Vice Versa weekend and dinner

Tasted Tuesday, July 27, 2021 by csimm1161 with 459 views

Flight 1 (8 Notes)

  • 2019 Vice Versa Cabernet Sauvignon Steltzner Vineyard 95 Points

    USA, California, Napa Valley, Stags Leap District

    Powerfully sharp and angular on the first pop of the cork, the Steltzner doesn’t take long before it is hale and hearty with unified black and red berry fruit, rock, black cherry skin, and black pepper notes. After four hours from a double-decant, this becomes a joyously chewy palate-stainer. A streak of red cherry and red licorice is complimented by a blackberry and olallieberry core that adoringly coats the back of the mouth. A tinge of dark spice makes a fleeting appearance before being washed away by the layers of fruit.

    Served next to the Liberace LPV, the Stletzner shows a tick or two less concentration and dramatic intensity. But hey, what do you expect?! I mean, Freddie Mercury looks pretty showy on stage until you stand him next to Marilyn Manson on a herrr’on induced cataclysm bender.

    The Stelzner will perform well on release with a healthy decant, but ideally it’s worth holding a couple of years before starting to tear into these bottles.

    Post a Comment / 1 person found this helpful, do you? Yes - No / Report Issue

  • 2019 Vice Versa Cabernet Sauvignon Beckstoffer Las Piedras Vineyard 100 Points

    USA, California, Napa Valley, St. Helena

    This is round #2 with the 2019 LPV since my last sampling it back in April. Once again, it is unquestionably the star of the show. This is the best LPV Vice Versa has ever produced and is categorically one of the best LPVs I’ve ever had. It just does…not…let…up, with a finish that lasts longer than a Turritopsis dohrnii immortal jellyfish (It’s fer reals. Look it up… And that’s right friends, you’re always sure to score an esteemed education nugget with a rando factoid every time you read a note from your pal csimm! You’re welcome). The concentration and intensity are perfectly weighted, with an attention-grabbing entry that isn’t so ostentatious it leaves you facedown on a sticky barroom floor at 2AM. Instead, its flashiness is bracketed with honed acidity and dark, DARK minerality.

    Yummy black licorice, blackberry cobbler, graphite, char, toasted spice, obsidian, creosote, and black molten lava from the biblical bowels of the underworld. It’s kinda like chewing on the Exorcist, except the ending of the LPV is WAY better. This is likely the deepest LPV I’ve encountered. Thankfully, its lift comes from propulsions of luscious tannins and acid that glaze the mouth and drench the palate with the proper ramp to hurtle the succulent black fruit and spice into flavor orbit.

    100 points. If this can retain its core character throughout the course of its evolution once in-bottle, then it will surely merit continued accolades and be rightly lauded as a perfect representation of the site and of Napa Cabernet Sauvignon. And what’s even better, my Cellar Tracker pal Cristall2000 has to once again face me and admit that the 2019 LPV beat out the 2019 Crane – for the second time. Victory!

    Read 23 Comments / Post a Comment / 4 people found this helpful, do you? Yes - No / Report Issue

  • 2019 Vice Versa Cabernet Sauvignon Beckstoffer To Kalon Vineyard 98 Points

    USA, California, Napa Valley, Oakville

    Initially, the 2019 To Kalon was a bit reserved (by Napa standards of course) and took a little bit of coaxing after the first pull of the cork. Double-decanted and given over four hours to find its groove, it willingly handed out chewy chocolate chunk, blackberry, blackberry seed, tar, and cassis notes. The front end is a smooth ride, with a slight tannic clamp on the tail. Similar in concentration to the Dr. Crane, if but a bit more serious and less fruity in profile.

    Served next to the To Kalon Beatrix, this TK was a hallmark Cabernet Sauvignon from the site, though it currently is a little shy on the soil and lead flavors that I routinely experience from this vineyard. On the final sips, this dropped beautifully into a deeper pitch and hinted at the to-be concentration that is certain to come with aging. The Beatrix was comparatively redder fruited in profile (with the Beatirx’s heavy Cabernet Franc component showing its varietal characteristics to full effect). 97-98+ points for this 2019 To Kalon Cabernet Sauvignon.

    Post a Comment / 2 people found this helpful, do you? Yes - No / Report Issue

  • 2019 Vice Versa Beatrix Beckstoffer To Kalon Vineyard 95 Points

    USA, California, Napa Valley, Oakville

    Similar to my experience with this wine back in April, the Beatrix showed a healthy dollop of red berry, cassis, earth, dry flowers, and an almost-Grenache-garrigue element that provides an herbal tinge to the finish. A lot of zip and energy here. Ideally a wine to age for a handful of years before it is ready for prime time. For those who can’t help but sample the Beatrix early, be sure to give it a good deal of air. The back end shows a little blocky with some tannic angularity due to the perception of alcohol at first. However, strong swirling is the solution and allows for the wonderfully pure fruit to show its potential. 66% Cabernet Franc. 34% Cabernet Sauvignon. If you love a solid CF, this is a winner for sure!

    Read 5 Comments / Post a Comment / 1 person found this helpful, do you? Yes - No / Report Issue

  • 2019 Vice Versa Cabernet Sauvignon Beckstoffer Dr. Crane Vineyard 98 Points

    USA, California, Napa Valley, St. Helena

    The first time I sampled the 2019 Crane back in April, it was surprisingly shut down and playing coy. Well, it’s done hiding in the corner and waiting to be asked to dance. This sample was exactly what I expect from top-shelf Crane. As much as I loved the LPV, and as much as I loved humble-bragging to my CT’er pal Cristal2000 about how LPV seemed to inch ahead of Crane once again in side-by-side comparative tastings, there is no denying that the Crane is a house favorite. Among twenty or so folks, I have to begrudgingly confess to hearing chants of “Ze Crane! Ze Crane!,” like I was surrounded by a gaggle of little Fantasy Island Tattoo zealots ready to declare the Second Coming of Crane.

    Though the Crane was tighter than some of its siblings on the initial pull of the shiner, it eventually busted out the front door with deliciously fruity red and black cherry, plum jam, and spice in a way in which no other wine can deliver. A darker cassis element came into play after the flavors toyed around more with air and temperature, expanding and undulating along its jammin’ attack. What can I say? It’s a wine that “flirts with perfection” (as the eminent Pros seem to routinely utter when they are tired of handing out 100 pointers like Oprah doling-out Pontiacs “…and you get a car, and you get a car…!” ).

    I think ultimately this Crane will be an ager, one that will certainly provide immediate near-term gratification for all the impatients of the world who can’t wait to guzzle these down (to whom I cannot blame in the slightest), but will best benefit from some time in bottle to really get its juices flowing (see what I did there…?!...juices flowing…? Get it? …Anyway…). 97-98+ points for the remarkable 2019 Crane.

    Read 2 Comments / Post a Comment / 3 people found this helpful, do you? Yes - No / Report Issue

  • 2019 Vice Versa Cabernet Sauvignon Mysterons 96 Points

    USA, California, Napa Valley

    As before when I gave this a try in April, the Mysterons is a punchy and fruity ride on a purple and red berry rollercoaster. Spice, bitter chocolate, and dust (Thorevilos/Ecotone tufa dust influence?) show more intense after a decant of a few hours, with a bass tone of richness and ripe berry sweetness filling in the profile. Finishes with notable depth but also with a slight bitter whip on the tail that provides lift and tension. There is a classicism here that is unique in the lineup; this will be a fascinating wine to follow over the next decade (or three).

    Read 6 Comments / Post a Comment / 2 people found this helpful, do you? Yes - No / Report Issue

  • 2019 Vice Versa Cabernet Sauvignon The Magnificent Seven 99 Points

    USA, California, Napa Valley

    This is just so intense and concentrated that one can’t help but be utterly mesmerized by its commanding presence. Blackberries and scorched earth are spun together in a commercial-grade blender on HIGH and stuffed with cacao and charcoal before it all spurts out the top and crescendos in a purple-black juice Bellagio fountain; a stunningly choreographed wine-aquatic experience. It is worthy of its class and place as the top Vice Versa wine in the lineup. I have a personal affinity for the LPV (full disclosure on that), but the M7 is a loooooooooooong ride of blackberry, black soil, purple licorice, Baker’s chocolate, and spice flavors pumping lushness and drive over the palate with a “Now whatcha got, punk?!” sassy attitude.

    Read 10 Comments / Post a Comment / 2 people found this helpful, do you? Yes - No / Report Issue

  • 2019 Vice Versa Cabernet Sauvignon Les Cousins 100 Points

    USA, California

    A joint venture with the Bretons and Stephan Asseo of L’Aventure, the Les Cousins is a hybrid of Vice Versa’s Napa juice and L’Aventure’s holdings from the Willow Creek District in Paso Robles. 100% Cabernet Sauvignon, this sub-species Liger unfolds in the glass with a unique succulence that is simultaneously lavish and precise. Black licorice, dark chocolate, wet limestone, warm blackberry cobbler, plum, and black cherry flavors march across the palate with a decidedly direct but also at once openly expressive bearing. It is almost as if Napa is the engine and Paso is the steering wheel, where powerfully-postured ripe fruit is given course and direction. The front end fools you into thinking it is going to be overtly exaggerated and extravagant, but along comes a mineral grip to crack it all into proper form.

    To be frank, I’ve sometimes found Central Coast Cabernet Sauvignon to be missing an element of concentration. They can be somewhat one-note for me (though, what Asseo does with L’Aventure is pretty darn phenomenal in general as it is). However, The Vice Versa Les Cousins caulks-in any perceived cracks in complexity and depth. Because I’ve also found many Napa Cabernets to be so bombastic that I can be quickly floored by the palate-burdening sensation of fruit, fruit, and more fruit, I endeavor to discover those Cabernets that carry requisite acidity, frame, and determined purity as well. Here too, the Paso terroir finds purpose in providing focus and keen maneuverability to which the core can travel with distinct persistence.

    I mean, let’s be honest; some of these little experimental projects can be fun for the winemakers and proprietors to tinker about and Frankenstein their ways into making wines in attempt to enhance allure in their brands or market some form of fabricated exclusivity. But for us consumers, we are sometimes left wondering if investing in someone’s “just cuz” side project is worth even entertaining. I can tell you as someone who doesn’t have a shower of money constantly raining down on my head, I often ignore these types of ventures and just stick to what I’m relatively comfortable with in a certain winery. Yet, all that said, I can also tell you that as soon as I tasted this wine, my exact quote was, “Hey, hold up Patrice. When are you releasing this and how many am I allowed to get?” So, do your research as I know many of you will, but in the end, I’m ALL about this wine. It is not so unique that it isn’t true to the varietal and doesn’t have a solid place in the Vice Versa lineup. It’s unctuous and delineated in the same breath. It’s perfect fruit and perfect frame. It’s an amazing Cabernet Sauvignon. Period.

    98-100 points. Let’s see what happens here once it hits bottle. A very limited production on this. Hopefully I don’t get too busted for doing a write-up on this since there won’t be much of it to go around.

    Read 6 Comments / Post a Comment / 5 people found this helpful, do you? Yes - No / Report Issue

Flight 2 (5 Notes)

  • 2019 Vice Versa Chardonnay Platt Vineyard 96 Points

    USA, California, Sonoma County, Sonoma Coast

    Similar to the 2018 Vice Versa Platt Chardonnay, this 2019 is a crisp lemon squeeze of a wine that spits white minerality and bitter citrus pith to great length. A floral elemnt tries to push through, but it is stifled a bit by the lemon juice zipping along the palate. The 2018 may have a little bit more going on complexity-wise due almost completely to its extra year of age; so, the 2019 will likely follow suit. The 2018 is also more of a rocket ship compared to the more academic 2019. The perceived acidity of the 2018 is higher than the experience I currently get with the 2019. All that said, I think the 2019 will pick up both speed and complexity over the next year or two. It is perhaps slightly fresher than its year-older brother, but again, that might be more of an age comparison thing between the two more than anything else. Bottom line, if you loved the 2018 like I did, you’ll be hard-pressed to find a better domestic Chardonnay, especially since VV’s style avoids slopping their Chardonnays in a tower of butter and vanilla and making you gum your way through it.

    Hold this for another year and be rewarded with a snappy Chardonnay that offers Burgundian frame and speed while staying true to its California fruit roots.

    Read 3 Comments / Post a Comment / 2 people found this helpful, do you? Yes - No / Report Issue

  • 2018 Vice Versa Pinot Noir Platt Vineyard 94 Points

    USA, California, Sonoma County, Sonoma Coast

    Once exposed to air, this succulent monkey really fills out into a juicy expansion of red and black cherry, red and black raspberry, spice, and mulch notes. It’s an interplay of fresh-meets-forest, with the earth flavors intertwining with the deeply pitched berry components. Finishes just rich enough to coat the palate, and just tense enough to form proper frame and swiftness to elongate the medium finish.

    Post a Comment / 2 people found this helpful, do you? Yes - No / Report Issue

  • 2015 Vice Versa Cabernet Sauvignon Beckstoffer Las Piedras Vineyard

    USA, California, Napa Valley, St. Helena

    I’ve played around with this wine here and there over the last few years and I am always a little circumspect about predicting how it is going to perform. LPV in general can shut down throughout bottle evolution and for whatever reason I’m no stranger to catching it when it can be pretty balled-up and tense. This particular bottle displayed focused and honed black cherry and crushed asphalt flavors that are distinctly LPV. Because it was served side by side with the 2015 VV TK BBS and Crane BBS, this LPV showed even more frame and minerality by comparison. This bottle had about 8 hours of a double-decant and it probably could have benefitted from even more. This is a wine for aging and will likely hit its full stride in 10-15 years from vintage. I wouldn’t mess with these until way after 2025++..... Of course, I never follow my own advice.

    Post a Comment / 1 person found this helpful, do you? Yes - No / Report Issue

  • 2015 Vice Versa Cabernet Sauvignon Beckstoffer To Kalon Vineyard (BBS) 96 Points

    USA, California, Napa Valley, Oakville

    Displaying an exceptionally young and tight demeanor, the 2015s in general seem to require even more time in bottle before coming to full fruition. Double-decanted for over 8 hours, the To Kalon BBS shows the hallmarks of the site in a compacted and exquisitely framed-out package. Primary and bitter on the back end, up and until open air in the glass for an hour or so really gives it permission to stretch its legs, this is a serious To Kalon that is decidedly chiseled. It is a fantastic food wine.

    Post a Comment / Do you find this review helpful? Yes - No / Report Issue

  • 2015 Vice Versa Cabernet Sauvignon BBS Beckstoffer Dr. Crane Vineyard

    USA, California, Napa Valley, St. Helena

    Of the three 2015 Vice Versas consumed this night for the dinner portion of the event, the Crane was…wait for it… the most fruit-forward of the three. It starts out a little hollow and plummy, but only for a flash; before you know it, it is chiming-in with plum, black cherry, and spice notes that completely elevate both the accompanying food, and in turn, the wine itself. These Vice Vera wines held up well next to a 2015 Promontory and 2012 Harlan circling the table like wine sharks just waiting and hoping to crush the competition (Of course, it’s not a competition, but it kinda is, right?!). Anyway, my take-away from the Vice Versa 2015s is that they are masterfully honed and determined, but ultimately would benefit with more time in-bottle. Hold until 2025.

    Post a Comment / Do you find this review helpful? Yes - No / Report Issue

Flight 3 (17 Notes)

  • 2015 Sine Qua Non Grenache "E" Eleven Confessions Vineyard 96 Points

    USA, California, Central Coast

    Red and purple plum, spice, brush, red cherry, black raspberry, and faint hits of cedar, the “E” left me with the impression of a wine that has so much potential, but is nowhere near where it needs to be in terms of even coming close to maximizing its ability to display its true attributes until another 7+ years pass. With air, it becomes deeper and broader. There is certainly succulence here; those who know SQN will not be disappointed IF they exercise patience. Currently, it is a workable wine that pairs well with food, but as a stand-alone, it shows some blockiness. The Krankl texture is just barely starting to peek through at certain moments, but overall it isn’t able to deliver that blossoming mouthfeel that a perfectly-aged Eleven Confessions can present. Hold for now.

    Post a Comment / 3 people found this helpful, do you? Yes - No / Report Issue

  • 2016 Sine Qua Non Grenache Pajarito Del Amor Eleven Confessions Vineyard 96 Points

    USA, California, Central Coast

    In a sea of top-shelf Napa Cabernet Sauvignons, this SQN was able to wedge its way into the crowd and make a fine showing. However, two things about that. Firstly, there was an obvious profile difference that made evaluation (at least, MY evaluation) of it a little difficult. Having a 2012 Harlan side by side with a 2016 SQN is an acrobatic palate-bender that can pull me in different directions. Second, like its older sister the 2015 SQN “E,” this Pajarito needs time. It desperately wants to flaunt deeper berry and darker fruit flavors, but it stays primarily in the upper register (air helped but it obviously didn’t get it to extraordinary heights given its youth). Notes of anise, unsmoked cigar, and candied cherry notes rose to the top, but again, they stopped short of fully thriving. An alcoholic finish aided in keeping the texture and flavors at bay. A wine of power and charisma that needs to soften and deepen its character with time. Hold until 2027+. A budding champ without a doubt… with proper patience.

    Post a Comment / 3 people found this helpful, do you? Yes - No / Report Issue

  • 2012 Harlan Estate 100 Points

    USA, California, Napa Valley, Oakville

    I got all ramped-up to write about this wine and then just re-read my notes from 4/30/2021 that basically say it all (so, refer to those notes if you want to read my novella from April). This was probably my favorite wine of the weekend. It is just so perfectly balanced, smooth, and complex. The depth is extraordinary, as in EXTRA awesome. A 2015 Promontory (as well as a number of the amazing Vice Versa wines) were nipping at the heels of this Harlan, but I can’t deny my complete adoration and affection for this amazing wine. It is an emotional response for me.

    When CT’er Cristal2000 said he was considering popping the cork on this bottle, I tried to play it off casually, like that would be a wine “worth exploring” or some sort of snobby academic reply that made me think I was saying something only mildly suggestive as to the merits of opening it for “the other people.” Of course, what I really meant was, “Um, I want. Me drink. Now please.”

    And yes, I hear it constantly. “But is it worth it, really?” Hell, I dunno. Generally speaking, it doesn’t put a roof over my head or cure me from cancer, so in that vein, I guess it’s not worth it. It is for me. Well, is it a bummer that it is in the top price bracket that it is…as in, it’s own bracket, leaving almost all Napa Cabs in the fiscal dust for only the elite to sample? Of course it’s a bummer. But if a Ferrari was inexpensive and everyone had one, it wouldn’t be a Ferrari. Regardless, if I (meaning me…not anyone else) had to have just one wine before I die kind of thing, this is at the top of my list.

    Read 28 Comments / Post a Comment / 5 people found this helpful, do you? Yes - No / Report Issue

  • 2015 Promontory 97 Points

    USA, California, Napa Valley

    Refined and acutely polished, the 2015 Promontory showed even better than when I had it back in April. Sophisticated red berry fruit and tobacco notes initially load the front end with classicism and judicious restraint, but come mid-palate, the profile shifts to a more purple/black contour, deepening as it rides through its expansion of flavor. Purity of fruit is off-the-charts. It remains somewhat tight throughout consumption, but it never becomes rigid or sterile. Its nucleus is just rock solid and serious business. Subtle herbs, graphite, and dust notes add additional interest. A great showing tonight with this bottle and one of the wines of the night (just barely overshadowed by a 2012 Harlan – go figure). Hold the Promontory for now. Try again in 5+ years. 97+ points.

    Read 7 Comments / Post a Comment / 2 people found this helpful, do you? Yes - No / Report Issue

  • 2016 MacDonald Cabernet Sauvignon

    USA, California, Napa Valley, Oakville

    Flawed. Wet cardboard and a moldy funk on the nose. Bitter and seedy on the palate. Not like any MACDONALD I’ve ever had. Clearly flawed and not even close to being representative of 100 point-type wines from this producer. Super bummer.

    Read 4 Comments / Post a Comment / 4 people found this helpful, do you? Yes - No / Report Issue

  • 2016 Scarecrow Cabernet Sauvignon 96 Points

    USA, California, Napa Valley, Rutherford

    Dusty red berry, purple plum, currant, earth, and some embers. I much appreciated this wine more since my last having it back in January 2020. This bottle takes a short bit of time to open up, but the sophistication is starting to finally show here. As others are aware, this carries an old-world component that keys-in squarely on its terroir and more medium stylistic display of the varietal. It tastes expensive, though it is a little strait-laced and shy on the finish still, with a medium expansion of flavor. The grip and frame over-flex here and there, letting you know that youth is still in control here. Ideally, hold bottles for another 5+ years.

    Read 4 Comments / Post a Comment / 6 people found this helpful, do you? Yes - No / Report Issue

  • 2016 Château Pavie 97 Points

    France, Bordeaux, Libournais, St. Émilion Grand Cru

    Locked, loaded, and tight as a drum, the 2016 Pavie is SUCH an infant all it needed was a pacifier and its blankie to get it all set for its requisite hibernation for the next 15 years. The precision on this wine is absolutely unmatched, as is the barely budding sense of perfectly honed and pure fruit. But holy hotcakes and caviar, this sinewy boxer is all business in its current state. Academically, it’s absolutely worth experiencing, but it is nothin’ but needles on the finish, even with hours and hours of air. All that said, I absolutely loved it! I loved it in a more scholastic way to be sure, primarily because if any wine on the planet has the potential to be a gladiator after two decades have passed, its this Pavie. I wasn’t worthy to try this wine yet, but was grateful to have been given the opportunity to check it out. It’s an fistful of fruit just waiting to cluster-bomb your palate. Hold the 2016 Pavie until they do a reboot of “Top Gun 2040: A Space Odyssey.” 95-97+ points.

    Read 8 Comments / Post a Comment / 8 people found this helpful, do you? Yes - No / Report Issue

  • 2009 Château Brane-Cantenac 91 Points

    France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Margaux

    Earth and cedar notes hit the palate shortly before the red and black currant and cherry fruit notes come into the picture. Getting a little sooty and coarse already. Old school. Drink now.

    Post a Comment / Do you find this review helpful? Yes - No / Report Issue

  • 2017 Domaine du Chateau de Meursault Meursault 1er Cru Les Perrières 95 Points

    France, Burgundy, Côte de Beaune, Meursault 1er Cru

    A powerful showing, with a decent amount of oomph and raw authority on the front end, asserting lemon and lime juice, sea foam, wet limestone, quince, and orange bitters flavors with full-frontal might and explosive complexity. The layering of flavor is not inhibited by the supremacy of its tannic strength and has the capacity to successfully deliver sophisticated and detailed essence without just being a big brute. The listed 14% ABV is not a surprise, with a finish that displays a slight angularity at the moment due to the perception of alcohol on the back end. Otherwise, this is a fabulous bottle of Meursault. Dainty white Burg aficionados probably need not apply. If you’re a domestic Chardonnay lover looking for a gateway into the expat world, this Perrieres might just be your bridge to the “other side.” Drink now with some air (even a possible decant for an hour or so), or hold for a couple of years to see if the booze balances-out even better.

    Post a Comment / Do you find this review helpful? Yes - No / Report Issue

  • 2018 Domaine François Mikulski Meursault 1er Cru Charmes

    France, Burgundy, Côte de Beaune, Meursault 1er Cru

    Strike two with this wine. For lack of a better term, this wine was a bit of a snoozer. It was “fine” in the technical sense, but it really was just a flat affective display of fruit and minerality. It didn’t have much of a beginning or an end. It just existed. Hold bottles a few years just cuz I really have no idea what else can be done to cattle prod this wine into having a pulse.

    The awesome 2017 version of this wine is totally on another planet compared to this drab 2018.

    Post a Comment / 1 person found this helpful, do you? Yes - No / Report Issue

  • 2018 Domaine Henri Boillot Puligny-Montrachet 1er Cru Clos de la Mouchère 96 Points

    France, Burgundy, Côte de Beaune, Puligny-Montrachet 1er Cru

    A beautiful unfolding of lemon and lime juice, citrus zest, white and green melon rind, orange oil (NOT the termite-killing kind), quince, and wet travertine notes. A broad-shouldered P-M that is packed and stacked, but also holds a lively finesse that permits striking flavor expansion of its citrus and mineral elements. For a warmer vintage, the 2018 Boillot Mouchere is attractively vibrant and is creeping toward similarities to the electric 2017. An excellent P-M. Try the next bottle in another year or two.

    Post a Comment / 1 person found this helpful, do you? Yes - No / Report Issue

  • 2016 Domaine Trapet (Jean et Jean-Louis) Latricières-Chambertin 94 Points

    France, Burgundy, Côte de Nuits, Latricières-Chambertin Grand Cru

    Earthy red and black cherry and citrus peel present in a primary and linear format, but still provide accessibility that just begins to hint at its qualitative Grand Cru refinement. More red-fruited and higher register at the moment. Revisit this in a decade. Fabulous potential here, especially for those who appreciate a more traditional profile.

    Post a Comment / 2 people found this helpful, do you? Yes - No / Report Issue

  • 2016 Domaine François Mikulski Volnay 1er Cru Santenots-Du-Milieu

    France, Burgundy, Côte de Beaune, Volnay 1er Cru

    Funky earth and dusty plum, with cedar, mushroom, salt rock, smoke, and wilted herb flavors. Slightly thin and watery on the finish. Medium all the way around. No fireworks here this time compared to my last bottle over a year ago.

    Post a Comment / Do you find this review helpful? Yes - No / Report Issue

  • NV Krug Champagne Brut Grande Cuvée Edition 168eme 94 Points

    France, Champagne

    A brighter showing than the last few bottles I’ve had – which I appreciate. Still, there is that slight oxidative characteristic that is indicative of all things Krug. Some love Krug for that exact flavor note. Others, like me, wish it was just a hair brighter and zippier and was sans that banana peel component that sometimes trespasses on the livelier citrus elements.

    Post a Comment / 1 person found this helpful, do you? Yes - No / Report Issue

  • 2016 Ultramarine Blanc de Blancs Heintz Vineyard Sonoma Coast 93 Points

    USA, California, Sonoma County, Sonoma Coast

    Lemon, sea foam, and salt rock flavors are speedy on the front end and rounded on the back. A little Ultramarine funk typicity adds interest. Compared to other vintages, the 2016 seems to be a broader and fuller sparkler compared to the more punchy 2013; the 2016 reminds me of the 2014 with its open and wide expansion of flavor. Drink now and drink cold, as a warmer temperature tends to flatten out the needed tension.

    Post a Comment / 3 people found this helpful, do you? Yes - No / Report Issue

  • 2009 Billecart-Salmon Champagne Brut Millésimé 91 Points

    France, Champagne

    Bright and crunchy, with a citrus and alkaline profile that marries steely elements with zesty fruit notes. No real signs of aging, with a linear cut that races over the palate and dances into an agreeable and spritely finish.

    Post a Comment / Do you find this review helpful? Yes - No / Report Issue

  • 2001 Château d'Yquem 100 Points

    France, Bordeaux, Sauternais, Sauternes

    Honeyed apricot, lemon succulence, the ripest peach you’ve ever had, clementine, wet flowers, lemon verbena, and a mélange of herbs all make for the most impressive of Sauternes known to the free world. Pair it with seared foie and you have the most amazing “traditional” pairing you could ever ask for. “I’ve died and gone to Heaven” was uttered more than once by many a partaker that night. Drink now and feel like a million bucks!

    Read 4 Comments / Post a Comment / 2 people found this helpful, do you? Yes - No / Report Issue