JT is having a baby

Houstons - Irvine, CA
Tasted Tuesday, March 20, 2012 by Paul Lin with 261 views

Introduction

Our friend JT is about to become a father, so in celebration of his baby, as well as the recognition that he probably won't be able to join us for a while, we decided to break into his cellar and crack open some of his trophy wines. The wines were, to be sure, quite large scaled and very new world, but they were also a delight to taste and experience. Although many of us had our own favorites, the overall consensus among was rather uniform, with my own top wines of the night matching the group's. A fun time, as always, and Houston's always does a great job accommodating us.

Flight 1 - Champage (2 Notes)

  • 1996 Henriot Champagne Cuvée des Enchanteleurs Brut 94 Points

    France, Champagne

    This wine is in an ideal spot right now -- a perfect blend of fruit and age. Shows honeyed notes of brioche, yellow apples, candied ginger, and sweet lemon curd. Multi-dimensional on the palate, with good depth of flavor and a long, persistent finish. With time and air, the wine evolves and starts to show more nuttiness and mineral. A really delicious wine!

    Post a Comment / Do you find this review helpful? Yes - No / Report Issue

  • 2002 Moët & Chandon Champagne Cuvée Dom Pérignon 90 Points

    France, Champagne

    I love this Champagne, but there seems to be quite a bit of variation between bottles. Tonight's wine showed stately, restrained notes of sugar cane, green pears, and ginger. A bit austere and linear on the palate, dominated by crushed minerals and a flinty acidity. The finish tapers off a bit, but the structure and quality of fruit is clearly there. 90-91 points.

    Post a Comment / Do you find this review helpful? Yes - No / Report Issue

Flight 2 - Whites (2 Notes)

  • 2008 Sine Qua Non Kolibri

    USA, California, Central Coast, Santa Barbara County

    Given all the positive reviews here on CT this wine is clearly well liked. But to be honest, I don't really get it. For to my palate, the wine seems a bit too manipulated, too overworked. The result for me is a compact and muddled palate and an overall lack of freshness. That said, there are some interesting aromatic elements to it -- some good, some not so good, such as dried apricots (yum), nectarines (yum), toasted marshmallow (no), and cotton candy (ok). Dry in the mouth, with some nice acidic citrus fruits, but the finish is extremely bitter and alcoholic. I'm glad I got to try it, but this is not a wine that I would buy for myself.

    Post a Comment / Do you find this review helpful? Yes - No / Report Issue

  • 2010 Rivers-Marie Chardonnay B. Thieriot Vineyard 88 Points

    USA, California, Sonoma County, Sonoma Coast

    This wine departs quite a bit from my experience with their Chardonnay. Previous vintages have been characterized by elegant fruit, fine minerality, and piercing acidity. This showed none of that. Instead, it was a bold expression of tropical fruits -- pineapple, mango, kiwi -- framed by a more substantial oak presence. It did gradually show more finesse as the evening wore on, but everyone at the table was a bit surprised that this was a Rivers Marie.

    Post a Comment / Do you find this review helpful? Yes - No / Report Issue

Flight 3 - Reds (5 Notes)

  • 2001 Robert Foley Claret 93 Points

    USA, California, Napa Valley

    Densely sweet layers of black cherries, blackberries, and cassis. Prodigiously endowed, this wine flaunts itself on the palate, scandalously sheathed in rich espresso and dark chocolate mousse. An irresistible wine in many ways, if slightly imperious. Fortunately, there were other, more appealing wines at the table.

    Post a Comment / Do you find this review helpful? Yes - No / Report Issue

  • 2001 Bond Vecina 95 Points

    USA, California, Napa Valley

    Sumptuous and profound, this wine has all the markings of a new world classic. It boasts delicious notes of red velvet cake, ripe black cherries, dark chocolate and raspberry coulis. Yet the wine also shows a certain gravitas, gripping the palate with tannic red currents, wet soil, and pencil shavings. Impressive finish and quite the stunner! Voted #2 WOTN.

    Post a Comment / Do you find this review helpful? Yes - No / Report Issue

  • 2002 Merus Cabernet Sauvignon 96 Points

    USA, California, Napa Valley

    I thought the Bond was impressive, and may indeed be the better wine in the long run, but tonight this wine was just incredible! Lavishly adorned with ripe black cherries, crème de cassis, maraschino liqueur, cocoa nibs, and dark roasted coffee. An opulent wine to be sure, but what I found most appealing was its textural effortlessness. Rarely have I had a wine so densely flavored yet so polished on the palate. My notes say, "Awesome! Silky! Sexy!" Voted #1 WOTN.

    Post a Comment / Do you find this review helpful? Yes - No / Report Issue

  • 2002 Hourglass Cabernet Sauvignon 94 Points

    USA, California, Napa Valley

    Opened with some barrel funk, so I set my glass aside in the hope that it would blow off. When I returned to it later in evening, the wine had blossomed into an absolutely gorgeous panoply of blue and black fruits. Densely structured on the palate, this wine weaves pure fruit essence with wood smoke, graphite, and espresso. Exceptionally balanced and delicious! Voted #3 WOTN.

    Post a Comment / Do you find this review helpful? Yes - No / Report Issue

  • 2005 Colgin Cariad 92 Points

    USA, California, Napa Valley

    There's a lot about this wine to recommend it, and in many ways I can see why Parker likes it, but for me this wine went a little too far. A massive effusion of red currant jam, black cherries, dark chocolate, and vanillin oak. Bigger isn't always better, especially with wine, and in some ways the extraction of flavor has led to a loss of nuance -- and in this case, too much heat. Notwithstanding some of my issues with it, there is no doubt considerable quality here, and the heat was much less noticeable with food.

    Post a Comment / Do you find this review helpful? Yes - No / Report Issue

×
×