Tasting Notes for cwaltonhouse

(81 notes on 72 wines)

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Red
3/18/2017 - cwaltonhouse Likes this wine:
91 points
Very approachable, but still has the classic petite sirah structure. Resolved tannins are there, but smooth. Nose was lovely, with dark fruits and some asphalt / tar undertones. Initial palate was great, with similar dark fruit and blackberry jam. Finish was medium, and overall backend of the palate was a little thin. Overall, a great wine, and lovely with steak, as you'd expect.
Red
2000 Clos du Marquis St. Julien Red Bordeaux Blend (view label images)
1/27/2017 - cwaltonhouse Likes this wine:
89 points
Sad; had this wine in the cellar 12 years, and it's clearly past it for my taste. 3 hour decant, and it may have been too much. Great structure, but lacking in fruit and complexity. Mostly barnyard, a touch of VA maybe, and faded cherry. I'd drink up and skip a lengthy decant.
White
1/27/2017 - cwaltonhouse wrote:
88 points
Slightly oxidized and lacking depth and complexity. Mineral notes with slight nuttiness, but fruit is all gone at this point. Past it's prime.
Red
12/24/2016 - cwaltonhouse wrote:
90 points
Perhaps a couple years past peak, this wine was enjoyable still but lacked an edge or outstanding characteristic to make it notable. Still love the Sheridan fruit in this wine, and a great QPR, but better enjoyed when it still has a bit more stuffing perhaps.
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Red
12/24/2016 - cwaltonhouse Likes this wine:
92 points
I've had a few of these from different vintages now, and have some themes that stand out. The structure is very, very well built--resolved tannins with some age, but the roundness and velvety mouthfeel are what stand out. On the downside, these wines are always too hot. Too much alcohol distracts from the nuances of the grapes and makes it harder to appreciate. Overall, still a 90+ point wine for the overall quality, but lacks the restraint/finesse of a winemaker striving for more balance and nuance.
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Red
12/21/2016 - cwaltonhouse Likes this wine:
91 points
High marks for lovely structure of this wine, but lacking a little complexity or punch on the nose and palate. Resolved tannins, moderate acid in balance, and lovely silky roundness in the mouth. Nose was classic aged cabernet. Palate had dark fruit, light herbs. Moderate finish. Overall, a very enjoyable wine that is drinking very well now, and has the structure to last a couple years more, though I wouldn't expect improvement.
Red
7/3/2016 - cwaltonhouse Likes this wine:
92 points
Abbreviated notes. Drinking very well. Decanted 2 hours. Nose was fragrant and showing red fruit. Palate well rounded, tannins soft. Seems to be peaking.
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Red
1997 Terreno Chianti Classico Riserva Chianti Classico DOCG Sangiovese Blend, Sangiovese (view label images)
12/17/2014 - cwaltonhouse Likes this wine:
89 points
Good wine, but time has taken some of the depth and complexity, as one would expect. 1.5 hour decant. Nose of sour cherry, leather, and meat. Wine is round and smooth, with good acid still making this crisp on your palate. Flavors are red fruits, but lacks depth of flavor. Overall, enjoyable and fun to drink---but nothing to get too excited about.
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Red
12/15/2014 - cwaltonhouse wrote:
88 points
No formal notes, but was actually a bit disappointed by the one dimensional nature of the wine at this point in its evolution. Lacked some thrust and complexity.
Red
11/6/2014 - cwaltonhouse wrote:
94 points
Really impressive; best wine I've had in a while. Really peaking now. Decanted and repoured to bottle to take to restaurant, likely had 3+ hours of air. Harmonious, soft tannins, powerful nose and lovely balance of fruit and earthiness on the palate.
Red
12/15/2014 - cwaltonhouse wrote:
89 points
No formal notes.
Red
10/6/2014 - cwaltonhouse wrote:
87 points
Just not that impressive. Never opened up, even after 2-3 hour decant. Hot, high alcohol. Muted nose and palate wasn't very complex or interesting. Dried fruits, tart cherry, light leather and cedar.
Red
12/8/2013 - cwaltonhouse Likes this wine:
87 points
This wine gets plaudits for QPR; very rare to find a 15 year old wine for less than $15 that is still standing and enjoyable.

Notes: Sour cherry, cedar on the nose with a slight medicinal note. Medium body with good roundness. Palate was a bit sour, perhaps due to declining fruit due to age---but still enjoyable.
Red
5/30/2013 - cwaltonhouse Likes this wine:
92 points
I was pretty impressed with how this bottle was showing; pulled from cellar, immediately decanted for ~1.5 hours. Color is still very deep, with slight bricking around the rim--but the core is still dark red. Nose was lovely, with nice aged qualities of cedar box, leather, and sweet prune. Still fresh, in the mouth it was medium to full bodied with good balance and dark fruit. Acidity has mostly mellowed out, but this wine is not flabby. Wish I had a few more! Still some life left in it, but I feel it's at peak currently.
Red
11/26/2012 - cwaltonhouse wrote:
87 points
Limited notes available. Dark purple/red. Some spice on the nose. Dark fruits, and some tar on the palate? Definitely well worth the $7 paid, but nothing to write home about otherwise. Interesting for its cerebral exercise and unique nature.
Red
11/26/2012 - cwaltonhouse wrote:
91 points
Fun bottle; was told this was heavily oxidized, but that wasn't the experience I had. The oxidation seemed as expected for a 13 year old bottle. Color was still holding strong, with a medium dark core and light bricking toward the rim. Nose showed some nice aging characteristics, with leather, pencil shavings, and sour cherry. Palate was pleasant, though not too complex, with the red fruits and some nuanced vegetable notes; medium length finish. Good structure--smooth, round, medium to full body.
Red
10/15/2012 - cwaltonhouse wrote:
86 points
Interesting, but not thrilling. A cerebral experience in that the nose is something very unusual--notes of eucalyptus, tar, and fresh cut peppers. The palate was underwhelming, however, where the notes from the nose didn't follow through: dark fruits and some minerality. What was really disappointing was the length, though--can't remember a wine with so short a palate.
Red
9/19/2012 - cwaltonhouse wrote:
91 points
Very good wine; had more life left that I thought it might at this stage, definitely could go 5 more years. Decanted ~1 hour before drinking. Red fruits, kirsch, and pencil shavings on the nose. Palate was very nicely structured and round, with red fruits. Enough acid to keep it fresh, and a medium long finish. Nice, but not overly complex.
Red
7/6/2012 - cwaltonhouse wrote:
90 points
2 hour decant. Drinks like a CA cab, nose of red fruits, oak. Palate was powerful and ripe, with sweet red fruits, cedar, and a touch of vegetal notes on the finish. A bit hot as others have called out, but certainly not so much so that it kills the wine. This has a few years ahead of it, and Im curious if it gets any more complex as it ages.
Red
6/19/2012 - cwaltonhouse wrote:
88 points
Interesting wine. Much more New World style than Old, with a very perfume driven nose of rose petals, dark fruits, and slight pencil shavings. Palate was very sweet with the dark fruits most prominent. Not what I expected really, and a bit too sweet for my liking. I will give this a few years to settle down a touch, and I'm hoping the sweetness dissipates a bit.
Red
6/19/2012 - cwaltonhouse wrote:
89 points
Nice shiraz that didn't overly impress, but certainly punched above its price. Dark fruit, menthol, and a touch of eucalyptus is what we got on the nose. Mostly the fruits on the palate. Medium weight, soft slightly drying tannins. Medium finish.
Red
6/11/2012 - cwaltonhouse wrote:
89 points
Third bottle in past 2 months confirmed suspicions: This wine is a great value and example of aged merlot, but it's on the downward slope and will fade with too much oxygen. Do not decant for long--a pop and pour may be the best approach, in fact. This time, popped and let stand for 1 hour without decant. Enjoyed the same lovely aged notes of leather, cigar box, a bit of green vegetable notes and dried tart cherries on the nose. Palate lovely and round with smooth, fine tannins. Then, about an hour later, the wine fades into a more acidic, thin version that loses the fruit and complexity, becoming more tart and drying. Quality and very enjoyable, just treat it right and drink up without reservation!
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Red
2003 Château Potensac Médoc Red Bordeaux Blend (view label images)
6/7/2012 - cwaltonhouse wrote:
90 points
Very good, but not overly complex or thought provoking. Nice softening of the wine due to a few years of age. Decanted for an hour and consumed over the next two. Simple Medoc nose of red fruits, leather, cigar box and a bit of green pepper. Palate was soft and round with similar notes flowing from the nose. Tannins mostly dissipated. Drinking well now.
Red
5/25/2012 - cwaltonhouse wrote:
89 points
Drinking nicely right now. Popped and poured at a restaurant and drank over the next 90 minutes. No detailed notes, but characteristics included dark fruits, pencil shavings, and some tart cherries showing a little age. Good. Nice acid. Definitely a solid wine that has smoothed out and developed into a very easy drinker. Nothing to write home about, but very satisfying regardless.
Red
4/16/2012 - cwaltonhouse wrote:
91 points
Better this time; intentionally kept the decant shorter, only 1.5 hours. The additional couple weeks in the cellar also could have helped it settle after receiving from Garagiste. The nose was similar, with hints of dark fruits, nice ageing characteristics like kirsch, and light tar and cedar. The palate was more green this time, but very round still. The finish took on the tar notes as the wine oxidized in the decanter. Overall, very smooth and pleasing. Elegant with great aged characteristics backed by enough acidity and smooth tannin to keep it all in balance. Very nice.
Red
4/2/2012 - cwaltonhouse wrote:
90 points
This wine really showed age, which was a bit of a surprise given that it's only 11+ years old. For a Barolo, I would have expected it to withstand the test of time a bit better. Decanted 4 hours. Aged red-orange in the glass, with a light red core that dissipated to orange on the rim. Nose was not too complex, with leather, hints of pencil shavings, and muted red fruits. The palate was bright with acidity as others have also noted, and it did prove to very much be a food wine. It stood up well to the veal osso buco. Overall, not a lot to wow you, but strong enough to give good ratings when paired with a quality dish.
Red
4/2/2012 - cwaltonhouse wrote:
89 points
Decanted three hours. Still great color, dark red core with slight bricking on the rim. Nice, mature nose showing some leather, sour cherry, and kirsch. Palate flavors were rather muted, with some soft red fruits barely lingering. Round, smooth in the mouth with a medium length finish. Overall, a very nice wine to drink that paired very well with antipasti; but just nothing to really sit up and take notice. For $14, I'll take it though! Great QPR
Red
2/4/2012 - cwaltonhouse wrote:
85 points
Just didn't show anything for me; very tart, high acid. Not a lot going on. Probably wasn't the right time to open this up, but now I know for next time.
Red
12/24/2011 - cwaltonhouse wrote:
89 points
Not showing the meaty & smokey notes that I loved so much first time around, but still a solid wine and great QPR. Nose was dark fruits, cedar box, and hint of cranberry. Palate dark earthy fruit, and round medium to full body.Very good.
Red
10/27/2011 - cwaltonhouse wrote:
82 points
Past it's peak, or maybe not stored optimally. All fruit was gone except for some very sour cherries. Not a lot here at this point, and the wine was showing some bricking. Seems to be that the 2006 was simply not built for longer term storage.
Red
9/8/2011 - cwaltonhouse wrote:
89 points
Consistent with others' notes. Nothing to write home about. Parts of this wine make it clear that it is well made---the soft tannins, the French oak, etc. But the nose is quite muted, and the flavor profile is linear and not too thought provoking. High alcohol shows.
Red
5/20/2011 - cwaltonhouse wrote:
89 points
Bottle traveled in checked baggage 24 hours before opening. Stood up for 24 hours, and decanted for 1.5 hours. Sadly, felt this was a bit muted. Nose was closed, with shy notes of tart cherries and dusty leather. Palate was nice and round, with flavors of cherries, clove, and slight cedar shavings. Finish was slightly drying and medium length. Overall, a good wine, but for the price it was a bit disappointing for such a muted showing. Perhaps the travel shook it up...or it is past its peak.
Red
3/11/2011 - cwaltonhouse wrote:
87 points
Decent bottle, especially for the price, but nothing that makes you sit up and take notice; rather muted nose with notes of blackberry, tire, and smoke. Palate also a bit mute, with primarily dark fruit and cedar notes. Medium weight, medium finish. May improve with another year or two to flesh out, but doesn't seem to hold much more potential.
Red
3/14/2011 - cwaltonhouse wrote:
89 points
Thought this was a really fantastic wine for $10; great deal at Pete's wine shop. Nose was very nice, with notes of red fruits, pencil shavings, and violets; palate was red fruits. Medium body, and medium length finish. Nicely rounded wine and ready to drink.
Red
3/11/2011 - cwaltonhouse wrote:
87 points
Decanted 1 hour before drinking; dark blueish purple color, moving to dark ruby toward the rim. Nose of gravel, raspberries, and hints of violets and creme---not a super expressive nose, but the fruit became more pronounced as the wine oxygenated. Palate was a bit muted, with blueberries, dust, and a tough of something green....asparagus? Finish was medium length. Medium weight which belied its color. Overall, a clearly well made wine that was an intellectual endeavorer for me, but didn't have anything that really sat me up and made me take notice.
Red
3/7/2011 - cwaltonhouse wrote:
86 points
No notes taken.
Red
2/11/2011 - cwaltonhouse wrote:
88 points
Aggressive decant for 1 hour, drank over 3 hours. Dark red to purple, with red rim. Nose was closed at first, but opened up around 1.5 hours in. Aromas of red fruits and cream, with nuances of jalapeño and tires. Toward the end of the 3 hour period, the nose shifted more toward the tire smell, and the fruit lost power---making me think this wine doesn't necessarily have a long life ahead. On the palate, the red fruits dominated. Medium to full bodied, with a short to medium finish. Not too hot, and tannins not obtrusive. Not sure this improves much, but a good drinking wine.
Red
1/29/2011 - cwaltonhouse wrote:
90 points
Aggressive decant, 1 hour before tasting. Dark, rich crimson color. Nose of dark fruits, cedar, and hints of violets---a bit closed, and hot, not too expressive. Full bodied with fine but very grippy tannins. Palate was also closed, with the oak overpowering the dark fruits to a large degree. Finish is long but a bit hot right now. This wine has the trademark amazing Quilceda structure, and enough going on to turn into something very, very nice. Potentially 92 - 94 points in a few years, but for now, only a 90. Give it at least three years to come together, and for the Oak Monster to subside. If it fleshes out and softens, this will be a fantastic QPR.
Red
1/29/2011 - cwaltonhouse wrote:
89 points
Aggressively decanted and poured. A very nice change of pace compared to the WA State syrahs I more frequently enjoy. Dark crimson with purple hues toward the rim. Nose of smoked meats, blackberries, and hints of green pepper. Medium to full bodied, with a small amount of softening tannins on the finish accompanied by a moderate amount of acid. Palate of dark fruits and meat. A good, solid wine, but lacking a bit on the palate length and finish, which keeps it out of the 90 point range.
Red
1/30/2011 - cwaltonhouse wrote:
89 points
1.5 hour decant. Slight bricking, ruby with great clarity. Nose of sour cherries, light tar, and hint of lavender. Medium weight, with softly drying tannins to make a nice, round wine. Flavors of red fruits on a rather short palate with bright acidity. Medium length finish. I'd rate this wine an 89 by itself as it doesn't really give you too much to think about, but it paired magnificently with Canard a L'Orange--the acidity of the wine playing off the orange essence of the l'orange sauce. Fantastic food wine, and would rate the wine a 92 when part of this meal. Delicious!
Red
2006 Xanadu Cellars "Grand Vin" Destiny Ridge Vineyards Horse Heaven Hills Red Bordeaux Blend
1/10/2011 - cwaltonhouse wrote:
85 points
Similar notes to most recent tastings; I think this smaller bottle may be slightly ahead of the larger formats in aging process, and as a result, isn't showing quite as much depth at this point in time. It may be that this wine is finally beginning to slide down the other side of the curve. Nose has the typical red fruits, sour cherries predominantly, accompanied by a bit of wood varnish. The palate is the same red fruits, but a touch of rhubarb coming through now may be the sign that the depth is fading. Slight bricking also on the rim of the glass. Probably time to drink up.
Red
12/26/2010 - cwaltonhouse wrote:
88 points
A good wine, but nothing too interesting to warrant a higher rating. Nose of dark fruit which followed through to the palate. A bit of heat, but that settled down after about an hour. Can't recall any characteristics that stood out.
Red
12/6/2010 - cwaltonhouse wrote:
89 points
Interesting wine; pulled straight from cellar, popped, and poured. A bit of sediment in the bottle. Nose had leather, spice, and current; palate had some mineral notes accompanied by dark fruit. Medium bodied, smooth finish. Enjoyed the noticably different style of a SA shiraz, though wouldn't say it was spectacular. Seems to be peaking.
Red
2006 Xanadu Cellars "Grand Vin" Destiny Ridge Vineyards Horse Heaven Hills Red Bordeaux Blend
11/20/2010 - cwaltonhouse wrote:
88 points
1.5L bottle; decanted 1 hour. This wine showed perhaps its best that I've ever tasted; wondering if the large format bottle that's been cellared a few years is helping its evolution. The "funk" is barely perceptible at this point, and if you didn't know it was there, might even be mistaken as an interesting musty note. Slight bricking. Nose of tart cherries, oak, and leather; palate of sour cherries and plum. Soft mouthfeel, medium weight, quite round. Though the bottles remaining are few, I think this one could go another 1 - 3 years and evolve even a bit further. Wait and see....
Red
5/1/2010 - cwaltonhouse wrote:
91 points
Big fruity, velvety explosion of a merlot; definitely an Aussie style wine. Great flavors, but a bit too one dimensional for me to rate it a bit higher.
Red
11/1/2010 - cwaltonhouse wrote:
91 points
I really liked this; in fact, I wish I had another bottle that I could rest for another 3 - 5 years. This is a big merlot, not a thin simple one that is often stereotyped for the varietal. Notes of current, vanilla, and cedar. A bit heavy on the oak at this point, and a think a bit more time would allow it to open up and show it's underlying complexity. It definitely has the structure and quality to last a few years. 91 pts for now, but potentially a bit higher after some time to evolve.
Red
10/7/2010 - cwaltonhouse wrote:
90 points
Very solid, well made PN--though nothing to blow your mind, there were great flavors of sour cherries, and a very nice, round mouthfeel followed by a smooth finish. This was a pinot that drank bigger than I would have assumed. Great QPR.
White - Sparkling
10/7/2010 - cwaltonhouse wrote:
89 points
Very well made; nice soft, small bubbles, good cream notes. Good champagne, just nothing that really "wowed" me.
Red
9/7/2010 - cwaltonhouse wrote:
87 points
I didn't think much of this wine when purchased at the tasting room, and not a whole lot changed. To be honest, probably could have used another year or two to lay down as the oak and tannin was still a little overpowering. Though I'm not sure the fruit was ever going to come through on this one. Dark purple with aromas of cigar box, vanilla, and graphite. Not much coming through on the palate but some dark berries. Finish was a bit tight, with some tannins gripping lightly. Overall, just not that expressive and somewhat heavy.
Red
9/7/2010 - cwaltonhouse wrote:
88 points
A solid wine, but definitely not up to par with previous vintages. This version seemed to be a bit heavy on the oak, and not nearly as thought provoking . Still the thick, dark berry flavors and aromas, but much more cedar and less of the nice mint, vanilla notes that I remember from the '03/'04. A good wine for the price, but nothing to really write home about.
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