PHMG WAG: Two Shots and a Vertical Tasting

Lyon Quarantine Site

Tasted June 19, 2021 by Grinner with 25 views


First tasting for this group since 2/1/2020! This was #134 in the series that started in 1997! My job was to pick out some hedonistic reds from a variety of years and I stuck to the left coast to make sure fruit was center stage. Mostly succeeded!

"Two Shots" > 2 weeks ago, was the requirement. I've had 2 shots, maybe more...

Flight 1 - Opener (1 note)

Did you like it more with Havarti and pear or aged Beechers and apple? Either! with a drizzle of reduced Balsamico...

2016 Merryvale Chardonnay Silhouette USA, California, Napa Valley
93 points
I'm always surprised when I enjoy a Cali Chard, so typically the only ones we get our hands on are in club shipments. That said this was very nice! A nice mix of tropical fruit with pear, apple, and citrus. Less oak than many and nice hints of spice and minerality on the finish. You could save it 5 years if you like tertiaries...

Flight 2 - The Reds (8 notes)

The reds were double decanted at least 2 hours before tasting.

2011 Hall Cabernet Sauvignon Jack's Masterpiece USA, California, Napa Valley
92 points
Opening red for a "bounce around the left coast" vertical! There's an immediate palate sweetness due to glycerin. Then the deep black and blue fruit hits. Modest earth and spice notes. Decent structure: now-2026.
2012 DeLille Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon Four Flags USA, Washington, Columbia Valley, Red Mountain
94 points
This bottle was excellent! Pretty much the same score and note as 6 years ago:

Layers of black fruit, pencil, mocha, and stone with some serious grip.

Ok, it's relaxing its grip at this age! Now-2027
2013 Beaulieu Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon Georges de Latour Private Reserve USA, California, Napa Valley
94 points
This is the 3rd time we've had this wine in this group and it's nice to see the evolution. The score is the same but it's opening up!
My last note from 2019 was a combo note:

"Classic Napa Cab and JUST starting to near its window.

2/18/2017 rated 94 points: PHMG WAG Blind Pairs: Quality vs. Price (The Lyon's Downed Tree House): This is a dark brooding wine with black fruit, espresso, stone, and oak notes. The tannins are substantial without being coarse. 94+ on day 2. Drink 2018-2030. (2898 views)

I'd adjust the window now to 2020-2030."

Now, in 6/21, there's some warm ripe blackberry and cassis in great balance with the savory notes. Tannins are integrating. Now-2033.
1 person found this helpful Comment
2014 Envy Wines Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve USA, California, Napa Valley
93 points
Best QPR of the reds this night. Creme de cassis, black cherry, plum, cigar and eucalyptus linger nicely on a firm structure. Now-2029.
2015 Pride Mountain Vineyards Cabernet Franc USA, California, North Coast, Napa / Sonoma
92 points
Scored it higher 3 years ago, but I did not enjoy this less. It's more integrated and smooth, youthful exuberance replaced by nicer table manners. Blue and black berry fruit, plum, herbs/spice, and floral notes. Now-2025
2016 Whitehall Lane Cabernet Sauvignon Millennium MM Vineyard USA, California, Napa Valley, Rutherford
94 points
Back to bigger wines! Winner of the MSOTN award (Most Structure) this evening. This bottle housed a wine that was deep, dark and long with black currant, blackberry, black plum, tobacco and stone. Now-2030.
2017 Betz Family Cabernet Sauvignon Heart of the Hill USA, Washington, Columbia Valley, Red Mountain
97 points
WOTN. Emphasis on BALANCE! Hard to do sometimes with big wines... Fresh black fruit with earth, spice, flowers, graphite, and oak just go on and on. Now-2042
1 person found this helpful Comment
2018 Cayuse Syrah En Chamberlin Vineyard USA, Washington, Columbia Valley, Walla Walla Valley
92 points
As always these wines can be polarizing but the crowd tonight did not mind the moderate C-funk. Blackberry and plum flavors are not quite hidden by the pepper steak, anise, iodine and leather notes. Surprisingly tannic, wait a year, then until 2033.
1 person found this helpful Comment

Flight 3 - Dessert (1 note)

Served with a barely sweet Lemon Bundt -- amazing!

White - Sweet/Dessert
2016 Domaine Huet Vouvray Moelleux Le Haut-Lieu France, Loire Valley, Touraine, Vouvray
95 points
For some, this was WOTN and certainly it was the QPR/OTN. The nose is so refreshing it just pulls you in; ever been stuck in a wine glass?

Steve Martin: "then the drugs wore off..."

Lemon curd, quince, peach, honeysuckle / florals, and nice minerality Just Dance! Sugar / acid balance is right on. Less of a liquid Sweetart than a Quarts de Chaume and overall amazing. Now - grandchildren.
2 people found this helpful Comments (1)


It was SOOO nice to be back! "I'm back in the saddle again" Aerosmith. More to come!

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