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

2013 Johanneshof Reinisch Rotgipfler

Thermenregion more

6/26/2015 - hankj wrote: 92 points

First experience with Rotgipfler and can say I'm fairly blown away.

Did a little poking and a close cousin is Gewurztraminer. Use that as a baseline for imagining this wine's potential for weight, aging and strong aromatics. It doesn't have a Gewurz aroma profile exactly though, less of the spicy element and something more saline.

There are several wines it reminded me of in ways: saline and acid in a richer white like Albarino; the savory herbaceous almost a little oily character of Pinot Blanc; the beeswax and pepper richness of Roussanne; the layered, deep stone fruit an slight wooliness of Vouvray.

Comparisons aside Rotgipfler is all its own, distinct, unique. It's got richness and would age absolutely fabulously. It's also light on its feet and elegant, would match a huge range of foods. This bottle of Rotgipfler holds up as a peer of fine examples of the analogues mentioned above - it's not a minor cousin but rather could easily inhabit the place of a famous varietal if much more broadly planted and much more broadly known. But it will remain a rare little wine. At $20 a bottle I'm now hunting a case of this, and have hardly been more confident that a white will pay off in spades 5, 10 and even 20 years of age.

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Red

2010 Tenuta di Arceno Chianti Classico

Chianti Classico DOCG Sangiovese Blend, Sangiovese more

6/12/2015 - hankj wrote: 89 points

I'm going to comment on how this will age. It's a new world weight wine, and clean and a little clinical. Has a lot of dark fruit, but also lots of structure and plenty of wood. I think it will age well, or at least that age will do it well and that it won't die for a long time. I'm not opening another one of these until 2022 minimum.

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Red

2005 Belle Vallée Pinot Noir Reserve

Willamette Valley more

3/9/2015 - hankj wrote: 89 points

Solid, extracted Pinot with good structure. Drink now.

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White

2013 Winzer Krems Grüner Veltliner Kremser Sandgrube

Kremstal more

2/26/2015 - hankj wrote: 91 points

Loved this Gruner. It had all the fruit (grapefruit, white peach) and lift of name-your-favorite 1 liter beer cap bottle, but clearer and more intense. Add to that some more serious structuring elements like grass and stem tannin (sort of an analogue good Loire Sauv Blanc) and this wine is both serious enough and a casual glass. Crazy food friendly too, great qpr!

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Red

2008 Paul Hobbs Pinot Noir Russian River Valley

more

2/7/2015 - hankj wrote: 92 points

5th bottle out of 6. Just starting to lose a little fruit to tertiary development. A little more muddled and softer than previously - as expected this wine probably doesn't have the acid or tannic backbone to carry past a year or two more (to my palate, ymmd). It's aging, again to me, kind of like a lower-acid high end Aussie Shiraz so I'll drink my last one this year probably. Still a really good bottle of wine, and if you like the way softer wines get old you can hold for a while.

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Red

2005 Ridge Monte Bello

Santa Cruz Mountains Red Bordeaux Blend more

1/24/2015 - hankj wrote: 92 points

We decanted this and drank relatively unceremoniously. It came across as a good quality, balanced, not overdone in any way California BDX blend. Not mind blowing or particularly special but a really nice wine. Not a QPR wine but not at all disappointing at the price. Fwiw it drank to my palate better than the particular bottle of Bionic Frog alongside it.

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Red

2004 Allegrini Amarone della Valpolicella Classico

Corvina Blend, Corvina more

1/24/2015 - hankj wrote: 93 points

In a perfect place right now - will change but not get better. Lost weight in the bottle, but if you like older wines you could wait.

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Red

2006 Le Vieux Donjon Châteauneuf-du-Pape

Red Rhone Blend more

12/7/2014 - hankj wrote: 90 points

Stinky CdP in the mini Pegau - nice wine good value

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Red

2003 Viñedos de Páganos Rioja El Puntido

Tempranillo more

11/28/2014 - hankj wrote: 92 points

drinking very nicely - integrated and developing tertiary character but still has some tannic backbone. I'm glad I drank now but if you have an "old wine" palate you could wait 5 years if cellared properly.

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White - Sparkling

2002 Le Brun-Servenay Champagne Vieilles Vignes Brut

Chardonnay more

11/9/2014 - hankj wrote: 91 points

nice Champagne - very crisp and acidic

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Red

2008 Mackey Syrah

Walla Walla Valley more

10/28/2014 - hankj wrote: 91 points

thinner bodied than one might expect from WA State and a bit more of an austere, peppery, leaner-berried profile. Northern Rhone? Not really but maybe a few steps farther toward that side of the spectrum than the average WA Syrah.

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Red

2008 Paul Hobbs Pinot Noir Russian River Valley

more

10/28/2014 - hankj wrote: NR

terrific as always. Has shed a little wight and picked up a little tertiary aspect. These to me are in the prime drinking window - could see them fading but if you're an old wine palate then you can wait. 94-95 points.

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Red

2008 Renegade Wine Co. Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve

Columbia Valley more

9/29/2014 - hankj wrote: 90 points

to me pretty much defines a 90 point wine - nice balance, something to like through all aspects of the palate, nothing standing out as wrong or lacking, enough restraint to drink with food. If it had 1% more alcohol, and a little more extract, and a little more wood, and was a little more bone dry, then it would be one of those hundreds of WA State Cab blends trying too hard to be Quilceda Creek. But it's not, and that's a good thing.

Drinking well now; will resolve a bit more. I won't wait more than 2 more years to drink my last one.

Some of these early Renegade labeled wines are quite good. Note that this doesn't follow with more recent vintages; Renegade processes excess wine and in the beginning they got some from a few great wineries - now it's almost always leftover bulk juice.

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Red

2005 Romano Dal Forno Valpolicella Superiore

Corvina Blend, Corvina more

9/22/2014 - hankj wrote: 93 points

Drank at Seattle CT Group Italian wine gathering at my house - great time with good peeps!

Many good notes below so I'll try to post a different sort of impression. This wine is special. When I popped it several hours before the event it exploded with licorice, fig compote and very ripe dark fruits. At that point it drank easy and slightly one dimensional. By the time of the general tasting it grew more open and kaleidoscopic but also more brooding with far greater wood-character and multiple components of every class of wine smell in the book - soil, animal, mineral, fruit, spice, green plants, brown plants. two hours later the 1/3 of a bottle left over had perhaps the strongest cedar element I''ve ever smelled in a wine and tannin had overwhelmed the palate.

A good analogue for how this wine is built is the harder end of the high-end BDX spectrum. It was a serious wine in something of that super-highly structured international luxury bottle style, and it drank very much like a younger bottle of $200+ Pauillac or Pessac might - seemingly open as first, then a quick trot through complexity with wood ever-growing, then nothing but overwhelming (but nice quality) barrel.

My takeaway is that this wine is already something pretty good, but it's build to maybe be something spectacular down the road a bit. I'll hold my remaining bottles 8-10 more years (note that I'm not at all a fan of the "venerable bottle" but in ten years this might just be settling in) before popping another, and try to buy a few as new vintage arise.

If I was opening another I'd do it with some really rich meaty food - an entree, not snacks - like Ossobuco or a braised lamb shank. Something that could match the complexity of the wine and absorb some of its woody punch. All in all good stuff, interesting, dignified wine that still very much shows a sense of place.

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Red

2010 Orma Toscana IGT

Red Bordeaux Blend more

7/16/2014 - hankj wrote: 88 points

not as finessed a wine as I'd expect - big and a little backward and slight odd mushroomy funk. I like the 2009 much better and doubt this vintage will develop into something better than that (to my palate anyway)

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White - Sparkling

NV G. H. Mumm & Cie Champagne Cordon Rouge Brut

Champagne Blend more

7/13/2014 - hankj wrote: 90 points

Very nice champagne in the fuller, more expressive mode. If I had to tag its style to something more expensive that would be NV Pol Roger. Not a follower of this wine but have heard report that Mumm has stepped up it's quality recently and this bottle sure feels like that. Dosage give a little bit of weight but not really apparent sweetness. Not long but does have a little bitter almond note that carries it to a decent enough finish. Good food wine - not exactly an oyster and shrimp Champagne but matches really nicely with salty appetizers. Excellent qpr at the $28 I paid.

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Red

2001 Bodegas Emilio Moro Ribera del Duero Malleolus de Valderramiro

Tempranillo more

7/11/2014 - hankj wrote: 90 points

surprised that this wasn't longer, deeper or more complex. Solid wine but not what I'd call special. Definitely wouldn't rebuy - lots better out there at the $100 price point

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Red

2009 Orma Toscana IGT

Red Bordeaux Blend more

7/11/2014 - hankj wrote: 93 points

This wine is squarely what you'd expect.

It's got clear Italian character, and specifically is easy to identify as Tuscan.

It smells like Sangio - red cherry, earth - and Merlot - plum, spice. Add some tobacco and licorice to that and you've got the idea. [Edit - got this wrong - no Sangiovese in this wine. Cab Sauv is the blending grape here].

It drinks like Europe 2009 - lush, open and still structured with enough acid to age well, in the way bigger, lusher wines age. Decanted for an hour or two but there was nothing backward or closed about this bottle. From the taste on opening to finishing it 3 hours later it drank well the whole way through.

Style is my preferred - old world wine but with some new world fruit and weight. Not a fruit bomb, not a searingly austere messenger of terroir only.

Popped this one with the CT Seattle crew. Won't open another for a while, though I don't doubt this wine could be happily consumed at any point from right now through 2025 (if properly cellared). Age should add some complexity but delightful, I thought, as is.

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Red

2006 Quinta do Crasto Douro Reserva Old Vines

Red Blend more

6/11/2014 - hankj wrote: 91 points

evolving wonderfully as it sheds weight in the bottle. Crazy value.

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Red

2007 Buena Vista Pinot Noir Estate Vineyard Series Ramal Vineyard

Carneros more

6/11/2014 - hankj wrote: 91 points

excellent rich, earthy Pinot - if you like forest floor/barnyard character this is a good bottle for you.

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Red

2005 Tenuta Sette Ponti Crognolo Toscana IGT

SuperTuscan Blend more

6/11/2014 - hankj wrote: 90 points

rustic yes, also plummy, earthy, mushroomy Sangio/Merlot goodness - darn good bottle that could go at least 5 more years

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Red

2007 Neyers Syrah Old Lakeville Road

Sonoma Coast more

6/11/2014 - hankj wrote: 93 points

in a great place right now - tasting consistent with my previous notes, just a little more tertiary.

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White - Fortified

2011 Alvear Montilla-Moriles Pedro Ximénez de Añada

more

4/17/2014 - hankj Likes this wine: 95 points

Color: grade b maple syrup with some ruby undertones.  Nose: cooked fig, sticky raisin, POG (passion orange guava juice), cognac, orange infused milk chocolate, lilting trace of dry sherry's saltiness.  Hard to pinpoint but there's an aspect to it that smells like good anejo tequila.  Palate: nutty caramel, mince meat pie, top shelf mai tai.  Super long.  PX isn't for everyone thank god let's keep it cheap!

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Red

2007 Lagier Meredith Syrah

Mt. Veeder more

3/14/2014 - hankj wrote: 92 points

dark, powerful and primary but nicely balanced too. For me finished second out of a line up of 8 mostly more expensive Syrahs, only second to a very special bottle of Betz.

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Red

2005 Storybook Mountain Vineyards Zinfandel Mayacamas Range

Napa Valley more

3/10/2014 - hankj wrote: 91 points

from Magnum. Still fresh enough to hold a while but definitely in a good window. Well integrated and in balance with enough tertiary notes asserting themselves to add good depth. Ate with chimichurri filet kabob - on the nose pairing for sure!

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  • Tasting notes: 424 notes on 337 wines

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