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Wine Type Vintage Name Variety Locale Date Posted Score Helpful Comments Comment Date Community Score More...
White

2012 Treana White

Central Coast White Rhone Blend more

11/22/2014 - tomherer Does not like this wine: NR

Clearly a polarizing wine, and I'm landing more on the hate end of the love/hate equation. Agree with every TN here on some level; there is some viognier typicity, complexity, finish, and aromatic appeal here. But it just suuuucks to drink. So sweet, rich, and overpowering that I wish the respectable finish would just stop.

Weird wine; can't score. Probably a great find for a fan of the style at the half-off NHLS closeout price, but I'm dumping the rest and moving on.

  • Comment posted by tomherer:

    2/15/2015 6:33:00 PM - You're absolutely right -- I believe it's a completely dry wine, and didn't mean to suggest that it's literally a sweet wine. Appreciate you pointing that out. Rather, meant that there's an unpleasant perceived sweetness due to a lack of balance. In my experience, great white Rhone varietal wines have a refreshing foil -- e.g. the bitter pit of a stone fruit in addition to its flesh. If memory serves, this wine doesn't, and the result is a wine that tilts hard to the ripe/flabby side. Hope that clarifies.

Red

2012 Belle Glos Pinot Noir Dairyman

Russian River Valley more

1/18/2015 - tomherer Does not like this wine: 85 points

Last bottle, and good riddance. Was hoping it would come around with a little more cellar time, but you can't polish a turd, as they say. Gloopy, saccharine, woody; just can't see how this resolves, ever. The core of pure fruit puts it a rung above apothic. I'm not exactly one of the pinot cognoscenti du jour that's turning their cellar over to 100% Rhys and keeps a pinup of Rajat Parr in my gym locker, either. Loves me a full-throttle RRV pinot, but this should never have been released for $45.

  • Comment posted by tomherer:

    1/19/2015 8:20:00 AM - Yah, that's a more than fair point, especially given how backwards the northern CA pinots are touted to be in 2012. But I thought about it a lot after each $2 sip and am really of the opinion that this is the biggest underperformer in the BG portfolio since probably 2007. The oak, thickness, and sweetness seem more like flaws than disintegrated components. Time will tell of course, and I agree that it should improve a bit with more cellar time, but see no hope of this ever becoming outstanding pinot, fwiw.

    That said, I shared it with my sister, a wine novice, who loved it and took the rest of the bottle home, so yah, your bottles still will prob go to good use regardless :)

Red

2009 Miura Pinot Noir Pisoni Vineyard

Santa Lucia Highlands more

11/29/2014 - flyinburrito Likes this wine: NR

Whoa! Full disclosure, we drank two bottles of 1er cru white burgundy beforehand so not sure if the remaining drops left in the glass modified this or not (probably not) but Whoa! This really did have some of that Burgundy barrel influenced coffee, mossy, underbrush, black dirt aroma and flavors with intense bright red fruit on the palate. Great acid and definitely can last some years in the cellar. Either slight bottle variation, or a lesson in letting your bottles rest after shipping or I was just wanting so much to drink a grand cru burgundy tonight that I tasted what I imagined :)

  • Comment posted by tomherer:

    11/29/2014 6:47:00 PM - Yah, I got the same exact thing going on a few days ago, sans the Burgundy aperitif. I think this wine has serious depth if given the time to show it. Just ordered a couple more bottles and hope to lay them down for at least a few years to see what develops. Glad you're enjoying this too!

White

2011 Sanguis Incandescent

Santa Barbara County White Rhone Blend more

11/2/2014 - tomherer wrote: 89 points

Impulse purchase upon seeing the bottle (literally just seeing it; this stuff doesn't get anywhere close to Maine) at AZ wine co. Been picking at it for a few hours tonight; trying to hold it up to the cult expectations and high admission fee, but to no avail. There's no lightning in this bottle.

Varietal characteristics line up mostly with the roussane, and are nice. Peach/apricot, honey, almond, some bitterness. Starts sweet, and quickly swings over to raw in a way that's not at all integrated. Some spice on the medium finish.

It's a good wine, but feels like I'm drinking more of the label. Revisiting the second half of the bottle tmw in case a little air helps it along some.

  • Comment posted by tomherer:

    11/3/2014 7:21:00 PM - Checked in on the rest of this today; let it sit out a while to loosen up. No dice. It's just not great -- punches in a class at least half its weight.

White

2005 Sans Permis Chardonnay La Chanson Argentee De Cuillere

Santa Barbara County more

10/2/2014 - afketter wrote: 86 points

Not bad for the price ($11), but certainly past it's prime. It's a shame because I can see how this would have been a great bottle 3 years ago

  • Comment posted by tomherer:

    10/4/2014 7:01:00 AM - Had the 05 wayfarer last week and can confirm it's on the decline. Still a solid core left, but apple cider and mustiness are taking over. Would open immediately.

  • Comment posted by tomherer:

    10/22/2014 6:07:00 PM - Drained the Chanson quickly based on these life expectancy concerns, and meant to post a note, but you know how it goes :). Between the two -- wayfarer and chanson -- I found this to be much better. Definitely on the decline, but you can still identify the wine it once was, whereas that was only barely the case with the wayfarer. Wouldn't buy more, but a fun, low-stakes experiment. On a related note, find it interesting that LB would market the wines being obviously past prime if not almost spoiled. Haven't found that to be their style thus far...

    Did you get a chance to try the wayfarer?

Red

2012 Belle Glos Pinot Noir Dairyman

Russian River Valley more

9/4/2014 - mfortunek wrote: NR

So here is the definitive note on this wine (arrogant, right? - just wait). If you have a refined palate and a cultivated nose for pinot noir, there is a strong chance you will be repulsed. However, if you are new to wine or more of a beer/liquor drinker, you will find some pleasantries here; and that's okay. The rub is that this bottle retails at $40. If you're not a wine drinker, that's too much to pay for a bottle of pinot (i.e. you aren't going to be drinking this), and if you do have a more refined palate you will instantly compare this wine to far, far better pinots at the same price point (and below) and become vituperative. This is a wine without a market; a man without a country. It's too expensive for the people who will actually enjoy it, and too basic/syrupy for the people who will pay $40 for a Caymus family wine.

  • Comment posted by tomherer:

    9/8/2014 6:55:00 PM - Appreciate what you're saying about the quality of the wine, but don't think you can call QED. The wine has a market; the Wagners in large part helped create it. There's a consumer somewhere between the deep-pocketed connoisseur and the novice that splurges on Coppola. Cakebread doesn't pump 25,000 cases of Chardonnay (mostly) through restaurants for $80-100 a pop every year because it's life-altering. It's because expense accounts embrace pleasure and consistency.

    I'm as incensed as you are about this misfire of a wine, and would like nothing more than a refund for my remaining bottles. But that has nothing to do with the fact that the market will absorb every. last. oneofthem.

White

2012 Michel Gassier Costières-de-Nîmes Nostre Païs Blanc

White Rhone Blend more

8/16/2014 - jonahfactor Likes this wine: 93 points

There's a lot going on in the glass, starting with an enchanting aroma that instantly transports you to a New World barrel room. Deep straw hued, luscious legs and a bouquet that moves from barrel room to fields of flowers. I would have gladly stopped there. But the palate is equally enthralling. Gobs of honeyed white plums, mandarin oranges and flecks of grapefruit zest and lemon pith, complemented by notes of brook-soaked pebbles and minerals. Air reveals some nutty butterscotch notes, all kept lively -- and food friendly -- by precise acidity. Full bodied. Great texture. A blend of four varietals, mostly Grenache Blanc and Roussanne. Such precision, freshness and flavor, all for only $13. I'm thinking this won't be a candidate for long-term cellaring, since it's so fresh, lively and complex right now. Plus, I won't be able to resist cracking open the remaining bottles. Try it with lobster or sand dabs. Delicious!

  • Comment posted by tomherer:

    8/16/2014 5:26:00 PM - Love your TNs, this one no exception. Every Gassier I've had from the past few vintages has been a home run -- will make sure not to skip this one per your endorsement. Cheers!

Rosť

2013 Charles & Charles Syrah Rosé

Wahluke Slope more

7/18/2014 - tomherer Likes this wine: 88 points

This is going to be a go-to all summer long. Strawberry, cherry, and very tart/bitter citrus are super refreshing. Plunk down $10, drain on patio, rinse, repeat. Nice lingering finish. Bone dry and I expect will stay vibrant for a couple years.

  • Comment posted by tomherer:

    7/19/2014 7:10:00 PM - Just had the 2012, just starting to show signs of slipping. Maybe 12-18 months is the right window for this.

Red

2004 Clarendon Hills Grenache Old Vines Romas

more

7/16/2014 - rustyRudy Likes this wine: 97 points

Deep red. Dark fruit on the nose. This has developed nicely with elegant, but multilayered fruit, minerals,white pepper, and seems to have the fruit, acid and tannins in perfect harmony. Although these have had some bottle variation this one was right on target.

  • Comment posted by tomherer:

    7/16/2014 7:34:00 PM - Only have one of these to spare -- want to time it precisely if possible. What's your take on evolution/shelf life from here? Peak, or give it time? Any advice much appreciated.

Red

2010 Novy Family Wines Syrah Santa Lucia Highlands

more

1/17/2014 - Arch57 Likes this wine: 92 points

An absolutely gorgeous wine packed full of fresh dark fruit, smooth tannins, smoky notes and a long finish. Case worthy as a "power buy" in NH state stores. Great weekday wine and the screwtop makes it easy to handle after a long day at work.

  • Comment posted by tomherer:

    2/26/2014 5:42:00 PM - Read this note in the power buy section of the NH liquor store, of all places :). Really enjoyed it -- thanks for TN/reco.

Red

2009 Dashe Cellars Zinfandel Old Vines Todd Brothers Ranch

Alexander Valley more

2/12/2014 - mazik Does not like this wine: 83 points

Popped and poured, strange bouquet, if you can call it that, of dust and forest floor, palate was hot, muted black fruit, good mouth feel, grippy tannins, medium finish. After a while I began to get candied cherry aromas, so I think the fruit is there, hiding out, will see if there is further improvement tomorrow. Later: Nope, fruit is just as muted on the following day. Gave it to my wife to poach figs in. Very disappointed--and I don't get the reviews by IWC and RJonWine.com: was our wine damaged, or were they drinking something else?

  • Comment posted by tomherer:

    2/14/2014 11:09:00 AM - Just cracked my first last night -- very much like you describe it. Was quite "dead" -- tasted as if it had been aged an extra decade or two. No high hopes for hiding fruit to emerge, but would love to hear if it does for you..

  • Comment posted by tomherer:

    2/14/2014 12:01:00 PM - Yah, was just mulling that with a colleague. It's not just IWC and RJ, but around 10 consecutive positive TNs before the Last Bottle shipment landed, including a couple from MartinD of Enofylz Wine Blog, who is the man. After the LB shipments went out, all the TNs turned negative, so I'm guessing LB either flipped a flawed lot, and/or that it's weather-related. Given the weather that tarheel17 has been having in SF lately, it's starting to look like the former, which would be really surprising/disappointing, as I've never had anything but great experiences with LB.

Red

2009 Dashe Cellars Zinfandel Old Vines Todd Brothers Ranch

Alexander Valley more

2/10/2014 - tarheel17 wrote: NR

nose: dust, dried fruit. not too exciting.

palate: most surprising (not having tasted the producer before) is the med-high/high acid. It has a straightforward palate that is neither heavy/plush nor light/dynamic - rather staid, really. The long finish brings mostly tart red fruit with just the faintest bit of spice. Low-ish alcohol for a zin, though it is not entirely minimized.

I don't know that I would peg this as zinfandel necessarily. I like the low-octane persona, but the wine is just kinda boring. Perhaps travel-shocked - received it in the mail 2 days ago. Will hold final judgement until it has "settled" (although I'm not entirely sure that travel shock exists in wine, I remain willing to be disproven).

  • Comment posted by tomherer:

    2/11/2014 7:42:00 PM - Just got mine in Maine from LB. Arrived around 2:00pm, opened the box and pulled them out now at 10:30pm, and they were still freezing cold to the touch. Thinking they may have actually been frozen solid for some time. Will be looking for travel shock, if not damage, but will thaw them out for a couple weeks and hope they show OK..

Red

2009 Jaffurs Syrah

Santa Barbara County more

1/28/2014 - HOS Does not like this wine: NR

Wow, I'm the outlier here. I wonder if I had a flawed bottle. This was fruit forward but very, very tart which overwhelmed everything else for me. Not rating and I will try another bottle and hope.

  • Comment posted by tomherer:

    1/28/2014 6:29:00 PM - Thx for giving it another chance -- pretty sure the bottle was the outlier and not you. Plowed through a good number of these over the past couple years, and none have shrieked; very balanced juice. Hope you enjoy the next one.

Red

2009 Joseph Swan Vineyards Pinot Noir Trenton View

Russian River Valley more

1/8/2014 - drrobvino wrote: 94 points

This is a truly beautiful bottle of restrained, elegant, delicious and perfectly ripened RRV Pinot.
Very light in color, med(-) ruby at the core, fading to an almost colorless rim.
Nose is very RRV, but in a perfect sense, showing off red cherry, tart plum skin, spice box and soil-inflected tones to keep the tart and savory components in balance, like a well-made perfume.
The palate is textbook PN perfection, repeating tart cherry and plum notes from the nose, adding tobacco, cola, orange zest, umami, gentle but persistent spiciness. It's all there, supported by med alcohol, med tannins that are now rounding and drinking beautifully, and a delightful med(+) acidity, higher than what is typical in PN, especially from Calif. The finish is med length and just hones in on the cherry and spice for 30 secs or so, leaving you wanting for another sip.
Drinking beautifully right now, and I would hesitate to say how long this wine will last since I haven't tried many Swan PN's as they get over 7 yrs of age. I've read that they seem to last quite awhile, and based on the gorgeous balance and plentiful fruit, with great acidity, I'd say this wine will further improve for another 3-4 years and drink well through 2020+. It is sooo delicious now, drink one if you have a few bottles and see how the other bottle ages…Nice.

  • Comment posted by tomherer:

    1/8/2014 5:25:00 PM - Love your TNs. This one practically puts the glass in your hand. Much appreciated.

White

2012 Claiborne and Churchill Edelzwicker Proprietors' Blend

San Luis Obispo County White Blend more

11/17/2013 - The Drunken Cyclist Likes this wine: 88 points

I should have tried these in the reverse order. I know that, particularly since I have had my fair share of Edelzwickers in my day. I studied in Strasbourg, France and had a limited budget, which usually meant that beer was the drink of choice (we would buy liters of Kronenbourg from the gas station for about 50 cents–trying to keep it classy).

When we opted for wine, the choice was Edelzwicker. It was relatively inexpensive, had some great acidity, and usually a hint of sweetness–the perfect gateway wine for Coca-Cola swilling Americans. The term comes from German, as you may have surmised: edel (noble) and zwicker (blend). Thus the wine was originally a blend of the noble Alsatian varieties: Riesling, Gewürztraminer, Pinot Gris, Muscat (but has since been deregulated and Pinot Blanc and Sylvaner can now be included)–kind of a kitchen sink approach (the C & C is a blend of Gewürz, Riesling, Pinot Gris, and Pinot Blanc).

Before I twisted open the Claiborne and Churchill Central Coast version, I was worried. I had never seen an Edelzwicker outside of Alsace (not even in Paris), let alone on these shores. I figured that the Pinot Noir was really good, though, so one out of two is not that bad at all, and I would suffer through the Edelzwicker.

Another surprise.

A great floral nose that really underlines the Gewürz–floral and fruity, with mango and papaya. Light on the palate, where the mango really comes through. The residual sugar nicely balances out the vibrant acidity. This is a very nice wine that would work well on the patio, with some grilled fish, and even on the Thanksgiving Day table. Very Good. thedrunkencyclist.com

  • Comment posted by tomherer:

    11/29/2013 4:22:00 PM - Really enjoyed the storyline AND the TN. Thx much.

Red

2009 Westerly Vineyards Pinot Noir

Santa Barbara County more

11/10/2012 - tomherer Likes this wine: 92 points

Really interesting stuff. So happy I took a flyer on closeout. Smells of cherry, orange peel, cinnamon, and cedar. Also displays these flavors, in addition to wild berry, pomegranate, mineral, and black pepper.

Fairly lightweight and nervy, with a long delicate finish dominated by the spice flavors. Did a PnP, but it didn't sing until about an hour in, so some air is recommended, and I wouldn't hesitate to lay this down for a few years.

  • Comment posted by tomherer:

    11/24/2013 5:22:00 AM - Thanks! If only they'd made more of it. Looking good, Billy Ray; feeling good, Louis!

Red

2011 Belle Glos Pinot Noir Dairyman

Russian River Valley more

11/19/2013 - Champagne Lady Does not like this wine: 75 points

Having been a long time fan of Belle Glos (Claark & Telephone Vineyard) I bought a bottle of their new release of Dairyman. It was awful. The cherry favor was over the top and tasted much like cherry cough syrup. I was so very disappointed. Where was the balanced fruit, the lovely aromatic tones, the delightful Pinot? And I live in the wine country with an abundance of great wines. For me, it was a waste of good monies and such a disappointment :((( back to the Clark & Telephone Vineyard which I understand is being ripped up and won't be available for years. Argh.

  • Comment posted by tomherer:

    11/22/2013 7:07:00 PM - Are you positive it was the 2011 and not the 2012? '11 wasn't the new release as of your TN date, and IMO is up to C&T standards..

White

2006 Château de Beaucastel Châteauneuf-du-Pape Blanc

White Rhone Blend more

11/20/2013 - Redguy wrote: NR

Dumb nose, marginally expressive palate, no acid pop.... no excitement to be found here. Closed phase. Hold

  • Comment posted by tomherer:

    11/21/2013 1:54:00 PM - I popped one about two years ago and experienced exactly the same thing. Heck of a long closed phase.

White

2008 Keller Estate Chardonnay La Cruz Vineyard

Sonoma Coast more

11/13/2013 - TPB Likes this wine: 91 points

Really nice balance of fruit and oak. Some butterscotch and tropical fruits in the nose, nice citrus, lemon and apples on the palate and a fresh finish with some toasty, spice notes.

  • Comment posted by tomherer:

    11/13/2013 10:56:00 AM - finally, someone else likes it!! :)

Red

2012 Belle Glos Pinot Noir Dairyman

Russian River Valley more

11/4/2013 - tomherer wrote: NR

Cautionary tale in not taking notes at a tasting event. Was at a trade event a couple months ago, had the Dairyman, loved it. Bought a few bottles of the 2012 -- convinced what I tasted was the 2011, cause this in no way compares. Worst bottle of BG I've had, and I've enjoyed quite a few.

The fruit is primary, sappy sweet, and homogeneous. Cherry? Plum? Who knows/cares. Then there's the only other discernible note -- oak. To call it overwhelming doesn't do it justice. Mouth-splintering oak, makes the wine completely uninviting. The weird thing is that the last grapes for this wine were harvested almost exactly a year ago; one would think imparting oak this heavy would take more time?

Anyway, no score for now -- not because I don't have (a low) one in mind, but because it's the youngest BG I've ever tried, and because I can envision the oak folding into the fruit a year or two from now. Not expecting great things from it regardless, but will revisit/score down the line.

  • Comment posted by tomherer:

    11/6/2013 11:21:00 AM - Sounds you fell into the same trap I did :). Meiomi is a good analogy -- this tastes sort of like an average vintage of that to me. Simple, oaky, off-balance.

Red

2010 Francis Ford Coppola Pinot Noir Votre Santé

California more

8/1/2013 - RobertDwyer Likes this wine: 86 points

86 doesn't seem like a big number, but for a CA Pinot without off notes and a creamy texture it's actually pretty good.

I enjoyed this wine at Ruth's Chris not too long ago and hadn't seen it around at retail in MA so I hopped on this opportunity to pick some up at $9.99. At $9.99 you have to temper your enthusiasm a bit -- I'd call this wine "very good" rather than "outstanding". Hard not to like it. And for $10? Please!

  • Comment posted by tomherer:

    9/7/2013 6:28:00 PM - Great note Robert -- 86 isn't a big number, but at the same time, never had a better $10 CA Pinot. Not by a long shot. Glad you liked it, thx for the perspective.

White

2010 Miner Family Marsanne La Diligence Stagecoach Vineyard

Napa Valley more

6/28/2013 - Nojomoschwa Likes this wine: 92 points

Very rich Marsanne, with butterscotch and oaky character and ripe stone fruit core. Quite a big wine, but it all sort of works together. On the finish, there is a sake-ness about the flavor and mouth sensations. I wish I had more than one bottle of this. At $20 from Last Bottle (vs. $30 on their site), it was a good buy, especially with free shipping only 3 bottles. I will look out for this producer again (although this was a collaboration between Miner and François Villard in the Rhône).

  • Comment posted by tomherer:

    6/29/2013 10:53:00 AM - definitely worth looking out for -- Dave and Francois also do a Syrah that's of the same caliber. Pretty special collaboration imo.

Red

2009 Turley Zinfandel Duarte

Contra Costa County more

6/17/2013 - Lord Rodney wrote: 88 points

I wasen't too happy with this wine. Not bad but it seemed pruny. Not plummy like Turley can be. In fact it seemed a little tired like an overripe Chateauneuf from 2003 or something like that. Still have 4 bottles! ups!

  • Comment posted by tomherer:

    6/17/2013 7:24:00 PM - this bottle is a tricky one for me -- find it to be absolutely exhilarating when just opened, but turning raisiny after just ~15 minutes of air. Recommend pounding it with a few friends :).

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