Sunday, 30 December 2018

Piedmont 2015 - Part III

Up to now I have tasted ca 20 2015 Baroli from cask and bottle, not nearly enough to make a judgement, but.....if I would so anyway, I would say that in comparison with the 2013 vintage (which I love) the 15´s are denser and warmer with more structure. But they still have a fine balance.
They will surely last longer then the 13´s but they don´t have the charm of that vintage. I will buy but maybe not as much as I have of the 13´s.
2015 Baroli tasted - so far... - from Aldo Conterno, Vietti, Luigi Pira, Renato Corino, Brovia, Guido Porro and Marengo.

Some more 2015 Langhe Nebbiolo´s:
2015 Langhe Nebbiolo, Andrea Oberto
An open, fine nose with notes of dried strawberries, forest floor, damsons, rose petals and warm tiles. A very fine warmth. Very, very good.
The taste is young and upfront with notes of ripe lingonberries, asphalt, dried flowers and rosehips. Refreshing acidity and silky tannins. Long and fine.
90p   (tasted 2018/12)


2015 Langhe Nebbiolo La Chiusa, Chionetti
A fresh, high, leaning on tart, nose with notes of lingonberries, incense, dried mushrooms and dry licorice. A fine intensity and lots of character.
The taste is tight and seedy with notes of raspberry licorice, earth, violets, rosehips and bakelite. Very nicely structured. This I like. Very, very good.
91p   (tasted 2018/12)

Friday, 28 December 2018

Piedmont 2015 - Part II

2015 is shaping to be a really good, but maybe not a great vintage in total. Tasting the Dolcetto´s last year revealed some examples that were a tad heavy but for the most part they were solid and good.

The Barbera´s on the other hand has faired really well from this, a tad warmer year. During this year I have tasted stunning bottles from Bartolo Mascarello, Brovia, Vietti, Giacomo Conterno, Marengo, Luciano Sandrone, Burlotto, Luigi Pira, Vajra, Renato Corino and more. They are ripe, rich but very finely structured and giving heaps of drinking pleasure.

Then there is the Nebbiolo´s. As I wrote in Part I, the Langhe Nebbiolo´s gives a good impression of the upcoming Barolo vintage. Here are two more.

2015 Langhe Nebbiolo, Moccagatta
A spicy, open, fine nose with notes of violet licorice, forest raspberries, dark flowers and fir wood. Very, very good. A fine sweetness to the fruit.
The taste is cool and seedy with notes of ripening lingon- and blueberries, forest floor, asphalt and spices. Fine, silky tannins. Drinking great now but will surely age well.
90p   (tasted 2018/12)


2015 Langhe Nebbiolo, Cascina Corte
A laid back, fine nose with notes of sweet/sour cherries, undergrwoth, raspberry vinegar, candle grease and dry licorice. Multi layered and fine.
The taste is tight and linear with notes of sour cherries, raspberry licorice, gravel and almond paste. A high acidity. Long, with a fine dryness at the end.
89p   (tasted 2018/12)

Thursday, 27 December 2018

Stilton & Port - 1985 Taylor´s Vintage Port

Christmas - Stilton & Port - what a giveaway!

1985 Taylor´s Vintage Port
From a half bottle, this exudes a dark, sweet and intoxicating nose from the glass, with notes of dades, green raisins, chocolate mousse, bonfire, toasted almonds, a hint of cognac and molasses. A lovely depth and richness.
The taste is deep and profound with strenght, balance and concentration, with notes of fried Brazil nuts, nougat, dark violets, dades and moist dark clay. Long, long and rewarding. Still young of course but irresistible today.
94p   (tasted 2018/12)


Wednesday, 26 December 2018

Drinking Tonight - 1995 Gravello, Librandi


1995 Gravello, Librandi
This Calabria blend of 60% Gaglioppo and 40% Cabernet Sauvignon shows of a mature, lightly meaty, undergrowth nose with notes of dried cherries, tobacco, sweet violets and smoke. A hint of molasses. A fine dried up sweetness. Very, very good.
The taste is round, warm and mature with notes of ripe red cherries, dry licorice, scorched earth and herbs. Broad shouldered and fine. Sweet, soft tannins in the back of the finish. A bargain, like the 93, tasted two years ago.
88p   (tasted 2018/12)

Saturday, 22 December 2018

Drinking Tonight - 2008 Brunello Di Montalcino Poggio Al Vento, Col d´Orcia

2008 Brunello Di Montalcino Poggio Al Vento, Col d´Orcia
A deep, lovely, multi layered nose with notes of perfectly ripe cherries, violets, sandelwood, lovely floral aromas and chrushed rocks. Very handsome. So fine. Young of course but the quality, oooh the quality. This is already a masterpiece but give this 8 years and...
The taste is tight, wonderful and with notes of sweet/sour cherries, rosemary, dried flowers, warm sand and dry chocolate. The tannins are polished with the finest cloth. High and fine. This is just stunning. Gotta get me more of this! For notes of a recent vertical of 1985 - 2007 Poggio Al Vento, see this link.
97p   (tasted 2018/12)


Friday, 21 December 2018

Piedmont 2015 - Part I

Soon, very soon, the first 2015 Baroli will be released. How is the 2015 vintage then? I will get back to that, The Barolo Boys have during the trips of 2018 and 2017 tasted a few..., from cask and from bottles.

But a really good way to get a glimpse of the upcoming vintage is to taste the Nebbiolo´s, which have been on the market for some time now.

I will the coming days - a perfect companion to the fat Christmas food - taste a bunch of Nebbiolo´s from 2015. Lets start with these two bottles!

2015 Nebbiolo d´Alba Baluma, Diego Conterno
This opens a bit funky and with the aroma of the particuliar chicken farmyard that I have some problems with, but it recedes in the background after some time in the glass and leaves room for notes of spicy strawberries, forest floor, dry biscuits and hot gravel. Good in a all over the place kind of way.
The taste is seedy, cool and "natural" with notes of moist earth, sweet/sour raspberries, asphalt and beetroot. A fine warmth. A very good acidity. Except for the chicken farm notes, a very good wine.
87p   (tasted 2018/12)


2005 Nebbiolo d´Alba Vigna Valmaggiore, Bruno Giacosa
Right out of the gate this is a charmer, with notes of cranberries, hard cherry candy, some balsamic scents and fresh herbs. Very, very good. A fine depth and a laid back elegance.
The taste is initially silky but soon the polished tannins take over, alongside fine notes of ripe lingonberries, earth, herbs and chrushed rocks. Has a high drinkability factor.
91p   (tasted 2018/12)

Thursday, 20 December 2018

Some Fortified Wines To End The Tasting Season


The last tasting of the year in our mothly tasting group and Mikke of course delievered the goods, as he did last year.
All wines tasted double blind, except for the last one which we knew that it was a 2016.

1950 Sercial, Leacock´s
A fine, delicate nose with notes of dried yellow plums, dates, rum raisins, salt rocks and a hint of saw dust. Deep and complex.
The taste is multi layered and complex with notes of fried nut, bakelite, dried tangerines and a fine salty note. Very long. A high intensity. A very fine acidity but I remember this wine with a searing acidity the times I have tasted it, some 10 years ago. It has mellowed, at least this bottle.
91p   (tasted 2018/12)



1982 Colheita Bual, Cossart Gordon
A spicy, fine, deep nose with notes of cold mulled wine, French nougat, warm dust and ginger bread. Very fine.
The taste is big and concentrated with notes of dark plums, dades, smoke and fried nuts. A long, long finish with a fine combination of alcohol, acidity and body.
92p   (tasted 2018/12)

1988 Colheita Terrantez, d´Olivieras
Aaaaaah, this has depth and complexity in spades! A very deep, intoxicating nose with notes of plums, detergent, old leather, undergrowth, stables and nougat. Very, very fine.
The taste is tight and concentrated with notes of chocolate covered apricots, smoke, old tobacco and chrushed rocks. A high, fine acidity. The finish is counted in minutes. Just stunning.
95p   (tasted 2018/12)



2011 Pedro Ximénez de Añada, Alvear
Oh dear, this is not good. Apparently a 100p Parker wine...this wine is oxidized and cloying at the same time, from the get go to the finish. The first smell is that of a cheap strawberry wine that has started a secondary, not wanted fermentation. Then it has some wet cardboard scents, without being corked. All over the place, and not in any good places. Not fortified but pushing 17% alcohol.
The taste, ooh the taste, sweet, surupy and did I mentioned sweet? Sweet is good if there is a balancing acidity. There isn´t. 100p? Oh dear.
67p   (tasted 2018/12)

1978 Colheita Port, Kopke
Aaah, back to some good wine! A deep, concentrated nose with notes of raisins, dried dark flowers, blue ski wax, dades and the fine aroma of a childhood plastic car track that has gotten warm. Very, very good.
The taste is steady and fine with notes of fried nuts, raisins, fir wood, licorice covered chocolate and asphalt. Very long with a fine warmth. Some maturity. Really fine.
93p   (tasted 2018/12)



2016 Vintage Port, Dow´s
Well, we did now that it was a 16 Port, and the colour - pitch black - was a kind of give away... The nose is high and fine with notes of blackberries, violets, scorched earth and raspberry licorice. Given this blind I would, on the nose alone, ventured that this would be a well behaved Zinfandel or a more modern Aglianico, not a fortified wine.
The taste is broad and tight with notes of ripe blueberries, graphite, violets and dark chocolate. Some green raisins in the finish. A fine structure, but for a very young Port, the tannins are very well behaved and on the smooth side of things. For you youngsters, give this 20+ years and tell me how it turned out.
91p   (tasted 2018/12)

Tuesday, 18 December 2018

2000 Château Citran


2000 Château Citran
This 50% Cabernet Sauvignon and 50% Merlot sports a fine, open, mature nose with notes of red and black currants, autumn leaves, some live stock in a distance and coffe grounds. A fine maturity with sandelwood and leather coming up to surface after some time in the glass. Very, very good.
The taste is soft, mature and velvety with notes of dried damsons, tobacco, earth and some juniper berries. Finely polished tannins. A hint of austerity at the end. Drinking perfect now.
89p   (tasted 2018/12)

Monday, 17 December 2018

Some Rieslings - Schaefer, Prüm, Keller, Schäfer-Fröhlich & More

2001 Haardter Bürgergarten Riesling Spätlese, Müller-Catoir
A elegant, low keyed, maturing nose with notes of dried up lavender honey, sun warm rocks and lemon/licorice candy. Very, very good.
The taste is semi dry - initially - and pure with notes of candied lemons, salt rock, dried apricots and minerals. A very fine acidity. Ends dry. In a lovely state of maturity.
90p   (tasted 2018/06)




2007 Wehlener Sonnenuhr Riesling Kabinett, Willi Schaefer
A cool, spicy, high nose with notes of grey pears, birch leaves, petrol and chrushed rocks. Crisp and fine.
The taste is fine, light and expressive with notes of chalk, spices, lemon peel and grey pears. Long and lingering. Very fine.
92p   (tasted 2018/06)

2005 Wehlener Sonnenuhr Riesling Spätlese, Willi Schaefer
A high, intense nose with notes of lime peel, starfruit, wet asphalt and white peach. Very handsome. Lots of focus and concentration. Still young.
The taste is refined and intense with notes of sweet lime, candied lemons, moist earth and a salt/sour/sweet note that is fantastic. Very long. This is brilliant.
95p   (tasted 2018/06)




1997 Wehlener Sonnenuhr Riesling Auslese, Joh. Jos. Prüm
A very deep, complex nose with notes of dried up vanilla ice cream, a rubber carpet, white currants and honey pastilles. A lovely maturity. Very fine.
The taste is tight and concentrated with notes of dry pine apple, rubber, autumn leaves, honey and sweet minerals. A long, long finish with a brilliant acidity. At 21 year of age, still an adolescent.
95p   (tasted 2018/06)

2008 Schlossböckelheimer Kupfergrube Riesling GG, Schäfer-Fröhlich
A young, perky nose with notes of white pepper, grass, pear ice cream and steel. Lively and fine.
The taste is earthy and steely with notes of pears, white currants, steel and minerals. A high intensity. Long and fine. Still very young.
91p   (tasted 2018/08)




2016 Bockenauer Stromberg Riesling GG, Schäfer-Fröhlich
A very stony, lightly herbal, fresh nose with notes of elderberries, grass, iron and minerals. Very, very young, doesn´t show of much at this state.
The taste is dry, crisp and stony with notes of lime peel, chrushed rocks, white currants and a touch of ginger. Tight. Needs time, 6+ years.
88p   (tasted 2018/08)

2014 Niersteiner Riesling Kabinett -H-, Keller
H for Hipping. A very fascinating nose, with an initial whiff of an old outboard two-stroke engine combined with scents of grape, apricots, dried flowers and slate. Really fine. Very deep.
The taste is crisp and racy with notes of quince, birch sap, tangerines and grape. A cleansing acidity. Very, very fine.
93p   (tasted 2018/08)



2005 Norheimer Dellchen Riesling Spätlese, Dönnhoff
A deep, somewhat mature nose with notes of dried up lemoncello, wet asphalt, herbs and dry grass. Very good but not with that extra lift that the bottles from Dönnhof usually have.
The taste is almost fully dry with notes of herbs, dry mango, grass and gravel. A bit linear. Good though. I don´t think it will improve.
85p   (tasted 2018/08)

2008 Schlossböckelheimer Felsenberg Riesling GG, Schäfer-Fröhlich
An open, direct nose with notes of passionfruit, asphalt, lemon cream and earth. A bit iodine after a while. Interesting and fine.
The taste is tight and seedy with notes of grape, iron, lime peel and slate. Tighter on the palate. A fine acidity. Very, very good.
88p   (tasted 2018/11)






2002 Rheingau Riesling Kabinett, Robert Weil
A mature, round, fine nose with notes of dried up lemon ice cream, grass, iron and white flowers. Very fine.
The taste is dry and concentrated with notes of grilled lemons, dry peach, slate and grass. Long and fine. Perfectly mature.
90p   (tasted 2018/11)

2006 Kiedrich Turmberg Riesling Spätlese, Robert Weil
A deep, concentrated nose with notes of dried apricots, diesel oil, passionfruit, fried nuts and a touch of saffron. Very deep and complex.
The taste is seedy, fine and multi layered with notes of candle grease, apricots, nuts and earth. Long and balanced. Really fine.
93p   (tasted 2018/11)




2004 Dalsheimer Hubacker Riesling Auslese, Keller
A very deep, concentrated nose with notes of ripe apricots, ripe herbs, lemon licorice, asphalt and a touch of saffron. Very fine.
The taste is rich and concentrated with ripe yellow apples, saffron, almond paste and earth. Very long. A fine maturity. Lovely.
92p   (tasted 2018/11)

Saturday, 15 December 2018

Birthday Dinner - Three Baroli From The Greatest Vintage Ever


It is that time of the year - another "year" older and deeper in debt.

1964 Barolo, Giorgio Carnevale
This 54 year old Barolo show of a round, sweet, open nose - all three bottles was opened 8 hours before decanted 30 minutes prior to dinner - with notes of a moist mushroom forest, sour/sweet raspberries, smoke, nuts and rubber. A low keyed intensity.
The taste is fine and refined - much more so than the nose - with notes of dried raspberries, licorice, undergrowth, paint and dried flowers. Long and fine. Fully mature but in no hurry to drink.
88p   (tasted 2018/12)


1964 Barolo, Fratelli Graziola
Oooh yes, a winner! Starts of a bit shy, but evolves beautifully in the glass with notes of fir wood, dark licorice, damsons, rosehips, asphalt and a hint of old mint. Just lovely.
The taste is dense and tight with notes of dry licorice, undergrowth, dried strawberries, ginger bread and old leather. Very long and fine. Still with fine sweet fruit. For drinking now and the coming 8+ years.
91p   (tasted 2018/12)

1964 Barolo Riserva Speziale, Luigi Bosca
Ah well, this bottles shows up from time to time, they look good, the level is fine, the label looks great, but they have been standing in a shop window - or something like that - for 20 years...
50p   (tasted 2018/12)

Monday, 10 December 2018

The Monthly Crew´s Autumn Tasting Dinner


It was time for our semi annually wine tasting (drinking...) dinner. Great food, wine and fun as usual! This time me and HG was responsible for the dessert.
This is how it went. All wines except our own tasted double blind.

1996 Brut, Henriot
A light smoky, mature nose with notes of dried apricots, lemon licorice, soap and dry biscuits. Medium deep and fine.
The taste is fine and balanced with notes of cookie dough, grilled lemons, minerals and dried flowers. A fine, long finish with a cleansing acidity. For drinking now and the coming 5+ years.
90p   (tasted 2018/11)

NV Cuvée Des Grands Vintages, Eric Rodez
To my recollaction, I have never tasted anything from this producer. The nose is stony and smoky with notes of steel, white currants and dried lingonberries, A tad anemic.
The taste is tight and concentrated with a high acidity and notes of iron, white currants, grass and minerals. Somewhat foursquare.
85p   (tasted 2018/11)



1990 La Grande Dame, Veuve Clicquot
A lovely mature nose with notes of orange peel, ripe yellow apples, undergrowth, dry fudge and a hint of band aid. Complex and fine.
The taste is round, creamy and mature with notes of dried up Tarte Tatin, pecan nuts, lemon cream and earth. Yummy! A fine mature intensity.
94p   (tasted 2018/11)

2004 Blanc des Millénaires, Charles Heidsieck
A very deep, still young nose with notes of lemon peel, Thai basil, minerals and white peach. Racy and refined. Very young.
The taste is tight and seedy with notes of lime juice, birch leaves, chalk and grey pears. A long, strict finish with a high, cleansing acidity. Will need 8+ years to become more like the 1995.
92p   (tasted 2018/11)

2003 Batard-Montrachet Vieilles Vignes, Rijckaert
An unknown producer for me, this 15 year old Batard, even though displaying a high degree of maturity, was a treat.
The nose is deep, mature and lovely with notes of dried flowers, shellfish shell, apriocts, glue and caramel, in a gorgeous mix. Very complex and fine.
The taste is round and mature with notes of tangerines, almond paste, dry fudge and grilled lemons. A long, structured finish with plenty of power still. Could never have guessed it to be from a hot year, very balanced and racy.
94p   (tasted 2018/11)



2002 Batard-Montrachet Vieilles Vignes, Rijckaert
The 02, from a supposedly greater vintage than the previous wine, doesn´t do the vintage justice. The nose is big and brawny with notes of cellar apples, orange peel, clay and autumn leaves.
The taste is large scaled with lots of bitter oranges and additional notes of cooked apples, dried up tangerine jam and undergrowth. A hint of oxidation. Good but a far cry from the 03.
84p   (tasted 02018/11)

2002 Meursault-Charmes, Henri Germain
This felt, at least, ten years younger than the previous wine, although coming from the same vintage. A high, earthy and spicy nose with notes of grass, lemons, white currants and cap gun smoke. A fine structure, leaning towards the anemic.
The taste is young, focused and fine with notes of chive, white currants, flint and grass. A fine acidity and intensity. Very, very good. 6+ years.
91p   (tasted 2018/11)


2013 Esprit Blanc, Tablas Creek
A round, fluffy nose with notes with notes of yellow plums, herbs, pears and smoke. A fine note of handcream after a while. Very good.
The taste is creamy and fresh with notes of plums, minerals, banana peel, ginger and smoke. A long, fine finish. Maybe a tad low in acidity.
88p   (tasted 2018/11)



2015 Hermitage Le Chevalier de Sterimberg, Jaboulet
Tasted for the third time this year, and it behaved exactly the same on this night, a gorgeous wine.
93p   (tasted 2018/11)

2014 Pinot Noir Savoy Vineyard, Peavy
This flight was the easiest, we all pegged it as Pinot all the way through, but the origin of the bottles - well, the Omerta rules apply...
Same vineyard, two producers, two fine wines. The Peay (a new producer for me) shows a cool, refined nose with notes of ripe lingonberries, earth, bakelite and fresh herbs. Very lively and fine.
The taste is pure and racy with a lovely Pinot fruit, with notes of freshly chrushed strawberries, herbs, a hint of tobacco and forest floor. Intense and vivid. Very fine.
93p   (tasted 2018/11)


2013 Pinot Noir Savoy Vineyard, Littorai
The Littorai displays a more laid back, elegant nose with notes of wild raspberries, ski wax and gravel. The fruit feels a bit warmer than the Peay. Very good.
The taste is tight and fine with notes of ripe lingonberries with some blueberries tossed in, bakelite, gravel and undergrowth. A bit withdrawn, needs a couple of year in the cellar.
91p   (tasted 2018/11)

2011 Charmes-Chambertin, Domaine Arlaud
A deep, lovely and lively nose with notes of root vegetables, red beet juice, candle grease and some smoky scents. Very intoxicating and fine. A very fine sweetness to the fruit. Gorgeous.
The taste is pure, fresh and spirited with notes of wild raspberries, forest floor, red beets, sun warm rocks and a hint of leather. Long and distinct, with a very fine acidity. 5+ years. Great wine.
95p   (tasted 2018/11)



2014 Charmes-Chambertin Vieilles Vignes, Domaine Bachelet
Even better, the Bachelet offers up a deep, tight, drop dead gorgeous nose with notes of ripe wild strawberries, forest floor, earth, licorice, incense and a hint of fir wood. Very complex. Just stunning.
The taste is pure and focused with notes of strawberry licorice, root vegetables, chrushed rocks, a hint of smoke and sandelwood. The finish goes on and on. A great wine now, perfection in 8 years.
96p   (tasted 2018/11)

1890 Malmsey, Freitas Martins
What dreams are made of - mine at least! Opened and deacanted one week before the tasting, old Madeira needs lots of air. The nose is just perfect, multi layered with notes of fried nuts, linoleum, cold coffee, rubber, Finnish green marmelade, fir, old leather and thousand other aromas. Bottomless deep.
The taste goes on for minutes, gentle and rich with a pearcing acidity and notes of eggnog, old chocolate, nuts, linoleum, glue and dark incense. Brilliant. Packing quite a punch. Could go on for another 128 years...
99p   (tasted 2018/11)



1968 Boal Resrva, d´Olivieras
Tasted eight years ago, and equally great on this night, I just love Madeira!
97p   (tasted 2018/11)

Saturday, 8 December 2018

Due Dolcetto

A non meat evening - you got to try everything once, right? :-)

2017 Dolcetto d´Alba, Sergio Guidice
Everyone that has been to Centro Storico and parked at the top right below that castle, has noticed a small door/window displaying the wines of Sergio Guidice right across the parking spaces.
Has anyone ever been in? The Barolo Boys have, meeting the most charming elderly couple, that opened and poured the wines, which their son Alberto makes (born in 1964). A delightful visit.
I bought their Barolo and this bottle, which opens with a rather large scaled, rustic nose with notes of damsons, scorched earth, dried blueberries, bakelite and iron.
The taste is broad and tight with notes of toasted almonds, dark cherries, rowan-berries and undergrowth. Again, rustic, but also with a rustic charm.
85p   (tasted 2018/11)


2016 Dolcetto d´Alba, Luigi Pira
Even better than a year ago when tasted on the estate. Has put on a bit of weight but the acidty still makes it perky and full of joy, with notes of blueberry bushes, violet, dried raspberries and undergrowth. Highly drinkable at the moment and will surely continue like this for 5+ years.
89p   (tasted 2018/11)