4th Saturday group uptown tasting

R&D's

Tasted March 23, 2019 by AllRed with 69 views

Introduction

The March tasting was declared to be an uptown tasting, so bottles were to be of higher quality than usual. Participants bring their wines in brown bags and identify them as being light, medium or heavy. We mix up the bottles a little, but try to keep them, generally, light to heavy and pour them in flights of no more than six. Wines are evaluated for twenty minutes or so and then discussed and unveiled before moving on to the next flight.

Flight 1 - Warm ups (4 notes)

The Ruinart was opened as a nonblind starter before moving on to the doule blind whites.

Rosé - Sparkling
N.V. Ruinart Champagne Brut Rosé France, Champagne
92 points
Nonblind. Lot LAKCW. deep pick color with a lingering mousse and notes of macerated red berry and cherry with doughy undertones. The red fruit continues on the palate. Fine bead with nice supporting acidity.
White
2001 Frédéric Magnien Corton-Charlemagne France, Burgundy, Côte de Beaune, Corton-Charlemagne Grand Cru
93 points
Double blind. Deep straw yellow color. Notes of lemon curd and roasted apple. Medium-bodied, with mineral, grilled lemon and stone flavors. Excellent. I nailed this one, guessing a 2001 Corton Charlie.

This is in a great spot and I don't know that there's anything to gain by holding it. I would enjoy these over the next couple of years.
White
2013 Peter Michael Chardonnay Cuvée Indigene USA, California, Sonoma County, Knights Valley
93 points
Double blind. Initially a bit muted and too cold, this needed to warm a bit to reveal itself. Apple, tropical fruit and lemon Pledge. Pear and orchard fruit with a rich texture.
White
2015 E. Guigal Condrieu La Doriane France, Rhône, Northern Rhône, Condrieu
92 points
Double blind. Opens with a slight chipemical quality followed by apple blossom, lemon and pear notes. Orchard fruit with nice weight on the palate. Very good, but just didn't show as viognier.
2 people found this helpful Comment

Flight 2 - Reds (6 notes)

Red
2000 Ridge Monte Bello USA, California, San Francisco Bay, Santa Cruz Mountains
94 points
Double blind. Crimson with some bricking. Tobacco, red currant, violet and plum. Medium-bodied with integrated tannins and flavors of plum, tobacco and black fruit. Adds a scorched earth/tar note. Long finish. Balanced. I was leaning towards Bordeaux here. 94-95 pts.

For my palate this is at peak and should hold, though probably not improve. Drink now-2023.
2 people found this helpful Comment
Red
2001 Paloma Syrah USA, California, Napa Valley, Spring Mountain District
92 points
Double blind. Plummy red fruit aromas lead to dark fruit on the palate. Plenty of peppery spice elements too. Soft though noticeable tannin, becoming more dark-fruited as it sits. Guessed syrah.
Red
2006 Peter Michael Les Pavots USA, California, Sonoma County, Knights Valley
90 points
Double blind. Has a cedary note, followed by sour red fruit, spice and chocolate. Full-bodied. Spicy red fruit on the palate. The sour note fades in favor of a nice herbal note that led some to guess cab franc. Turned more towards dark fruit as it sat, and the tannins became a it more forward. Young and primary. Guessed cab sauv. Was surprised to see the 2006, as I would have guessed this was a few years younger. Hold.
Red
2010 Schweiger Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Gate Block USA, California, Napa Valley, Spring Mountain District
88 points
Double blind. Inky color. Reticent; never really opened up. Dark fruit and tannin.
Red
2013 Peter Michael Les Pavots USA, California, Sonoma County, Knights Valley
94 points
Double blind. Notes of black fruit and chocolate. The palate follows the bouquet. This is really well-balanced and has an abundance of fruit supported by fine-grained tannin. Young, but very tasty. Guessed Napa cab sauv. This had been decanted about five hours before the flight. 93-95 pts.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
2006 Glaetzer Shiraz Amon-Ra Barossa Valley Australia, South Australia, Barossa, Barossa Valley
Double blind. Beef bouillon cubes on the nose and palate- so much so that this is undrinkable.
3 people found this helpful Comment

Flight 3 - Reds (6 notes)

Red
2009 Shafer Cabernet Sauvignon Hillside Select USA, California, Napa Valley, Stags Leap District
96 points
Double blind. Cassis, currants, plum, chocolate and spice. Abundance of dark fruit on the palate. Velvety tannin structure. Balanced; young. Guessed Napa cab sauv.
5 people found this helpful Comment
Red
2006 Shafer Cabernet Sauvignon Hillside Select USA, California, Napa Valley, Stags Leap District
93 points
Double blind. Black fruit, showing a bit hot too. Black fruit, plum, vanilla and chocolate flavors. Long finish. Napa cab sauv.
Red
2015 Sine Qua Non Grenache Le Chemin Vers L'Heresie USA, California, Central Coast
93 points
Blind, though with both of our wines in the second flight I was fairly certain which they were. Deep color for a grenache. Aromas of candied raspberry and mulberry, spice and licorice. Initially shows its alcohol too. Full-bodied. Abundant sweet red berry fruit on the palate with spice elements lingering on the finish. Shows better balance and less alcohol as it sits.

This had been decanted for about two hours before being rebottled. It then sat in an open bottle for 90 minutes before the flight was poured.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
2002 Detert Family Vineyards Cabernet Franc Oakville USA, California, Napa Valley, Oakville
92 points
Double blind. Notes of raspberry jam, black fruit and a bit of brett- a nice underlying funkiness. Well-balanced. Dark fruit on the palate. While my initial thought was Bordeaux, it was quickly evident that the fruit was too generous.
Red
2013 Somerston Cabernet Sauvignon Estate Grown Celestial USA, California, Napa Valley
95 points
Double blind. Deep color. Notes of chocolate, red raspberry and cassis along with a pronounced zin-like brambly dark fruit element that follows through on the palate. Full-bodied with medium, fine-grained tannins and flavors of black fruit, plum, pepper and the aforementioned brambly fruit. Really lush mixed fruit elements and nicely balanced from the attack through the finish. Impressive. Guessed Napa cab sauv. 94-96 pts.
Red
2015 Sine Qua Non Syrah Trouver l'Arene USA, California, Central Coast
93 points
Blind, though with both of our wines in the second flight I was fairly certain which they were. Deep opaque color. Notes of plum, black fruit, roasted meat and pepper. Loads of dark fruit on the palate. Hints of white pepper, violet liqueur and black cherry as well. Long finish. Easy to pick out as the syrah.

This had been decanted for about two hours before being rebottled. It then sat in an open bottle for 90 minutes before the flight was poured.
1 person found this helpful Comment

Flight 4 - Dinner/dessert wines (4 notes)

All nonblind.

White - Sparkling
2008 Dom Pérignon Champagne France, Champagne
96 points
A nonblind transition before we started on the dinner wines. Orchard fruit, ginger, roasted almond and dough notes. Fine bead; lingering mousse. Good backbone.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
1991 Laurel Glen Cabernet Sauvignon Sonoma Mountain USA, California, Sonoma County, Sonoma Mountain
93 points
Courtesy of Sue. Always a treat to taste these older Laurel Glens, and good to get a read on one that is still in my cellar. Garnet core with some bricking. Red currant, plum and lavender with a terrific underlying earthiness. These always have that wonderful old world character. Red berry fruit and leather on the palate. Has a slight bit of tannin yet. For my palate, this vintage is finally approaching peak. Drink now-2025. 93+ pts.
Red
2000 Philip Togni Cabernet Sauvignon USA, California, Napa Valley, Spring Mountain District
91 points
From magnum. Currant, cassis, leather and cedar notes with hints of tobacco underneath. Integrated and balanced, with plum, currant and leather. Medium finish. Always a treat to taste these, especially alongside an older Laurel Glen.
White - Sweet/Dessert
1998 Château Climens France, Bordeaux, Sauternais, Barsac
92 points
Deep golden yellow color. Apricot and pineapple on the nose and palate. Picks up more tropical fruit in the lingering finish. Honeyed fruit elements as well. Very nice.

Closing

Thanks, R&D for another fun tasting!

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