A Friday Night Toronto Wine Dinner

Tasted October 18, 2013 by Wine Canuck with 123 views

Introduction

This was a fantastic dinner with the Toronto crew. David did a fantastic job on the food and opened some killer vino. Can't believe that just about everything showed.

Flight 1 - Hors d'oeuvre (1 note)

PEI Malpeque oysters with shallot, horseradish jelly
Canadian sturgeon caviar with crème fraiche on a buckwheat blini
Fried chicken and waffles, bacon maple syrup
Mini moose and fois gras burgers with spiced apple chutney

White - Sparkling
1996 Bollinger Champagne La Grande Année France, Champagne
95 points
Nose just soars out of the glass. Very rich and powerful in the classic Bollinger style. Toast, almond, honey, light brown spices, a hint of lightly roasted coffee. Very light oxidative notes. Palate has excellent balance and shows show some youth via sour tart acid indicating it's aging gracefully and here for the long haul. Love this champagne and this style.

Flight 2 - Amuse (2 notes)

Butter poached lobster, roasted corn puree, osetra caviar, crisp pigs ears

White - Sparkling
1985 Charles Heidsieck Champagne Cuvée Charlie France, Champagne
91 points
Nose smells very young for it's age and really prominently features a raw sugar note with some really quite fresh citrus fruit, and fresh baked bread. Palate is nicely acidic and feels fairly young.
White - Sparkling
1993 Moët & Chandon Champagne Cuvée Dom Pérignon France, Champagne
90 points
The nose featured a bit of a musty note with background rye bread and orange peel. Showing quite a bit of maturity and some oxidation. Palate comes across a tad bitter. Wouldn't age this too much longer.

Flight 3 - Flight 1 (2 notes)

Potato crusted pacific cod, salsify
Mediterranean scampi
Beet beure blanc

White
2004 Domaine William Fèvre Chablis Grand Cru Les Clos France, Burgundy, Chablis, Chablis Grand Cru
91 points
Appealing nose with nice subtle complexity. A little bit of a barley note, wool, seashells and lemon. It is so fresh. As expected, loads of acid! Finish is long and subtle carried on lemon and salene finish. Not enough else there for me to push the score much higher.
White
2003 Gravner Breg Anfora Italy, Friuli-Venezia Giulia, Venezia Giulia IGT
Fascinating nose that is really reminiscent of young Nebbiolo or Lacrima di Mora d'alba. Very fragrant and flamboyant. Nose of citrus blossom, licorice, anise, lemon candy, orange rind. A lot going on here. Palate is a bit different than the nose. Totally dry, lean, and has some dusty tannin. With a slightly clipped finish. Not rated due to unfamiliarity with this style, but it was interesting to try.

Flight 4 - Flight 2 (3 notes)

Veal cheek ravioli in squab liver

Red
1982 Château Gruaud Larose France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Julien
96 points
Fabulous nose that so nicely balances it's relatively elevated level of rusticity and ripeness. Similar to the 83 but a bit more concentrated, ripe and youthful. Nose of sweat, old leather, moist tobacco, farmyard, and deep rich blackberry/currants. Palate is relitively lush, with just enough acid and still some powdery ripe tannin on the finish. 96 Points. Fabulous!
Red
1986 Château La Conseillante France, Bordeaux, Libournais, Pomerol
92 points
Clean nose that started slow, but gained momentum as it unfurled. Notes of plums, pencil lead, white flowers, violets and a whiff of alcohol come through as it sits in the glass. Palate feels somewhat red fruited (red plums) and is a touch astringent but plesant.
Red
1999 Conti Costanti Brunello di Montalcino Italy, Tuscany, Montalcino, Brunello di Montalcino
91 points
Poured from magnum. The nose has that nice brunello sneaker sweat note. Plenty of fruit and nose feels very primary. Notes of powdered candy pokes through. Palate has some degree of integration with low perceived tannins but of course loads of sour acid. Very complete and enjoyable wine from a traditionalist.

Flight 5 - Flight 3 (3 notes)

Ragu di cinghiale, home garganelli, parmigiano reggiano

Red
1987 Diamond Creek Cabernet Sauvignon Gravelly Meadow USA, California, Napa Valley, Diamond Mountain
92 points
A classic and typical Diamond Creek. Shows the classic blackberry liqueur note I often get and even a little red fruit, with some nice background exotic spice. Definitely young tasting and ripe, but is correct and fresh. Palate is ripe, lush, a touch high in alcohol, and actually has a lot of acid. The blackberry liqueur and spice notes are repeated on the finish. Nicely done.
Red
1991 Robert Mondavi Winery Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve USA, California, Napa Valley
93 points
Interesting nose of tomato, some earth, crushed rock, bit of a beef broth note, grilled meat, some exotic spices. Actually quite minerally. Dark cherry. Palate is a bit heady with some alcohol noted, but less ripe than the gravelly meadow tasted previous to this. Palate is balanced and complete with a nice spiced cherry finish.
Red
1992 Dominus Estate Napanook Vineyard USA, California, Napa Valley
95 points
Oh baby this has a fantastic nose! Very Bordeaux like. Loads of barnyard, coffee bean, roast beef, dark cherry, cedar and a plesant green note. Very complex and complete nose, it's such an integrated package it's hard to delineate the nuances. Beautifully done. Palate feels a bit primary with a nice acid profile. Very fresh and youthful but in an excellent distinctly old world style. Finish is long and memorable. Gorgeous.
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Flight 6 - Flight 4 (1 note)

Carnaroli risotto with fresh alba white truffles and parmigiano reggiano

White
1990 Château de Beaucastel Châteauneuf-du-Pape Blanc France, Rhône, Southern Rhône, Châteauneuf-du-Pape
89 points
Heavily oxidative. Notes of salene, walnuts, dried lemon peel. Palate replays the nose identically with fresh salene, walnuts and dried lemon peel. Someone said this drinks like a fino sherry and I have to agree. I'm not really one for oxidative notes, so I didn't really love this.

Flight 7 - Flight 5 (2 notes)

Rabbit loin stuffed with woodcock innards
Pigeon leg confit
Fava beans
Brussel sprouts

Red
1998 Giacomo Conterno Barolo Cascina Francia Italy, Piedmont, Langhe, Barolo
92 points
Lovely nose of orange pekoe tea, leather and tar. Palate is fresh, with still loads of acid and tannin. Tar is replayed on a long finish. 92 with room for improvement as it ages.
Red
1996 Poderi Aldo Conterno Barolo Cicala Italy, Piedmont, Langhe, Barolo
Nose on this was of raisins, prunes, dates, alcohol and a little spice. This was indicative of either heat damage or a severe overripeness. Not sure which and not rated.

Flight 8 - Flight 6 (4 notes)

Rack of venison
Lobster mushrooms
Port and huckleberry jus
Jerusalem artichoke in duck fat

Red
1998 Paul Jaboulet Aîné Hermitage La Chapelle France, Rhône, Northern Rhône, Hermitage
90 points
A fairly ripe and primary expression of Hermitage. Nose of raisins, bay leaf, and pepper, not much else. Palate is round and finished on harsh acid and alcohol with a medium finish. Didn't love this.
Red
1997 Domaine Jean-Louis Chave Hermitage France, Rhône, Northern Rhône, Hermitage
93 points
This was beautiful, classic, restrained syrah. Very typical of the Chave house style. It only got better as the night went on. Nose features loads of green olive, green peppercorn, pickle juice, red currants, black currants and bacon fat. Palate replays many of these notes and finishes very long with all the red currant acid you could want. Archetypical classically styled Northern Rhone that is still on the younger side of the maturity curve for this producer, but still open for drinking.
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Red
1994 Dominus Estate Napanook Vineyard USA, California, Napa Valley
95 points
Poured from magnum. Second Dominus of the night and a similarly beautiful Bordeaux styled nose. Nose blasts sweet toasted cedar, loads of violets, black currants, barnyard. Palate is a bit more plush and primary feeling than the 1992 poured from 750 earlier in the evening, likely due to the format. Kind of a round plum flesh texture. Again finishes long and should go a while longer yet, especially in this format.
Red
2006 Sine Qua Non Syrah Raven Series USA, California
92 points
Loaded nose chalk full of complexity, however it is quite brutish. Nose of capers, motor oil, diesel, tar, stewed blackberries and blueberries, crushed pepper, vanilla, bacon fat. Palate is almost a bit creamy with a sweet entry and a vanilla, tar tinged finish. If this is your style then you will go crazy. For me it's a bit big, but does keep fine balance. I could see how others could score this higher.
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Flight 9 - Cheese (1 note)

Saint Agur, Picobello, Poached Pear, Toasted Brioche

White - Sweet/Dessert
1983 Château Gilette Crème de Tête France, Bordeaux, Sauternais, Sauternes
89 points
On the darker side in color. Nose is predominantly apricots. With time some botrytis showed with a lightly spiced nuance. Palate is nicely viscous and sweet but turns more bitter and short on the finish.

Flight 10 - Dessert (1 note)

Dark chocolate hazelnut torte
Dark chocolate gelato
Panna cotta with port soaked amarena cherries

Red - Fortified
1977 Fonseca Porto Vintage Portugal, Douro, Porto
91 points
This poured very light in color and had a very boozy nose. Also featured were walnuts, cherries and red currants. Nice sticky bitter finish of toasted nuts and red fruit. Perhaps not as good a showing as other scores would indicate.