Comments on my notes

(10 comments on 9 notes)

1 - 9 of 9 Sort order
2012 Copain Syrah Hawks Butte Vineyard Yorkville Highlands
In a great spot. Floral nose, lots of ripe, juicy black fruit, and black pepper. Still sporting evident tannins and acid, but in balance. Finish is persistent and tasty. A restrained yet elegant CA syrah. Lots of life left in this beauty.
  • BBencz commented:

    4/26/19, 5:59 PM - Thanks Frank. I always enjoy your notes on Wells' wines. Found this bottle tucked away in the cellar and decided to pop it. I can't imagine this wine showing any better than this bottle. It really is killer stuff.

  • BBencz commented:

    4/26/19, 6:10 PM - I have two bottles of 2012 Brosseau down there somewhere. Have moved away from CA GSMs and now am overloaded with pinot and chardonnay. Largely because that's what my wife prefers. Good luck with champagne. It's cool to turn over a cellar every few years and go in a different direction. Enjoy...

1986 Château Ducru-Beaucaillou St. Julien Red Bordeaux Blend
7/22/2018 - BBencz Likes this wine:
96 points
From a bottle re-corked at Ducru in 2011. Decanted for two hours. A bit of musty funk blew off after about an hour, leaving behind forest floor, tobacco, and blackberry aromas. Wine showed only slight secondary characteristics, with blackberry and currant flavors dominating. Tannins are fully integrated. Could not believe this was a 32-year-old wine. Just fantastic, and still going strong.
  • BBencz commented:

    7/22/18, 7:25 AM -

2013 Domaine Jean Royer Châteauneuf-du-Pape Cuvée Prestige Red Rhone Blend
2/9/2018 - BBencz Likes this wine:
89 points
Lighter style. Seems to have taken on more age than I would have expected at this stage, with red fruit well in the background and mint and licorice up front. Unless this is hitting a dumb phase, I'd say drink now while you can. This bottle was fading fast.
  • BBencz commented:

    2/9/18, 7:56 AM - Tannins were barely perceptible. I wonder whether the bottle was flawed. Cork was fine. But it was way lighter than I expected from a barely 5-y.o. Royer.

2005 Fattoria Galardi Terra di Lavoro Roccamonfina IGT Aglianico
10/8/2016 - BBencz wrote:
Having a hard time figuring out the Galardi allure. Two hour decant through a Vinturi. Beautiful dark garnet color at the edge, and almost black at the center. Really interesting nose of deep red fruit and light ash. But palate is largely dry and unforgiving with harsh tannins and little fruit. A great wine to stare at and smell, but fairly unenjoyable to drink. Maybe I need a tutorial or the wine needs another decade; I just don't get the hype.
  • BBencz commented:

    10/9/16, 5:37 AM - Thanks for the note; good to know. The 2005 opened up as the night went along and started to show some additional fruit, but even after 5 hours it was still quite tannic. I have bottles of Galardi from 2004 through 2012 -- looks like I need to wait at least another 10 years on the younger bottles, and probably through 2030 on the later ones. And you are correct-- I'm still working through whether I like the style. Have some 20+ y.o. Barolos and enjoy those. Aglianico seems like a tougher grape; can't tell whether it ever rounds out....

2011 Nicolas Joly Savennières Les Clos Sacrés (Les Vieux Clos) Chenin Blanc
8/1/2016 - BBencz Likes this wine:
91 points
Cork totally soaked through and covered in mold at top. One hour decant, but took about two hours to start to make sense. Nose of baked apple, raw pie crust and a bit of petrol. Lemon curd, hazelnut, flinty minerals and a dry sherry finish. Not for the faint of heart, and certainly better with food.
  • BBencz commented:

    9/10/16, 5:34 PM - Bought from Garagiste. My understanding is that this is how this wine presents. Joly is a maverick and this is how his wines drink. Some like them, some love them, and some hate them. For me, depends on the night and the food.

2010 Domaine Grand Veneur Châteauneuf-du-Pape Vieilles Vignes Red Rhone Blend
5/1/2016 - BBencz Likes this wine:
99 points
Stunning. Best 2010 CdP I've had to date.
  • BBencz commented:

    5/1/16, 8:34 AM - Popped and let sit in cellar for an hour in bottle. Then decanted and let sit for another hour. Was pretty much perfect after those two hours. Big, but not hot. Certainly not dumbing down at all. Will go another 20 years easy. Had it side-by-side with the 2009 Veneur VV. No comparison. The '09 was nice (a bit hot, though), but the '10 was out of this world.

2012 Kistler Chardonnay Hyde Vineyard Carneros
11/6/2015 - BBencz Likes this wine:
90 points
Definitely a yellow-green hue. Wet stone nose and lemon curd flavors with a bit too much acid at this point. Will give another year or so to see if it balances out.
  • BBencz commented:

    11/8/15, 7:57 AM - Am sure this wine will indeed blossom given time. Only thing on the nose for me during this last tasting was a very pure aroma of clean, wet stone. Like sitting stream side at a mineral spring. Maybe it was my nose that night and not the wine, but for me it wasn't giving much. It had an hour or so of air before we tasted, so it had some time to open up in the bottle. Anyway, thanks for the note.

2012 Altamont Wine Studio Pinot Noir Adelaide Hills
4/10/2014 - BBencz Does not like this wine:
80 points
My wife, who generally loves New and Old World pinots, proclaimed that this one tasted like dishwater. I agree; prominent soap notes and otherwise not much going on. Big fail from Garagiste.
  • BBencz commented:

    4/19/14, 2:39 PM - Thought about that. We usually wash our glasses in hot water without soap, and on very rare occasions I'll put in one drop and blast the glasses with hot water for several minutes until there is no trace of soap left. We have 5 more bottles of this wine, so will take another look and write another note when we open the next one.

2010 Copain Pinot Noir "En Bas" Kiser Anderson Valley
1/3/2014 - BBencz Likes this wine:
92 points
Burgundian indeed. Strong floral notes followed by light red fruit. Sour raspberry flavors with zingy acidity that's not out of place. Delicate, balanced and very enjoyable. A great example of what Cali pinot can be. Wish more CA winemakers would gravitate toward this style instead of making over-the-top, heavily extracted cough syrup.
  • BBencz commented:

    1/4/14, 11:03 AM - Frank- still trying to figure out how to respond to your note, so hope you see this. Appreciate your comments and have enjoyed reading your notes, esp re Copain. My wife and I fell in love with Copain and Wells' winemaking after a trip to Sonoma in 2009. Have enjoyed the evolution of his syrahs (have a mag of 2007 James Berry in the cellar that I'm dying to open, but will wait), and just started buying his pinots. Will definitely post when I pop the 2010 En Haut. Happy New Year to you. Regards, Brian

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