Comments on my notes

(24 comments on 23 notes)

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Red
2016 Rivers-Marie Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley
2/8/2020 - SMHalps Likes this wine:
92 points
Mike Smith Cabernet Night (Bobby Van's on Park, NYC): Part of a Mike Smith blind Cabernet tasting. This or the Carter Cellars was my favorite. An easy drinking cab with some structure to go along with the gobs of fruit.

It was the only 2016 in the tasting, as the other 3 reds where all 2015s. Maybe his wines just demand to be drunk young.
  • mhewitt commented:

    2/10/20, 6:06 AM - This wine is made by Thomas Rivers Brown. Maybe you like his style more than Mike Smith? Or maybe it was just the night. Who ever knows?

White
2016 Thibaud Boudignon Anjou Chenin Blanc
6/10/2019 - liteagilis wrote:
Not sure. Wife juice
  • mhewitt commented:

    6/12/19, 6:53 AM - Your wife has great taste in wine!

Red
2014 Continuum Proprietary Red Napa Valley Red Bordeaux Blend
Winorama: A winter in Wineland III; 1/4/2019-1/13/2019 (Portland/Willamette, Eureka, Napa): Third trip in a row to the winery and third time with this wine. It's interesting to see how it changes each time. The last two years it's been mostly red fruits and very soft tannins and a wine that is more approachable. Now I'm getting black cherry and at least some structure form the tannin (even though the wine has stayed soft), There's a bit of an elegance that's starting to emerge with more time in the bottle. Some idea that this is entering drinking window but honestly for me it's got a lot more time to go.
  • mhewitt commented:

    1/11/19, 2:34 PM - This wine has been spectacular both times I've had it.

Red
2009 Domaine Paul Autard Châteauneuf-du-Pape Cuvée La Cote Ronde Red Rhone Blend
10/13/2018 - Les Kangas Likes this wine:
95 points
Opened 1/2 hour before dinner of bbq marinated abicore tuna filet. Consumed in Reidel CdP/Syrah glass. Absolutely stunning wine, wish we had more. We had another bottle, a few months ago, and it was fantastic with a steak.
  • mhewitt commented:

    11/2/18, 9:52 AM - I'll sell you mine (4 bottles). Stored temp controlled since release.

Red
2009 Drinkward Peschon Cabernet Sauvignon Entre Deux Mères Napa Valley
10/5/2018 - mhewitt wrote:
94 points
This wine is in the zone now. It's put on a bit of weight and opened up significantly since last time I had it three years ago.
  • mhewitt commented:

    10/5/18, 7:45 AM - Maybe, maybe not. If you have 6, I would definitely pop one. I like to drink CA Cabernet once it's open aromatically, not necessarily once it's fully resolved like a mature Bordeaux or Burgundy, so take that into consideration.

Red
1996 E. Guigal Côte-Rôtie La Turque Syrah
9/28/2018 - MC2 Wines Likes this wine:
95 points
Charleston IV - Return of the Collectible; 9/27/2018-9/30/2018 (Charleston, SC (various locations)): Yum yum again. Rhone wine is really my sweet spot at the moment I think and this was just wonderful. Black fruits and violets and just a hint of the brine side (although a bit less than you sometimes get with this wine). It's on the younger side. Very well balance and nice acidity and while this is a more 'modern' style coming on the heels of some new world wines it almost feels a touch restrained. Very enjoyable.
  • mhewitt commented:

    9/29/18, 8:01 AM - This was mind blowing!

Red
2014 Outpost Cabernet Sauvignon True Vineyard Howell Mountain
9/26/2018 - chuckos77 Likes this wine:
94 points
Really nice wine but was surprised that it was cloudy. Don't recall that from previous bottles. Velvety long finish and wonderful black fruit. It was like tasting the fruit in the vineyard. Has anyone else experienced the cloudiness?
  • mhewitt commented:

    9/26/18, 6:09 AM - The 2013 is also cloudy. I haven't had the 2014, but it wouldn't surprise me.

Red
2014 Domaine du Pégau Châteauneuf-du-Pape Cuvée Réservée Red Rhone Blend
6/11/2018 - asgerG wrote:
92 points
No formal notes but I remember an elegant Pegau much in 2011 style.
  • mhewitt commented:

    8/14/18, 6:26 AM - These "middling" vintages of Pegau seem to be my favorites. The '13 is drinking great as well.

White - Sparkling
2002 Union Champagne de Saint Gall Champagne Grand Cru Cuvée Orpale Blanc de Blancs Chardonnay
5/19/2018 - rocknroller wrote:
95 points
Light golden color. Split the bottle over two plus hours while watching the royal wedding although my wife might suggest that it was not an even split- she might have a valid point :). Nevertheless, I (and she) were thoroughly enamoured with this bottle. I'd had this once before at one of our small group tastings and really enjoyed it. But having the opportunity to drink this over a couple hours and watch it revealed layer upon layer was a real eye opener. The nose has a wistful almond cream and caramelized sugar note upfront, with white peach and stone fruits, followed by slate. This evolves to show a more yeasty and toasted nose really almost an hour into it, and at the same time showing wispy citrus notes as well. The palate feels medium bodied, certainly elegant and lifted with light cream, almond and lemon chiffon on top of the stone fruits. The minerality is refined, coming across with wet slate and subtle chalk. As it warms just a bit well into the second hour it takes on weight, and I get an almost savory quality on the palate too. EFW suggested this was Comte like, and I don't think it is a bad comparison. Certainly the overall style would equate nicely. This is a real winner, and I think while so complex and enjoyable now, this has the ooportunity to be even better over the next couple years - that is if you can keep your hands off them. 94+ to 95pts and maybe some upside to go.
  • mhewitt commented:

    5/22/18, 6:35 AM - Good note, and I agree, this is a killer wine.

Red
2014 Lewelling Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon St. Helena
5/5/2018 - Badmonkey wrote:
92 points
Get together with some friends: 2015 Carter Weitz cab, 2015 Myriad Beckstoffer Georges cab, 2015 12c Beckstoffer Georges cab, 2014 Quivet Kenefick Ranch cab, and 2014 Lewelling cab.

Dark red and black fruit - dark cherry, currants, and a little blackberry/blueberry. Smooth mid-palate with solid depth/concentration for the price point, however, the fruit came across a little closed. Nice flavors of dark berries and a little spice. Fairly long finish but just a little tannic. Popped/poured but drank out of a decanter for a couple hours. Improved a little with time. Still enjoyable but I believe this vintage needs another year or so for the fruit to soften/open-up a little more which is no surprise in light of the Winery's recommendation to give their entry level cab at least 5 years from the vintage date which would be 2019. In my opinion, 91/92 at this stage.
  • mhewitt commented:

    5/5/18, 4:49 PM - Good review. I agree, this wine needs time. At least 3 more years in my opinion.

Red
2012 Saunter Wines Cabernet Sauvignon Eagle Summit Vineyard Howell Mountain
11/7/2017 - csimm1161 wrote:
93 points
Same as my other notes. This filled out nicely after a short bit of air. Deep and dark, if not a little round and soft on the back end. The grip on this wine is more "medium" than I normally prefer, but it makes up for it in the dark fruit flavor department. Drink now and over the next couple of years.
  • mhewitt commented:

    1/26/18, 9:35 AM - CSIMM1161 - How would you compare this to Outpost's Howell Mountain Cabernet (not the True)?

Red
2010 Perfect Season Cabernet Sauvignon Bidwell Creek Estate and Vineyard Knights Valley
12/16/2017 - napasoutherner Likes this wine:
94 points
Had this beautiful wine with a friend. Wasn't expecting much as I didn't know the label but it came recommended by someone I respect. This wine completely overdelivered. Beat a 2012 Fantesca All Great Things. P.S Had a Beautiful nose of roses and graphite. Long supple strength on the tongue but not a brute. Borderline between feminine and masculine wine. Nice long finish, wish I had more.
  • mhewitt commented:

    1/8/18, 1:35 PM - Indeed it did!

White
1995 Robert Ampeau & Fils Meursault 1er Cru La Pièce-sous-le-Bois Chardonnay
1/4/2018 - mhewitt wrote:
95 points
Mid yellow color showed exactly as a 22 year old Meursault should. Beautiful honey and stone fruit scents on the nose lead into a round wine balanced by great acidity. This is drinking brilliantly and I can hardly wait to open my other bottle.
  • mhewitt commented:

    1/5/18, 6:30 AM - No oxidation at all. It was in prefect shape.

Red
2013 Rivers-Marie Cabernet Sauvignon Lore Vineyard Oakville
1/3/2018 - csimm1161 wrote:
91 points
I’m continuing to try to follow this wine with some diligence over a tracked span of time. From a healthy Coravin pour. Over the course of an hour, it didn’t budge much (as expected). I noticed a bit of a bitter vegetal note this time around. It began to compete with the chalky (almost pithy) grip that clamped down on the would-be black core fruit. Otherwise, previous notes apply.
  • mhewitt commented:

    1/4/18, 1:38 PM - I've found the vast majority of 2013 Napa cabs to be pretty much as you describe: Tannic monsters. I'm letting all mine rest for at least 5 years. For me, even the 2013s that showed well initially (Outpost True, Mending Wall) have shut down.

Red
2011 Domaine du Pégau Châteauneuf-du-Pape Cuvée Réservée Red Rhone Blend
11/2/2017 - Deutsch Does not like this wine:
80 points
The tasting note before recommended allowing it to air out for an hour to shake the funk. Spot on! But I couldn’t shake the memory of the smell. I eventually had to discard. Couldn’t drink it.
  • mhewitt commented:

    11/3/17, 6:15 AM - Deutsch, if you you like the Xavier, you are unlikely to like any Pegau. They are pretty much on opposite sides of the old school, new school styles.

Red
2012 Tensley Syrah Colson Canyon Vineyard Santa Barbara County
10/12/2017 - ebert Does not like this wine:
86 points
fizzy and maybe going through a secondary fermentation. Definitely not drinkable
  • mhewitt commented:

    10/13/17, 8:44 AM - This wine has obvious RS and is not sound. I emailed the winery and they denied it, and as such, I've never purchased another Tensley wine.

Red
2011 Beringer Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Private Reserve Napa Valley
8/4/2016 - mhewitt wrote:
93 points
This is a very impressive showing from the 2011 vintage, proving Howell Mountain (71% Steinhauer Ranch) was very successful in this vintage. Still a bit shy on the nose, but dense, fruity and plush in the mouth with impressive concentration. Best to hold until 2019.
  • mhewitt commented:

    6/26/17, 10:43 AM - Thanks tomoem! I'm glad you found the note helpful.

Red
2010 Château La Vieille Cure Fronsac Red Bordeaux Blend
12/25/2016 - Jvanwinkle Likes this wine:
88 points
Earthy and spicy on the nose and palate. Wine still had tannic grip even after it sat in the glass. Higher alcohol levels were somewhat noticeable. Overall the impression was a powerful, rustic wine that could stand up to some pretty hearty holiday food.
  • mhewitt commented:

    1/12/17, 6:22 AM - This needs way more time. The 2004, a much less tannic and less ripe year, is drinking great right now.

  • mhewitt commented:

    1/12/17, 8:05 AM - Widely available for $25 and it's a steal at that. Enjoy!

Red
2010 Château La Vieille Cure Fronsac Red Bordeaux Blend
8/21/2016 - AAJR Likes this wine:
89 points
Have both the 2009 & 2010 in the cellar. First taste of the 2010 after several years of cellaring. Earthy nose with berry aromas. Still quite tannic/tight & really didn't soften up much during the 4-5 hours we consumed. Feels like I had a similar experience when trying the 2009. I'm going to wait several more years before revisiting- underlying structure seems solid - hopefully a few more years helps both vintages along.
  • mhewitt commented:

    8/21/16, 5:22 PM - The 2004 is drinking great right now. Wait on the '10s and '09s

Red
2008 Tablas Creek Esprit de Beaucastel Paso Robles Red Rhone Blend
5/11/2016 - fingers wrote:
87 points
Notes after following for a day open. Color is garnet heading into brown, about 70% opaque with very minor sediment. Aroma is a bit lacquered and oxidative, hanging on to florals while the fruit is slipping away. The palate is mature and smooth with fully resolved tannins presenting a nice glycerin feel, but the fruit won't be much longer for this world. I can't imagine this is going to see a dumb phase like it's French counterparts.. I think it is just heading over the hill and needs to be consumed in the near future. The CT drink window is much too optimistic (and the Galloni window even worse) judging by my experience from my first bottle in January to this example. Both bottles had perfect storage conditions all along, yet the dropoff in a mere 5 months is substantial. 4+10+17+6 = 87
  • mhewitt commented:

    5/11/16, 4:18 PM - I've had two well stored bottles of this recently and both were notably oxidized. I'm not sure what the critics are tasting but the drinking window is way off.

Red
2012 Tensley Syrah Colson Canyon Vineyard Santa Barbara County
4/29/2016 - geneswine wrote:
86 points
I had a bottle of this a year ago and liked it, rated 91. This bottle is so jammy that it ia almost undrinkable. I could not detect any real structure. No difference on the second night. So what to do with a bottle like this? I mixed a little water and it was much better. Jammy ness now under control and some very nice fruit flavors were noted. I also tried a little Pinot Gris and it was even better. I guess it just needed a little blending.
  • mhewitt commented:

    5/2/16, 5:41 AM - This wine is flawed and has serious residual sugar. You shouldn't have to make a table blend for a wine of this "quality" to be drinkable.

Red
2012 Schrader Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon RBS Beckstoffer To Kalon Vineyard Oakville
12/2/2015 - mhewitt wrote:
97 points
This is a spectacular cabernet. Will it get better? Probably, but it's drinking great now. Pop and pour, it's open and ready for business. This is top 5 all time wines for me and top 3 cabernet.
  • mhewitt commented:

    12/8/15, 2:24 PM - Dave - Our bottle was pop and pour and it was open from the get-go. I have to buy tomorrow so I wanted to open a bottle to see if it's worth the tariff. It is!

Red
2006 Hartwell Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Misté Hill Stags Leap District
12/6/2010 - wineguy58 wrote:
92 points
Great Stuffing. 2hour decant Cocao dust on truffles with jubilee cherries. 15 second finish. Day 2 oak settled with a precision of cherries rarely observed with a wine under $50. great find
  • mhewitt commented:

    12/6/10, 5:17 PM - Wineguy58- I too love this wine (3 in my cellar). It's available for $29.95. Best deal of the year for my money. This site has a link to where it's available for that price. http://www.nickelanddimewine.com/2010/11/04/hartwell-estate-miste-hill-stags-leap/

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