Think and say what you will about Coravin, there are use cases when it is simply a godsend. Like last night, when I got back from a dinner out and just wanted one more glass of something good before retiring.
I'm fortunate that I have a reasonably wide variety of wine on hand at any point in time, but in this situation I normally have to go through a quick calculus to figure out realistically how much I'm going to drink, is it ready now, what condition the wine will be in the following day, and what condition I'll be in the following day. Then I invariably do something stupid, wasteful or regrettable, or all three.
Enter the Coravin-a tool capable of rendering moot all the dithering described above. A glass of 23 year old Hermitage to warm the bones on a stupidly cold night? Why the hell not?
Translucent almost muddy red, noticeable browning at the rim. This is clearly mature. There's a faint note of plum/prune still lingering on the nose, however it's dominated by minerals, smoked meat, and a kind of chalky spine. Sweet plum flavors emerge with about 20 minutes of air in a most gratifying way, along with underbrush, iron and beef bouillon . It's still kicking. Mouth-filling, softly textured, with tannins that appear light but have an astringent persistent grip on the finish. Though the tannins seem to be winning the battle at this point, it's still an autumn serenade.
Northern Rhone Tasting (Brad's house, Seattle): 2,4 TCA. What I call a "bloomer," as in, if we had decanted and not noticed, it would've been completely undrinkable. Poured straight from the bottle, Jon was the first to nail it to the wall. Still, educational enough. Probably would've warranted a low to mid 90s score.
Definitely bricking and advanced. Finesse and balance. Structured yet soft. Rich and warm, not that gamey, actually fairly Southern Rhone in feel and flavor. Leather. Prune. A little red fruit. Decent complexity. Came apart as the evening went on...while not an emergency, my sense is that this should be drunk. Yet very satisying and relaxing. Parker's note (although the one I have is ancient) is optimistic and off the mark.
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