Comments on my notes

(34 comments on 32 notes)

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Red
2003 Shirvington Shiraz McLaren Vale
6/16/2018 - Ex-Ray Likes this wine:
98 points
Still very dark garnet and totally opaque, with no brown at the edges. Fabulous, pronounced nose of plums, blackberries, smoke, roast meat, complex. Huge on the palate, with flavors to match, deep and robust but round, still with loads of fruit, and no hint of overripe. Very full-bodied and concentrated without being thick, heavy, or tannic. The alcohol is quite high and hot, though. Aftertaste is very rich, deep, and long. A fabulous wine which has aged perfectly and still at its peak. I think it will hold for a few more years, but why wait? One of the best Shirvingtons!
Ric
  • IncaRoads commented:

    7/20/18, 6:02 AM - The poor showing in October of 2017...was that just a bad bottle?? Your 2 most recent TN’s would indicate such. Your love affair with Shirvington appears to be in full bloom!

Red
2007 Ridge Monte Bello Santa Cruz Mountains Red Bordeaux Blend
5/13/2018 - AllRed wrote:
90 points
Second Sunday Group: Ridge Monte Bello 2005-2012 (Jeff's): Double blind. Plummy dark fruit, red berry, pepper, perfume and violet aromas. Elegant and pretty- I really like the bouquet here. Very well-balanced, with good structure and acidity and abundant red fruit on the palate. A bit of spice comes in on the lengthy finish. 90+ pts.

My #1, Domino's #4
Group #5, 56 pts

Not surprised that this was my favorite, as it drank well at release for a good bit before going into a phase. I enjoyed quite a few of these very early on.
  • IncaRoads commented:

    5/21/18, 11:44 AM - Thanks for the notes on your MB vertical. Am surprised that not one vintage rated higher than 90 pts for you. Have been sitting on a handful of 06’s and 07’s, suppose I will keep on sitting and hope some ample cellar time will prove rewarding.

Red
2005 Pax Syrah Castelli-Knight Ranch Russian River Valley
3/26/2018 - jbro Likes this wine:
95 points
My note from 2017 is copied below.The wine is still fabulous--basically unchanged from a year ago--sad to say this is my last bottle, but it is worthy of the rating last given--95/excellent

Last tasted in 2012. Almost five years later the wine is unfaded deep purple with absolutely greasy legs. Intense dark fruit on the nose with leather and raw meat. Wonderful in the mouth-tannins fully resolved-sweet blueberry and blackberry and still the slightest touch of soy. Great finish. An outstanding syrah.
  • IncaRoads commented:

    3/27/18, 11:21 AM - I went deep on the ‘05 Pax Syrahs, has proven to be a fantastic vintage for them. The Castelli-Knight is the one bottling I decided to hold for last. Cannot wait!

Red
2015 Ridge Zinfandel Dusi Ranch Paso Robles
12/6/2017 - Guy Des Rosiers Likes this wine:
88 points
This Zin cannot be accused of subtlety. It's big, purple, boozy, and packed with more fruit than Carmen Miranda's hat. The nose evokes baked bread, alcohol, blackstrap molasses, and raspberry coulis. The attack is off-dry, and the wonderfully pure fruit (raspberry, blackberry, and just about any other berry you can think of) knocks you down at the door like a lovable, slobbering St. Bernard. The oak is well under control, the acidity is balanced, the wine bears its massive alcoholic weight surprisingly well, and the length is impressive. But is it good? Well, if this note appeals to you so far, then yes, by all means, back up the truck. On the other hand, if this makes you cringe, then please go out and buy some Cornas. As for me, there's definitely a place in my heart for this type of big, in-your-face Zin, if I'm in the right kind of mood. And tonight I am.
  • IncaRoads commented:

    12/7/17, 11:10 AM - Oh, just great. I have been humming “ The Lady In The Tutti Frutti Hat” all damn day ��

Red
2013 Plumpjack Syrah Napa Valley
10/1/2017 - Cuellar's Cellar Likes this wine:
93 points
amazing
  • IncaRoads commented:

    10/11/17, 3:00 AM - You gave this 88 points 11/15...dramatic improvement with a few years' bottle age?

Red
2010 Flora Springs Cabernet Sauvignon Wild Boar Vineyard Napa Valley
2/24/2017 - cfarren Likes this wine:
95 points
Luscious but we should have been more patient! Great now (aerate to get full beauty) but will be even better in 1-2 years.
  • IncaRoads commented:

    6/16/17, 12:51 PM - I am thinking your score of 65 was made in error in light of your mostly-positive note?

Red
2013 Plumpjack Syrah Napa Valley
6/13/2017 - acyso wrote:
70 points
Terroir Tuesday at Table, Donkey and Stick (Chicago, IL): Inky black. Nose is devoid of any syrah character -- the spice, meat, olives, brine, anything good, has been stripped out in favour of black jam. Hell, they even managed to get rid of most of the tannins. It's a little thinner than blackberry jam, I suppose. In all fairness, this holds its 15.2% alcohol pretty well, but as syrah, this is trash.
  • IncaRoads commented:

    6/15/17, 12:52 PM - Sorry to hear this just didn't do it for you. Do you mind if my takeaway from this is that you rated it 10 pts higher than the SQN Midnight Oil and Colgin??

Red
2003 Longfellow Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley
1/7/2017 - MadisonWIneGuy wrote:
95 points
Such a terrific wine. Exceptional. Cherry fruit is becoming more secondary to the leather, some oak, pipe tobacco, and other aged wine profile notes. Let it breather about 5-10 minutes to blow off some of the oak and this is ready to go. Had with a fantastic NY Strip at Tornado Room. Wait no longer. Drink and savor each sip. 95+ pts.
  • IncaRoads commented:

    4/17/17, 1:55 PM - Contact me if you want deetz on finding the '01 of this at $20 a pop...troutmask@hotmail.com

  • IncaRoads commented:

    4/27/17, 9:35 AM - Annnd, they're gone!

Red
2013 Venge Vineyards Scout's Honor Napa Valley Zinfandel Blend, Zinfandel
2/25/2017 - rmcnees Likes this wine:
93 points
This was even better than when we tasted it last year with the fruit being more balanced and settled predominating more over the other complex notes - dark inky purple colored, full bodied, bold, chewy, tongue coating, mouth puckering, concentrated, complex yet smooth, polished and balanced, delicious sweet black raspberry, blueberry and black cherry fruits with notes of violets, dark mocha, truffle, anise and spices, with an long finish that almost tastes like candy.

https://unwindwine.blogspot.com/2017/02/venge-scouts-honor-napa-valley-red-wine.html
  • IncaRoads commented:

    2/25/17, 6:06 AM - Nice to hear, esp coming from you! I loaded up on a bunch of these at a great price, dug other bottlings from this producer, and I love a good Zin blend...the presence of charbono and Syrah components rather intrigued me!

White
2007 Newton Chardonnay Unfiltered Napa County
2/8/2017 - RKatzDO wrote:
91 points
Quite nice. Rich, acid balance. Held on well, making me glad I put a few away. Pairs well with Bones Steakhouse onion rings/steak sauce.
  • IncaRoads commented:

    2/10/17, 9:56 AM - Bones vitals??? ��

Red
2013 St. Amant Winery Zinfandel Old Vines Marian's Vineyard Lodi
There are a few people in the wine industry that I would consider walking up to, smacking them on the back, and say “How the hell are you, you son of a bitch?” Stuart Spencer is certainly near the top of the list. His father did more to put Lodi on the map than perhaps any other individual outside the Mondavi family and Creedence Clearwater Revival. The wines of St. Amant mirror Stuart’s personality: quiet at first, but once they open up, there is a lot there to discover. This wine was rather tight initially, but with time, solid fruit and balance. Stuart does not try and hide the fruit in his wines, nor should he. Yet another example of why Lodi is one of the more under-valued wine regions in the world. thedrunkencyclist.com
  • IncaRoads commented:

    2/5/17, 3:43 AM - Don't forget the historical significance of Lodi being the birthplace of A & W root beer!!

Red
2005 Redmon Cabernet Sauvignon Family Selection Napa Valley
6/23/2013 - kvswine wrote:
93 points
This Wine makes you wish you had a time machine to go back and buy several cases. Layers of complexity, a long lingering finish that for me is the hallmark of a great wine.
  • IncaRoads commented:

    1/24/17, 11:42 AM - My local merchant has a few of these gathering dust on shelf. May I ask you how much you paid? Thanks!

Red
2014 Chad Cabernet Sauvignon Howell Mountain
8/22/2016 - Petiger Does not like this wine:
78 points
Howell Mt my A$$. This tasted like any jammy $15 grocery store cab. WineAccess should be ashamed to be selling this and I wish I could meet "Chad" one day so I could kick him in the nuts for selling "$150" cab like this.
  • IncaRoads commented:

    12/17/16, 6:06 AM - LOL!! Yet another Chad bottling just came up on WineAccess today, I have passed on all in the past and will continue to do so. WineAccess should cleanse themselves of all Chadstuffs and attempt to maintain SOME degree of respectability.

Red
2010 Bodegas Borsao Garnacha Campo de Borja Tres Picos
12/1/2016 - Vandiner Likes this wine:
90 points
I thought - based on other comments here - that this wine may be past its prime. Initial nose was hot and a bit petrol like. Decanted and drank over a four hour period. I don't recall a wine that improved so dramatically with contact with air. If you have a bottle, don't fret, just decant and wait a couple hours, and you have a big, beautiful wine.
  • IncaRoads commented:

    12/3/16, 2:11 AM - Totally agree. Reports of its decline have been greatly exaggerated. Drank from magnum recently and it was vibrant throughout and, yes, kept getting better with more and more air. Have one more mag, will confidently push to 2018+.

Red
2011 Belle Glos Pinot Noir Clark & Telephone Vineyard Santa Maria Valley
11/25/2016 - Pluecht Does not like this wine:
84 points
Drinking very consistently. Continues to be grandmother's favorite wine. Extremely overextracted massive fruit bomb. If you like this kind of wine go for it if not turn it into sauce
  • IncaRoads commented:

    11/25/16, 10:22 AM - There's a joke here about your Grandma liking this and a possible prune component. But I'm not going to make it ;)

Red
2011 Esterlina Pinot Noir Reserva Esterlina Estate Vineyard Anderson Valley
11/27/2014 - chuckos77 Likes this wine:
95 points
Not a pinot fan by any means but this wine is exceptional. Bright light berry flavors jump off the tongue and linger. Well balanced and probably a little young. Don't care, tasted excellent.
  • IncaRoads commented:

    9/15/16, 3:00 AM - Thanks for your note, prompted me to pull the trigger on a pair of these :)

Red
2006 Eagles Trace Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley
5/14/2016 - gf2182 Likes this wine:
93 points
oh my.... decanted for 1.5 hrs before touching... amazing wine, deep color, med bouquet, nice graphite core but still very good dark fruits, this qualified as a special experience... so glad I took my own advice ... just one bottle left in the cellar and while I think it has many years ahead, I don't see it improving, will look for a special occasion and oppty to decant 1-2 hours before drinking
  • IncaRoads commented:

    5/15/16, 2:08 AM - Good news! Have been sitting on a single of this for ions, I always seem to pass right by it when selecting a Cab. It shall be duly pulled this Summer at some point when there is cowstuffs on the grill :)

Red
2001 La Rioja Alta Rioja Viña Ardanza Reserva Especial Tempranillo Blend, Tempranillo
5/4/2016 - sequoiagrove Likes this wine:
95 points
OMG. that says it all.

ok, ok , Ill say a bit more. So Im on a business trip to Mallorca. And After the official business, Im trecking with these Italians, and we start talking about wine. They are absolutely appauled by the fact I speak so highly of rioja wine. They know the cheap crap rioja in their country that it is impossible that I know anything about wine and can like rioja. then we switch topic to itlaian wine where I mention I like pian delle vigne brunello 2000.

that makes them pause. and go; so, you taste all these wonderful wines, and still you say rioja is one of your favourites?? how is this even possible??? [with italian accent, which sort of enhances the exclamation]

So, one of the italian has found "the best place in palma to have paella". We agree to go there and I choose the wine.

Im sceptical about this port facing tripadvisor place, I cant find a wine list, but I see that have Jamon Iberico, which is on my todo list. and they have lamb cutlets which would go wonderfully with a rioja, if they have it! Meanwhile I look for winebars and find 2 potential places were to have good wines afterwards.

We agree. and meet in the evening for dinner. I go straight for the wine card and talk to the waitor (that speaks the most english, which isnt a lot, so Im going Italian mode. which works a bit better. Turns out they have ardanza res. esp. 2001 and immediately I go Thats the one! we take 2! Turns out its their last 2 bottles.

the waiter opens and pours in decanter (even though the spaniard in our midst doesnt know any spanish word for decanter) and lets me taste first. One whiff and Im in heaven!

i say "this is EXACTLY what I think real wine is and what I think rioja is , when I mention rioja and think of rioja! And I did not expect to find anything like this here.

the iberico ham comes in as well. the italian wine enthusiasnt tries it and goes " wow, what the fuck , this is REALLY REALLY good. this night is turning out to be really something alreadY". i managed to convert a sceptic.
He kept talking about how amazing that wine was during the entire evening.

it had that transcended broken down fruit with wood and tobacco, that fills me with joy and gives me goosebumps, brick colour, lingering finish.
the label described that they made this version in only three vintages. 1964, 1973, and 2001, where the weather was in a certain way.
  • IncaRoads commented:

    5/4/16, 6:21 PM - Have been reading thousands upon thousands of TN's here over the years and, without a doubt, I enjoyed this one more than any other. Thank you, God bless, and may you continue to have such similar wine-gasms in the future.

Red
2004 Pax Syrah Castelli-Knight Ranch Russian River Valley
2/5/2016 - rustyRudy Likes this wine:
94 points
Dark ruby. This has mushrooms , earth, spice, with dusty red fruit , mature , dried cherries, and a great finish. Terrific fully mature Pinot.
  • IncaRoads commented:

    2/7/16, 4:03 AM - ...fully mature SYRAH, but I am sure you already knew that ;)

    Appears you and Andrew Dodd attended same event. Great news on the 2010 QC Cab showing, have one stowed away for a special occasion.

Red
2010 Thorn-Clarke Shotfire Cabernet Shiraz Barossa Cabernet-Shiraz Blend, Red Blend
A unexpectedly Shiraz-dominated Cab/Shiraz blend. A muted nose of dried prune and nail polish with a touch of menthol and mildew. Hot on the palate with less than medium weight. Tannins are present and young - though not overwhelmingly so - and end short, exposing with their sudden departure a somewhat flimsy acidic end. Not so much a fruit-bomb as a fruit-blip, the wine has no coherent structure and can be just as deflating to one's expectations as an over-promising Wonderbra. Then again, perhaps it's the drinker's fault for expecting more of an $18 bottle. A wine that's certainly worth its price, but no more.
  • IncaRoads commented:

    2/2/16, 9:11 AM - Yowza! I am glad I didn't have you as a teacher in school.

Red
2013 Jaffurs Petite Sirah Thompson Vineyard Santa Barbara County
12/28/2015 - ElSol Likes this wine:
96 points
Still love this. I've been accused of inferior taste but this is a fruit bomb and I am drawn to that. Its a little hot. Modest tannins in this bottle, not a lot of complexity. But fruit for miles. Yum. I'm stocking up with a case for the long haul.
  • IncaRoads commented:

    12/29/15, 7:24 AM - Well-played, my friend! Keep in mind that you must always take anything coming from a dude who has "Buckeye" in his user name with a grain of salt ;)

Red
2009 Epoch Estate Wines Sensibility Paderewski Vineyard Paso Robles Grenache
Disjointed and way too much alcohol. It starts out with an artificial candied red fruit, which reads more as "red candy" than any actual discernible fruit. The mid palate is thin with a tiny bit of oak notes, then it transitions to licorice, which quickly turns to a general bitterness that gets increasingly unpleasant. All of the above is coated by an persistent wave of alcohol that just keeps gaining momentum. The nose starts with a nice spicy note, but is similarly pummeled by the alcohol. I've liked other Epoch wines before and I don't have a problem with 15+% wines, but it is really hard to find anything redeeming in this wine. In fairness to their other wines, this is the worst thing I've had from them by a very wide margin, but this sets bottom really low.
  • IncaRoads commented:

    12/4/15, 7:12 AM - Ouch! One man's trash is another man's treasure, I suppose, but I totally appreciate where you are coming from.

    Feel free to send the rest of your Epoch stash my way ;)

Red
2004 Louis Jadot Chambolle-Musigny 1er Cru Les Feusselottes Pinot Noir
9/7/2015 - sawira wrote:
89 points
No formal note. Delicious and in a very good place. Nice complexity for its age, maybe a hair too much wood for me.
  • IncaRoads commented:

    10/7/15, 1:59 PM - Would you mind emailing me? Have a question re: one of your TN's. Thanks!! troutmask@hotmail.com

Red
2012 Nichols Cabernet Sauvignon Mt. Veeder
Bitter, thin without any fruit. How can someone make such a fruitless thin cabernet with 2012 fruit?! Wine Access raved about this wine stating it was discounted because of the birth of the winemakers (term used loosely) son. It would have been nicer if they just said this wine is a blunder of a great vintage. This was the wine that assured me that WineAccess writers are absolutely and completely full of shit. They have some good deals but the consumer has to do their homework and not take chances on unknowns because a salesman writes a great story. I honestly doubt if the writers ever actually taste the wine. So to conclude, This wine is drinkable but tastes like a cheap artificial $10 wine, I see no future for it, and i'd be embarrassed to have stamped 2012 on this Napa Cabernet. It also explains why I keep seeing other Nichols wine on WineAccess...shameful.
  • IncaRoads commented:

    8/4/15, 8:15 AM - Thanks for the insight into this wine/producer. Just got the offer for the 2013 vintage and was dubious of all of the hyperbole. A Wine Access hallmark, I am learning. Easy pass for me.

Red
2007 Crushpad Cabernet Sauvignon Backbone Tokalon Central Coast
10/22/2009 - Anonymous wrote:
95 points
Amazing aromatic profile of roses, spice and black currant. Really exotic for a cab, and smells exactly like it did from bottle. I drank this the night it arrived, so it may have been somewhat muted. A really great bottle of wine already, tho.
  • IncaRoads commented:

    7/29/15, 6:28 AM - If you would please email me, have a Q about this wine. Thanks! (troutmask@hotmail.com)

Red
2009 Failla Pinot Noir Pearlessence Sonoma Coast
7/27/2013 - drcoop wrote:
98 points
Sometimes it's best to return home. Remind yourself of what made you fall in love with this finicky varietal in the first place. Mssr Jordan bit us with the pinotphile bug 3 years ago on a cool spring day with an array of dazzling glasses next to a roaring potbelly stove the day after I was engaged to my beautiful wife. That small house adjacent to the winery off Silverado Trail was a little slice of heaven that day. Thank you Ehren for giving us a taste of that memory again. The poured color is a clear light plum. Certainly purple but not inky nor opaque. As the glass moves down to the final sips it changes to a stunning bright ruby. Josh Jensen states in "Heartbreak Grape" that the nose is about 80% of the enjoyment of a glass of wine. This bottle certainly proves his point. I must emphasize that all the essential components are present. Truly voluptuous mouthfeel filled with mild warming tannins and acid that elevates it above many other other iterations of California pinot. Even a finish that lingers for at least 30 seconds. The nose is a dream of pure red fruits. Starting with tart young red cherries off the stem followed by sweet strawberry pie interwoven all along with a hint of raspberry. I brought the wine to another collector, my ill neighbor who couldn't drink, but stuck his nose in the glass and proclaimed "oh my god". My wife remarked how the palate is a reflection of the nose. I find this to be a tremendous accomplishment for any winemaker. Applause for the entire Failla team. Bravo!
  • IncaRoads commented:

    6/10/15, 11:54 AM - Well, you certainly enjoyed this! Thanks for the one review that sealed the deal on my decision to nab this particular vintage of Pearlessence.

Red
2012 David Coffaro Petite Sirah Dry Creek Valley
4/17/2015 - boogie96 Likes this wine:
94 points
What a great wine! Before you even smell or taste it, you enjoy just looking at it in the glass. Beautiful color, deep purple that looks almost silk like in texture.

I got a very smokey nose, with tar and black pepper. That follows right in the mouth with smoked meat, grilled veggies, and some light spice that mellows out to allow some fruit to shine through, and a finish of chocolate covered cherries.
  • IncaRoads commented:

    4/20/15, 1:56 PM - Curious, was this the 12-month aged (green label) or 16-month aged (red label)? Thanks!

Red
2012 David Coffaro Escuro Sonoma County Red Blend
5/17/2014 - rodsjuice Likes this wine:
88 points
An interesting blend of Portuguese varietals. This is the 16 month aged wine. The wife and I absolutely loved it. Great nose easy to drink. I am going to order a few more bottles before it is all gone.
  • IncaRoads commented:

    11/3/14, 2:08 AM - Curious to know whether you have been enjoying the 10 mo. or the 16 mo. bottling of the '12 Escuro. Thanks!

  • IncaRoads commented:

    11/6/14, 5:17 AM - Errr, never mind. It pays to read tasting notes carefully ;)

Red
2007 Cade Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Cuvée Napa Valley
7/25/2014 - webbaker Likes this wine:
95 points
Multiple tastings with consistent notes. Decanted about 30 minutes, then consumed over the next 24 hours. I hadn't tasted since last December and I was a little shocked how good this was. Dark, rich fruit flavors, dust, smoked meat, good depth. Damn, I'm going to be sad when I drink my last bottle. More recent vintages of Cade (esp. '10) have let me down, this was the vintage that turned me into a Cade fan. Really, a great wine at this price point from the vintage of the decade. I'll hope for better vintages in the near future.
  • IncaRoads commented:

    7/25/14, 11:32 AM - So good to hear this! Have a pair of these and have been itching to open one for quite awhile, guess now is as good a time as any. Also have a few of the 07 Howell Mtn Cab. Am expecting a similar showing, if not better. Cheers!

Red
2006 Col Solare Columbia Valley Red Bordeaux Blend
4/24/2014 - Snoman Likes this wine:
92 points
Really hitting its stride now. Dark purple in glass, with black fruit aromas. Flavors of rich blackberry, blackcurrant and wild cherry, framed by dusty sweet tannins and leaving with a fabulously rich finish. Close to perfect, and a great value for a big time Washington state Bordeaux blend.
  • IncaRoads commented:

    4/24/14, 3:49 AM - Your TN succinctly mirrors MY impressions of this wine. I am looking forward to see how it develops over time, it certainly appears to be built for the long haul. However, it is a WASHINGTON Cab blend, not Napa.

Red
2007 Altamura Sangiovese Napa Valley
Slow ox for 90 minutes. Brighter in the glass than expected, and seemed to show first signs of age/fading on the edges. Nose had a lot more fruit than expected, especially plums. Did not strike me as a sangiovese at all -- had prepared a veal ragu and concerned that this was a bit the wrong direction. Heavier mouthfeel than it appeared. Devolved into something akin to a cheap port -- chewy, cloyingly sweet. Unpleasant. Re-approached on Day 2 with no improvement and poured remainder down the drain. A real disappointment given our pleasant experience with the cabs from this label.
  • IncaRoads commented:

    12/17/13, 6:02 AM - Found your TN quite surprising, especially in light of your pleasant drinking experience with this Sangio a mere 4 months ago. Cracked my first one about a month ago and it was a "wow" wine for both me and my guests. Enough so that I was compelled to track down more. Bottle variation perhaps?

Red
2007 Ridge Monte Bello Santa Cruz Mountains Red Bordeaux Blend
11/28/2013 - K88888C wrote:
85 points
Very tannic and tart. Needs at least another 3-5 years in the bottle. Color and smoothness holds good promise.

This bottle was opened and aired for 3 hours followed by decanting for another hour at the restaurant.

Perhaps the vineyard's different process of grinding and including the seeds brought its bitter finish forward. Bottle was not fully enjoyable and tastes like it is not yet within the drinking window. The wine drinkers at my table declined a second glass due to the bitterness.

Would sample again but not before 2020. Also, would like to learn more about the use of the seeds in their processes.
  • IncaRoads commented:

    11/29/13, 3:22 AM - Wow, what a shame! You would never anticipate such a poor Monte Bello showing, of ANY bottling, at ANY point in its life. Will hold mine for several more years and hope (expect?) that time pays off dividends.

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