San Antonio Wine Geeks - The Great Gathering (aka: Steak porn/Wine Orgy)

The Home of Steve Treu
Tasted Friday, November 5, 2010 - Saturday, November 6, 2010 by Nutty08 with 544 views

Introduction

Generously hosted by Steve Treu(again), we assembled every known wine geek in the San Antonio region. 20lbs of prime aged beef was flown in for the assembly, and cooked to perfection under the guidance of Steve T. and John Webber. Big thanks to these guys for cooking for 18!

Flight 1 - Chardonnays (2 Notes)

  • 2004 Marcassin Chardonnay Marcassin Vineyard 94 Points

    USA, California, Sonoma County, Sonoma Coast

    (11/6/2010)

    The rare chardonnay that lives up to the hype. Light gold in color. Big complex nose with floral character. Honey suckle and vanilla. Big lush palate, but plenty of acidity and hangs on the palate for a long long time with a tropical and stony finish. Very complex, changing frequently in the glass. A big wine, lots of oak influence but striking for its balance and focus. Enjoyed very much. Agree with the "oily" comment from others.

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  • 2008 Maybach Family Vineyards Chardonnay Eterium 92 Points

    USA, California, Sonoma County, Sonoma Coast

    (11/6/2010)

    Interesting that this was drained long before even 1 bottle of Marcassin was finished. Bright spicy floral nose. Loaded with acidity that you could feel on your teeth, with grapefruit and pineapple flavors. Slightly bitter oak on a medium length finish. A little disjointed and probably served slightly too warm. Good, but hold a few years to allow this to come together.

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Flight 2 - More Mature Wine (9 Notes)

Great setup. Overall striking how similar the older Napa wines were to the Bordeaux.

  • 1998 Colgin Cabernet Sauvignon Herb Lamb 92 Points

    USA, California, Napa Valley

    (11/6/2010)

    Complex spicy nose with green pepper and currants. Mature palate with fine gritty tannins in the background, good acidity adding an element of freshness. Lovely red fruits, earth, spice and a medium length finish of forest floor and leather. Mature wine, probably at peak, but no rush to drink. The pedigree of this wine is obvious. While I don’t care for too much bell pepper influence, this wasn’t enough to keep me from enjoying the wine and seemed to add complexity. Striking for it’s resemblance to a St. Estephe.

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  • 1995 Dominus Estate Napanook Vineyard 90 Points

    USA, California, Napa Valley

    (11/6/2010)

    Shy nose, with slight green notes, spice, and leather. Palate was refined and focused fresh acidity and very dry tannins on the backend. Plenty of currants and cassis, with mature leather notes. Nice balanced wine. Underperformed compared to the ’96 I had last year.

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  • 2001 Fisher Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Coach Insignia 91 Points

    USA, California, Napa Valley

    (11/6/2010)

    Mature Napa cab in a traditional style. Cassis and tobacco nose with lovely earth and forest highlights. Ripe palate, nice cassis and currant core, with plenty of mocha and oak influence on a medium length finish. Quite nice and well made, drinking perfectly now with plenty of red fruits and nice mature characteristics as well. Didn’t distinguish itself in this loaded lineup.

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  • 2000 E. Guigal Hermitage 90 Points

    France, Rhône, Northern Rhône, Hermitage

    (11/6/2010)

    A nice break from the bdx blends. Floral nose, with some black pepper and slight amount of burnt rubber. Round lush palate, mostly integrated tannins, with dark berries, but becomes slightly hollow leading into a clipped finish that was surprisingly simple, but strong stone element. Good.

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  • 2000 Château Lagrange (St. Julien) 93 Points

    France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Julien

    (11/6/2010)

    Great example of a wine in a big year that has obvious modern influence and contains elements of a Napa cab, but retains its sense of balance and place. Big ripe nose, with bright red fruits, with burn toast and just a hint of funk. Complex palate, quite dense and concentrated but frsh, with smooth fine tannins. Moderate length finish with the fruit hanging on along with toast and just a hint of vanilla. Big, but balanced and refined, drinking well now but peak is far in the future. Glad I have a couple of these.

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  • 1996 Château Lagrange (St. Julien) Flawed

    France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Julien

    (11/6/2010)

    Very different than the other bottle I had 6mos ago and strikingly different than the ’00. Slight TCA, enough to flaw the wine, but not enough to tell that a pretty, probably mature wine was underneath. Shame.

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  • 1978 Château Montrose 89 Points

    France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Estèphe

    (11/6/2010)

    Cork stained to the top with a little seepage, but the capsule was stuck to the top, likely sealing it. An interesting wine that continued to improve until finished in 2-3hrs after opening. No decant. Light, delicate nose with forest floor, leather, and later some bell pepper. Delicate palate, with slightly sour cherry fruit and medium length finish of forest and mineral. Certainly past peak, but still holding and quite interesting. Maybe too light and not enough power for me, but a nice experience.

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  • 1990 Ridge Monte Bello 93 Points

    USA, California, San Francisco Bay, Santa Cruz Mountains

    (11/6/2010)

    Surprisingly young and fresh, certainly not showing its 20yrs of age. Nose of bell pepper, candied currants, tobacco, and coffee. Very complex but restrained. Palate with lovely bright red fruits, dark currants and pepper. Fantastic finish of coffee and dark fruits. Well made, perfect balance in a traditional style. Was very similar to the mature bdx, didn’t have a lot in common with the more recent Napa cabs. Green character is quite prominent, but not enough to be distracting for me.
    As good as this was, it wasn’t as expressive and open as a ’94 I had last year, given this and how strikingly young this wine seemed, it doesn’t seem to have hit its peak yet.

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  • 2002 Sister Creek Vineyards "4" Blend Reserve 87 Points

    USA, Texas, Texas Hill Country

    (11/6/2010)

    Interesting nose of burnt rubber, vanilla, and cassis. Pleasant, round palate, with velvety mouth feel, and ripe red fruits. Decent finish. Good wine, just lacks the complexity of the competition.

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Flight 3 - More modern, younger wines (9 Notes)

  • 2002 Pretty Sally Cabernet Sauvignon Estate 84 Points

    Australia, Victoria

    (11/6/2010)

    Huge expressive nose of eucalyptus/mint and very little fruit. Palate was sharply acidic with the peppermint/eucalyptus really overshadowing any underlying fruit. Clipped finish. Interesting, but the peppermint flavor was rather off-putting. I was actually considering whether John W. put a peppermint in a blind wine for fun. Really not enjoyable. Finally guessed a Heitz cab in an under ripe year like ’98. Interesting but odd.

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  • 2004 Finca Allende Rioja Allende 90 Points

    Spain, La Rioja, Rioja

    (11/6/2010)

    Dark red fruits on an expressive nose with a little coffee and vanilla. Strong red fruit profile and high new oak influence. Fine tannins palate, with ripe cassis and berries, lvely spice notes. Mocha/toast finish. Texture reminded me of a young French Grenache. Needs some time to let the oak integrate.

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  • 2005 Andrew Will Ciel du Cheval Vineyard 91 Points

    USA, Washington, Columbia Valley, Red Mountain

    (11/6/2010)

    Strikingly unique nose in this lineup with strong blueberry and blackberry nose. Palate with strong acidity, but retains a sweet fruit profile leading into an earthy finish. Interesting given the blue fruit and relatively light oak. Still needs some time.

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  • 2007 Dominus Estate 94 Points

    USA, California, Napa Valley

    (11/6/2010)

    A great example of Napa, with ripe red fruits but never heavy, thick or overdone, with a freshness I haven’t noted in other wines from the ’07 vintage. Bright red fruit nose, with strong cassis and subtle oak spices. Very fine polished tannins, strong core of red fruits. Long finish with elements of mocha and toast. This wine had great poise, polish, and balance. Will need to find some. Surprisingly, very enjoyable now. Hard to imagine a linear progression to the ’95, so might represent a slightly different winemaking style.

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  • 2004 Maybach Family Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Materium 92 Points

    USA, California, Napa Valley, Oakville

    (11/6/2010)

    Change in style from the other Napa cabs. Very concentrated red fruits, low acidity, sweet lush and slightly candied, with a very round and lush mouthfeel. Surprisingly tannic and drying, but soft . Pure red fruits—mostly cassis, currants and berries. Plenty of new oak, with a strong vanilla mocha finish. Good wine, but slightly “amped up” for my taste.

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  • 2005 Chateau Montelena Cabernet Sauvignon The Montelena Estate 91 Points

    USA, California, Napa Valley

    (11/6/2010)

    Notable for a much darker flavor profile than the other Napa wines. Lots of spice and mocha on the nose with a hint of saline along with cherry and cassis fruit notes. Ripe slightly candied fruit palate with toast and mocha and strong vanilla on a lengthy finish. Interesting flavor profile, but the oak wasn’t well integrated on this showing, overshadowing the fruit some. Complex and would expect to improve with time.

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  • 2004 Quilceda Creek Cabernet Sauvignon Galitzine Vineyard 92 Points

    USA, Washington, Columbia Valley, Red Mountain

    (11/6/2010)

    Complex nose with a nice minty element. Very ripe, high toned red fruit, with polished tannins, and maybe the most concentrated on the cab dominated blends. Big, balanced, and pretty. Still, maybe more refined and concentrated that my usual preference. Wish I had more time to spend wit this one as I suspect it will unwind with more air.

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  • 2005 Rudd Oakville Estate Proprietary Red 91 Points

    USA, California, Napa Valley, Oakville

    (11/6/2010)

    Rather shy closed nose with dark fruit, mocha and vanilla notes. Very dark fruit flavor profile, with currants, and black cherry. Big chunky tannins, with seemingly high alchol. Good length to the finish with strong oak character. Disjointed, needs lots of time.

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  • 2006 Tenuta San Guido Bolgheri Sassicaia Sassicaia 95 Points

    Italy, Tuscany, Bolgheri, Bolgheri Sassicaia

    (11/6/2010)

    WOTN for me, though painfully young. Rich complex nose with a pure red fruit profile, lots of cassis, licorice, lavender, with a saline element. Fresh acidic palate, with fine tannic finish that was the most drying of the night. Palate adds tons of red fruit, but just an explosive mineral/slate character that I can’t say I’ve ever experienced in a cab. Great length on the finish, with a little coffee. Really only enjoyable with steak to cut the tannins, this will be a remarkable wine in 10+ years.

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Closing

A stunning evening that couldn't happen with the generosity of the group. Great wine, company and food cooked to perfection. Big thanks to all participants!

Other wines present that I missed: '07 Corra, '07 Dow's, and another syrah I can't recall.

Steaks served: Bryan Flannery Private Reserve California Dry Aged Prime, Austin Meat's Wagyu, Lobel's Dry Aged Midwest Prime, Allen Brothers Wet Aged Prime.

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