The Second Avery Family Cellar Wine Dinner - Really old wines

The Grill Room at the Rosewood DC

Tasted February 24, 2017 by dcwino with 398 views

Introduction

As some of you may already know, the Averys is a six generation family run wine merchant in Bristol, England that was found in 1793. On Thursday October 20th, Christie’s London auctioned this landmark collection. The family cellar is in Bristol where summer high temperatures rarely gets above 70. According to the Christie’s wine department, the cellar has maintained the active cooling and humidity.

Four guys in DC area decided to actively participate in the auction. Luckily, we succeeded on acquiring 160 also bottles of very old wines. The wines are from the 20s to the early 70s.

Upon receiving them, I was pleasantly surprised by the excellent appearances. There was a mag of the 55 Avery Chambertin that was leaking which was not a terrible surprise. Most of the bottles had excellent fills and sound color. As old bottles go, no great wines, just great bottles. However, our chances of having the great experiences seemed to increase significantly.

Our inaugural dinner was a great success. This was the second Avery dinner. Our success rate was not as high as the inaugural dinner but we had a number of exceptional bottles. I have had my fair share of the old wines as I love them. My success rate is around 20% memorable, 20% excellent, 20% good, 20% drinkable and 20% undrinkable. A couple of the participants were new to the old wines and they were pleasantly surprised by how complex and sweet the wine showed.

Flight 1 - Champagne (2 notes)

White - Sparkling
1996 Krug Champagne Vintage Brut France, Champagne
98 points
Another exceptional bottle. Beautiful harmonious nose displaying lemon curd, candied orange peel, peach, tarte tatin, crème brulee, cinnamon, ginger and wet stone. Harmonious and elegant yet energetic and precise palate, candied orange and tart tatin driven palate impression, bright acidity, strong presence of mineral and a seamless long finish that resonates. For the past few years, the 96 Krug has reached the peak. Absolutely delicious yet profound.
2 people found this helpful Comment
White - Sparkling
1979 Pol Roger Champagne Cuvée Sir Winston Churchill France, Champagne
91 points
Sound looking bottle with a good fill level. Delicate nose displaying shy yellow fruit, slightly oxidize apple, lanoline, toffee, ginger and mineral. Soft, warm and round, shy medium mousse, slightly lacking acidity hence lacking energy and precision and a medium finish.

Flight 2 - Marcassin Chardonnay (2 notes)

White
2010 Marcassin Chardonnay Marcassin Vineyard USA, California, Sonoma County, Sonoma Coast
95 points
Feels fresher than the last bottle. Youthful mineral driven nose displaying pineapple, lemon curd, acacia flower, spicy spices, butterscotch and limestone. Fresh and energetic, of course in very Californian way, medium acidity, strong presence of mineral, and a nice spicy spices and mineral driven finish. There is a hint of heat but it is not terribly bothersome. Nice showing.
1 person found this helpful Comment
White
2007 Marcassin Chardonnay Marcassin Vineyard USA, California, Sonoma County, Sonoma Coast
93 points
Deeply toned nose displaying sweet yellow fruit, peach, mango, caramel, a hint of lanoline and jalapeno and mineral. Excellent concentration, dense yellow fruit driven palate impression, bright acidity, medium mineral and a medium to long spicy finish with a hint of heat at the end. It is riper and deeper than the 10.

Flight 3 - Old white (2 notes)

White
1943 Château Olivier Blanc France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan
95 points
Clear light honey color. Pop and pour, fresher than the last bottle, fresh apricot, golden delicious, a hint of lanoline and mineral. It reminds me a bit of Japanese plum wine. With air, it opens up beautifully, candied apricot, crème brulee, light honey, lanoline and mineral. Perfectly harmonious, elegant and silky, delicious subtle yellow fruit, perfect amount of acidity and mineral, and a lovely long finish. It gets better and better with air, becoming fresher and more precise. Remarkably fresh for a seventy plus year old wine. Stunning showing.
White
1964 Averys Chablis Grand Cru Les Clos France, Burgundy, Chablis, Chablis Grand Cru
90 points
A bit more advanced than the last bottle. Medium expression nose displaying apple juice, sweet spices, sweet and sour sauce and mineral. Medium concentration, dense yellow fruit driven palate impression, good mineral presence and a medium burnt sugar driven finish Not as good as the last bottle but still enjoyable.

Flight 4 - Red Burgundy (4 notes)

Red
1955 Domaine Jean Monnier & Fils Pommard 1er Cru Grand Épenots Clos de Citeaux France, Burgundy, Côte de Beaune, Pommard 1er Cru
96 points
Absolutely captivating fully mature Burgundy nose displaying decadent earthy red fruit, maraschino cherry, strawberry and rhubarb tart, sous bois, raw button mushroom, caramel, soy, strong Asian spices, cedar, iron and strong earth. Fully integrated earthy palate, decadent earthy red fruit driven palate impression, strong acidity, iron and a lovely long earthy finish. The nose is truly remarkable, 98 point nose and 93 point palate.
Red
1959 Remoissenet Père et Fils Gevrey-Chambertin France, Burgundy, Côte de Nuits, Gevrey-Chambertin
flawed
Madeirized, earthy and straightforward.
Red
1972 Averys Mazis-Chambertin France, Burgundy, Côte de Nuits, Mazis-Chambertin Grand Cru
93 points
Medium expressive nose displaying soft cherry fruit, a hint of stewed tomato, raw button mushroom, sous bois and earth. Medium concentration, soft and warm red fruit driven palate impression, bright acidity, good mineral presence and a medium to long cherry fruit driven finish. Nicely mature Burgundy but not as good as the last bottle.
Red
1955 Averys Nuits St. Georges 1er Cru Les Roncières France, Burgundy, Côte de Nuits, Nuits St. Georges 1er Cru
92 points
Initially a hint of madeira which slowly dissipates with air. Fully mature earthy nose displaying slightly dry cherry, blackberry jam, licorice, soy and strong earth. Excellent concentration, dry black cherry and earth driven palate impression, good acidity and a medium to long earthy finish. Not the most complex wine but very good fruit concentration and sweetness.

Flight 5 - '61 Vogue Musigny (1 note)

Red
1961 Domaine Comte Georges de Vogüé Musigny Cuvée Vieilles Vignes France, Burgundy, Côte de Nuits, Musigny Grand Cru
96 points
In half bottle with high ullage. Beautiful soft red color. Medium expressive warm and soft nose displaying subtle red fruit, raspberry jelly, strawberry jam, sous bois, rose, iron and earth. The palate to die for, silky and sensual, beautifully layered, subtle round and warm red fruit driven palate impression, strong iron/limestone, perfect amount of acidity and a seamless long finish. 93 point nose and 98 point palate. Excellent showing. I would love to try from a magnum.

Flight 6 - '49 Bordeaux (2 notes)

Red
1949 Château La Croix de Gay France, Bordeaux, Libournais, Pomerol
flawed
Strong VA, coffee, tobacco. Nice material and silky palate. Too bad.
Red
1949 Château Beychevelle France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Julien
95 points
Beautiful mature claret nose displaying bright red fruit, strawberry, cedar, autumn leaves and mineral. Perfectly harmonious palate, soft yet bright and energetic, bright acidity, good mineral expression and a clean long bright red fruit driven finish. Not the most concentrated or complex but drinking beautifully showing good freshness and lovely balance.

Flight 7 - 20s Bordeaux (2 notes)

Red
1929 Château Branaire (Duluc-Ducru) France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Julien
97 points
Some Bordeaux “traditionalists” love to reminisce the 70s' Bordeaux without realizing how ripe and concentrated the Bordeauxs once were. Beautiful complex nose displaying decadent red fruit, cherry, leather, cedar, black truffle, sous bois, a hint of caramel, strong presence of mineral and earth. Exceptional concentration, beautifully layered decadent red fruit, quite dense, bright acidity and a seamless long leather and cherry driven finish. The fruit is quite generous and decadently sweet. Drinking magnificently.
Red
1924 Château Pontet-Canet France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Pauillac
96 points
Incredibly unique nose that is dominated by porcini. Our resident mycologist, Adam, informs us that the nose is closer to a dry porcini. I am starting to think more like matsutake. Tertiary dominating nose, strong dry mushroom, a hint of raspberry and cherry, mineral/iron, cedar and earth. Fully integrated harmonious palate, strong mineral presence, perfect amount of acidity and a long mineral driven finish. The dry mushroom dominating nose is really unique. Once in a lifetime kinda nose that I love.

Flight 8 - '53 LLC mag and '61 Rauzan Gassies (2 notes)

Red
1961 Château Rauzan-Gassies France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Margaux
flawed
Slightly madeirized.
Red
1953 Château Léoville Las Cases France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Julien
flawed
Madeirized. Exceptional concentration, however.

Closing

A great time was had by all

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