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

2011 Aubert Chardonnay Ritchie Vineyard

Sonoma Coast more

7/1/2015 - tp096255 Likes this wine: 92 points

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COLOR: Lemony-gold, translucent (by careful decanting!)
NOTE: Nose is sweet citrus followed quickly by burnt marshmallow, graham, poached apple/pear (like a funky fruit-based S'More). Mouth is medium+ and full of ripe citrus, creme brulee, a little heat into the smoky finish. Good acidity, but a bit oak-heavy. Got one more bottle but I think I will sell it.

DECANT: 0-1hour
GLASS USED: Bordeaux
TASTE: 9.2
COST: 84
VALUE: 5.5
TRY AGAIN: now-2017
CORAVIN'D: Yes
PRE-POUR LEVEL: 100%
PAIRING:
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Red

2009 Domaine de la Janasse Châteauneuf-du-Pape Vieilles Vignes

Red Rhone Blend more

7/1/2015 - tp096255 Likes this wine: 94 points

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COLOR: Deep purple-garnet with medium garnet rim
NOTE: MUST DRINK THIS BETWEEN 60-65 DEGREES FAHRENHEIT. Below that temp range you wont get the nuances in the nose. Above that range the alcohol simply dominates the other elements, esp in the mouth and finish. In the zone the nose is like singed pink rose petals (that's a first), garrigue, raspberry liqueur, amarena cherries, anise, cherry pipe tobacco, dark-chocolate-covered candied orange peels (yep). This is one of those amazing Janasse wines. But keep it cool y'all! Mouth has a nice medium-heavy weight, somewhat puckering tannins (that takes a couple points off and may melt away with a few more years in bottle), full of fresh black cherry, pomagranate, red currant jam, cracked black pepper, tobacco and leather. The mouth really strikes me as being more of a Pinot Noir, but just a little more edgy/peppery. The finish is just lovely at 30+ seconds, but still quite tannic like the mouth, and I get a lot more Zinfandel-like brambly black and red berry fruit along with the tobacco.

It's a lovely wine that will probably improve a couple points with a couple more years, though it drinks well now with a 6-10 hour decant. Just be sure to keep it at the optimal temp range or you won't get the enjoyment you should. This is a much "fussier" VV than Janasse usually puts out.

DECANT: 6-10 hours
GLASS USED: Pinot Noir
TASTE: 9.4+
COST: 110
VALUE: 6.5
TRY AGAIN: now-2025
CORAVIN'D: no
PRE-POUR LEVEL:
PAIRING:
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Red

2009 Schrader Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon "Old Sparky" Beckstoffer To-Kalon Vineyard

Oakville more

7/1/2015 - tp096255 wrote: NR

Coravin Lesson #1: Do not access a bottle, overpressurizing it in the process, then stand that bottle up at room temp. Fortunately I drank about 60% of this bottle before it turned all porty. And by all porty, I mean ALL PORTY. Like a bad version of a Cabernet Port you probably had from some cheezy winery in a bad wine region. It's such a shame because this was a great wine, but this shows you what improper handling will do. I had planned on finishing the bottle in short order but then ended up on a restricted diet for the next several months. Now I went back to this same exact bottle from my earlier note and the wine is destroyed. It's essentially undrinkable but I'm trying to drink it as my punishment. Just so I remember what I did to that poor little wine. All those berries gave their life for me and I did them wrong. So sad. I am a bad dog. I have learned my lesson.

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Red

2012 Vines On The Marycrest Syrah

Paso Robles more

7/1/2015 - tp096255 wrote: 93 points

This was the hit of the Garagiste event. Everyone raved about it. The best way to describe this particular wine is blueberry pie with Saigon cinnamon. Fruit forward in every way, dense, engaging, lovely. All of the wines poured were great, but this outshined all of them. This was the best winery of the event, followed by Pulchella.

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Red

2010 Clos des Papes Châteauneuf-du-Pape

Red Rhone Blend more

7/1/2015 - tp096255 Likes this wine: 95 points

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COLOR: Deep ruby-garnet, with ruby rim, translucent.
NOTE: PnP smells like Flintstone's Vitamins, no joke! But that's at about 50 degrees. As the wine warms up it loses the fake candy note and starts to show its bad self. I Coravin'd this into my Riedel Somm Burgundy glass since it was already in use and it's acting like a de-facto decanter, and a mighty good one at that. Gives me a good bead on the color and nose. With minimal time it's already filling the massive bowl with amazing red forest berry fruits, serious kirsch, garrigue, tar, and rosewood dust. I've never been a big fan of Clos de Papes reds, but this is shaping up to be something special.

I don't have enough time to let this evolve throughout an entire day (which it deserves), but I will tell you this: No heat anywhere. Nose is just plump and lush with deep mountain berry fruits, super-concentrated. All the same other elements mentioned earlier in this note are still present. Mouth is rich, round and opulent. It's like a liqueur of small wild mountain strawberries, mixed with some fine herbs, hints of cabin smoke. Delicious. The finish carries the same profile but does clamp down with a tannic bite, though it's lovely at 30+ seconds. This is an amazing CdP now and will just benefit from 2-5 years of aging. Give it a nice decant now and you won't be disappointed.

Put this thing with some grilled meats and watch out. It's good on its own but begs for some food to slice with its tannins.

DECANT: 0-3 hours
GLASS USED: Riedel Somm Burgundy (the big boy!)
TASTE: 9.5
COST: 95
VALUE: 8.9
TRY AGAIN: now-2025
CORAVIN'D: yes
PRE-POUR LEVEL: 100%
PAIRING: n/a
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Red

2006 Marcassin Pinot Noir Marcassin Vineyard

Sonoma Coast more

7/1/2015 - tp096255 Likes this wine: 92 points

Good, but not great like the 2006 BSR version. This was almost pedestrian when drank next to the BSR. Typical. Bad QPR.

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Red

2006 Marcassin Pinot Noir Blue-Slide Ridge Vineyard

Sonoma Coast more

7/1/2015 - tp096255 Likes this wine: 95 points

This is great PN. Better than the estate bottling. No formal notes, but this was the WOTN. It was great from nose to finish.

Okay, grabbed another glass using my Coravin, and this is just the best mature PN I've ever had. Yes, it's bricking in color, but man, put it in a Riedel Sommelier Burgundy glass and it just fills that thing and sings like a tenor!

The nose is great, but the mouth and finish are just full of opulent, deep red berry fruit that grips you and holds you until the cinnamon, nutmeg, leather, tar and cherry pipe tobacco can assert themselves. This is really a Siren wine. You are drawn in to the rocks and then devastated. How can an almost 10-year old PN from California do this? It's doing it. Don't question how. Just enjoy. This wine is ready to go. No decant is necessary, but it doesn't fall apart after several hours so proceed accordingly.

One of the best Cali PN experiences I've ever had. Prob top 3. Kudos to Marcassin.

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White

2014 Bevan Cellars Sauvignon Blanc Dry Stack

Bennett Valley more

7/1/2015 - tp096255 Likes this wine: 92 points

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COLOR: Most cloudy white wine ever, more than an Aubert Chard even! Cloudy, light gold honey. Cloudy like a Louisiana bayou...

NOTE: Russell never does anything small, so why would his SB be any diff? I can just hear his staff telling him that the wine wont be stable without fining/filtering and him replying that he doesn't give a flying leap through a rolling doughnut hole (or something far more graphic and not fit for publication). Lovely nose of ripe pineapple, expressed lemon oil, and an almost savory topnote, like of rosemary or thyme, but very subtle. You can smell the raspiness of the lees, almost pine-like. Mouth is rich and round, not sleek/racy/sharp in any way (unlike many SBs). This is not your usual SB, as if you couldn't figure that out already. Mouth is full of ripe pineapple, papaya, mango, lemon, lime, kumquat. Finish leaves a lot of fruit behind in favor of creme brulee and a spike of acid+heat (13.4ABV now that I checked).

This SB breaks a lot of stereotypes. No cat pee, cut grass, limestone, etc. It's more of a full-bodied Chard-lovers SB, fat-bottomed girl of sorts. Prob wont work with your stupid oyster shooters and all that, but man it is great all on its own. Worked great in the Montrachet glass.

I still prefer my Merry Edwards SB, perhaps because of the Musque clone and the slight RS. But this is a close second for very diff reasons.

DECANT: PnP
GLASS USED: Riedel Montrachet
TASTE: 9.2+
COST: 37
VALUE: 6.5
TRY AGAIN: now - 2017
CORAVIN'D: n/a
PRE-POUR LEVEL:
PAIRING:
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Red

2003 Château Léoville Barton

St. Julien Red Bordeaux Blend more

7/6/2015 - tp096255 wrote: 85 points

I like it because I can drink it, but I hate it because I have been cellaring this freaking punk-a** bottle for a decade and just now realized this is the same stupid kind of bor-dough plonk I've been wasting my time on all along. How did James Suckling rate this a NINETY-EIGHT in 2006 and then change that to a 92 (NINETY-TWO!!!!!) in 2011?!? It's not even a 92 in my book. This is drinkable but it has the same ol stupid bor-dough funk in the nose, insipid ash-tray mouth muddled with some blackberries, followed by more ash tray in the mouth. Oh man, I am angry. I am so glad I stopped buying any bor-dough wines about 5 years ago. I know, not all of them SUCK, just most. Yikes. What an utter disappointment. I am going to sell off every single bottle of bor-dough in my cellar. Left-bank, Right-bank, and all the other banks. Oh, that's what it is! They are all used to going to the "bank" after I buy their wines en primeur! Well, maybe in some future century when bor-dough catches up to Napa in the making of fine wines I will entertain a purchase or two. Pretty sure I'll be dead by then.

Bye bye and good riddance bor-dough!

Sincerely,

Troy Peterson

(Epilogue: This is only a rant about RED bor-dough, not white/sweet ones. And this was no PnP willy nilly tasting, it was a full-on decant with tastings every hour for several hours and at a consistent temperature. And yes, I am still waiting to taste Petrus, any vintage!)

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Red

2010 Turnbull Cabernet Sauvignon Fortuna Vineyard

Oakville more

6/29/2015 - tp096255 Likes this wine: 95 points

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COLOR: Garnet with brickish-garnet rim (mature?)
NOTE: This is lovely from nose to finish, so no wonder why Parker called it out as one of his favs from the 2014 releases. It is oak-driven, but on the nose it's more sweet mulberry, then the mouth is rich and decadent, with loads of darker fruits mingled in with lots of dark cocoa, then the finish just sails off for 45 minutes of lovely cocoa powder covered blackberries. Its great. I love this, and yes, I'm a cab-whore. This is Schrader/Bevan quality. No doubt about it.

DECANT: 1-3 hours
GLASS USED: Bordeaux
TASTE: 9.5-
COST: 250
VALUE: 2.0
TRY AGAIN: now - 2018
CORAVIN'D: Yes, initially, left 85% in bottle
PRE-POUR LEVEL: 100%
PAIRING: meat!
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Red

2005 Quilceda Creek Cabernet Sauvignon

Columbia Valley more

6/29/2015 - tp096255 Likes this wine: 93 points

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COLOR: Deep garnet with medium-garnet rim
NOTE: Lovely sandalwood-laced blackberry juice nose, cinnamon and tar, then medium+ mouth has nice bright black mulberry juice, acidic but in a good balancing way, that leads to the finish. This is NOT a 100 point wine but still maintains its solid core of fruit and structure almost the same today as it did 7 years ago when I first tasted it. Has hardly budged. This thing has another decade in it at least.

DECANT: 1-3 hours
GLASS USED: Bordeaux
TASTE: 9.3
COST: 120
VALUE: 5.0
TRY AGAIN: now - 2025
CORAVIN'D: first time, and now at 60%
PRE-POUR LEVEL: 100%
PAIRING: marinated beef, um um
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Red

2011 Bevan Cellars Sugarloaf Mountain Vineyard

Napa Valley Red Bordeaux Blend more

9/23/2013 - tp096255 Likes this wine: 95 points

Tasted this with Victoria and Josh. Amazing juice. Full on 9.5 and rising. Just slightly eclipsed by the EE in this vintage.

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Red

2010 Saxum Paderewski Vineyard

Paso Robles Zinfandel Blend, Zinfandel more

7/15/2014 - tp096255 Likes this wine: 93 points

I guess I expect these Zin-based Saxums to be drinkable earlier or with a minimal decant, but that just isn't the case. They are beasts like all the others and need to be tamed with time.

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Red

2009 Favia Rompecabezas

Amador County Syrah Blend, Syrah more

7/15/2014 - tp096255 Likes this wine: 92 points

Much more Syrah-driven than 2008. I preferred the Grenache-dominant 2008. This was a bit too intense for some of the folks at dinner.

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Red

2010 Epoch Estate Wines Ingenuity Paderewski Vineyard

Paso Robles Red Rhone Blend more

8/15/2014 - tp096255 Likes this wine: 92 points

Good stuff all over again!

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Red

2010 Booker Vineyard Vertigo Extended Age 22 Months

Paso Robles Syrah Blend, Syrah more

7/15/2014 - tp096255 Likes this wine: 93 points

Good juice. I Like this extended barrel version a little better.
9.3+

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Red

2010 Booker Vineyard Vertigo

Paso Robles Red Rhone Blend more

7/15/2014 - tp096255 Likes this wine: 93 points

Good juice. I Like the extended barrel version a little better.
9.3-

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Red

2009 Rhys Pinot Noir Horseshoe Vineyard

Santa Cruz Mountains more

7/15/2014 - tp096255 Likes this wine: 91 points

Good solid PN.

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Red

2012 Donelan Pinot Noir Two Brothers

North Coast more

6/15/2014 - tp096255 wrote: 86 points

This might have just been in an awkward place but I didn't enjoy it this time. It was thin and fruit was muted. Decanting didn't do anything for it.

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Red

2009 Darioush Cabernet Sauvignon Caravan

Napa Valley more

7/15/2014 - tp096255 wrote: flawed

Had it at the winery in Sep 2013 and it was good stuff. This was still drinkable but noticeably flawed. Shame

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White

2010 Lewis Cellars Chardonnay Barcaglia Lane

Russian River Valley more

8/15/2014 - tp096255 Likes this wine: 93 points

Very good. Had it in Nov 2012 and then another bottle today. Holding up well.

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Red

2011 L'Aventure Optimus

Paso Robles Red Blend more

12/15/2014 - tp096255 wrote: 88 points

One of the least impressive Optimus' in memory. Just okay.

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White - Sweet/Dessert

2003 Château La Tour Blanche Sauternes

Sémillon-Sauvignon Blanc Blend more

1/15/2015 - tp096255 Likes this wine: 95 points

This is still one of our all-time favorite stickies. Just gorgeous.

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Red

2009 Chappellet Cabernet Sauvignon Clone 7

St. Helena more

6/15/2015 - tp096255 Likes this wine: 90 points

Decent juice.

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Red

2010 Chappellet Cabernet Sauvignon Clone 4

Napa Valley more

9/15/2014 - tp096255 wrote: 88 points

Okay, but not very fruity or complex.

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  • Tasting notes: 967 notes on 815 wines

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