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Comments on my notes

(28 comments on 24 notes)

1 - 24 of 24 Sort order
White - Sweet/Dessert
2003 Château d'Yquem Sauternes Sémillon-Sauvignon Blanc Blend
7/13/2022 - Topper Likes this wine:
96 points
Served two bottles to 14 people at the rehearsal dinner before my daughter's wedding and everyone was immensely impressed. This is one that dances across the palate and the finish stays for a full minute if not longer. There is no other wine like Yquem and as long as you don't directly compare this to the 01, you should find it to be a huge success.
  • Topper commented:

    12/20/22, 2:17 AM - Thanks, Juliansi

Red
2005 Domaine Henri Gouges Nuits St. Georges 1er Cru Les Saint Georges Pinot Noir
4/24/2021 - Topper wrote:
89 points
It’s so rare to see an 05 look like it’s over the hill but I think that’s happening here. Was so good a few years ago but now seems to be falling apart. Let’s see what happens with the next bottle
  • Topper commented:

    6/30/22, 6:36 PM - Hope you're right. Will waits a couple of years and then pop another.

Red
2015 Château La Mission Haut-Brion Pessac-Léognan Red Bordeaux Blend
6/15/2022 - Topper wrote:
94 points
If one is going to drink this young, it might as well be now. Could shut down more in the future. Great structure and intensity. Very intense in the mouth but mellowed over the course of dinner. Try again in ten yrs
  • Topper commented:

    6/25/22, 4:27 AM - Thanks for pointing that one out!

Red
2006 M. Chapoutier Ermitage Le Pavillon Hermitage Syrah
4/3/2018 - Topper wrote:
95 points
Beautiful, kaleidoscopic flavors of meat, pepper, spice and tobacco, all in great harmony right now. The surprise of the tasting was that this wine completely outshone the also wonderful Chave Hermitage '06, though one expects that the Chave will be the better wine in ten years. Don't compare these, just drink them and enjoy the ride.
  • Topper commented:

    2/24/22, 8:15 PM - I agree for right now. Let's see what happens in a few years.

Red
2002 Domaine Leroy Corton-Renardes Corton Grand Cru Pinot Noir
2/21/2022 - Topper wrote:
97 points
A big wine, earthy and brooding with mostly black fruit, forest floor and porcini mushrooms. Lurks around in every corner of your mouth before showing off its long finish. Very Leroy and rather serious for a Corton, but absolutely captivating. Very much a contrast to the much brighter and expansive 02 La Tache in the next glass.
  • Topper commented:

    2/22/22, 3:22 PM - They were both terrific wines. I preferred the Tache tonight but just by a whisker. Really a matter of taste - bright flavors in the la Tache and more brooding in the Corton. The 99 Leroy Renardes may be my favorite over either 02, but it's really hard to rank these amazing wines..

Red
2001 R. López de Heredia Rioja Reserva Viña Tondonia Tempranillo Blend, Tempranillo
7/8/2021 - Topper wrote:
86 points
My second underwhelming bottle of this. Worried that I may have to dump the rest.
  • Topper commented:

    7/9/21, 11:18 AM - Thanks for all the comments. I have some Gran Reservas from the 80s and 90s that I enjoy a lot. Maybe I wasn’t fair to this one by drinking it so soon even though it was a ‘regular’ reserva. I’ll wait another several years before trying t one again.

Red
2001 Quilceda Creek Cabernet Sauvignon Washington
7/8/2021 - Topper wrote:
94 points
Plenty of notes on this one. Drinking just like the last one I had in 2015. Terrific Washington Cab.
  • Topper commented:

    7/9/21, 10:07 AM - You are so right ( unless California has somehow annexed Washington). I’ll fix that in the note

White
2019 Domaine François Cotat Sancerre Les Culs de Beaujeu Sauvignon Blanc
6/12/2021 - Topper wrote:
90 points
Fairly acidic but broad flavored with a strong grassy component. Likely needs a couple more years to come into its own.
  • Topper commented:

    6/12/21, 3:56 PM - I see your point 10xm, and will hold the next one longer but it’s hard for me to hold my whites for 10 yrs and risk the dreaded premox

  • Topper commented:

    6/20/21, 6:32 AM - Thanks Guillaume, I will hold on to a few of these and see how they develop

Red
1995 R. López de Heredia Rioja Gran Reserva Viña Bosconia Tempranillo Blend, Tempranillo
11/28/2020 - Topper wrote:
95 points
Others have described this very well. I'll only say that it was firing on all cylinders, gained strength in the glass and was the perfect accompaniment to Thanksgiving dinner
  • Topper commented:

    11/28/20, 1:15 PM - I agree Harley, I think these wines are underestimated.

White
2017 El Enemigo Chardonnay Mendoza
5/3/2020 - Topper wrote:
92 points
Lots of disparate reviews on this one, but it was a crowd pleaser in my house. Unexpectedly good for an Argentinian chardonnay at a very reasonable price. Worth trying to see whether you are on the pro or con side of the argument.
  • Topper commented:

    11/27/20, 3:17 PM - Thanks srh. We always have to taste these things ourselves. The critics can only take us so far.

Red
2006 Siro Pacenti Brunello di Montalcino Sangiovese
6/13/2020 - Topper wrote:
89 points
A little floral, a little bit of heat. Not terrible but I agree with those who say that this does not much resemble classical brunello.
  • Topper commented:

    6/14/20, 9:09 AM - Thanks for your comment, oldwines

White - Sparkling
2002 Salon Champagne Blanc de Blancs Brut Chardonnay
4/29/2020 - Hollowine wrote:
90 points
Gonna side with the minority on this bottle, which was the first 2002 I've had.

I think this is closed and tight right now, which I feel I was able to validated by saving 1/2 bottle for days 2&3 with just a stopper to cap the fizz. Got markedly more bright on the next nights, clearly needed some air and glad it wasn't an "off" bottle. The 1996 is my favorite wine ever and I've been lucky to have it many times, so comparing the '02 to the '96 I felt it was years behind in readiness. I'm hoping my other bottles will age at the same pace, if so this is probably a 50 year wine at least.

Delicious, just wouldn't put this in the top levels just yet. 87 night 1, 93 night two.
  • Topper commented:

    4/29/20, 8:18 PM - Hollowine, the 96 Salon is my favorite champagne as well. That one seemed to drink beautifully right from the start. I'm hoping that more recent vintages, like 02 and 06, that are less open to start with, end up nearly as good as the 96.

White - Sparkling
1996 Salon Champagne Blanc de Blancs Brut Chardonnay
12/28/2019 - Topper wrote:
96 points
Drank my last bottle on my birthday. So sad to see it go. Probably my favorite champagne from my favorite vintage. Very nice recent notes by DCWino if you want more details on the flavor profile, but this time I just preferred to enjoy and not think about it too much.
  • Topper commented:

    1/2/20, 9:55 AM - Now would be a good time for it. Dont delay that gratifcation!

Red
2007 Marqués de Murrieta Rioja Castillo Ygay Gran Reserva Especial Tempranillo Blend, Tempranillo
3/23/2019 - Topper wrote:
94 points
Deep, savory, rich and seductive. A full and serious wine that could warm you on a cold, damp night. If you like serious wine where the dark and complex flavors slightly overshadow the fruit, this is one for you.
  • Topper commented:

    3/23/19, 6:57 PM - Eric, it was poured out of a Coravin from a bottle that had been first tapped two days prior.

Red
2005 Domaine Henri Gouges Nuits St. Georges 1er Cru Les Saint Georges Pinot Noir
12/9/2015 - Topper wrote:
95 points
I hadn't opened any of these bottles thinking them too young but a friend opened one and it was just fabulous. Textbook burgundy already full with dark fruit and secondary flavors of mushrooms, moss, leather and maybe a hint of licorice. So glad to have a few of these and will open one every few years to see how they evolve, but this one was completely ready and strutting its stuff.
  • Topper commented:

    10/18/18, 11:10 AM - No, but on seeing AG comments that came out recently, I think I'll pop one soon

Red
1996 Ciacci Piccolomini d'Aragona Brunello di Montalcino Vigna di Pianrosso Sangiovese
8/4/2008 - Topper wrote:
90 points
Very nice mature brunello. Flavors have softened to the point of being very easy to taste and consume. Very popular at the table.
  • Topper commented:

    4/10/18, 8:49 PM - Thanks Ring, that was the early senility setting in. Of course it's a brunello.

Red
1967 Bertani Amarone della Valpolicella Classico Corvina Blend, Corvina
7/10/2014 - Topper wrote:
96 points
Was very fortunate to attend a tasting of recent Bertani Amarones with Stefano from the winery. Along with some recent releases and the 06 Classico (which is worth buying if you know you will be around to drink it in 20 years), we were served the 75 and 67 Classicos. The 75 was what I would expect from an older wine from this house with raisiny warmth and a fruit compote profile but the 67 was something else altogether. It was one of those magical wines that combines medium weight, beautiful subtle fruit and and a cornecopia of other flavors that just keep coming at you. Reminded me of an old Lopez de Heredia rioja that goes on and on without ever being a tannic monster. This one may go on forever in the manner of the mythical 1928 version of this wine. Thanks so much for serving it.
  • Topper commented:

    5/12/15, 1:34 PM - Hope you enjoy it.

  • Topper commented:

    2/12/17, 12:52 PM - Baroloboy, this was made available by reps of the estate who were doing a tasting of their recent wines in Boston 2 years ago and made these available to those in attendance. Bottles are in offsite storage but I will try to post a pic of the label when I can.

Red
2001 Bruno Giacosa Barbaresco Asili Nebbiolo
12/8/2016 - Topper wrote:
94 points
Really great wine in great form. Medium full with lots of sparkle. Cherries, tobacco, old leather and a touch of molasses. Big crowd pleaser that seemingly could be served with a wide variety of foods, or without any. Quality stuff.
  • Topper commented:

    12/9/16, 3:23 AM - It wasn't decanted. Might benefit from an hour or so in the decanter but not much more.

Red
1994 Harlan Estate Napa Valley Red Bordeaux Blend
5/29/2015 - Topper wrote:
I bought this a few years after release and when opened now the cork was dry and crumbly and the wine, while palatable, was just a shadow of what was in a well-kept wine that I had just a month ago. Sad, but we'll just move on to the next bottle of something else.
  • Topper commented:

    8/10/15, 8:01 AM - Thanks Lipsman, Maybe this has something to tell us about how long to keep our Harlan's, even from the good years. I'll try to make sure most of mine are drunk up by year 15 or so.

White - Sparkling
2004 Dom Pérignon Champagne Champagne Blend
7/1/2015 - Topper wrote:
92 points
Very tasty but predominantly yeast and brioche flavors and aromas overtake the fruit. Fairly light on its feet and the acid is prominent. It just hasn't all come together yet.
  • Topper commented:

    7/2/15, 4:05 AM - Agree completely Buzzz

Red
2003 Château Branaire-Ducru St. Julien Red Bordeaux Blend
2/2/2015 - Wine Poor wrote:
91 points
We enjoed this with Groundhog. This again was classic Bordeaux. Nicely matured, and an hour in the decanter helped it along. This time we noted some leathery taste as well. Actually, we had this with leg of lamb, but it was Groundhog Day, so...
  • Topper commented:

    2/5/15, 3:52 AM - That got my attention. Got me to wonder what groundhog would taste like. Not going to find out but did have guinea pig once in Peru.

Red
2002 Clarendon Hills Astralis Shiraz Blend, Syrah
5/22/2014 - Topper wrote:
93 points
The theme of this flight was - one grape, four countries, served blind. The grape turned out to be syrah, and the countries were Australia, France, Italy and the U.S. Wines ended up to be 02 Clarendon Hills Astralis, 01 La Turque, 02 Sine Qua Non Just for the Love of it, and 01 Macchiole Scrio. The first three were all terrific and only the Scrio couldn't stand up to the competition. For me, the SQN just squeeked out a victory over the Guigal, with the Astralis just a whisker behind. People were able to easily pick this out as the Aussie on account of the sweet blue/black flavor profile, the big impact of the wine and highish alcohol, yet they were surprised at the relative softness and balance of this wine compared to the same wine in its youth, or to other Australian blockbuster wines. In the end, it couldn't quite match the complexity and verve of the SQN and the La Turque but it definitely belonged in their company.
  • Topper commented:

    5/23/14, 3:36 AM - It was the 02. I'll fix that up.

Red
2005 Clos des Papes Châteauneuf-du-Pape Red Rhone Blend
8/23/2013 - Topper wrote:
93 points
This is a big, bright, spicy, mouthfilling, cherry tinged wine. Somehow, if I had to show someone a a representative bottle of Chateauneuf and they had never had one, I might pull this out. Not the best, not the biggest, but a very good modern version of this region's wine.
  • Topper commented:

    9/3/13, 11:23 AM - Of course you are right, and some of my favorites are rather unique, but I do think that there are some aromatic and flavor profiles that are common to a wide swath of these wines and that was what I was referring to. Thanks for the comment.

Red
2004 Fontodi Flaccianello della Pieve Colli della Toscana Centrale IGT Sangiovese
2/16/2013 - Topper wrote:
flawed
This bottle had died and gone to heaven and since it was my only one, I can't compare to other bottles of the same vintage. Came in dead last at a tasting of 11 wines where it was by far the costliest. Stinky nose, off flavors (but not corked), off nose, drank as though it were poorly made, which would be out of character for this producer. I'll call it an off bottle, but not because it was obviously corked or oxidized. Others have had better luck with this.
  • Topper commented:

    2/16/13, 1:41 PM - Thanks for your comment. I normally don't assign points to wines that are flawed with a common taint such as oxidation or cork but that wasn't the case with this bottle. My comment in the note was that it was not corked or oxidized. I hope it is not representative but the score does reflect my experience with this bottle.

  • Topper commented:

    2/17/13, 6:44 AM - Ok, I stand corrected and will note this as a flawed wine. If any of you want to send me a more pristine example, I'll be happy to try it.

  • Topper commented:

    5/8/13, 4:19 PM - Sorry you had the same experience. Must be a few bad bottles of this in circulation.

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