Saturday 13 April 2013

An Evening of Highs & Lows, Mostly Highs...

When invited to M & J, the evenings usually are full of highs withouth lows. But not on this night - not their fault though - they haven´t made the wines - others are to blame...
The food and company on the other hand was, as always, topnotch! :-)
Thanks M & J for a wonderful evening!

It was a tuesday - 16 bottles - wednesday was a tad heavy.
All wines tasted double blind.

1987 Saarburger Rausch Riesling Kabinett, Ziliken
A mature, cheesy nose with notes of banana peel, burnt butter, matchbox and wet earth. Some moldly cellar notes without being corked. No thanks.
The taste is over the hill and far away with flavours of cheese, mold and overripe pears - yummy!
54p   (tasted 2013/04)

1992 Klüsserather Bruderschaft Riesling Spätlese, Clüsserath-Schmitt-Eifel
A wide open, mature nose with notes of grilles lemons, dried herbs, shellfish shells, grass and a touch of rubber (in a positive way). A fine maturity. Really good.
The taste is round, mature but with a fine structure and some fine lemon fruit. The finish is medium long and dry. Notes of dried fudge and apricots in the end. Very good.
87p   (tasted 2013/04)

1989 Erdener Treppchen Riesling Auslese, Dr. Loosen
A deep, mature, fine nose witn notes of peach, smoke, hay and some buttery scents. Fully mature and fine.
The taste is mature, tight and a bit off dry with notes of dried fruits, hay, smoke and a touch of saffron. Nice maturity. Very good.
86p   (tasted 2013/04)

1988 Veuve Clicquot Rare
A beautiful pure and fresh nose with notes of red apples, mustard seeds, dry fudge and summer flowers. Complex and fine. Have started to reach maturity. Very fine.
The taste is sprightly and juicy with lovely notes of apple sorbet, lavender, wet rocks and dried flowers. A fine refreshing acidity. A medium long, dry finish. A beautiful bubbly!
91p   (tasted 2013/04)

1997 Kongsgaard Chardonnay
A deep, smoky, tight nose with profound notes of grilled shellfish, lemon cream, matchbox, butter cookies and some earthy aromas. Very deep and fine. The sweetness of the fruit is amazing. Stunning stuff!
The taste is pure, tight and concentrated with notes of butter fried nuts, lemon cream, summer flowers, dried tropical fruits and wet rocks. The finish goes on for minutes and offers lots of pleasure. Very fresh.
Huh? A 1997 Kongsgaard? We were surprised when it was revealed, I had pegged it much younger. Delicious juice!
95p   (tasted 2013/04)

1999 Kistler McCrea Vineyard Chardonnay
This on the other hand have been manhandled somewhere during its journey to our table - a dry nose with notes of sherry and almond paste with a big, ripe, alcoholic taste with lots of overripe red apples and wet earth. Tasteable, but not much more.
58p   (tasted 2013/04)

2000 Leeuwin Estate Chardonnay Art Series
A intense, finely tuned nose with gorgeous notes of white peaches, dried flowers, smoke and a sweet minerality. Very very fine. Elegant and poised.
The taste is complex, deep and gorgeous with notes of peach, grilled lemons, lime fudge and lots of crushed rocks. The finish is long and elegant. This is really fine.
92p   (tasted 2013/04)

2002 Corton-Charlemagne, Louis Jadot
A deep, concentrated but a bit restrained nose that needs lots of air to unfold. But then things happens - lots of sweet yellow apples, melted butter, chalk and cap gun smoke. A very fine, high pitched nose.
The taste is young, tight and concentrated with a lot of weight in the fruit and notes of grapefruit, cold butter, chalk and some bonfire notes. Long and fine, this needs another 3-5 years to unfold some more. Great wine!
92p   (tasted 2013/04)

2007 Les Crêtes Chardonnay Cuvée Bois
This Valle d´Aosta Chardonnay opens up with an interesting nose with notes of flowers, popcorn and smoke, so just going on the nose I thought that we were back in the USA. With air notes of seashells, dried pineapple and herbs in butter emerge. Very interesting.
The taste on the other hand brings you right back to Europe, with its stringency, acidity and structure. Lots of sweet lemons, almonds, grapefruit and minerals. The finish is medium long and dry. Very good.
88p   (tasted 2013/04)


2008 Talley Rosemary´s Vineyard Chardonnay
Just wow! What a nose! Deep, intoxicating and fresh with notes of star fruit, grilled lemons, vanilla ice cream, cold butter, fudge and smoke. Very, very deep. Wit air a beautiful note of summer flowers emerge. Magnificent!
The taste is tight, pure and creamy with the sweetest lemons imaginable alongside some white peaches, cold butter, dried flowers and cap gun smoke. The finish goes on for over a minute. Racy and hedonistic! Great stuff!
94p   (tasted 2013/04)

2010 Dog Point Chardonnay
The first bottle was corked, but M, afraid that weren´t enough to drink, got another bottle on the table. And we were happy, for this is delicious grape juice! The nose is cool, tight and fresh with notes of lemons, lime, cucumber water, cap gun smoke and chalk. Deep and fine. Opens up all night long. Very young.
The taste is tight and pure with lots of grilled lemons and limes and notes of fudge, cold butter, star fruit and chalk. Very long and finely tuned. Needs another 3-5 years. Great!
92p   (tasted 2013/04)

2010 Littorai Charles Heintz Vineyard Chardonnay
And the stunning Chardonnay´s keep coming! This beauty opens with a deep, intense and laser focused nose with notes of lemoncello, licorice, butter cookies, summer flowers and crushed rocks. Keeps on evolving in the glass all night long. Very, very fine.
The taste is tight, concentrated and pure with notes of green apples, lemons, oyster shells and chalk. The finish is counted in minutes. A very fine acidity. Gorgeous stuff! Cellar it for 2-4 years, and it will be even better.
93p   (tasted 2013/04)

2010 Foxglove Chardonnay
A big, open, fine nose with notes of marshmallows, dried fruit, melon and green apples. Very good although not as deep and profound as the previous ones. A fine warmth.
The taste is fresh and medium intense with lots of interest and notes of lime, green apples, minerals and nuts. A medium long, fine finish.
Huh?! 11 $! This is apparently bottled by Varner, which Chardonnay´s I love. How can they make this quality and sell it for 11 $? And why can´t I buy it!?
88p   (tasted 2013/04)

To finish the evening of we were presented with three decanters - red wine time!

2009 Littorai Hirsch Vineyard Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir
A fine, deep, opulent nose with notes of ripe rasberries, licorice, pan fried herbs and some dark chocolate. Big and juicy, but when it reach room temperature it gets a tad flabby. Otherwise, very fine.
The taste is young, tight and warm with notes of rasberries, plums, licorice, forest floor and a hint of oak. The finish is long and warm, and again, when it gets warmer, the alcohol makes an appearance in the finish. But there is fine fruit here and as long as you drink it between 14-17 degrees Celsius, it is a fine mouthful of Sonoma Pinot.
90p   (tasted 2013/04)

1996 Barolo Le Vigne, Sandrone
Aaaaaaaah - home sweet home! The maturing aromas of Nebbiolo - is there anything better? The nose is deep, elegant and fine with notes of cool cherry fruit, dried mushrooms, licorice, rosehips and a touch of chocolate. With some air a beautiful perfumed note emerge. A very fine warmth. Semi mature. Really, really fine.
The taste is like an iron fist in a velvet glove with lovely notes of sweet/sour cherries, licorice, rose petals and chocolate cream. The finish is long, structured and warm. Very, very fine. The tannins shows themselves in the finish. This stills needs 4-6 years before reaching full maturity. Aaaaah - there is nothing like a Baroli! :-)
94p   (tasted 2013/04)

2003 Papa, Sine Qua Non
Remember - we tasted all bottles double blind... What the f...k is this - plum compote with grain alcohol? But wait, there is more interesting notes - burnt toast, dark, dusty chocolate, sugared coffee, prunes and VA. Lots of VA. Ungainly and unfocused, this isn´t good. At this point I´m guessing a overripe Australian Shiraz.
The taste is big, fiery and angular with notes of overripe black cherries, plums, beetroots, soy sauce and dusty chocolate. The finish is very, very long, with overripe sweet fruit and alcohol. I´m still guessing a Australian Shiraz, M have presented some disgusting Aussie wines over the years. :-)
And it is revealed......SQN? What? I have loved SQN every single time I have had it - blind or not. And this bottle wasn´t wrong, it wasn´t cooked or corked or otherwise faulty. Just bad.
I had it at 62p, but being a label drinker (aren´t we all...? :-) I notched it up to
65p   (tasted 2013/04)


  1. Ouch. What did M think about the SQN? Did everyone concur that it did in fact suck?

    Nice to read about Kongsgaard, never had one of their wines.

    Totally agree about Foxglove. Awesome stuff for no money at all. Too bad one can't find it over here...

  2. Well, he was, and still is, in denial...:-) But the unanimous impression was a over-the-top wine, although the degree of acceptance was slightly different.
    Yes - I could drink the Foxglove every day of the week!

  3. Come to...Papa! :-)