Northern Rhone tasting (London): This bottle was singing -- the wine of the tasting. (Thank you, Thomas!) Fully mature but not showing any signs of decline, the bottle was still holding up well 3.5 hours into the tasting. Funk, length, depth, delicacy and lightness ... what you want in a mature Cote Rotie. As Thomas said, with mature reds at this stage it's not always easy to distinguish claret, rhone, and burgundy -- but for me this was unmistakeably northern rhone.
Cork had just started to leak and was quite loose. There was some additional head space but no sign of spoilage. Sediment was tight against the bottle. It was open shortly after opening and did not fade over a long meal. Had a full characteristic spicy flavor with great finesse and no obvious tannin. Color was somewhat light but not browned. A wonderful mature wine that was hard to stop drinking.
Beautiful, translucent garnet with only a hint of clearness at the edge. Nice smokey, black cherry, earthy nose, great fruit with mostly integrated tannins, medium finish. Overall a lovely, elegant wine that belied my minimal expectations, especially as this bottle had leaked and was made before the house of Delas instituted its quality improvement regime years ago. There is no danger of near-term decline, as far as I can tell, as long as it has been well-cellared.
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(Delas Hermitage "Marquis de Tourette") This was served blind and I thought it was a mature traditionally styled Barolo. I was way off. Had a tarry nose with meaty hints that became more apparent with air. Very floral too with some dark fruit lurking underneath. Great palate with perfectly mature fruit and great elegance. Long finish and bright acids. Perfect match with the lamb stew. This wine kept getting more and more aromatically complex.
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