In Vino Veritas Session 5

MIT
Tasted Thursday, January 31, 2013 by Benj with 182 views

Introduction

The last of the In Vino Veritas tastings: The importance of the method.

Flight 1 (13 Notes)

  • 2005 J. Lassalle Champagne Cuvée Angeline 91 Points

    France, Champagne

    Premier Cru. Very big nose - like Martinelli's sparkling apple juice with a rich honey note and relatively light yeast. Pure fruit and light yeast palate, small amount of toast, very lovely. Very very slightly bitter on the end, but barely at all. Finishes quite long and gently warm. Bold style, but executes very well. $79.

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  • NV Bodegas Hidalgo Manzanilla La Gitana 83 Points

    Spain, Andalucía, Manzanilla de Sanlúcar de Barrameda

    Biscuits (English, not American), salt, bitter almond. Very dry, quite salty on the palate, reasonable acid but mostly on the front and back (where it is joined by the alcohol). The near-mid palate is quite empty. On the very back-end there's a distinct note of liver. Certainly an acquired taste and not really one for me. Take this rating with a pinch of salt - I've little to compare this with and it's just not really my thing. 15%, $18/500 ml.

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  • NV Emilio Lustau (Almacenista) Jerez-Xérès-Sherry Oloroso Pata del Gallina 1/38 Jarana 90 Points

    Spain, Andalucía, Jerez-Xérès-Sherry

    Molasses, dried figs, dates and salt. Bone-dry - very disorienting after such a rich nose. But man, this is lip-smackingly delicious. Great acid, quite alcoholic, very rich palate, slightly drying mouthfeel, tons of dried fruit and some roasted nuts, level of oxidation very well-integrated. Delicious! 20%, $45.

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  • 2007 Domaine des Baumard Coteaux du Layon Clos de Sainte Catherine 92 Points

    France, Loire Valley, Anjou-Saumur, Coteaux du Layon

    Yummmmm. Light gold color. *Very* fruity - mango and candied peaches on the pretty ester-y nose with relatively light botrytis. A *lot* of mango on the palate, botrytis and acid on the front, just a little flabby in the mid-palate. Finishes a bit spicy and a little cloying. Delicious, and would be absolutely spellbinding if the acid-sweetness balance was just a little better. 12.5%, $46.

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  • 1989 Dr. Fischer Ockfener Bockstein Riesling Beerenauslese 90 Points

    Germany, Mosel Saar Ruwer

    A little musty on the nose, quite oxidized (but not in a bad way), caramel. Still, great acid on the palate, very clean, lots of botrytis lingering on in the long finish. Too expensive for me. 10%, $82 / 375 ml.

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  • 2007 Swedish Hill Vineyard Vignoles Late Harvest 77 Points

    USA, New York, Finger Lakes

    Not very aromatic - lots of alcohol on the nose, small amount of tropical fruit (pineapple) and spice - not promising. Alcohol obvious on the palate, which is a little bitter, quite sweet and with not enough acid. Pretty cloying. Not *flawed*, just not good. Poor effort. A shame - I would want an American-French hybrid like Vignoles to do well (much as Vidal does in these parts), but not this time. 250 cases, 12.4% residual sugar, 10.8% alcohol, $23 / 750 ml.

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  • 1999 Markko Chardonnay Select Reserve Late Harvest 86 Points

    USA, Ohio

    First bottle was corked. Second seemed fine but had a pretty muted nose. Almost mango chutney it's so spicy. *Lots* of botrytis on the palate. A little off-kilter - the alcohol is coming through somewhat, but the acid-sweetness balance is good. Finishes a little short. 11.5%, $70 / 750 ml.

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  • 2005 Château La Tour Blanche Sauternes 91 Points

    France, Bordeaux, Sauternais, Sauternes

    Light gold color. Deep, luscious nose, like honeyed buttered apricots. Quite oaky. Clearly very young on the palate - really needs some time. Excellent acid, again very luscious, quite fat. Very well put-together. Should improve with time. Very long. 14%, $36 / 375 ml.

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  • 2007 Royal Tokaji Wine Co. Tokaji Aszú 5 Puttonyos 93 Points

    Hungary, Tokaji

    Light copper gold color. Now this is *pure* tinned peach syrup on the nose. Holy cow. Plus your standard botrytis and oxidation. Peaches continue on the palate. Loads of botrytis, plenty of acid - quite beautiful, with a long, gently tapering finish dominated by dried apricots and an entire forest of wood. Funny - I've had this exact wine before and didn't make quite so much of it (90-91 P if memory serves). Tonight it really hit the spot. 11.5%, $40 / 500 ml.

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  • 2006 Snow Farm Winery Vidal Ice Wine 94 Points

    USA, Vermont

    WHAT?! Where did THIS come from? An island in the middle of a lake in Vermont??? Light copper color. Nose like a combination of triple-concentrated Manischewitz grape juice and concentrated mango juice. Unbelievably intense on the attack - almost eye-wateringly so. Sometimes you'll taste something that is so unbelievably sweet and so unbelievably acidic at the same time that your saliva glands just can't cope and they almost start hurting. Well I love that sensation, and this delivers in SPADES. This is *so sweet* (21% residual sugar) but it has such an unbelievably huge amount of acid that it finishes remarkably clean. I'd had very little luck with ice wines up until tonight, but whoa. This might be a bit too much for some people, but what a wine! Rounded out nicely by some flavor components I can't identify because I'm still trying to stop my eyes from watering. $45 / 375 ml.

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  • NV Mendelson Pinot Gris Reserve Lot One 82 Points

    USA, California, Napa Valley

    Solera-style sweet Pinot Gris? Why not? Influenced by the Massandra wines. Copper-red color. Smells almost like an XO cognaac - very woody, caramel, dried fig, some apricot. However, very poor performance on the palate - disappointing after the nose. Almost completely lacking in any perceptible acid. This is an unctuous syrup but it lacks structure or much interest on the nose. 20.4% residual sugar, 13.5% alcohol (fortified). $45 / 375 ml.

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  • NV Blandy's Madeira Malmsey 5 Years Old 82 Points

    Portugal, Madeira

    Dark orange-brown color. Very oxidized, dark a little nice bitter/spicyness. Strong, short, disjointed and underwhelming.

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  • 1985 Dow Porto Vintage 89 Points

    Portugal, Douro, Porto

    Very dark - no bricking. Decanted 3 hours but still needs time. Nose still quite tight, but very warm - deep, sweet fruit. Very nice palate - great acidity, and starting to calm down. Well structured, but not moving me. Another couple decades perhaps? $120 these days in these parts.

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Closing

Quite the range tonight! And a great way to wrap up the series.

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