Talk about expectations. First, there's the green meanie reputation of 2004 burgundy reds. I've had some very nasty, green "04s so I'm nervous. On the other hand, Mugnier has a reputation of excellence even in difficult vintages.
This was simply a great red burg. Translucent light red in the glass and on the nose soaring fruit, spice and some earth notes - no bell pepper. The palate amps things up a bit further. It's hard to imagine a wine this light in colour with such density. Very pure too. A long finish is marked with some biting acidity. Basically, as nice as this was, it needs another 5 years. Thankfully, no green meanies to worry about if this bottle is the prototype.
A long lunch at Helen's place (Martinborough, NZ): The wine had a lovely spicy, savoury nose. Again, the winemakers were detecting brett, I was just seeing as sous bois and savoury complexity. But there was also some herby green tinges on the nose. An interesting wine on palate with some complexity of flavour, including some greenness, but not to a level I found off-putting. The wine had serious fruit weight and a dense mid palate. I thought that the acids were a little out of balance. Larry had the wine as a powerful Grand Cru. However, for this esteemed label, I thought this was a slightly disappointing showing. Perhaps, with more time, it will improve?
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I normally save something like this for a Friday afternoon but I've been in tastings all day and this list of confirmations just came through (it's nearly 4:00am here). After today's exercise, I can say with humility that the excitement of a new vintage still gets my blood pumping. The lifelong process of understanding the truth in wine leads us through a vinous treasure hunt that never ceases to amaze me...
Which brings me back to today's offer
You can throw darts at the list below - all are more than worth owning and the prices are about as enticing as I've seen. I don't have access to scores or pricing data so you will have to do some research on our own but, I do know, the prices are very low...
FIRST COME FIRST SERVED up to 6/each until we run out:
2004 JF Mugnier Clos de la Marechale
2005 Belliviere Eparses VV Coteaux du Loir Blanc
2005 Belliviere Jasnieres Les Rosiers
2003 Roagna Barolo Vigna Rionda
2003 Francesco Rinaldi Barolo Brunata
2005 Bois de Boursan CdP "Cuvee Felix"
2006 Resonance Vineyard Pinot Noir
Jon Rimmerman Garagiste Seattle, WA Burg6577 Loire6789 Loire6790 Italy5475 Italy5476 Rhone4522 OR6579