Sunday, 7 February 2016

Then & Now - 1995 & 2013 Le Volte, Tenuta dell´Ornellaia

I have over the years enjoyed the odd bottles of Le Volte that have come my way. It has always expressed a kind of light weight Super Tuscan character.

1995 Le Volte, Tenuta dell´Ornellaia
The nose is mature and soft with notes of red cherries and currants with additional notes of cigarette ashes, dried rosemary and wet dog fur (in a positive way!). Some dried up sweetness. Good.
The taste is mature and seedy with notes of red currants, dusty earth, baked onions and old leather. Very good. A fine tight character. The taste is better than the nose, but it shouldn´t be kept any further. I haven´t been able to get hold of the exact blend of the 95 but the 97 was made out of 60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Sangiovese and 10% Merlot, and it spent 10 months on barriques before being bottled. The first Le Volte saw the light of day in 1991.
85p   (tasted 2016/02)

2013 Le Volte, Tenuta dell´Ornellaia
18 vintages later, the blend is the same when Sangiovese is concerned, 30%, but the the Merlot is pimped up to 50% and Cabernet makes up the remaining 20%. The nose is deep and warm with notes od spicy plums, warm gravel, herbs and some chocolate wafers. Very good.
The taste is young, warm and spicy with notes of ripe cherries, gravel, rosemary and some saw dust notes. Will need 2-3 years to come together. Has spent 10 months in used Ornellaia barriques and cement tanks.
86p   (tasted 2016/02)

Saturday, 6 February 2016

Drinking Tonight - 2012 Black Poplar Block Pinot Noir, Pisa Range Estate

I was in a Pinot mood tonight, so I opted for a bottle of this.

2012 Black Poplar Block Pinot Noir, Pisa Range Estate
A fine, complex, spicy nose with notes of wild strawberries, liquorice, moist forest floor and a hint of chocolate bisquits. Very, very good. Cooked root vegetables. A very fine sweetness to the fruit. Dark roses. This is fine.
The taste is young, finely tuned and yummy with a lovely strawberry fruit and additional notes of liquorice, dried rose petals, Asian spices and forest floor. A very fine acidity. Medium bodied with a lovely elegance. A great drink tonight and I would venture for the coming 6+ years. 
93p   (tasted 2016/02)

Friday, 5 February 2016

Recollections Of Summer - 2001 Gran Claustro, Castillo de Perelada

Granted, the light has started to return to this northern part of the world. Still, the temperature is below zero. I long for the summer. And this bottle reminded me of last summer when we spent some weeks in Spain, in the Empordà region.
The only visit I made was to Castillo de Perelada, which turned to be a great visit. During our stay I tasted some more bottles from the estate and also bought some for bringing home.

2001 Gran Claustro, Casteilo de Perelada
The nose is deep and concentrated with notes of ripe black cherries, plums, moist dark earth, sweet violets, warm spices and expensive worn leather. A lovely warmth to the fruit. Some hints of maturity. This is as good as the 2009 tasted during my visit.
The taste is big and bold with strapping black currant and cherry fruit with additional notes of chocolate truffles, liquorice, warm herbs and undergrowth. The finish is one minute long and has a fine structure for further aging. Really, really good, would love to have more of this. Worked great with a home made truffle salami pizza!
94p   (tasted 2016/02)

Thursday, 4 February 2016

Live From Eriks Winebar - 2004 Special Club, Paul Bara

Passing by, and thinking, why not...

2004 Special Club, Paul Bara
The nose is steely and focused with notes of candied orange peel, hyachint, dark gravel, tangerines, bread and soap. A fine fruity character. With its 70% Pinot Noir and 30% Chardonnay, it has, right now anyway, more Chardonnay aromas than the other way around.
The taste is tight and, again, steely with notes of apricots, pears, lots of minerals and some soapy notes. A very high acidity, that makes the finish bone dry, a bit too much at this stages I think. Needs food. Good though.
88p   (tasted 2016/02)

Wednesday, 3 February 2016

Tasting Perfection - Six Bottles From Colgin

Divine invited and I dropped everything to get a chance to taste the wines from Colgin. Paul Roberts from the estate presented the wines and their Napa origin with enthusiasm and energy.

2012 Cariad
The 12 Cariad with its blend of 53% Cabernet Sauvignon, 26% Merlot, 12% Cabernet Franc and 9% Petit Verdot, is a masterpiece. The nose oozes up from the glass with stunning notes of ripe black currants, plums, moist earth, decaying flowers and fried herbs. Absolutely stunning. Multi layered and refined. Marvellous.
The taste is packed full of the most perfect black currants imaginable combined with notes of sweet minerals, warm herbs, dried plums and cocoa. Its like drinking velvet yet it packs some polished tannins underneath. This is brilliant.
97p   (tasted 2016/02)

2010 Cariad
The 10 Cariad is even closer to perfect. This gorgeous blend of 48% Cabernet Sauvignon, 28% Merlot, 14% Cabernet Franc and 10% Petit Verdot has a depth, concentration and intensity that is hard to describe. The sweet black currants and plums intermingled with notes of woodsmoke, warm herbs, rowan berries and licorice makes up a spine tingling nose. A lovely perfumed aroma. Breathtakingly beautiful.
The taste is all that the nose promise to be, with perfect fruit, a fabulous structure, a two minute long finish, making this wine a seamsless experience. A fantastic minerality. My notebook then have profanity written in it, to describe this wines greatness, but I won´t repeat it here. A truly great wine.
99p   (tasted 2016/02)

2012 IX Estate
Oh boy, my first perfect wine of 2016. At first I thought the two Cariad´s were the better wines, but this gained momentum with every passing minute and sip, and it came roaring past them during the tasting. The most perfect black currants fruit has a beautiful perfumed note to them, to go alongside the notes of warm tiles, sandelwood, plums and cocoa. The purity of this wine is mindboggling, you have to smell it to believe it. Faultless.
The taste is the stuff of fairy tales, for can this be real? There is perfection down on a molecule level, and I will not jot down all that I found in this wine, but suffice to say, if you have to steal or embezzle to get hold of a bottle, do, it will be worth the prison time. Made out of 62% Cabernet Sauvignon, 19% Merlot, 11% Cabernet Franc and 8% Petit Verdot, this will easy make my Most Memorable list when 2016 has ended.
100p   (tasted 2016/02)

2006 IX Estate
Since I am a genuine necrophiliac I thought I would go for this older version of the IX Estate. Sadly not. It is a very good wine, make no mistake about it, but it didn´t really do it for me. The nose is big and bold with sweet notes of plums, black currant jam, dried flowers, smoke and Christmas spices. Not only smoke, there is a whiff of something burnt, may it be fruit, wood or rubber. From time to time I get a glimpse of - a good one, mind you - a Amarone, and that is, in my book, not good.
The taste is tight, concentrated and a bit forceful with notes of cooked black currants, plums, flower water and some burnt rubber. A long, warm finish with some, in comparison to the wines above, unsofisticated tannins. It seems like a hard judgement, but the three previous wines set the bar very, very high. It is in fact a very, very good wine and on its own I would surely have it enjoyed it more. Made out of 66% Cabernet Sauvignon, 21% Merlot, 8% Cabernet Franc and 5% Petit Verdot.
92p   (tasted 2016/02)

2012 IX Estate Syrah
The 12 Syrah is a charmer with its opulent nose, full of ripe blackberries, dark cookie dough, violets, bloody meat and some dried strawberries, very interesting and yummy. Some smoke notes after a while. Really good.
The taste is young, tight and seedy with notes of lightly peppered meat, blueberry pie, dried flowers and violets. A long, peppery finish with ripe tannins and a fine acidity. Very young and for now, highly gulpable.
93p   (tasted 2016/02)

2011 IX Estate Syrah
The 11 is a stark contrast to the 12´s exuberance, with its elegance and fine notes of blueberries, bay leaves, earth and crushed white peppar. Very cool and very fine. This I like more. Balanced.
The taste is tight and focused with notes of blueberries, rowan berries, veal stock and lots and lots of minerals. A long, refined finish with a fine dryness. A class act.
95p   (tasted 2016/02)

Tuesday, 2 February 2016

Barolo Boys Does 1999 Barolo

Sverker invited to another Barolo Boys get together, with some hang arounds present, eager to get in to this most exclusive group...:-)

The state of the 1999 vintage, based on the wines tasted on this evening, is very good. None of the bottles tasted were really mature and for most of them some real cellaring time would be rewarding, at least 5+ years. There is a fine sweetness to the fruit without being a opulent year and the tannins balance and gives structure to the wines. I would love to have more 99´s in the cellar.
All wines tasted double blind.

Flight I
1999 Barolo Pressenda, Marziano Abbona
This was a gift to the Barolo Boys from the estate when we visited a couple of years ago, and we have saved it for this tasting. The nose is deep and somewhat mature with fine notes of cherry liquor, violets, sugared coffee and a whole mushroom forest. A very fine sweetness to the fruit.
The taste is more withdrawn than the nose and it shows of notes of liqourice, red cherries, gravel and tobacco. Some old school rustic tannins in the long, warm finish. Could be drunk now or cellared for 6+ years.
89p   (tasted 2016/01)

1999 Barolo, Josetta Saffirio
This is a stunner. When I have tasted younger Barolos from Saffirio I have found them to be good but not great. This is. The nose is deep and concentrated with some animal scents and additional notes of asphalt, ripe black cherries, bay leaves and forest floor. Very, very good. Refined yet broad shouldered.
The taste is tight and intense with notes of black cherries, undergrowth, dried mushrooms and gravel. A very structured, long, dry finish with some powerful tannins still. This should be cellared for another 5+ years.
94p   (tasted 2016/01)

1999 Barolo Rocche dell´Annunziata, Renato Corino
This just reeks of VA and other unpleasantness.
50p   (tasted 2016/01)

1999 Barolo Vigneto Arborina, Elio Altare
The 99 Arborina is a stunner. The nose is deep and intoxicating with notes of mushrooms, raspberry truffles, liquorice and a touch of VA, in a complex sort of way. A lovely sweetness to the fruit. Great.
The taste is still young, tight and focused with notes of hard cherry candy, raspberries, forest floor and liquorice. Great structure. The finish is over a minute long and there are some finely polished tannins that show themselves at the end. I would wait 4+ years before opening the next bottle.
94p   (tasted 2016/01)

Flight II
1999 Barolo Cannubi Boschis Riserva, Virna/Borgognot
The 1996 was really good a couple of months back. Lets see how the 99 express itself. The nose is cool and elegant with notes of dried rose petals, hard cherry candy, veal stock and mushrooms. This is as good as the 96 on the nose.
The taste follow up the nose with a cool red cherry fruit and notes of coffee powder, rosehips and mushrooms. A long, distinct finish with some yet unresolved tannins. Could be drunk now but preferably cellared for 4-6 years.
91p   (tasted 2016/01)

1999 Barolo Cannubi Boschis, Sandrone
Aaah, a perennial favourite of mine, the Cannubi Boschis from Sandrone usually gets my taste buds on highest alert and both the 1990 and the 2001 have earned perfect scores. And this is good, make no mistake about it, but when it was revealed I was a tiny bit disappointed. The nose is elegant and focused with notes of ripe red cherries, rose petals, gravel and beet roots. Very balanced.
The taste is tighter than the nose leads you to think, with fine notes of ripe red and black cherries, earth, tobacco and rosehips. The finish is very long, very structured and very fine. Still young, this would need 5-7 years in the cellar.
93p   (tasted 2016/01)

1999 Barolo Cicala, Aldo Conterno
A deep, elegant nose with notes of cool red cherries, hard cherry candy, tobacco and a mushroom forest. Very nicely structured. Fresh, still young. Very fine.
The taste is concentrated and seedy with lovely notes of ripe red cherries, rosehips, some dusty earth and dry liqourice. The finish is long, cohesive and structured. Really fine. Still needs 5+ years in the cellar.
93p   (tasted 2016/01)

1999 Barolo Granbussia Riserva, Aldo Conterno
Aaah - Granbussia! The depth, concentration and focus of this wine is of the highest pedigree, and you now before it is revealed that this is from one of the best producers (I guessed it to be Sandrone´s Cannubi Boschis...). All is in place and it only needs another 6-8 years before perfection probably is achieved.
97p   (tasted 2016/01)

Flight III
1999 Barolo Margheria, Luigi Pira
The first Pira wine has a deep, laid back, focused nose with notes of rowan berries, red cherries, gravel and some tobacco. Cool and refined. Very, very good. Still young.
The taste is seedy and liniar (in a good way) with notes of ripe red cherries, liquorice, dusty gravel and a hint of tar. A long, structured finish. Still young, wait 5+ years for the next bottle.
92p   (tasted 2016/01)

1999 Barolo Marenca, Luigi Pira
The other bottle from Pira is even better with a lovely floral nose, displaying elegance and coolness. Very, very fine. Additional notes of ripe lingonberries, mineral and dried mushrooms flows up from the glass.
The taste is pure and tight with lots of polished tannins and fine notes of rowan berries, red cherries, asphalt and dry liquorice. A lovely concentration. Still on the young side of things. A very fine wine. 6-8 years.
93p   (tasted 2016/01)

1999 Barolo Ciabot Mentin Ginestra, Domenico Clerico
The next two bottles turned out to come from one of my favourite producers - Domenico Clerico. These are not for the wimpy Nebbiolo lover, and those who think that the oak is too much - well, its a free country - still... The nose of the Ciabot Mentin Ginestra is deep, hedonistic and wonderful with notes of spicy cherry jam, moist earth, tar, veal stock and liquorice. A touch inky. Very, very deep and fine.
The taste is big and bold with notes of ripe black cherries, liquorice, sweet violets, ink and sweet flowers. Broad tannins, a hefty backbone and a stunning experience all around. Give this stunner 6+ years.
95p   (tasted 2016/01)

1999 Barolo Percristina, Domenico Clerico
As good as the CMG is, the Percristina is magic. It has all that the CMG has, but the fruit is turned up to eleven. As impressive as it gets. Tasted some two years ago, this bottle was even better. Perfection in the making, just wait 8+ years.
98p   (tasted 2016/01)

Flight IV
1999 Barolo Bricco dell´Violo, Vajra
I have always liked Vajra´s Bricco dell´Violo, and this bottle was no exception. The nose is deep and seedy with notes of tobacco, ripe cherries, rose petals and a interesting scent of banana peels. Very, very good.
The taste is tight and intense with notes of red cherries, forest floor, tobacco and dried rose petals. Fine, caressing tannins in the long finish. Give this beauty another 5+ years.
92p   (tasted 2016/01)

1999 Barolo Vigna Rionda, Massolini
A laid back, refined nose with a lot of stuffing and notes of ripe red and cherries, violets, asphalt and a attractive greenish scent. Very deep. Still young. Very, very fine.
The taste is tight and seedy with notes of hard cherry candy, fresh mushrooms, bay leaves and asphalt. The finish is long and taut with finely polished tannins. This needs lots of time, at least 8+ years. Very high quality.
93p   (tasted 2016/01)

1999 Barolo, Bartolo Mascarello
A big, deep. old fashioned nose with gorgeous notes of rose petals, ripe red cherries, earth, liquorice and forest floor. A bit willful, but oooh so good! A lovely warmth to the fruit. Great wine.
The taste is tight and structured with fine notes of cool cherries, rosehips, dried flowers, gravel and cigarette ashes. A long, intense finish with, from time to time, brutal tannins. Impressive but will need 6+ years before unveiling itself fully.
94p   (tasted 2016/01)

1999 Barolo Monprivato, Giuseppe Mascarello
Too bad - something is really wrong with this bottle without being corked.
50p   (tasted 2016/01)

1999 Barolo Rupestris, Cappellano
S generously poured this instead of the shot Monprivato, and what a replacement! The nose is a posterchild of intensity, concentration, and at the same time, lightness. Wonderful aromas of ripe red cherries, dry liquorice, rose bushes, cigarr ashes (and we all know where that scent comes from...:-)) and fresh ceps. Magnificent.
The taste is light as a feather and yet stings like a bee, with stunning notes of hard cherry candy, raspberry liquorice, tar, mushrooms and dried flowers. The finish goes on forever and the tannins caressing the mouth cavity, leaving a distinct mark. For drinking in 6+ years time to infinity. The wine of the evening alongside the Percristina.
Since the late Theobaldo didn´t want his wines to be scored, I never do.   (tasted 2016/01)

Sunday, 31 January 2016

A Bottle Of Bubbly - 2003 La Cuvée Mesnillésime, Guy Charlemagne

As a starter at our latest wine tasting group gettogether, G poured this beauty. On my way home I ordered some bottles!

2003 La Cuvée Mesnillésime, Guy Charlemagne
A deep, smoky, creamy nose with notes of hazelnuts, grapefruit, yellow apples, matchbox and fudge. Very, very good. A lovely depth and harmony. Still very young - none was even close guessing its age or vintage - 03!
A young, perky taste with notes of yellow apples, dried up honey, oatmeal, fudge and smoke. A long, long finish with a fine acidity and a nice grapfruit bitterness. Will evolve well over the coming 6+ years. Very, very fine.
93p   (tasted 2016/01)

Thursday, 28 January 2016

2006 & 2007 Volnay, Domaine Bernard & Thierry Glantenay

After drinking the marvellous 2008 Puligny-Montrachet from this Domaine, I came across some Volnay´s. The  Domaine is primary a red wine producer with two 1er Cru Pommard and three 1er Cru Volnay as their highlights. And I got hold of one of the 1er Cru Volnay´s, from 2005 and 2009. But that´s for later, tonight, two village Volnay.

2006 Volnay, Bernard & Thierry Glantenay
This is a bit low keyed at first and needs time to open up, and when it does it shows fine earthy aromas with notes of ripening raspberries, herbs, veal stock and wood smoke. Very good. With air a great forest nose emerges. Really fine. And still rather young.
The taste is still young, seedy and focused with notes of ripe lingonberries, red beets, earth and veal stock. The finish is long and dry. Very, very good, and should evolve nicely for another 5+ years.
90p   (tasted 2016/01)

2007 Volnay, Bernard & Thierry Glantenay
The 07 is more open and fruity on the nose with fine notes of strawberries, rosehips, Asian spices and a hint of tobacco. Very, very good. With air a complex note of old fashioned dirt comes through. This is gooooood!
The taste is cool, tight and focused with notes of wild strawberries, liquorice, forest floor and mild tobacco. The finish is long, dry and focused. A very good acidity. Young still, I would like to drink this for another 5+ years. A lovely wine.
92p   (tasted 2016/01)

Wednesday, 27 January 2016

1975 Chianti - Two More Bottles

My batting average on the case of 1975 Chianti´s I bought a while back has not been great. Out of  seven bottles tasted - here,  here and here - only two have been enjoyable. Well, I´m no quitter, so lets bring out two more and keep our fingers crossed!

1975 Chianti Classico Palazzo Al Bosco, Olivieri
It starts rather well. This one has a big, mature, meaty nose with notes of ripe cherries, balsamic vinegar, sweet violets, some VA and a wet dog in a distance, making it a interesting nose. Fully mature. Comes and goes, sometimes deep and fine, sometimes murky and a bit flat. Good though.
The taste is mature, warm and broad with notes of dried cherries, black olives, hot gravel and some old wood. A nicely leathary perfumed finish. Very good. Drinking well.
83p   (tasted 2016/01)

1975 Chianti Classico, Fattoria delle Lodoline
But then, with this bottle with the impressive family name of Contessa Pepita Radicati di Brozole, we´re back too a bad one - heavily corked.
50p   (tasted 2016/01)

And I have more...:-)

Tuesday, 26 January 2016

Young Bordeaux - Grand Cercle Des Vins De Bordeaux

A couple of days ago I had the opportunity to taste through some bottles of young Bordeaux, mostly from the 2011 and 2012 vintage. Grand Cercle Des Vins De Bordeaux arranged the tasting with lots of proprietors and winemakers present.

I tasted wines from 21 estates and have listed them in points intervals below. Those marked with a * I found especially attractive and showing nice Bordeaux typicity.

Generally I prefered 2012 over 2011, the latter a bit lighter and in some cases a tad anemic.

2011 Château Magrez Fombrauge
2009 Château Haut-Bacalan

2011 Château Fontenil
2012 Château Vray Croix de Gay
2010 Château Siaurac
2003 Château La Croizille
2011 & 2013 Château du Parc
2013 Château Fleur Cardinale
2011 Château Laroze
2007 Château La Marzelle*
2011 Château Faizeau
2011 & 2012 Château Les Grands Chénes
2011 Château Lestage Simom
2011 Château D´Arsac*

2010 & 2011 Château Cap de Faugères
2013 Château Dalem*
2011 Château Fontenil
2008 Château Vray Croix de Gay
2011 Château La Croizille
2011 Château Tour Baladoz*
2011 & 2012 Château Fleur Cardinale
2011 & 2013 Château Fombrauge
2012 Château Laroze
2011 Château La Marzelle*
2011 & 2012 Château Le Prieuré*
2012 Château Faizeau
2011 & 2012 Château D´Arcins*
2012 Château Lestage Simon
2011 & 2012 Château Malescasse*
2011 Château Haut Breton Larigaudière*

2012 Château Cap de Faugères*
2001 & 2011 Château Dalem*
2009 & 2010 Château La Croizille
2005 & 2010 Château Tour Baladoz*
2010 Château D´Arsac*
2012 Château Haut Breton Larigaudière*

Sunday, 24 January 2016

Drinking Tonight - 1996 Château Ferrand

After a fantastic tasting dinner last night with 2009 Echezeaux, DRC, 1995 Deutz Blanc de Blancs, 1995 Château Haut-Bailly and 1995 Heytesbury Chardonnay (notes to follow) as the shining stars, I opted for something more basic on this evening, to go along some pork chops with a cauliflower and broccoli purée.

1996 Château Ferrand
Popped and poured, this Pomerol needed some time in the glass to unfold fine aromas of ripe plums, sugared coffee, tobacco and undergrowth. Some maturity. This is good. Evolves nicely over the evening. A fine sweetness to the fruit.
The taste is modestly mature, warm and soft but with a fine backbone and notes of plums, tobacco, forest floor and smoke. A fine finish with velvety tannins. Drinking perfectly on this evening. Very, very good.
87p   (tasted 2016/01)

Friday, 22 January 2016

Two 96´s From The South Of France

Checking through my inventory I find a lot of single bottles with some age, begging to be drunk. Well, you don´t have to ask me twice!

1996 Cuvee Sextant, Cellier d´Orfee
This 50% Syrah, 50% Carignan blend has a mature, warm, soft nose with notes of smoke, seared meat, earth and some dark bread dough. Nice in a peasant form of way.
The taste is broad and mature with notes of warm herbs, dried black fruits, gravel and wood smoke. A compact warmth and a medium long, rather dense finish. Fully mature, and possibly a tad so.
84p   (tasted 2016/01)

1996 Château Montus Cuvée Prestige
This bottle is almost as good as the one I tasted three years ago, which came directly from the property. I bought some in 1999 and this is the last bottle. The nose is a Bordeaux poster child even though this is 100% Tannat. Lovely notes of red and black currants, fresh stables, tobacco and leather. A tad more mature tha the previous bottle. Very, very good.
The taste is cool, tight and barely mature with notes of black currants, pencil shavings, stables and tobacco. Feels younger on the palate. Really good. When you know what it is you get the sense that the tannins are a bit more expressive and sturdy than your regular Bordeaux, but blind I would put this in Bordeaux ten times out of ten. Great wine.
92p   (tasted 2016/01)

Wednesday, 20 January 2016

Drinking Like Common People - Part Two - The Reds

Why do I do this to myself? The curiosity doesn´t kill the cat, it kills my stomach...
In part one I tasted the Whites, now it was time for the Reds. Please God, don´t hurt me now...

The lay up of the tasting is that I have taken the 10 most sold white and red wines of 2014, bought the ones that are sold in regular bottles or, sadly, in plastic containers, but omitted the ones that only are sold in bag-in-box (3 liters) - there are some limits to how much wine I will pour down the drain...

Here they are in backward order from number ten.

2014 The Big Zin, ViniMundi
It doesn´t start well... This Italian wine with its American name has 12 gram sugar per liter and it shows. The nose is big and sweet with notes of jam, toast, dry asphalt and vanilla. Even though it is big it is hollow behind the sweetness.
The taste is big, foursquare and sweet with jammy black fruit (?) and a feeling of lots of alcohol even though the label says 13,5%. The finish is like chewing on blotting paper. Number 10 on the list and 2.468.652 bottles sold in 2014 and I ask myself, why?
60p   (tasted 2016/01)

2015 Ecologica Shiraz Malbec Reserve, La Riojana
Thankfully it got better, much better, in fact the best wine in the line up. This Argentinian has a light, peppery nose with notes of red berries, liquorice, bakelite and some road dust. A good sweetness to the fruit. Good.
The taste is young, dry and tight with notes of red currants, white pepper, tobacco and road dust. The finish is rather short but this is drinking fine. Good. 2.538.255 bottles sold of this number 9 and the only one I would buy personally.
82p   (tasted 2016/01)

2014 Mauro Primitivo Albarello, Nordic Sea Winery
Why? Why make this disaster? This, and the Palazzo below, is blended and bottled in Sweden, at Nordic Sea Winery´s "winery". 2.565.992 bottles of this crap was sold during 2014. Why? The nose has nothing to do with wine with its notes of plastic, burnt rubber, syntetic raspberries and saw dust. Gets you interested, right? Wait until you taste it...
The taste is a manipulated concoction of unripe grapes, lots of acidity, plastic and oak chips. The finish is medium long and really nasty. It differs 80 cent (0,8 Euro) between this and the real wine above, are people mad?? Number 8 on the list.
54p   (tasted 2016/01)

2014 Graticcio Appassionato, Tommasi
Number 6 on the list, with 2.640.360 bottles sold, isn´t that bad. The nose is medium deep with some raisins, forest and chocolate notes. A good dryness to it. Some warm rosehips after a while. Good.
The taste is tight, dry and warm with notes of raisins, dried red fruits, gravel and warm herbs. It is a bit too dry in the end of the finish, but with food it works decent enough.
76p   (tasted 2016/01)

2014 Palazzi Mio Rosso, Nordic Sea Winery
This abomination is the cheapest wine on the list. That doesn´t however forgive this sorry excuse for a wine. The nose has some interesting aromas of cheap raspberry ice cream, manufactured vanilla, saw dust and rotten tobacco. It is just absurd in its awfulness.
The taste, and mind you, it took some courage to put this in my mouth, is even worse than the Mauro above, with chemicals, artifical acidity, dry tannins and not a fruit in sight. The finish is medium long, sorry to say. The cretins responsible for this mess should change jobs to garbage management, judging from these wines, that should be more up their alley. Number 4 on the list with 3.171.670 bottles sold - I have lost hope in mankind.
52p   (tasted 2016/01)

2014 Appassimento Edizione Oro, Casa Viniroria
Number 2 on the list with 4.204.690 bottles sold. What is it with the Swedes and sugar? This has 11 gr/liter. But this handles it better than the Big Zin above. The nose is big and broad and sweet with notes of ripe plums, liquorice, warm summer flowers and herbs. It actually smells from time to time like a hot day in Italy, and that can´t be bad!
The taste is big and juicy with notes of plums, pipe tobacco, dark chocolate and warm herbs. The finish is medium long and edging on fiery. For the style, and with a big chargrilled steak, this is drinkable, but on its own it gets tiresome fast. Not bad though.
78p   (tasted 2016/01)

Monday, 18 January 2016

Saturday, 16 January 2016

Two Lovely 2011 Barbaresco Bottles From La Ca´Növa

When I tasted through the sortiment of Brix Wine earlier this year I fell in love with the Barbaresco´s from La Ca´Növa, even though I only tasted two. :-)
I bought some bottles of the Montefico I tasted and also of the Montestefano - time to test drive them over two days at home, where you have the time and focus on the wines, compared to a trade tasting where you spend a couple of minutes with each wine. But that kind of tasting also has its merits, because otherwise I wouldn´t have discovered these beauties.

2011 Barbaresco Montestefano, La Ca´Növa
Right out of the bottle this displays charm and ease, with lovely notes of rosehips, red cherries, red tea, fir forest and lots of gravel. Cool and fine, and some smoke aromas after a while. Develops nicely over the evening and the red cherries become sweeter. Day two it has deepened and the fruit and structure is even more harmonious and classy. This is really fine.
The taste is young, tight and pure with notes of  red cherries, rowanberries, lots of rose petals and crushed rocks. There are some finely tuned, sweet tannins in the long finish. Very stylish. Day two it has toughened up, with lots of cool red cherries, red liquorice and minerals. The finish is long, dry and structured. Will need 4-6 years in the cellar. Great stuff!
93p   (tasted 2016/01)

2011 Barbaresco Montefico Vigna Bric Mentina, La Ca´Növa
This is as good as when I tasted it earlier this year. The nose is a masterpiece with its stunning aromas of red and black cherries, cigarette ashes, dried ceps, hard cherry candy and violets. It is a bit darker in the fruit than the Montestefano. Just wonderful. When I stick my nose in the glass on day two it is filled of crushed black cherries, spruce and that lovely perfumed fragrance you get when you walk into a Ermenegildo Zegna store. Beautiful!
The taste is tight and intense with notes of cool red and black cherries, liquorice, forest floor, violets and cigarr smoke. The tannins are juicy, perfectly polished and very young. Needs time. Day two the tannins dominate even more, especially in the finish, but the fruit is marvellous in its concentration even though the wine seems airy and refined. In 6-8 years time this will be pushing upwards the three digit score. Gotta get me more!
96p   (tasted 2016/01)

Wednesday, 13 January 2016

Mirans 50 Year Birthday Bash

Too bad. I was expecting a lot of bottles from the stellar year of 1965, but instead we had to make due with these...:-)
All tasted non blind.

1996 Comtes de Champagne, Taittinger
Second time this year - life is good. The nose is deep, racy and still young with notes of toast, steel, candied lemons, birch sap and smoke. Very refined - lika a ballerina. Gets better and better in the glass. Stunning.
The taste is pure, tight and refined with notes of ripe yellow apples, matchbox, yellow pears, toast and a touch of fudge. The finish goes on and on with a racy acidity. This has a long life ahead of itself. Gorgeous juice.
97p   (tasted 2015/12)

1996 Corton-Charlemagne, Bonneau du Martray
This was not up to par. Not bad per se, but it displays some oxidative notes, both on the nose and on the palate. Very drinkable but not as it should be.
85p   (tasted 2015/12)

2011 G-Max, Keller
The 11 G-Max is a youngster, but a great one! The nose is cool, seedy and layered with notes of white currants, rock dust, ripening peaches, chalk and expensive soap. A very handsome wine.
The taste is young, tight and focused with notes of grey pears, chrushed rocks, chlorophyll and steel. A long, intense finish with a lovely purity. Give this beauty 4-6+ years in the cellar.
95p   (tasted 2015/12)

2014 Nierstein (Pettenthal) Riesling Kabinett -P-, Keller
A young, elegant, fresh nose with notes of ripe pears, ginger, slate, lime and pine nuts. This is good, albeit very primary. Lots of crushed rocks comes through with a bit of air. Great stuff.
The taste is luscious, racy and semi dry with notes of grapefruit, white pears, lime peel and slate. Long and fine, sporting a cleansing acidity. Juicy! Not as great as the 2012 though.
92p   (tasted 2015/12)

2007 Piesporter Goldtröpchen Riesling Spätlese, Reinhold Haart
A cool, refined, somewhat mature nose with notes of ripe peach, melted butter, dried pine apple, crushed rocks and earth. A fine warmth. Very, very good.
The taste is creamy and polished with a lovely acidity and notes of ripe pears, dried flowers, gravel and flint. Long and silky. Drinking beautifully now.
91p   (tasted 2015/12)

1996 Barolo Falletti di Serralunga Riserva, Bruno Giacosa
The red wines starts with a booom! Last time I tasted this was in 2009 and it was then an infant. Six years later nothing much has happened, this is a slow developer. The nose is just amazing with a laser like focus and intensity with stunning aromas of sweet rosehips, dried ceps, hard cherry candy, veal stock, liquorice and forest floor. Breathtakingly beautiful.
The taste is well structured, firm and balanced with everything, except maturity, in place. Notes of ripe cherries, plums, mushrooms, liquorice and moist earth flows over the palate. The finish goes on for minutes and displays some still muscular tannins. This is perfection in the making, just wait another 8+ years for the next bottle.
99p   (tasted 2015/12)

1993 Barolo Rocche dell´Annunziata, Paolo Scavino
As I have written before, 1993 is a underrated vintage in Piemonte, and here is another example of that. The nose is deep and somewhat mature with lovely notes of dried mushrooms, cherry jam, moist forest floor, pipe tobacco and dried flowers. A very fine warmth to the fruit. Almost fully mature. Very, very good.
The taste is tighter than the nose leads you to believe, with fine notes of red and black cherries, rosehips, mushrooms, red liquorice and some dark chocolate. A long, firm finish with cool tannins. Should hit full maturity in 4-6 years. A very fine wine.
93p   (tasted 2015/12)

2005 Château Pontet Canet
Over to Bordeaux! The 05 Pontet Canet sports a deep, creamy, upfront nose with masses of sweet black currants, tobacco, plums, fresh stables, dark chocolate and scorched earth. Although it is a bit of a in-your-face wine, it shows it origin. Great intensity.
The taste is broad, seedy and warm with notes of creamy black currants, wood smoke, sweet minerals, dark chocolate and graphite. A very long, generous finish with firm, sweet tannins. This is really good and I guess that 5-7 more years in the cellar will benefit it further.
94p   (tasted 2015/12)

1995 Côte-Rôtie La Turque, Guigal
I should drink La Turque more often. But then there is La Landonne also. Not forgetting La Mouline, my favourite. Ah well, over to the bottle in question, and what a wine! The nose oozes up from the glass with stunning scents of ripe blueberries, peppered meat, perfume, violets and dusty earth. Very deep and focused. Just wonderful. Some maturity, but this has places to go.
The taste is tight, intense and meaty with notes of blueberries, blackberries, bakelite, violets, seared meat and perfume. A long, seamless finish with brilliant tannins and refinement. Drinking beautifully on this evening but I bet it will be doing that for another 10+ years.
97p   (tasted 2015/12) 

2009 Authenticity, Epoch Estate
This is according to Miran hard to get hold of. Made in 504 cases from grapes from the Paderewski vineyard in Paso Robles, and the blend is 64% Syrah and 36% Mourvèdre. It was aged for 23 months in 45% new barrels. The nose is very big and concentrated with notes of (over)ripe blackberries, iodine, plums, boiled red beets and rubber. Very intense. Needs time.
The taste is big and brawny with notes of blackberry jam, dried raspberries, dark fudge, rubber and violet pastilles. The finish is long, long and warm, verging on hot. More impressive than really enjoyable tonight, but there is quality here, and I would love to taste it in 6+ years time.
92p   (tasted 2015/12)

2010 Saint-Aubin En Remilly, Hubert Lamy
Miran asked if we were interested in something cold, dry and fresh before the dessert - does the Pope wear a funny hat?! The nose is deep and focused with notes of orange peel, summer flowers, expensive soap, Jerusalem artichokes and butter cookies. Very fine, young and creamy.
The taste is tight and pure with a really fine acidity and notes of tangerines, lemon cream, sweet minerals, smoke and summer flowers. A fine structure for the future. Great wine.
92p   (tasted 2015/12)

1990 Vouvray Moelleux 1er Trie Le Mont, Huet
Are the 90´s from Huet starting their (slow) downhill climb? This perennial 100 point wine was no slacker on this night, but it didn´t really have the usual perfect persistent finish and focus. Still, a great wine for ending a great evening - thanks Miran!
95p   (tasted 2015/12)