Tuesday, June 26, 2012
The Wine Group tasting 06.26.12 . . . epic? Not so sure . . .
Had the guys over to the house to taste through some old wines from Beaune Imports and wines that have been hanging around in the garage for years off and on and it was a hit and miss affair. Two and maybe possibly three of the wines were corked, some more than others and of course no one could agree on which ones were corked but there was some definite effect of the cork on all the wines whether it was the musty cardboard of classic corked wines or if it was just the muted fruit, slightly off of mildly corked wines. All I know is I am hoping and praying for a time when this can't happen to any wine, but it won't be in my lifetime, that's for sure. Too many people stuck on tradition.
The highlights of the night:
1998 Goisot Cotes d'Auxerre Corps de Garde Bourgogne Blanc (100% Chardonnay): Clean with pale gold core out to a watery rim, clean in the nose with fresh granny smith apples and custard and lemon zest with flavors to match. Creamy and textured in the mouth but no overt wood flavors and it finishes really long and persistent with tangy acidity. Excellent
1991 Chante Perdrix Saint Joseph: Clear and bright with a medium ruby core out to an orange rim. Spicy white pepper and smoked meat in the nose with hints of cranberry sauce. Smoked meat and blueberry/boysenberry balsamic vinegar reduction in the mouth with super fine tannins. Long, long finish with medium plus acidity, definitely what has kept this lovely wine alive. Excellent.
Others in the group loved the 1999 Domaine de Fauterie Cornas and the Goisot Fie` Gris. The Michel Juillot wines were over the hill be still interesting wines for what I am sure back then (and probably now) some really inexpensive off the beaten path Burgundy. The Canoe Ridge was disjointed and not fun. The Hubert de Montille 1993 Bourgogne opened up with time but was showing a definite cork issue. The 19997 Ferreira had maybe stayed too long in the garage . . . . and the Paul Chapelle was corked.
A fun night. The cheeses from the Cheese Store of Beverly Hills were delicious. Five guys must have eaten about 3 lbs of Selles sur Cher, Comte`, Ossau-Iraty and more thanks to Erik Kelley.
So the question: is it worth it to cellar wines for 15 to 25 years before drinking? Obviously, there needs to be a good place to keep the wine (cool, dry, dark, slightly humid but not too much) and the quality of the wine needs to stand up to the test of time (lots of acidity is needed to last 20 years, folks, lots and lots of acidity), and lots of luck that you don't have crappy cork that effects the taste of the wine and lets in just the right amount of oxygen so the aging process can percolate along. So I am not sure . . . after all these years in the business, if the rewards of long term cellaring outweigh the risks.
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