Monday, 11 August 2014

Vacation Wine Diary - Day 34 - Notes From Yesterdays Debauchery

Dear Diary

Yesterday, S and I went home to M, too take advantage of the summers last (?) warm day. We sat outside all night long, barbequed and shared the awesome bottles that M presented. Thanks!
All tasted double blind.

1997 Côte-Rôtie La Turque, Guigal
This bottle was opened by M the day before and half the bottle had been left with a cork inserted in the cellar. Unfortunately it has not faired well. Neither S or I found any tell tale Syrah signs.
The nose is deep and smooth with ripe black fruit, some dark chocolate and balsamic notes. We thought we were in Italy...
The taste is big and tight but not that expressive or without real character. Dark fruit, some oak and rusty tannins. I was thinking Aglianico.... I had thought that there shouldn't be a problem saving a Guigal La La wine from one day to the next, but alas. M said that it performed stunningly the day before.
No rating   (tasted 2014/08)

2008 Saint Aubin 1er Cru Derriére Chez Edouard Haute Densité,  Hubert Lamy
A long name on a glorious wine! This is a world class Chardonnay from the hands of Lamy. I tasted the 08 En Remilly last year that was great but this cuvee was even better.
The nose soars up from the glass with beautiful notes of just ripening peaches, cold butter, summer flowers and lots and lots of stone and minerals. Some cap gun smoke. Very intense and focused. This is really fine.
The taste is young, taut and complex with lovely creamy yellow fruit and a searing acidity with notes of butter cookies, yellow pears, flowers and sweet minerals. Very refined. The finish goes on and on. Again, world class!
96p   (tasted 2014/08)

1989 Wachenheimer Gerümpel Riesling Auslese, Dr. Bürklin-Wolf
This looked an orange wine when poured, but when I put my nose in the glass it was obvious that it is a mature Riesling. Or a Chenin Blanc... It has aromas from both, the petroleum that indicates a mature Riesling, and the oilcloth and hay that indicates a mature Chenin Blanc. And when aromas of slate, band aid, bee wax and soap are tossed in, I am more confused. But it is good all the same! A very fine maturity.
The taste is mature, pure and lovely with a fine dried up sweetness and notes of dried apricots, honey, band aid, dried flowers and a ever so tiny touch of botrytis. It starts of semi sweet when it hits the tongue and ends, almost, bone dry. Very, very good. But I guess it is downhill from here for this one.
92p   (tasted 2014/08)

1996 Vigna d´Alceo, Castello dei Rampolla
This is the debut vintage of Vigna d´Alceo. I attended a vertical tasting of this cuvée some years ago and the 99 and 01 was, and probably still is, really great wines. The debut vintage is not. It is good, but my impression is that they tried to hard the first time. The nose is still on the young side with notes of ripe black cherries, liquorice, rosehips and spruce shoots. Somewhat dusty. It feels like a lot of vin de presse have been added. It has a restrained character to it.
The taste is semi mature with notes of cherry pips, dark chocolate with at least 90% cocoa, gravel and dried rosemary. A medium long, dusty finish with lots of unrelieved tannins. Some bitterness in the finish. Good fruit but it is hidden behind the rather four square structure. With the bloody meat from the barbeque it worked great, but not for drinking on its own.
85p   (tasted 2014/08)

1996 Pahlmeyer
This beauty consists of 73% Cabernet Sauvignon an the rest is Petit Verdot, Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Malbec. The nose is deep, barely mature and decadent with notes of sweet black cherries, violets, graphite, expensive tobacco and sweet herbs. It has a wonderful sweetness to the fruit without being heavy handed or too big. Even elegant. This is goood!
The taste is a big mouthful of ripe Cabernet with gorgeous notes of black cherries, black currants, leather, tobacco, sandalwood and some autumn leaves. A long, long, finely tuned finish. This is just entering its plateau of maturity. A treat to drink.
94p   (tasted 2014/08)

1996 Penfolds Bin 707
This was instantly pegged as an Australian wine by S and me. Even a blind hen finds a grain from time to time...:-)
The nose is marked by the 15 months it has spent in American oak, with sweet notes of cassis liquor, blackberries, meat, eucalyptus, green pepper and sweet tobacco. Deep, dark and broading. And very, very good. Not overpowering in its exuberant style. 
The taste is big and steady with a lots of intensity and notes of sweet black currants, iodine, liquorice, dark chocolate, meat stock and mint. The finish is long, warm and satisfying. Very fine.
92p   (tasted 2014/08) 

1982 Barolo Bric dël Fiasc, Paolo Scavino
This bottle have been stuck, to our joy, in some sort of time warp. We were not even close guessing the vintage. This behaves at least 15 years younger than what the label says. I have tried the 82 Bric dël Fiasc one time before, and then it was close to perfect. And behaved accordingly to its age.
This one sports a deep, fresh, pure nose with notes of red cherries, a mushroom forest on a perfect autumn day, bay leaves, rosehips and some tarry aromas. Just gorgeous. And young...
The taste is tight, focused and very, very fine with notes of dried strawberries, dried mushrooms, hard cherry candy, rosehips and gravel. The finish goes on for minutes and there are lots of unresolved tannins. Very pure and refined. This still needs 10 years to reach the maturity level of the one tasted two years ago. Great stuff!
95p   (tasted 2014/08)

1989 Château d´Yquem
I drink Yquem to seldom! But when I do I love it! And this time was no exception. The nose is deep, powerful and multi layered with notes of dried apricots, mushroom cream, almond paste, a whiff of detergent and ripe pears. Not that much botrytis. Very, very deep. This is fine. Has started to mature but have many, many years ahead of it.
The taste is silky smooth and expressive with gorgeous notes of dried pine apple, saffron, chalk, milk chocolate and overripe pears. The finish goes on forever as it seems. Stunning! Would love to drink this with 10 years intervals over the next 50 years. Any sponsors? :-)
95p   (tasted 2014/08)

1994 Chalk Hill Botrytised Sémillon
Also from a half bottle, this Cali sweetie sports a big, mature nose full of dried tropical fruit, almond suryp, detergent and sweet hay. Very good but a tad top heavy.
The taste is big and bold with notes of apricot purée, glue, chicken stock and butter cookies. Sweet, a bit all over the place but I can´t deny the yumminess of this wine. In small sips.
87p   (tasted 2014/08)


  1. Such a pity, three young and sturdy wine aficionados and only nine bottles of wine. What a shame...

    1. Indeed - we have to rectify that next time...:-)

  2. Patience, young Skywalker. Patience. Next time around will also be kind of..."special". The theme is set. :-)