Tasting Notes Blog - Printer-Friendly Version - September, 2016
by Dick Scheer     
 Updated  October 9,  2016

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Wednesday, September 28, 2016

WT092816-1. 15 CUSTOZA, AZ. AGR. CAVALCHINA - (ITALY) 12.5%. Revealing, forthcoming, zesty, tingly./ Full mineral brace. Full texture, body, grip. 16.6.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $16.99

WT092816-2. 15 SOAVE GREGORIS, FATTORI - (ITALY) 12.5%. Really pungent. Quince, apple, pear./ Full garganega display of fruit and fragrance. Great acid and everything else. 16.7.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $11.99

WT092816-3. 15 SANCERRE, DOMAINE ETIENNE DAULNY - (FRANCE LOIRE) 12.5%. Nose both sweet and crisp in 2015./ Sweet citrus and full acid. Everything really amplified this vintage. Fine grip. Mango and lime on the nice, long finish. 16.9.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $19.99

WT092816-4. 15 CHATEAU DE FONTENILLE, ENTRE DEUX MERS - (FRANCE BORDEAUX) 12.5%; 40% sauv blanc, 20% each sauv gris, muscadelle, semillon. The other varieties add more fullness, body, and weight to Sancerre’s straight sauvignon picture. Lower latitude talking here too./ Sauvignon gris smokiness, muscadelle green fruits, semillon weight, sauvignon blanc lime. All the varieties are players in this fine, sunny vintage. 16.7.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $10.99

WT092816-5. 16 NEDERBURG THE WINEMASTERS WESTERN CAPE CHENIN BLANC - (SOUTH AFRICA) 13.5%; est.1791. Good zing. Straight on chenin yellow fruit aroma./ Pleasing youthfulness. Quince, lime, calcaire, acidity. Great texture. Medium intense flavor. Trace of bitterness on the finish. 16.2.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $14.99

WT092816-6. (15) FRANCAIS ROUGE LE TELQUEL, PIERRE-OLIVIER BONHOMME - (FRANCE LOIRE) 12.5%; Thierry Puzelat, winemaker. Fresh and aromatic. Spices, barks, roots. Spiced cherry and sarsaparilla aromas./ Sweet fruited and echoing those bark-root aromatic notes. Unique. 16.5.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $19.99

WT092816-7. 12 BEST’S GREAT WESTERN PINOT NOIR - 13% est. 1866. Deep and concentrated. Burgundy like earthiness. Oak and baked cherry./ Game, earth, acid, more. Welcome high acidity for an Aussie pinot. 16.3+.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $18.99

WT092816-8. 13 UMBRIA ROSSO CAJO, CANTINA TERRE DE TRINCI - (ITALY) 13.5%; 1/3 each sagrantino, merlot, cab sauv. Spicy, sweet, and ripe sagrantino aromatics. Licorice, sur maturite fruit./ Rich, ripe, earthy, Italianate. Lush, husky. Well balanced. Shows oak and barrel aging complexity, suavity. All. 16.8.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $18.99

WT092816-9. 14 KULETO ESTATE FROG PRINCE NAPA RED - (U.S. WEST COAST) 14.5%; 60% cab sauv, 20% merlot, plus petit verdot, malbec, syrah. Sweet and well prepared approach. Soo seductive. Great oak, smoke, ripe fruit./ Sweet caramel oak and smoky, spicy, ripe fruit. Well balanced presentation. Alluring. 16.8.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $19.99

WT092816-10. 14 CHATEAU KSARA RESERVE DU COUVENT BEKAA VALLEY RED - (LEBANON) 13.5%; 40% syrah, 30% ea cab sauv, cab franc at 3500 feet; est. 1857. More restrained and elegant than usual. Controlled, fragrant./ Yes, fresh and charming. Bravo! Some tannin and gaminess at the end. 16.9+.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $14.99

WT092816-11. 13 MASSAYA LE COLOMBIER BEQAA VALLEY RED - (LEBANON) 14.5%; 35% ea cinsault, grenache; 15% ea syrah, tempranillo at 3000-3800 feet; Faqra (Mt Lebanon) & Tanail (Bequaa Valley); owners Ghosn family, Brunier (Vieux Telegraphe), Hebrard (Cheval Blanc). Unique complex includes deep-seated cassis./ Special, racy, tannic. Mid term age potential. Wow! 16.8+.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $14.99

WT092816-12. 14 PLAN DE DIEU COTES DU RHONE VILLAGES, DOMAINE DE L’ESPIGOUETTE - (FRANCE MEDITERRANEAN) 14.5%; 70% grenache, 20% syrah, 10% mourvedre. Oh, sweet fruited for 14! All-grenache nose. Spicy and lively. Soars in 14; masterful./ Peppercorn and garrigue ranges. Power, texture, all. Very popular with the group. 17.0.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $17.99

WT092816-13. 12 ZACA MESA ESTATE SANTA YNEZ VALLEY SYRAH - (U.S. WEST COAST) 14.1%; est. 1973; 3% viognier; aged 16 months in French oak barrels. Ripe, sweet 2012 fruit. Body, leather, roti fruit./ Rich and ripe fruit, and sweet and racy oak. Power and heat on the finish. 16.6.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $14.99

WT092816-14. 12 DOURO, QUINTA DE LA ROSA - (PORTUGAL) 14.5%; 40% touriga nacional, 30% ea tinta roriz, touriga franca. Deep blackberry and seed spice plus fine oak vigor./ Wow! Elegant, tannic, concentrated, gripping, powerful. Loaded in all flavor and texture aspects. 17.3+.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $16.99

WT092816-15. 14 KREUZNACHER KRONENBERG KABINETT, ST. ANTONIUS - A. BIROTH - (GERMANY) 9%. Pretty resinous already./ Palate sweet and spicy and vigorous. 15.9.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $7.99

WT092816-16. 14 GAILLAC BLANC, CHATEAU LABASTIDE - (FRANCE BORDEAUX) 50% loin de l’oeil, 30% mauzac, 20% sauvignon blanc. Scented and full./ Palate in a bit of a development trough though. 14.0+?
    Price each (at time of tasting) $11.99

WT092816-17. 10 GAILLAC ROUGE, CHATEAU LABASTIDE - (FRANCE BORDEAUX) 13.5%. 50% duras, with cab sauv and syrah. Sweet and forward, wholesome fruit qualities./ Full and fruity, with plenty of 2010 build and stamina without 2010 resistance. Good acid. A big boy. 16.5.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $11.99

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

WT092116-1. JANSZ PIPERS RIVER TASMANIA PREMIUM CUVEE - (AUSTRALIA) 12%; est. 1986; methode tasmanoise. Fine bead. Wisps of both fruit and doughy bottle bouquet. Unique./ Oh, creamy, doughy, very suave. Nice little nip of CO2 at the end. A class product. 17.0.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $24.99

WT092116-2. 15 TERRE SICILIANE PINOT GRIGIO, GRAN SASSO - (ITALY) 12%. A little heavy and citrus-grainy already. From region and/or warm vintage? The past few vintages this was much livelier and high altitude oriented./ Mild acidity renders it rather bland. 15.2.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $12.99

WT092116-3. 15 VERNACCIA DI SAN GIMIGNANO PANCOLE, AZ. AGR. CESANI - (ITALY) 13%; organically grown. Appley and neat, concise. Pear too./ Not a screamer. Very discreet. Smooth, with refined acidity. For delicate meal-time applications. 15.9+.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $15.99

WT092116-4. 15 CHINON ROSE, DOMAINE BERNARD BAUDRY - (ROSE) 12.5%. A very pretty nose of strawberry and raspberry./ Delicate and exquisite fruit. Great acid. Perfect picture of Chinon rose. 16.9.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $16.99

WT092116-5. 15 CHEVERNY ROUGE, PIERRE-OLIVIER BONHOMME - (FRANCE LOIRE) 12.5%. From pinot noir and gamay. Fresh and spicy and unique. Plum chutney./ Sweet and sassy. Balanced. Unique. Great acid. 17.0.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $19.99

WT092116-6. 14 DROUHIN OREGON CLOUDLINE WILLAMETTE VALLEY PINOT NOIR - (U.S. WEST COAST) 13.9%. Fresh, crunchy cherry and cool, racy acid. Euro. Oregon and 14 racy-rich combo. Ideal./ Nice Oregon pinot tartness with black fruit and enough padding. Balanced. Fine craftsmanship. Sweet and crisp, clinging taste. 16.9.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $18.99

WT092116-7. 14 ROW 503 WILLAMETTE VALLEY PINOT NOIR - (U.S. WEST COASE) 13.9%. Less vivacity. Rich enough. Less aromatic flair. Appealing meat fat nuance./ Plenty of good acid. Less finesse. Fuller. More tannin. Less grace. Certainly a different style, and a valid one. 16.4+.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $16.99

WT092116-8. 12 CHATEAU BONNET, BORDEAUX - (FRANCE BORDEAUX) 13%; half each cab sauv, merlot. Fruitier than usual. Balanced and good. Sweet, black, positive, giving./ Not at all herbal. Fully accomplished. Good earthy basis. 16.3.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $16.99

WT092116-9. 12 CHATEAU MOULIN DE GRENET, LUSSAC SAINT EMILION - (FRANCE BORDEAUX) 13%; 75% merlot, 25% cabernet. Sweet and round, rich and right Lussac./ High in both fruit acid and sweetness. In-style Right Bank claret at an attractive price for its pedigree. 16.2.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $14.99

WT092116-10. 13 VENETO ROSSO MERET, CANTINE VITEVIS - (ITALY) 14%; 70% merlot, 30% cab sauv. Wonderful sweet, round, spicy Italian take on this grape set. Wow! One rich 2013. Power, sweetness, and spiciness in harmony./ Yes, sweet and spicy, full and well balanced. Complete. 17.0.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $14.99

WT092116-11. 14 SOBON ESTATE OLD VINE AMADOR ZINFANDEL - (U.S. WEST COAST) 14.7%. Dried and singed Amador zin fruit. Quite the powerful thing./ Sweeter, fresher fruit on the palate, which contains the power in a manner that a drier, more tannic wine would not.. Juicy and fine, immediate taste appeal 16.2.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $12.99

WT092116-12. 14 NIERSTEINER OELBERG RIESLING KABINETT, WEINGUT EUGEN WEHRHEIM - (GERMANY) 10%. Big time sulphur under screwcap./ Rightful sweetness and plenty of SO2 scratch. Air and age. A lot. 13.5++.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $12.99

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

WT091416-1. PORTUGAL ROSE LANCERS, JOSE MARIA DA FONSECA - (PORTUGAL) 10%; est. 1944. Light fruit. Pleasing enough pink fruit./ Sweetish. Gentle. Works. 15.9.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $7.99

WT091416-2. 11 CHOREY LES BEAUNE LES BEAUMONTS, DOMAINE ARNOUX PERE - (FRANCE BURGUNDY) 13%. Full of charm and fruit sweetness. Ideal 2011 burgundy at age five./ Engaging. Just the right weight, balance, and suave, forward bouquet and texture appeal for current applications. 16.9.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $35.99

WT091416-3. 11 SAVIGNY LES BEAUNE LES PIMENTIERS, DOMAINE ARNOUX PERE - (FRANCE BURGUNDY) 13%. Fuller, darker, spicier. That spicy black cherry quality of Savigny. Plenty juicy. Wow!/ Vigorous black fruit, sweet and ripe. Aromatic oak lacings. More tannin than the Chorey. Good now with richer fare, or cellar a couple of years of maximum suavity. 17.1+.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $38.99

WT091416-4. 12 CHATEAU RECOUGNE, BORDEAUX SUPERIEUR - (FRANCE BORDEAUX) 13.5%; 78% merlot, 12% cab franc, 10% cab sauv. A very pleasing claret for current drinking. Rightly sweet fruit. No resistance. Shows some barrel time bouquet./ Good crisp acid edge without tartness. Balanced and fine. Light tannin adds textural appeal. Easy to drink at the table throughout fall-winter. 16.3.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $14.99

WT091416-5. 12 CHATEAU BELLEVUE, BLAYE COTES DE BORDEAUX - (FRANCE BORDEAUX) 13.5%. Ripe and sweet, even some sur maturite. A really fulfilled 2012. Lots of fruit./ Yes, fruit, spice, and vigor. Great acid and fine tannin. Well liked by the group. 16.5.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $15.99

WT091416-6. 12 CHATEAU LA MENOTTE, LALANDE DE POMEROL - (FRANCE BORDEAUX) 13%; at Neac. Dark and deep. Oh, purple and black fruits. Soft and voluptuous Pomerol styling. Spicy complex from oak and barrel time. Yes, lush fruit plus tempered oak seasoning. Soft tannins. Large and luxurious. 17.1.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $21.99

WT091416-7. 12 CHATEAU ROCHER CALON, MONTAGNE SAINT EMILION - (FRANCE BORDEAUX) 14%; 95% merlot, 5% cab sauv. Spicy, woody, and generously fruity. Ripe fruit and barrel time altogether./ Dark fruit and full, spicy savors. Full textured, with fine tannins. 16.8+.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $16.99

WT091416-8. 12 CLOS DES MENUTS, GRAND CRU, SAINT EMILION - (FRANCE BORDEAUX) 13%. Oh, grand! Lots of new oak embellishments, well integrated with generous Saint Emilion fruit. Complex, special, big time, classy claret./ Yes, upscale, complex, broad and deep. Fine textured. Wow! Well liked by the group. 17.5.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $26.99

WT091416-9. 12 CHATEAU BEAUMONT, CRU BOURGEOIS, HAUT MEDOC - (FRANCE BORDEAUX) 13%. The more severe style of a Left Bank, cabernet rich 2012 claret. Black and solid cabernet frame and material. Runs deep and shows signs of barrel aging. Balanced and promising presentation./ Yes, close and tannic still. A rightful 2012 cru bourgeois claret in need of further cellaring. 16.5+.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $23.99

WT091416-10. 12 CHATEAU CROIX MOUTON, BORDEAUX SUPERIEUR - (FRANCE BORDEAUX) 14%. Ripe, powerful, open knit, modern. Sur maturite. Parker sleeper for sure./ Strong and tannic, frank and forceful. Some alcohol heat. Steak-house claret. 15.8.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $19.99

WT091416-11. 12 CHATEAU PUYBARBE, COTES DE BOURG - (FRANCE BORDEAUX) 13.5%. Subtle, discreet, soft, and elegant, especially coming after the Croix Mouton. It has good power and penetration of its own though./ Good strength, depth, breadth, padding. Well balanced. Fine tannin. Yet another 2012 Right Bank winner. Well liked by the group. 16.6+.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $11.99

WT091416-12. 12 CHATEAU LA FLEUR PLAISANCE, MONTAGNE SAINT EMILION - (FRANCE BORDEAUX) 12.5%. A bit gamy and open textured. A little coarse. Very sweet and revealing nose. Ripe, spicy fruit./ Rallies on the palate, showing spice, sweetness, acid, texture–everything. Great fruit display on the finish. See it through, for sure. 16.4+.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $17.99

WT091416-13. 12 CHATEAU DES LANDES CUVEE TRADITION, LUSSAC SAINT EMILION - (FRANCE BORDEAUX) 14%; Gold Medal - Lyon. Like the 2010, the obdurate house style in youth. Even tougher than the 10 was at the same stage. Has plenty of material and oak./ Full reserve and grip. Solid, concentrated fruit core. Well poised. A keeper. 16.4++.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $19.99

WT091416-14. 12 HAUT DE CHATEAU POUJEAUX, HAUT MEDOC - (FRANCE BORDEAUX) 13%; 45% cab sauv, 55% merlot. Spicy oak and good fruit ripeness. Cabernet and merlot fruit complementary. Sweet blackcurrant and cherry. Seems based on gravel, not clay./ Wow, lavish oak and sweet black fruit. Well crafted. Extra barrel time gives this more to offer at present than the Beaumont. Bravo! 17.0+.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $21.99

WT091416-15. 15 ANGOVE FAMILY NINE VINES SE AUSTRALIA MOSCATO - (AUSTRALIA) 8%. Fresh, vivid, racy acidity gives an almost petillant tingle. Vivacious and penetrating muscat character, more petits grains than alexandria, so it seems different in makeup from the previous vintage./ Yes, more petit grains orange blossom taste, less alexandria orange marmalade. Sweet, lithe, low alcohol. A quaffer. 16.7.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $11.99

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

WT090716-1. 15 MUSCADET SEVRE ET MAINE SUR LIE LE FILS DES GRAS MOUTONS, DOMAINE CLAUDE BRANGER - (FRANCE LOIRE) 12%; vines average 38 years. Brisk apple and ventilating terrarium airs. Cool./ Racy, yet not without muscadet’s tender middle palate. Very nice texture and balance. Hits the spot. 16.6.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $15.99

WT090716-2. 15 KAMPTAL HASEL GRUNER VELTLINER, BRIGIT EICHINGER - (AUSTRIA) 12%. Greener fruit and less fruit range and depth than the 2013 and 2014. Young./ Mild acid. Rather underwhelming by comparison. Will more bottle age help? 15.5+?
    Price each (at time of tasting) $15.99

WT090716-3. 14 SOAVE, SAN ROCCO - (ITALY) 12%. Showing some age. Middlin’./ Sweetness of garganega but aging. 15.6.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $14.99

WT090716-4. 15 ALSACE PINOT BLANC TRADITION, BOTT FRERES - (FRANCE ALSACE) 11.5%; est. 1835. Oh, this is rich and full. Expansive, well textured, generous./ Yes, 15 soft and round and voluminous and revealing. Doughy finish. 16.7.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $14.99

WT090716-5. 14 ALSACE PINOT GRIS IM BERG DOMAINE SAINT-REMY, FAMILLE EHRHART - (FRANCE ALSACE) 13%. Rich and fruity, nutty, waxy. Feel the power. Thick yet dry./ Yes, full and very nutty. Fulfills, delivers. An Alsace pinot gris with oomph. 17.1.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $22.99

WT090716-6. 15 CHABLIS, DOMAINE SEGUINOT-BORDET - (FRANCE BURGUNDY) 12.5%. Rich and racy both. Perfect apple-calcaire expression./ Rich texture and acid, fine balance. All fits together so comfortably. 16.9+.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $18.99

WT090716-7. 15 BLACK STAR FARMS ARCTUROS SUR LIE ISIDOR’S CHOICE CAPAELLA VINEYARDS OLD MISSION CHARDONNAY - (U.S. MICHIGAN) 12.5%. 70% Washington fruit. Slow starter. Some lees. Then the appley chardonnay aspect comes on./ Fills out on the palate. Good lees material, texture. Soft. Well done. 16.1.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $16.99

WT090716-8. 15 CRAGGY RANGE TE MUNA ROAD VINEYARD MARTINBOROUGH SAUVIGNON BLANC - (NEW ZEALAND) 13%. Sweet lemon and passion fruit aromas. Peachy too. Full and penetrating. Total race./ Softer and mellower than the nose suggested. Nose more intense. Grip all the same. Overall, both sweet and fine, racy and elegant. 16.9.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $19.99

WT090716-9. 15 JOEL GOTT CALIFORNIA SAUVIGNON BLANC - (U.S. WEST COAST) 13.9%. More noticeable alcohol and less flair than the previous 2-3 vintages. A relatively disappointing year for this./ Rather thick, and mild in acid. Just standard fare this vintage. So far anyway. 15.5+?
    Price each (at time of tasting) $12.99

WT090716-10. 11 BOURGOGNE PASSETOUTGRAINS, DOMAINE ARNOUX PERE - (FRANCE BURGUNDY) 12.5%. This retains sweet fruit at age five. It’s bottle bouquet is full too. Wheat germ aura./ Sweet and wheaty. The gamay and pinot have merged for a whole greater than the sum of the parts. Works well, and well priced. 16.2.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $11.99

WT090716-11. 15 DE LOACH HERITAGE RESERVE CALIFORNIA PINOT NOIR - (U.S. WEST COAST) 13.5%; est. 1975. Powerful. Not pinot soft./ Woody, hot. Less pinot expression than before. Better the last three vintages. Suspect other grape varieties now in play. 15.7.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $10.99

WT090716-12. 12 COTES DU RHONE LES VIEILLES VIGNES SANTA DUC, YVES GRAS - (FRANCE MEDITERRANEAN) 14%. Sweet and roti winemaker style surpasses the cool 14 ripeness norm./ Sur maturite, dryness, power. No garrigue. Not subtle. Well liked by the group. What it is. 16.0.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $21.99

WT090716-13. 14 TERRA D’ORO AMADOR TEROLDEGO - (U.S. WEST COAST) 14.5%; est. 1970. Sweet and strong, and fruity too. Uber teroldego; logical Amador take./ Swelling, sweet, and flashy fruit flavor. Great acid for food. Great value. 16.6.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $14.99

WT090716-14. 13 JASON-STEPHENS SANTA CLARA VALLEY CABERNET SAUVIGNON - (U.S. WEST COAST) 14.8%. Sweet and powerful. Full delivery. Exceeds the AVA’s norm. Bravo!./ Sweet black currant and oak. Everything harmonious. 16.8.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $18.99

WT090716-15. 14 MOSEL RIESLING FEINHERB, WEINGUT SELBACH-OSTER - (GERMANY) 11%. Just the right expression of cedar for its age. Ventilating. Great acid and race. Erstes Gewachs suggestions./ Rich and rangy flavor and texture. Feinherb balance of acid and off dry level of sweetness. 16.5.
    Price each (at time of tasting) $14.99

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