Sunday, August 18, 2013

Three wines and lots of guests

We had people over for dinner Saturday and Sunday, so with all the talking and laughing etc., I didn't get to do detailed notes, but here are my impressions of three of the wines we popped.

2010 Domaine Vignaud CHABLIS PREMIER CRU Fourchaume -- Nice, minerally, brothy nose.  Nice entry, but then lean and a little hollow at present in the mid-palate.  Finishes with lots of clean, limestoney minerals in the finish.  Will be better in 2-4 years.

2005 Chateau Lascombes MARGAUX -- Much better than it was two years ago when I opened my first bottle.  Starting to develop some complexity, with the California-like primary fruit and oak I thought dominated the first bottle I popped a couple of years ago starting to subside and beginning to develop into a more sophisticated Bordeaux cedary character.  Very long finish.  Another wine that will be better still in 2-5 years.  Too bad that was my last bottle.  Paired well with Saturday's grilled steaks.

2006 Paul Pillot CHASSAGNE-MONTRACHET PREMIER CRU CLOS SAINT JEAN (Rouge) -- a gorgeous, fully mature red burgundy.  Resiny cherry fruit, along with loads of gravelly minerals.  Leaner style, with very good acids.  Very nice with Coq au Vin.

Monday, August 12, 2013

2007 Vignavecchia CHIANTI CLASSICO RISERVA "Odoardo Beccari" (Tuscany, Italy)

A Chianti that thinks it's a Brunello.  I happen to like Chiantis that think they're Chiantis, but this is pretty good anyway.  Vignavecchia's str
aight CCR is, to my taste, more typical and more pleasurable.

Very dark black ruby.  On the first night, the nose and flavors were so closed, it wasn't particularly pleasurable.  All I got was dark, scorchy stuff. Night 2, after 24 hours under a Vacu-Vin enclosure, it was much better, much more open.  Still dark and relatively burly, but nice.  Very Brunello-ish.  Nose of charcoal, dark gravelly minerals, and scorched blackberry.  Very rich and tannic, with low-toned very scorched gravelly minerals and loads of sultry blackberry skins in the mouth.  A bit too much smoky oak, but pretty good.  Very full.  Still needs time to soften out.  Give it another year or two.  B.  I think I paid around $23 for this from over a year ago.  Imported by Superior Wines, Cranford, NJ.

Thursday, August 08, 2013

2011 Tenuta delle Terre Nere ETNA ROSSO (Sicily, Italy)

Very nice, very typical Etna Rosso.  That means it's good that clean, fruity, minerally flavor profile wrapped in a crisp, lively physical frame that is at total odds with what you'd expect from such a southern latitude.

Medium dark ruby garnet color.  Nice nose of ripe, macerated cherries and loads of clean stoniness.  Clean, fresh, and intense in the mouth.  Lots of ripe, winey cherries, a light, cedary component, and loads of minerality in the very long, lively finish.  fairly full-bodied, and with a decent amount of soft tannins.  Very nice.  Drink over the next 18 months.  B+.  I got this while at 2 Amy's Pizza in DC (excellent Neapolitan pizza) for $40.  I would think it would retail between $15-20.  Imported by daGrazia Imports, Winston-Salem, NC.

2011 Domaine de la Colline CHINON (Loire Valley, France)

A light, lively, flavorful wine.  I really liked it.

Very dark, jet black-ruby color.  Textbook Chinon/Cab Franc nose of black cherry, dry underbrush,  and a note that wavers between machine oil and toasted walnut oil.  Smooth and lively in the mouth, with intense flavors but in a medium-bodied frame.  Bone dry black cherry extract, loads of rocky minerals with a very slightly bitterish edge.  Long, pure finish.  Lots of soft micro-tannin adds a little texture as the finish fades.  B+.  Not sure what this would cost at retail, but it was $33 at Bistro du Coin in DC.  Imported by Monsieur Touton Selections.

Sunday, August 04, 2013

2010 Three Wine Company MATARO "Spinelli Vineyard" (Contra Costa County, Cal.)

From 125 year-old vines, this is a composed, low-toned, rich red.  Complex, intense, and smooth.

Very dark black-ruby.  Complex nose of toasted baking spices, rich blackberry, and pungent rock dust.  Low-toned and quite concentrated, this wine has rich flavors of ripe blackberry and dark minerals.  Pretty good acids for such a weighty wine.  Very full, and there's very slight peppery bite of alcohol at the end (heck, it is 15.2% for Pete's sake).  This will drink nicely for at least another 2 years, maybe more -- but with wines with this much alcohol, I'm always nervous about long aging, because the alcohol seems to take over after a few years and burn through the fruit.  B+.  Got this for $22 and change from as part of a mixed half-case of Three Wine Company wine
several months ago.

Friday, August 02, 2013

2012 Domaine La Rabiotte COTEAUX D'AIX EN PROVENCE ROSE (Southern France)

A fresh, lively, fun-to-drink rosé.

Light salmon pink color.  Fruity nose of watermelon, grapes, and strawberry, with a little metallic/mineral note.  Bone dry, rather full, with decent acidity.  Very slightly bitterish watermelony/cherry fruit flavors (I like the slight bitterness, or else the wine would have been too simple.)  Clean, refreshing finish.  A definite summer cookout rosé.   B.  Was $11.99 at Total Wine in Fairfax, VA.  Imported by Saranty Imports, White Plains, NY.