light roussanne white peach./ Pleasing flow of the vintage buoyed by alcohol-providing smoothness and amplitude. 16.4.
WT101415-04. 14 ERATH OREGON PINOT GRIS - (U.S.) 13.5%. Full apple, nut, melon set. Right./ Rather firm, dry, fluid. Betters years of this. Or is it me today? 15.8.
WT101415-05. 14 MACON CHAINTRE LE CHATEAU DE CHAINTRE, FABRICE LAROCHETTE - (FRANCE BURGUNDY) 13.5%. Full, with vanilla cream and ‘woody’ extras. Lees aging shows./ Woodsy. Rather less extract than usual. I think my palate is fatigued today from all the giant trade tastings lately. Or is it malo affected? Butter creme finish. Unusual for this series. 16.2+.
WT101415-06. 14 MARTIN RAY RUSSIAN RIVER VALLEY CHARDONNAY - (U.S.) 13.8%. Full. RRV pedigree. Full set of Burgundy winemaking techniques show, lees graininess, malo creaminess, good oak aroma and texture./ Full toast, granola in cream, fortitude, texture. 16.7.
WT101415-07. 12 CHATEAU MAISON NEUVE CUVEE ALEXIA EYMAS, BLAYE COTES DE BORDEAUX - (FRANCE BORDEAUX) 12.5%. Deep, tarry-dense straight-on 2012 fruit. Very black fruit and peel./ Solid, black, very concentrated. Dry, tannic, a bit astringent. Pleasing body and flavor intensity. Good value if given more bottle age. 15.9+.
WT101415-08. 13 BARBERA D’ALBA, FRANCO SERRA - (ITALY) 13%. Nice and spicy as usual. Rather 2013 firm, even austere. Licorice snap./ Glycerol, acid, light brett. Needs food. Preferred 2012, 2011. 16.2+.
WT101415-09. 11 RIOJA CRIANZA, MARQUES DE CACERES - (SPAIN) 13.5%. Baja warm. Shows wood time development but no fruit or oak flairs. Pleasing balance of the two though./ Thin and hot. Vinous. Standard. 15.1+.
WT101415-10. 13 NOBLE VINES 667 MONTEREY PINOT NOIR - (U.S.) 14.5%. Sweet and sassy. Both warmth and coolness. Standard./ High acid. 13 austere. 12 was better. 15.6+.
WT101415-11. 12 MARTIN RAY SONOMA CABERNET SAUVIGNON - (U.S.) 14.2%. This is a shadow of the 2009. Austere for 2012. Woody. Sonoma cabernet plain. Bitter almond note./ Oak vanillin. Hollow for 2012, and fruitless. 14.5+.
WT101415-12. 14 COTES DU RHONE CUVEE ROMAINE, DOMAINE LA GARRIGUE - (FRANCE MEDITERRANEAN) 14%. Solid, spicy, peppery, light garrigue. Dry and a little fruity, mainly vinous./ Very dry and austere. No fun for now. These are always firm young, but more substantial than this vintage. 15.4+.
WT101415-13. 06 PRIORAT ARTIGAS, BODEGAS MAS ALTA - (SPAIN) 14.5%; 80% grenache, 10% carignan, 10% cab sauv; special attendee price: $11.99. Mature, raisiny, getting a little stinky, decayed./ Mature. Good wood and texture. Still useful with food, but don’t keep.15.6-.
WT101415-14. 13 TERRA D’ORO DEAVER VINEYARD AMADOR ZINFANDEL - (U.S.) 14.5%; vineyard planted 1881. Ripe, deep, singed, powerful. Total nostril experience, both scent and texture wise. Oomph galore./ Power, glycerol, presence, fruit essence. Statuesque. 18.4+.
WT101415-15. 14 WINKELER HASENSPRUNG RIESLING SPATLESE, WEINGUT H. KRAYER - (GERMANY) 9%. Sweet orange, peach, and stone Rheingau riesling. 2014 clarity, form, beauty./ Sweetness coats acidity yet. Pure and lovely Rheingau riesling statement. 17.3+.
Wednesday, October 7, 2015
WT100715-01. 14 EST! EST!! EST!!! DI MONTEFIASCONE, FALESCO - (ITALY) 12%; 60% trebbiano, 30% malvasia, 10% roscetto. Lovely, lilting aroma of linden. So pretty and discreet./ Full and fetching flavors of orchard fruits. Flowing, gentle, ideal. 16.5.
WT100715-02. 14 MUSCADET SEVRE ET MAINE SUR LIE, DOMAINE DE LA PEPIERE - (FRANCE LOIRE) 12%. Perfect muscadet apple and moss aromas, with lift, coolness, balance. A great vintage./ So well textured. The acid properly tender. All about finesse and subtlety. 17.0.
WT100715-03. 14 SANNIO FALANGHINA, FEUDI DE SAN GREGORIO - (ITALY) 13%. Lovely, tensile, crisp display of stone fruits. Full, with great acid delivery. More pit fruits. Swelling finish. 16.9.
WT100715-04. 11 MONTAGNY LA GRANDE ROCHE 1ER CRU, LOUIS LATOUR - (FRANCE BURGUNDY) 13%. Pure, sweet, low oak Montagny charm and grace. No resin./ Well some Chalonnaise resin on the palate, in a positive way. Attractive and logical bouquet development at age four. More good things to come. Fine acid of the vintage. 17.0+.
WT100715-05. 14 VOUVRAY JARDIN EN FLEURS, BESOMBES MOC-BARIL - (FRANCE LOIRE) 11.5%. Lime, blossoms, almond, pastry./ Subtle, elegant, weightless. Buffered acidity. Young. Certainly a good effort and good value. 16.3+.
WT100715-06. 14 VOUVRAY, DOMAINE CHAMPALOU - (FRANCE LOIRE) 12.5%. More about texture, less about scent. Drier./ More quince, lime, calcaire. Full body and texture. Another super vintage of this, totally extracted. Gets better and better with aeration. 17.3+.
WT100715-07. 14 CHINON, CHATEAU COUDRAY MONTPENSIER - (FRANCE LOIRE) 13%. Oh, my! Deep and haunting. Cool yet ripe. Cabernet franc cherry plus creme. Fabulous./ Again. Fine textured. Cherry peel and extract. Good form, sweet center. Cherry and tar. Ideal. Fine tannin. Long finish. More substantial than the 2012. Wow. 17.1+.
WT100715-08. 13 PELEE ISLAND ONTARIO CABERNET FRANC - (CANADA) 13%. Starts a little neutral, vinous. Now sweetening up. Now the fruit becomes fulfilling./ Yes, sweet fruit. More grip than the 2013. Well priced. 16.1+.
WT100715-09. 11 MCWILLIAM’S HANWOOD ESTATE JACK’S BLEND SE AUSTRALIA RED - (AUSTRALIA) 13%. Singed, warm, sweet nose./ Warm, smooth, uncomplicated. Decent acid. Pleasing vinosity. Good deal. 15.5.
WT100715-10. 13 HIGHWAY 101 CENTRAL COAST PINOT NOIR - (U.S.) 13.8%. Nice, rich, ripe pinot. Not Monterey tart Sweet oak. All well composed./ Juicy and fine sweet-tart pinot combo. Cherry juice taste. Great acid, nice balance, fine oak. 16.8.
WT100715-11. 14 AMALAYA SALTA MALBEC 14 AMALAYA SALTA MALBEC - (ARGENTINA) 13.9%; w/ 10% cabernet sauvignon, 5% syrah; vineyards at 5500'. Deep, inky, essential, pure cherry and licorice. Wow! So pure a take on malbec./ Yes, intense, sweet, concentrated, and framed by fine tannin. Well balanced, well crafted. 16.6.
WT100715-12. 12 DOURO PINTAS CHARACTER, WINE & SOUL - (PORTUGAL) 14%; 47 year old vines; foot trodden; Wine Enthusiast 93/100. Deep, sweet, loaded Douro tinta. Fabulous oak, sweet fruit concentrate./ Yes, really powerful, sweet Port-zone tinta. Great intensity of both fruit and oak expression. Eminently well balanced. Has it all. 17.6+.
WT100715-13. 11 COTES DU RHONE CUVEE DES VIEUX TRUFFIERS, DOMAINE LA GARRIGON - (FRANCE MEDITERRANEAN) 14%; organically grown. Sweet fruit for 2011, with light peppercorn and garrigue seasonings. 2011 finesse./ Sweet and peppery-spicy. Well balanced. 16.4.
WT100715-14. 14 VITTORIA FRAPPATO IL FRAPPATO, VALLE DEL’ACATE - (ITALY) 13.5%; est. 1870. Sweet morello and maraschino cherry aroma. Young and subtle; the aroma is not gushing forth yet./ Sweet cherry flavor, focused and pure. Great acid. Tastes like a cherry wine, really. Ideal already on the palate. 16.8.
WT100715-15. 11 PETIT GUIRAUD DE CHATEAU GUIRAUD, SAUTERNES half bottle - (FRANCE BORDEAUX) 13.5%. Sweet and upbeat. Pineapple, lemon curd. Bright acid./ Really vital acidity to balance its unctuous sweetness. Total concentration here. Long and powerful. What must the Grand Vin be like?! 18.2+.