Sunday, 23 October 2016

Tasting The Penfolds Collection 2016

The other day I had the opportunity to taste through the newly released vintages of the upper echelon in the Penfolds family.
A lot of quality here but what have they done with the prizes? 420 Euro for Grange?! 250 Euro for the Bin 707?! Have they gone mad?! I´m not byuing, but I´m glad I got the chance to taste them :-)

2015 Bin 311 Tumbarumba Chardonnay
This is a juicy, upfront Chardonnay with notes of lemon cream, summer flowers, almonds and some smoke. A nice nerve to it, Very good.
The taste is young and forward with lots of sweet lemon fruit and additional notes of smoke, minerals and almond paste. A good acidity. But there is a hint of warmth at the end of the finish when it gets a little warmer in the glass.
88p   (tasted 2016/10)

2014 Bin 389
This 53% Cabernet Sauvignon and 47% Shiraz blend offers up a deep, warm, spicy nose with notes of ripe black currants, liquorice, smoke and some perfumed aromas. A warm earthy scent after a while. Open for business. Very good.
The taste is ample and warm with notes of peppered black currants, wood smoke, blood  pudding and dark chocolate. A long, hearthy finish. For drinking now and the coming 8+ years.
90p   (tasted 2016/10)

2013 St. Henri Shiraz
A deep, high toned, expressive nose with notes of ripe blueberries, starch, ink, meat stock and some dark perfume. A whole another style of Shiraz compared to the RWT and Grange, and better for it. Leaning more to a European style. Very, very good.
The taste is young, seedy and inky with notes of blueberries, bakelite, green peppers and hard liquorice. A very fine concentration. This is really good. Lots of polished tannins in the long, long finish. This will turn out great after at least 6 years in the cellar. Worth the tariff of 68 Euro. 96% Shiraz, 4% Cabernet Sauvignon.
94p   (tasted 2016/10)

2014 RWT
The RWT is 100% Shiraz from Barossa Valley, and it shows. A rich, lush nose with notes of (over)ripe blackberries, rosemary, toothpaste, sweet liquorice and dark smoke. Very deep. Dark, moist earth.
The taste is full bodied, warm and tight with notes of spicy blackberries, dark chocolate, wood smoke and black peppers. The finish is long, heady and intense, and maybe a tad so for poor, weak me... Very good though.
92p   (tasted 2016/10)

2014 Bin 707
The Bin 707 (even though the price is insane) is a terrific bottle of wine. The nose is deep, intense and seamless with stunning notes of ripe blueberries, warm gravel, grilled peppers, mint and graphite. I would say that the nose is more of a Shiraz/Cab mix than a 100% Cab, but all the same, it is a great wine.
The taste is refined and gorgeously structured with notes of ripe black currants, mint, black cherries, warm tiles and some smoke. Perfectly polished tannins shows themself in the long, long finish. Will get even better with 8+ years cellaring.
96p   (tasted 2016/10)

2012 Grange
98% Shiraz and 2% Cabernet Sauvignon. Still a baby. The nose is very deep, warm and concentrated with notes of ripe blueberries, dark meat, forest floor, ink and smoke. Very complex, but ooooh so young. Somewhat withdrawn. Lots to unfold here, given time.
The taste is young, tight and intense with notes of ripe blueberries, hard cherry candy, ink, asphalt and dark violets. The finish goes of for minutes. Again, elusive. This will need at least a decade in the cellar.
94p   (tasted 2016/10)

Friday, 21 October 2016

Drinking Tonight - 2014 Le Volte, Tenuta dell´Ornellaia

Home made pizza with truffle salami, hand picked mushrooms from a nearby Swedish forest and buffalo mozzarella; and a straightforward yet satisfying bottle of wine - life is easy.

Seeing Tenuta dell´Ornellaia on the label gets me salivating for the upcoming Ornellaia vertical we got planned, with bottles from 1988 onwards...

2014 Le Volte, Tenuta dell´Ornellaia
The blend has changed compared to the 2013, with the Merlot pumped up to 70% and the rest is equal parts of Sangiovese and Cabernet Sauvignon. The nose is medium deep and ripe with notes of plums, wood smoke, warm herbs and some chocolate aromas. Very good.
The taste is medium bodied with a fine warmth and notes of ripe blueberries, plums, chocolate wafers and Tuscan gravel. A nice long drying finish. Tenuta dell´Ornellaia writes on their webpage that "The 2014 vintage was the most challenging in our memory", but I think that they have produced a better wine this year than the previous one.
88p   (tasted 2016/10)

Friday, 14 October 2016

2005 Vougeot 1er Cru Le Clos Blanc de Vougeot, Domaine de la Vougeraie

A few weeks ago we went to Grand Hotel in Stockholm and attacked their fabolous seafood buffet - lobsters, clams, scallops, crabs, oysters and different dishes of these crustaceans, with sauces and vegetables. We ate, and ate, and ate.
But I needed something to drink! I went for a glass of 2006 Rol Roger (from magnum) which was crisp, clean and steely (92p).
I then opted for the 1914 Rol Roger from the winelist at 26.000 Euro but paced myself and ordered a half bottle of

2005 Vougeot 1er Cru Le Clos Blanc de Vougeot, Domaine de la Vougeraie
This 11 year old Burgundy needed a good half hour to really open up but when it did, it revealed great aromas of ripe blood oranges, summer flowers, lime fudge and warm chalk. Very fine. Some maturity.
The taste is deep, broad and structured with notes of lemon cream, sweet minerals, matchbox and almond paste. A very long, lingering finish with a fine warmth and a cleansing acidity. This is in great drinking phase. Really good.
93p   (tasted 2016/09)

Thursday, 13 October 2016

New Vintages From Louis Roederer

The other day, I got the chance, through VinUnic, to taste the new vintages from Louis Roederer. This is what I thought.

2004 Giulio Ferrari Riserva del Fondatore
But we started with this 100% Chardonnay from the high hills surrounding Trento. 2,5 g/l dosage and aged on the lees for more than 10 years, has turned out a wine with a round, expressive nose with some maturity and notes of ripe yellow apples, almond paste, smoke and a touch of cinnamon. Complex and intriguing. Very, very good.
The taste is soft and broad with notes of a Tarte Tatin made out of yellow apples, slate, smoke and warm grass. A very nice bubbly but it lacks some weight and focus on the mid palate. Highly drinkable. Good acidity and medium long. The nose outclasses the taste.
90p   (tasted 2016/10)

2009 Brut Vintage
This 70% Pinot Noir and 30% Chardonnay blend offers up a fruity, forward nose with lots of fresh bread and additional notes of hazelnuts, red currants, dark butter biscuits and some burnt toast. Very, very nice.
The taste is young, tight and elegant with notes of dark fudge, toast, warm grass and gravel. A medium bodied finish with a fine acidity and persistence. A very fine effort.
91p   (tasted 2016/10)

2009 Brut Nature
This is a none dosage (the wine above has 9 g/l in comparison) wine is a special one. I think it will need to time to settle and then some time to unfold. The stuffing is there but it is a bit disjointed today.
The nose is fresh and high with notes of lemon peel, elderberries, freshly cut grass and dusty gravel. Mountain river pure. A very salivating nose.
The taste is dry, then dry, then revealing notes of dry grass, white currants, lime juice and wet stones. It has an anemic feeling about it, yet the structure and backbone is there for something very good along the line. Give it 3-5 years.
91p   (tasted 2016/10)

2011 Brut Rosé
Its hard not to compare to the glorious 2010 Brut Rosé, and as nice as the 2011 is, it is a far cry from the previous vintage. The nose is cool, low keyed and nice with notes of ripening strawberries, red currants and blood oranges. A hint of fir. Very good.
The taste is medium bodied, young and fresh with notes of red currants, gravel and some raspberry liquorice. A nice, refreshing finish. This is good but again, I am glad I have bottles of the 2010 in the cellar.
88p   (tasted 2016/10)

2007 Cristal
Aaaah Cristal! Always a treat, and the 09 is no exception. The nose is pure and refined with stunning notes of lemon cream, summer flowers, newly washed clothes drying in the wind, grape fruit and a hint of oak. Luxurious and handsome. Great wine.
The taste is complex, multi layered and rich with notes of yellow plums, lemon fudge, matchbox and chalk. The finish is long, focused and nuanced. It will get even better in 5+ years time. And now we wait for the 08, which should be an out of this world experience, given what that vintage has shown so far.
94p   (tasted 2016/10)

Monday, 10 October 2016

Some Birthday Wines

Not mine though. M had his birthday recently and invited a couple of the usual suspects, and we got to drink these bottles.
All wines tasted double blind.

2006 Special Club Rosé, Paul Bara
A young, cool, fresh nose with notes of red currants, gravel, heather and cigarette ashes. A fine depth. After some time in the glass aromas of dried strawberries emerge. Very, very good.
The taste is tight and pure with notes of ripe lingonberries, red currants, bark and gravel. A long finish which show a very high acidity. Ends with a touch of bitterness. Needs more time.
90p   (tasted 2016/09)

2010 Nierstein Pettenthal Riesling Trocken, Keller
A expressiv, deep and just fantastic nose with notes of grey pears, sunflowers, Jerusalem artichokes, a touch of band aid and boat loads of slate. The intensity of the fruit it almost of the charts. Very impressive.
The taste dances over your tongue with a cristal clear purity and stunning notes of lemon peel, grey pears, blood oranges, slate and chalk. The finish goes on for minutes and the acidity accompany the fruit perfectly. Still young, gives this 6-8 years and you are looking at perfection.
96p   (tasted 2016/09)

2015 Brauneberger Juffer Riesling Kabinett, Max. Ferd. Richter
A trio of youngsters followed. The Richter has a light, elegant nose with notes of tangerines, candle grease and dry almonds. Nice enough but a tad shy.
The taste is light on its feet, has a medium body and shows notes of lime peel, green tea and minerals. A medium long finish. Should evolve well with 3-5 years in the cellar.
86p   (tasted 2016/09)

2015 Enkircher Ellengrub Riesling Kabinett, Weiser-Kunstler
A new producer for me and this example was impressive. It has a cool, refined nose with notes of elderberries, birch sap and chalk. A very fine dry sweetness to the fruit. Deep and fine.
The taste is racy and clean with notes of birch leaves, yellow plums and chalk. A long, intense finish with a fine acidity. Needs 3-5 years cellaring. Very, very good.
91p   (tasted 2016/09)

2015 Dhroner Häs´chen Riesling Kabinett, A. J. Adam
The Adam wine is as good as the one above, with a stony, crisp nose with notes of grey pears, spices, red lemons and a hint of detergent. Very fine.
The taste is young and focused with notes of grey pears, ginger, grass and chalk. A long, snappy finish. This is good amd will become even better in 2-4 years time.
91p   (tasted 2016/09)

2012 Nierstein -H- Riesling Kabinett, Keller
Tasted a year ago and it shows exactly the same. Stunning wine!
93p   (tasted 2016/09)

1998 Niederhäuser Hermannshöhle Riesling Spätlese, Dönnhoff
I kind of liked this, but its not what it is supposed to be. We guessed it to be 10-15 years older...
The nose is deep and mature with notes of dried apricots, dried honey, wet asphalt and some rancid butter - in a interesting way.
The taste is mature, dry and fine with notes of dry mango, orange blossom honey and wet stones. Long and fine. I liked it a lot but it should´t be like this.
88p   (tasted 2016/09)

2007 Hermannshöhle Kahlenberg Riesling Kabinett, Dönnhoff
This (still) youngster displays a light, smoky nose with notes of dry grass, lime peel, minerals and a hint of white chocolate. A fine depth. Very good.
The taste is fresh and energetic with notes of lemon peel, wet rocks and grapefruit. A long, very stony finish. Very good but verging on anemic.
87p   (tasted 2016/09)

1995 Pahlmeyer
This 79% Cabernet Sauvignon, 9% Cabernet Franc, 5% Merlot, 4% Malbec and 3% Petit Verdot is a beauty. 21 years old it displays a deep, concentrated, still youngish nose with succulent notes of ripe black currants, dark plums, chocolate biscuits, sweet cigarr smoke and graphite. Very deep, very seductive and very, very fine.
The taste is rich, structured and warm with notes of black currants, blueberries. liquorice and cigarr smoke. A very long, detail finish with still some well built tannins doing their work. This will hold well for another 10+ years. Great wine.
94p   (tasted 2016/09)

2001 Clos Erasmus
This has a deep, inky, concentrated nose with notes of smoke, meat, blackberries and moist, dark earth. Lots of structure and body.
The taste is big and seedy with notes of very ripe bluberries, balsam vinegar and damson. A very long, ripe finish with a hint of warmth at the end. Lots of flavour and taste but not that harmonious. Will more time help?
89p   (tasted 2016/09)

1996 Pahlmeyer Merlot
93% Merlot and 7% Cabernet Franc, and outrageously good! A big, steady yet complex and multilayered nose with gorgeous notes of dark plums, liquorice, melted asphalt and chocolate biscuits. There is a hint of dog fur that adds to the complexity. Very, very deep and just awesome, as one critic would have said.
The taste is firm, focused and tight with notes of ripe black currants, plums, moist earth and some tarry notes. The finish is long, long, rich and velvety, yet shows of some still ripe tannins at the end. This is a stunning bottle of wine, that will go on for another 8+ years.
96p   (tasted 2016/09)

Sunday, 9 October 2016

Just Bought

The second 47 Barolo bought in just a couple of weeks time...:-)

Saturday, 8 October 2016

2010 Puligny-Montrachet Les Referts, Domaine Bachelet-Monnot

We fancied salmon tonight and I grilled some succulent salmon fillets and made this sumptuous
Marco Pierre White butter- and tomato sauce to go along. I added some fried pancetta to accompany the wonderful smoky note of the wine I had opened earlier. A perfect match! :-)

2010 Puligny-Montrachet Les Referts, Domaine Bachelet-Monnot
A wonderful rich, intense, spicy nose with notes of grilled lemons, pickled ginger, melted butter and a hint of banana peel. A underlying firmness that is impressive. Just lovely. Some apriots after a while. This is right up my alley. Still young.
The taste is opulent yet fresh and pure with notes of lemon cream, summer flowers, apricots and dark fudge. The finish is long, long. long and just brilliant. Manage to combine lushness with a firmness and playfulness. A very fine acidity. This is a serious wine. Too bad that this was my only bottle. The 2008 tasted here.
96p   (tasted 2016/10)

Friday, 7 October 2016

2012 Les Voisins Syrah, Copain

I fancied a Syrah to go with my home made special Parmigiano burgers and my choice was a bottle of

2012 Les Voisins Syrah, Copain
This youngster displays a cool, fine nose with notes of ripe blueberries, plums, sandalwood and bay leaves. With air it becomes more peppery and restrained. A hint of tar. Very, very good. Needs more time though. This is fine.
The taste is young, perky and gulpable with notes of a mix of blueberries and raspberries, with additional notes of warm sand, fresh meat and new leather. Medium long and nicely structured. Give this baby another 3-5 years in the cellar and it will turn out even better.
91p   (tasted 2016/10)

Our kitchen rat named Gunnar (who has his own Global knife) with this evenings bottle

Thursday, 6 October 2016

1979 Barbaresco, Domenico Rivetti

1979 Barbaresco, Domenico Rivetti
After some looong days at work, why not open a bottle of aged Nebbiolo? This needed a half hour in a decanter before it got things together, and then it revealed a shy, mature nose with notes of dried strawberries, road dust, rosehips and old wood. A bit hollow in the middle. But nice in a low keyed, aged way. Holds well in the glass.
The taste is dry and mature with notes of lingonberries, old leather, undergrowth and some dry tobacco. Holding in there but this has gone a bit to far on its journey to death. With food it showed better, as always with these old bottles.
78p   (tasted 2016/10)

Thursday, 29 September 2016

2004 Chianti Rufina Riserva Nippozano, Frescobaldi

2004 Chianti Rufina Riserva Nippozano, Frescobaldi
Yet another fine Chianti Rufina. This displays a light, on-its-feet Sangiovese fruit with notes of sweet/sour cherries, violets, fresh tobacco aromas and some Tuscan gravel. A hint of maturity. Very good.
The taste is fine boned and seedy with notes of red cherries, dry liquorice, gravel and tobacco. A long, refreshing finish with a good acidity. A fine dryness at the end. Very, very good. For drinking now and the coming 5+ years.
89p   (tasted 2016/09)

Sunday, 25 September 2016

1987 Volnay Clos des Chênes, Bitouzet-Prieur

1987 Volnay Clos des Chênes, Bitouzet-Prieur
Opens a bit funky but with some air fine notes of dried strawberries, moist forest floor, Asian spices and a bonfire in a distance, emerges from the glass. A fine underlying driep up sweetness. Very good. Perfectly mature.
The taste is mature and dry with notes of root vegetables, dried raspberries, undergrowth and dry liquorice. A fine dryness in the medium long finish. A nice mature Volnay that went along great with the grilled chicken fillets and a light mushroom sauce.
87p   (tasted 2016/08)

Tuesday, 20 September 2016

Fish & Wine

1997 Kiedrich Gräfenberg Riesling Spätlese Trocken, Robert Weil
A nicely matured, refined nose with notes of dried lemon peels, saffron, banana peel and some plastic burning in the background. With air it becomes more mineral driven. Very, very good. A fine maturity.
The taste is mature and dry with notes of dried apriocts, star fruits, minerals and a hint of saffron. A medium long, structured finish. Very fine. Drinking perfect now.
90p   (tasted 2016/09)

2012 Savigny-Lès-Beaune Clos des Guettes, Louis Jadot
A medium bodied, kind of buttery nose with additional notes of yellow plums, tangerines, almond paste and matchbox. Outgoing and good.
The taste is forward and ripe with notes of lemon cream, butter biscuits, warm sand and some smoky notes. A good supporting acidity. Could use2-3 years in the cellar.
87p   (tasted 2016/08)

Monday, 19 September 2016

Just Bought

Do I really need more bottles of 1964 Barolo??
Well of course I do!!

Friday, 16 September 2016

2006 Chianti Rufina Riserva Vigneto Bucerchiale, Fattoria Selvapiana

2006 Chianti Rufina Riserva Vigneto Bucerchiale, Fattoria Selvapiana
This fine boned Sangiovese shows of a persistent, stony nose with notes of cool red cherries, rosemary, cigarette ash and violet pastilles. Very, very good. A tad restrained, but in a aristocratic, laid back kind of way. Demanding. Splendid.
The taste is young, tight and focused with notes of hard cherry candy, dried rosemary, Tuscan gravel and a touch of cocoa. A very fine framework. This has a great future ahead of itself, give it 3-5 years. Glad I have more.
91p   (tasted 2016/09)

Wednesday, 14 September 2016

One Colheita Port, One Vintage Port & One Sherry

Three fortified wines tasted during the last couple of weeks.

1964 Colheita Branco, Krohn
Its not every day you drink a white port, especially a Colheita from The Greatest Vintage Ever! But this was the day. The nose is open, fat and sugary with notes of old yellow apples, white suryp, plum jam and sweet flowers. Very interesting and fine.
The taste is big and intense with notes of cooked yellow plums, orange blossom honey, almond paste and some detergent. A long, sweet finish. Mature, but this could go on for many years to come. Very, very good.
91p   (tasted 2016/08)

1994 Dow´s Vintage Port
A deep, seedy nose with notes of dark cherries, damsons, sweet liquorice and some fried nuts. A touch fiery. Still rather primary.
The taste is tight and forceful with notes of dark chocolate covered cherries, liquorice, chestnut cream and warm gravel. A very long, sturdy finish with some alcohol notes in the end. This still needs time in the cellar.
89p   (tasted 2016/08)

NV La Bota 46 de Oloroso "Montilla", Equpo Navazos
This producer source the best sherries out there and bottle them in small quantities. The No 46 has an average age of 25 years and the release was 2.500 bottles. Info on its background here,
The nose is intricate and refined with lovely notes of dades, pine nuts, birch sap, green leaves and a hint of milk chocolate. Really complex and multi layered. Very, very fine.
The taste is deep and full of finesse with intense notes of dried orange peel, assorted nuts, dades and dried herbs. A long, sleek, refined finish. A great Sherry, again!
93p   (tasted 2016/09)

Monday, 12 September 2016

Tasting Through The Sortiment From Divine

Last week I had the chance to taste through the sortiment from Divine.
It is a little like cykling through a museum, you don´t really get a good look at the art in question but you do get a short glimpse of it, and can decide if its worth checking out more properly.

I tasted through 40 wines, these were the highlights. Short notes with a approximate score since I spent only one minute or so with each wine.

BlankBottle - first a few words about this idiosyncratic, charming, talkative producer in the shape of Pieter Walser. I could have stand there listening to him for hours, the drive, the energy and the love of his work is so obvious. And the wines! They really have a character of their own, with unortodox blends and single varietal wine, not to mention their names, but in Pieters words - "judge my wines on what´s in the bottle, not the varietal on the label". Read more here.

2015 Moment of Silence, BlankBottle
Very floral and rich with a lovely fruit driven nose. A long, distinct taste with a fine acidity. Really good.
~90p   (tasted 2016/09)

2015 Limbic, BlankBottle
A Neuro you know what that is? Pieter was hooked up to a computer that measured his brain, and in this case the subconscious part of his brain while tasting the different varietals, and the blend was determined by what his brain had reacted positive to while tasting. That´s one way of doing it... Read all about it here.
And the result? A gorgeous wine with a light creaminess, lots of restrained yellow fruit and a refined floral note. The taste is tight, pure and energetic. Mostly Chenin Blanc in the blend. This is goood!
~93p   (tasted 2016/09)

2015 Orbifrontal Cortex, BlankBottle
This was made using the same possibly varietal ingredients as the Limbic above, but the blend for this one was Pieters conscious mind. And guess what, no Chenin Blanc made the blend...
This is more floral and richer than the Limbic on the nose and the taste is broader, dryer and more ample. Very, very good.
~90p   (tasted 2016/09)

2015 Koffer, Blankbottle
On to the reds. This 100% Cinsault shows a cool, earthy nose with tobacco and dirt, and the taste is medium bodied and generous with notes of earth, cinnamon and tobacco.
~89p   (tasted 2016/09)

2015 Familiemoord, BlankBottle
One Swedish minister said many years ago that Norway was the last "Soviet" state in the world. He was wrong, I´m living in it... Because of an amusing story, Pieter has called this wine Familiemoord (Family murder) and what does the Swedish state monoply do? Refusing it. I am sure that the name alone would have lead to the demise of this country if it had been sold to an unknowing public... Cretins!
Anyway, the wine is a interesting blend of Grenache, Pinot Noir and Cinsault. The nose is blueberry rich and open with a warm, dusty aroma. The taste is seedy and dry with a fine blueberry and damson note. Really good.
~90p   (tasted 2016/09)

2015 100.000 Shiraz, BlankBottle
A single vineyard Shiraz, released only in magnums - I´m buying! Not only beacause of that, but beacause this is a gorgeous wine. The nose is spicy and rich with a silky feeling about it, and the taste is concentrated and focused with a deep core of blueberry and blackberry fruit. Great wine.
~93p   (tasted 2016/09)

NV Method Traditionelle, Quartz Reef
A very fine nose with notes of lemon cream and red apples, showing both the Chardonnay and the Pinot Noir in the blend. A dry, persistent finish with a fine acidity. Given this blind I´m not sure I would have been outside Champagne in my guess.
~90p   (tasted 2016/09)

2013 Bendigo Estate Pinot Noir, Quartz Reef
An extraordinay Central Otago Pinot from selected parcels, this beauty shows of dark raspberries, liquorice and forest floor on the nose and a silky yet steady grip on the palate. This is a keeper! It was really nice to get to meet and talk to Rudi Bauer from the estate.
~94p   (tasted 2016/09)

2015 Ladois Blanc, D´Ardhuy
A blend of 85% Chardonnay and 15% Pinot Blanc. I have always liked this wine but this vintage is the best yet - spicy, creamy and with a stern core, promising a long, healthy life.
~91p   (tasted 2016/09)

2013 Russian River Chardonnay, Lynmar
This large scaled Chard displays a great stucture underneath the big, sweet fruit. Me like!
~92p   (tasted 2016/09)

2014 Puerta del Mar Chardonnay, Ojai
This behaved just like a couple of months ago - a fine bottle of Chardonnay.
~91p   (tasted 2016/09)

2014 Bannockburn Pinot Noir, Felton Road
A fine, cool Pinot with lots of ripening raspberries, lingonberries and a hint of smoke. The taste is caressing and textured with a medium long finish and a really nice grip.
~91p   (tasted 2016/09)

2014 Russian River Pinot Noir, Lynmar
The Lynmar has a deep, meaty Pinot nose and a warm, spicy, flavourful finish.
~90p   (tasted 2016/09)

2013 Estate Pinot Noir, Melville
A deep, extrovert nose with sweet/sour raspberries, cigarr smoke and bay leaves. The taste shows a great framework and a fine intensity to the fruit. Really, really good.
~93p   (tasted 2016/09)

2014 Shea Pinot Noir, Ken Wright
This gorgeous Pinot oozes up from the glass with finesse and exquisite notes of wild strawberries, tobacco and spices. The taste is pure and concentrated and of pure class. This is a buy!
~94p   (tasted 2016/09)

2015 Tamarius, Mas Cremant
Last but not least, this Syrah/Grenache bargain from Côtes du Catalanes gives you an earthy, deep nose with black fruit and Christmas spices while the taste is young, perky and somewhat rustic in a old school way, for only 15 Euro. A great every day drinker!
~90p   (tasted 2016/09)

Saturday, 10 September 2016

Barolo Boys Does (Mostly) Riesling & Nebbiolo - Chapter Two

In which a yellow card is handed out to M because of the three Barbaresco´s in the first flight (only Giacosa Barbaresco is the approved exceptions!), but after that faux pas things shaped up nicely...:-)
All wines tasted double blind.

Flight I
1997 Barbaresco Vigneto Starderi, Spinetta
When the veil was lifted there were som ooohs and aaahs of suprise - could this (in the past) oak monster really have turned into this beautiful aged Nebbiolo? It really has, with a deep, ethereal nose with lovely notes of dried cherries, moist autumn leaves, soya, mushrooms and roses. Very complex and fine. A beautiful maturity.
The taste is mature, velvety yet with some gripping tannins in the end of the finish. Fine notes of sweer/sour cherries, tobacco, undergrowth and asphalt. Long, long and intense. Could go on for another 10+ years but I doubt it will become better than this.
95p   (tasted 2016/08)

2001 Barbaresco Vigneto Loreto, Albino Rocca
Again, a surprise when the bottle was revealed, beacuse this should have been better. A Albino Rocca from this great vintage should have rocked, this one didn´t. Mind you, not a bad wine, but...
The nose is deep, meaty and a tad warm with notes of cooked cherries. moist mushrooms, coffee grounds and dark earth. A tad volatile from time to time. A fine sweetness though.
The taste is big and warm with lots of cooked cherries and noted of dusty earth, coffee and bakelite. A long, warm finish which is a bit angular. Even so, a good drink. Maybe mistreated along the way?
85p   (tasted 2016/08)

2004 Barbaresco Vigneto Rabaja Riserva, Produttori del Barbaresco
This reliable producer has turned out a fine 2004 from the Rabaja vineyard. The nose is deep, cool and finely structured with notes of red cherries, cigarette ash, fresh mushrooms and a hint of bitter chocolate. Very, very good.
The taste is young, tight and focused with notes of ripe cherries, violets, rosehips and earth. Still on the young side of things. Finely polished tannins, promising this a fine future.
92p   (tasted 2016/08)

Flight II
1970 Barolo, Paolo Scavino
This and the 1990 below were tasted together only a month ago. With wines with this age there can be great differences between bottles, depending on storage and handling over the years. These bottles apparantly came from the same source and thats probably the reason why they were, if not identical, very much alike. The 1970 on this nigth has a tad brighter fruit on the nose and a better finish than the previous bottle.
90p   (tasted 2016/08)

1990 Barolo Bric dël Fiasc, Paolo Scavino
The 90 Bric acted more its age on this night than the previous bottle than behaved much younger. Starting to mature with great fruit and focus and the finish os long, sturdy and so rewarding. Great wine now and the coming 10+ years (and the bottle a month ago the coming 20+ years...)
95p   (tasted 2016/08)

2005 Barolo Bric dël Fiasc, Paolo Scavino
This youngster sports a deep, meaty nose with notes of ripe black cherries, sweet roses, earth and some wood smoke. Very deep and promising.
The taste is tight and intense with notes of ripe cherries, scorched earth, rosehips amd a touch of melted asphalt. Very long and concentrated. Needs time, I would give it 6-8 years before opening another bottle.
91p   (tasted 2016/08)

Flight III
1990 Barolo, Gianfranco Alessandria
A mature, round nose with notes of dried black cherries, forest floor, Christmas spices and some tapenade scents. A fine maturity. Soft and good.
The taste is mature and a bit sturdy with notes of Cherry Heering, dried spices, moist earth and some tobacco flavours. A fine dried up sweetness and a medium long finish. Fully mature and maybe a tad so.
88p   (tasted 2016/08)

2004 Barolo, Bartolo Mascarello
On our last visit to Bartolo Mascarello I walked past a big pile of 1964 in magnums in the cellar - I begged, I pleaded, I appealed, but to no avail, I guess they are still lying there...
But we move forward 40 vintages and drink the 2004 instead! The nose is deep and satisfying with lovely notes of hard cherry candy, ripe lingonberries, tobacco and red liquorice. Complex and refined. Still very young. Very, very fine.
The taste is tight and seedy with notes of ripe red cherries, dry liquorice, mushrooms and a hint of rusted steel. A long, long intense finish. Needs lots of time in the cellar, wait at least 8 years. This is going to turn out great!
94p   (tasted 2016/08)

2007 Barolo Rocche, Brovia
Maybe marked a bit by the year, because this sports a deep, warm, sweet nose with notes of Christmas spices, cherry jam, moist earth and a smoking ashtray. Very warm. Nice though. Lots of violet pastilles after some time in the glass. Very good.
The taste is big, warm and open with notes of cooked cherries, fried spices, earth and tobacco. A long, warm finish with a hint of tootpaste. Very good but a little marked by the warmth of the vintage.
86p   (tasted 2016/08)

Flight IV
2010 Barolo Ravera, Vietti
A Galloni 100p wine. Well, even experts are proned to make mistakes. A really good bottle of Barolo, no doubt, but a perfect one (if that indeed excist (yes it does - 1964 Monfortino for one...)) no way.
The nose is laid back, refined and focused with fine notes of cool red cherries, liquorice, ceps and tobacco. With air a lovely strawberries-cooked-with-Christmas-spices aroma comes forward. Really fine fruit. Very deep and promising.
The taste is young, intense and tight with notes of hard cherry candy, mushrooms, violets and expensive tobacco. The finish is long, refined and shows some neatly polished tannins. Gonna be great but will never (IMHO) reach the three digit score. And ironically, because of Gallonis score, this now cost as much as all the other Nebbiolos on this night combined...
93p   (tasted 2016/08)

2010 Barolo Brunate Riserva, M. Marengo
This however is a candidate for perfection. Its not far from it on this night. The nose is expressive, willful and breathtakingly beautiful with notes of perfectly ripe cherry fruit, raspberry liquorice, a whole mushroom forest and sweet flavourful tobacco. If I just somehow could fit my nose in to the glass! I could sit and sniff this forever. Just stunning.
The taste is a great as the nose, with intense notes of sweet/sour cherries, rosehips, gravel, red liquorice and moist leaves. The finish goes on for minutes and every screw and bolt is in the right place. Great for drinking now and my guess is that it will be even greater to drink the coming 20+ years. This is a must buy!
97p   (tasted 2016/08)

2010 Barolo Cannubi, Comm. G. B. Burlotto
This solid old fashioned Barolo was a perfect finish on this splendid night. The nose is deep, concentrated and rustic with notes of lingonberries, dried spices, iron and cigarette ashes. Very, very good. Almost withdrawn and recluse like, it delivers utter joy to sit and sniff. Great stuff.
The taste is young, tight and a tad foursquare, but the cherry fruit is polished and of the highest quality. Fine notes of dry spices, rosehips, dried mushrooms and some blood & iron. Long, long and structured. Really fine. Should evolve gracefully for 20 years. Loving it!
93p   (tasted 2016/08)