Comments on my notes

(324 comments on 290 notes)

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Red
2009 No Girls Syrah Walla Walla Valley
1/24/2020 - GA_Seattle Likes this wine:
96 points
Very earthy, musty notes initially, but funk dissipated after breathing for a couple hours. Medium red color. Luscious blue fruit coats and envelops the palate in rare fashion, amazingly elegant, refined texture. Soft, round tannins, medium acid. Wine is absolutely singing right now, best wine we've had in a few months. Recommend decanting 2+ hours. Drink within 2-3 years.
  • rustyRudy commented:

    2/29/20, 9:50 AM - You are right on about the need for a decant

White
2007 Marcassin Chardonnay Three Sisters Vineyard Sonoma Coast
5/26/2019 - andrewdodd86 Likes this wine:
97 points
Fully mature and slightly oxidized. Big oak, vanilla bomb, large wine. Loved it. At peak
  • rustyRudy commented:

    2/8/20, 3:53 PM - This bottle was better, not over oaked, marvelous! Sorry that you aren't here to share.

White
2007 Marcassin Chardonnay Three Sisters Vineyard Sonoma Coast
4/3/2016 - MAXIMUM SATISFACTION wrote:
94 points
Melon, crisp citrus, stones, and creamy oak. Straightforward and simple done impeccably well. Probably not going to improve a lot with time.
  • rustyRudy commented:

    2/8/20, 3:48 PM - Probably not better but my last bottle did hang in there and remained remarkable.

White - Sparkling
N.V. Jacquesson & Fils Champagne Cuvée n° 741 Extra-Brut Champagne Blend
9/21/2019 - rustyRudy Likes this wine:
93 points
Bone dry, lemon and lemon rind, good bubbles with a mineral and orange finish.
  • rustyRudy commented:

    10/6/19, 12:06 PM - Oops! Sorry! 93

Red
2011 Shafer Relentless Napa Valley Syrah Blend, Syrah
General Notes from last night's dinner. Superb. Its primarily Syrah but reminded me of a Zin. Still very young. Outrageous depth of flavor balanced by strong tannins (It had been decanted for @ 3 hours). Gorgeous fruit. Goes on forever. Well worth the $70 price tag. (Part of a wine dinner with 2014 Pride, 2014 Dancing Hare, 2001 Monte Bello, 2012 Hidden Ridge Impassable Mountain, 2003 Dominos, 2014 Schrader RBS, 2014 Abreu Madrona Ranch, 1995 Yquem)
  • rustyRudy commented:

    8/4/19, 10:41 AM - Thanks for providing the context of the Tasting note and the notes on the competition. This wine really performs well for me, especially for what was considered a challenging year.

Red
2009 Williams Selyem Pinot Noir Sonoma County
3/9/2018 - arthrovine wrote:
Pnp and decided to play around with Z burgs. This has been the best showing of this wine to date. Beautiful alluring classic Selyem aromas with balanced acidity and finished medium/short length but fully satisfies. Secondary flavors and aromas peeking through. This is why we age this producer’s wine. Should last at least a few more years.
  • rustyRudy commented:

    6/22/19, 5:41 PM - You were right in my opinion, still drinking very well.

White
2013 Rivers-Marie Chardonnay B. Thieriot Vineyard Sonoma Coast
8/5/2018 - csimm1161 wrote:
94 points
Similar to previous notes. One of the finer examples of this particular wine. Lemon citrus, lemon zest, vanilla glycol, pumice, and hints of hay. Somewhat straightforward, but flavorful and balanced. Weight and mid-palate were well distributed.

Typically I prefer higher end whites close to cellar temperature, but here colder (bottle in ice bucket) service proved better focus. Drink now. 93-94 points.
  • rustyRudy commented:

    6/15/19, 5:43 PM - As you predicted it is still drinking well. For me tonight it was best just slightly chilled. Sadly my last of three in this vintage.

White
2011 DuMOL Chardonnay Chloe Russian River Valley
10/27/2018 - sfbikeguy Likes this wine:
92 points
Excellent at usual! Our last bottle of the 2011 Chloe. Drank at a dinner party and the ladies were all subtly hoarding for themselves. The Chloe still has time if you want to hold longer.
  • rustyRudy commented:

    5/19/19, 7:43 AM - I agree , it will hold longer, but it is drinking so well now !

Red
1997 Monticello Vineyards (Corley Family) Cabernet Sauvignon Jefferson Cuvée Napa Valley
8/20/2018 - rustyRudy Likes this wine:
90 points
I bought this on sale in 1999. I had consumed the other bottles including the Corley Reserve long ago. I put this away and never got around to drinking it and long after its neglect I pulled and tasted it expecting to have to dump it. Cork albeit short was in perfect shape. No bricking, it really looks like the latest vintage of California Cab. Tart cherries, black tea, cranberry, and just a little heat on the finish. Maybe the high acidity kept this preserved and drinkable but it was good enough to drink with dinner and way too enjoyable to toss. I doubt many others have kept this around but let me know if you did.
  • rustyRudy commented:

    5/6/19, 11:24 AM - Thanks for your note and comment, I agree it was more than drinkable which is why I gave it a 90.

Red
2007 Larkmead Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley
4/14/2018 - csimm1161 wrote:
87 points
BIGTUNA and WINEPT have this wine pegged. A wine-by-the-glass at a bar that doesn't specialize in wine kind of wine. It is tolerable and will pass the time as you skulkingly peer across the room wondering why you didn't just stay home and watch Silicon Valley, but for the most part it is more like watching a PowerPoint presentation where the instructor just stands there and reads from the slides. It’s not horrible. It’s just when you drink it, you kinda forget that...wait...what was I saying...???....

You might be able to muster up some red currant and tart black/red cherry flavors, but not much beyond that except vanilla and cedar-laced alcohol. Better yet, order yourself a martini and call it a day. I felt like this wine makes you try too hard to appreciate it. And for a rockin' flavor-filled vintage like 2007, this wine shows as even more of a snoozer.

If you're looking for a beverage as a hand-off glass to some girl at a party you don't intend on asking out again, this is perfect...
  • rustyRudy commented:

    4/14/19, 6:07 AM - I always love your notes. This was harsh but funny! From reading other's notes over the last two years there is either bottle variation or this is a divisive wine. I can only say my bottle was better than your bottle. We have a lot of similar likes but had different opinions on this one. Regards!

Red
2017 Kosta Browne Pinot Noir Sonoma Coast
5/10/2018 - rustyRudy Likes this wine:
91 points
Tank sample from Freestone Vineyards likely to be blended into the Sonoma Coast offering. Lean, elegant, tart cherry and clean finish. Interesting to taste it at this stage in its development.
  • rustyRudy commented:

    4/13/19, 4:26 PM - Actually quite easily. I'm not a professional taster, not in the wine biz , do not have a blog and have nothing to sell. My notes help me keep track of what I've tasted, when to drink what's in my cellar and what I liked. I am on their mailing list and buy some each year. We had a great tour and my notes were to refer back to when these wines are released and to see how they have changed in the interim. They are primarily for my own personal use so please don't take them too seriously.

Red
2011 Torrin Akasha Paso Robles Syrah
8/19/2018 - morewineplease! wrote:
95 points
As previously noted, time to drink up. This bad boy is in its sweet spot. Drinking beautifully! inky, with medium- to full-body; silky smooth with a long finish. A little hot upon opening but a 2 hour decant solved that. Be prepared to smell the floral bouquet from the other side of the room! Great dark fruit and vanilla; wonderfully flexible, working with a wide range of rich food with complex flavors, especially a lightly smoked duck with a compote dressing.
  • rustyRudy commented:

    2/16/19, 1:26 PM - Whole heartedly agree that it is in a very nice place right now.

Rosé - Sparkling
N.V. Billecart-Salmon Champagne Brut Rosé Champagne Blend
8/30/2016 - jviz Likes this wine:
92 points
Best generally available NV rose? Such vibrant acidity, creamy strawberries on the palate, fine mousse, and a trace of minerals.. So well balanced, consistently good
  • rustyRudy commented:

    8/31/16, 4:51 PM - I agree 100%! It is my family's go to Rose

  • rustyRudy commented:

    1/13/19, 9:53 AM - Had not tried the Gosset in years, thanks for the heads up, will give it a try if I see any locally

Red
2016 Domaine Saint-Damien Gigondas La Louisiane Red Rhone Blend
11/8/2018 - rustyRudy Likes this wine:
94 points
Similar to last recent note, still killer nose, decanted, drank over 3hours, marvelous but young.
  • rustyRudy commented:

    1/13/19, 9:51 AM - Only had 2 so far, they were both fairly consistent, my son thought so as well

Red
2016 Arterberry Maresh Pinot Noir Maresh Vineyard Dundee Hills
10/27/2018 - rustyRudy Likes this wine:
91 points
Excellent value, Oregon Pinot that is all about subtlety and finesse.
  • rustyRudy commented:

    12/2/18, 8:52 PM - Thank you, I edited and corrected my mistake.

Red
2004 Pax Syrah The Emerald Pool Alder Springs Vineyard Mendocino County
11/27/2018 - rustyRudy Likes this wine:
92 points
Youthful in color. Cork was soft but intact. Lots of smoked meat on the nose and palate. Mature but not old. More acidity than I expected, crisp black cherry, black tea and a tart finish.
  • rustyRudy commented:

    11/28/18, 8:38 PM - surprisingly tart compared to the other bottles we drank, clearly not too old.

Red
2015 Domaine Saint-Damien Gigondas Vieilles Vignes Red Rhone Blend
11/9/2018 - Mootsie Likes this wine:
93 points
This is our style so we are probably overrating it, but wow, great wine. Juicy ripe/tart raspberry, smoke, licorice, white pepper.
  • rustyRudy commented:

    11/10/18, 6:11 AM - You are also going to like the 2016 if you haven't already tried it, even bigger and juicier , dynamite!

Red
2011 Le Piane Boca Nebbiolo Blend, Nebbiolo
11/2/2018 - rustyRudy Likes this wine:
92 points
Light red. Tobacco, grilled herbs, cedar and hot cinnamon. Starts of with spicy cherries, strawberry, fine grained tannins, and a delicate finish. Paired well with a white pizza.
  • rustyRudy commented:

    11/6/18, 4:39 AM - Based on the 2011 this drinks well young, nice fruit and character but should be good for several years. IMO no hurry but also no need to wait if it pairs well with the meal of the night

Red
2015 Bedrock Wine Co. Heritage Wine Pagani Ranch Sonoma Valley Zinfandel Blend, Zinfandel
11/3/2018 - JERB Likes this wine:
91 points
Smooth is not a word I would use to describe this wine. Lively and intriguing would be a better description. As with many of the Bedrock wines I have enjoyed, this one took quite some time to open up. It was decanted for three hours prior to the first taste. The first taste is where the "lively" description comes from. It was bright and had something of a snap to it. Along about hour six of it being open it really had morphed into this gorgeous medley of field blend flavors.

I am coming to realize that one simply has to be patient with many of the Bedrock wines; patient on the day you open it if you are opening it now, or patient by letting it sit in one's cellar for 5 or more years.
  • rustyRudy commented:

    11/4/18, 10:36 AM - I agree with your advice about patience or a long decant

Red
2012 Kosta Browne Pinot Noir Sonoma Coast
past its prime, lifeless
  • rustyRudy commented:

    10/27/18, 11:40 AM - I also like KB pinots right after bottling when they are jam packed with fruit flavors with a huge nose, but I also really enjoy them at this stage when the fruit calms down and all of the elements come together for a balanced and complex glass of Pinot. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder!

Red
2015 Domaine Raymond Usseglio & Fils Châteauneuf-du-Pape Cuvée Impériale Red Rhone Blend
10/14/2018 - drdan8 wrote:
This wine is just not ready for consumption. Primary forward fruit with little else of note or distinction. I think the elements are here for a splendid evolution...but its going to need 7-10 years easily.
  • rustyRudy commented:

    10/14/18, 8:49 AM - Thanks for the early tasting note, I plan to stick my two bottles in the cellar and leave them alone for 7 - 10 years

Red
2007 Caymus Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley
10/7/2018 - Somm David T Likes this wine:
94 points
I only have have a 1/2 dozen bottles of vintages that predate the 2012 vintage when Caymus still made wines in a style I appreciated. More; tannic, spice, earth and complexity.

Now, they are amongst the last to pick fruit, which translates into higher brix levels and much sweeter wines. They pick just as the grapes start to show the slightest raisin shrivel.

I thought I might be early on the 2007. Instead, it’s right around its peak form.

The nose reveals dark black currants. Ripe; blackberries, black plum, black raspberries, stewed plum, dark cherries, stewed strawberries and creamy raspberries. Dark spice, black tea, mixed dark berry cola, limestone minerals, rich dark soil, some dry crushed rocks, vanilla, cinnamon, sweet tarry notes, just a touch of eucalyptus with blue, purple and dark red fresh & withering flowers.

The body is full. Tannins round, grainy, tarry, sticky and meaty...60% resolved. Still lots of life in this 07....another 7-10 years of good drinking left. The wine is delicious. The structure, tension, length and balance are in a great spot. Ripe; dark black currants, blackberries, black plum, black raspberries, boysenberries, stewed plum, dark cherries, stewed strawberries and creamy raspberries. Dark spice with some palate heat, soft, understated and well integrated baking spices; light vanilla, clove and cinnamon. Black tea, mixed dark berry cola, black licorice, limestone minerals, rich dark soil, some dry crushed rocks, vanilla, cinnamon, sweet tarry notes, just a touch of eucalyptus with blue, purple and dark red fresh & withering flowers. The acidity is round and perfect. The flavors glorious. The long finish is extremely well balanced, seamless, it glides over the palate effortlessly and last minutes.
  • rustyRudy commented:

    10/13/18, 6:53 AM - Similar impression of their evolution, I stopped after 08. The 07's are the last year I personally really enjoyed their cabs.

White
2014 Aubert Chardonnay Hudson Vineyard Carneros
10/4/2018 - csimm1161 wrote:
94 points
Inviting and agreeable, with a moderate sex appeal and soft porn-esque delivery. Overall, fairly smooth; less glycol after 2+ hours in the decanter. Notes of lemon curd, lemon verbena, vanilla, and clarified butter (in a good way - not buttery or over oaked).

Richer than Eastside, not as sexy as Lauren or CIX; somewhat straightforward, but tasty for sure. Round and plump without being fat or sluggish. Enough energy to push through the flavors across the entire front-to-back attack. Medium mid-palate weight. Medium complexity. A very well done wine, if not just a bit less concentrated or intense as its other siblings.

Drink now and over the next couple of years.
  • rustyRudy commented:

    10/6/18, 8:16 AM - One of the things that makes Aubert so interesting for me is that his single vineyard wines are all well made, but there are striking differences from site to site as you have pointed out in many of your tasting notes. Always fun to compare them to each other. I enjoy reading your tasting notes! Thanks! Some friends, my son and I did a comparative tasting a little more than a year ago and it was one of the more enlightening and fun blind tastings that we have done.

Red
2015 Bodegas El Nido Jumilla Clio Red Blend
10/2/2018 - Quiet Lion Likes this wine:
92 points
Monthly Men's Wine Dinner (The Butcher's Table, Seattle): Full body, a little hot, red and black fruit on the palate, long finish. May need a little more time in bottle to show at peak, but already good. My and the group's #5 of 5 against a very tough field.
  • rustyRudy commented:

    10/5/18, 7:55 AM - In my opinion these do age very well and do need several years to optimally integrate. On the flip side, always fun to drink from the get go, but are going great even after a decade or more.

White - Sparkling
2006 Taittinger Champagne Comtes de Champagne Blanc de Blancs Brut Chardonnay
10/3/2018 - rustyRudy Likes this wine:
97 points
Drank to celebrate my wife's birthday . Had with fresh fruit, cheeses and cured meats. I have to agree with Frank Murray III that the finish is the most remarkable attribute of this wine. I did not think it was too sweet or rich for my personal taste however. Great bubbles. Tart lemon and lemon curd, well balanced from start to finish. Terrific bottle of wine but there are other bottles that come close to matching this for less $.
  • rustyRudy commented:

    10/5/18, 7:44 AM - Others that are close for me: Bollinger NV, the Mousse Fils Blanc de Noirs, and Louis Roederer NV all which I have recent tasting notes on. Not as complex but enjoyable and come "close" for me.

White - Sparkling
N.V. Moussé Fils Champagne l'Extra Or d'Eugène Blanc de Noirs Extra Brut Champagne Blend
9/29/2018 - rustyRudy Likes this wine:
94 points
Recommend by Eric at Apex Wines. Great nose even when still cold. Profuse small bubbles, lemon curd, marzipan, touch of vanilla and oak, fresh, lively, and long smooth finish. Plenty of citrus, packed with multiple flavors, will definitely need to get more.
  • rustyRudy commented:

    9/30/18, 10:12 AM - Thanks for the comment, I will look for the Mon Village .

Red
2012 Saxum James Berry Vineyard Paso Robles Red Rhone Blend
9/29/2018 - City Squirrel wrote:
93 points
Seems to have all the fixings, but Wow!, can't believe this is still so wound up for a 2012. Decanted for close to 5 hrs back n forth between decanter & bottle and it just started releasing closer to the 4-5 hr mark. My guess is this would be fantastic day 2 and maybe even day 4. Similar to my previous notes... no need to rush this, plenty of life ahead or decant, decant, decant!
  • rustyRudy commented:

    9/30/18, 7:07 AM - FYI when we visited Saxum in May Justin Smith said he feels his 09's are what are currently drinking well. So decant, decant decant is probably best for the 12's at this time. Our 07's are also drinking really well.

White
2015 Aubert Chardonnay Larry Hyde & Sons Carneros
9/5/2018 - Burgundy Al wrote:
90 points
Chardonnay Shootout: Burgundy vs New World, Double Blind (Booth One - Chicago IL): Double blind in Chardonnay New World vs Old World shootout. Great aromatic start with rich stone and orchard fruit and spice aplenty. Palate is similar but so much riper, seemingly less balanced and thereby less enjoyable. Spice on the palate comes across as so new oak driven. Warm finish. Probably better with another year or two in the cellar, but not long-term because of the heat, so 2019- 2023 or so. Correctly identified as New World.
  • rustyRudy commented:

    9/6/18, 4:41 AM - Enjoyed all of the blind tasting notes. No grade inflation here, you are tough ! I do wonder if a slightly older Aubert would have performed a little better. I know you have tasted them from your previous notes and you probably brought Burgundy. Any thoughts?

White - Sparkling
N.V. Billecart-Salmon Champagne Brut Réserve Champagne Blend
9/3/2018 - rustyRudy Likes this wine:
93 points
Capped off a really nice weekend. Had with mixed cheeses. Decent nose, excellent bubbles, citrus, lively, reasonably complex, nicely finished.
  • rustyRudy commented:

    9/5/18, 8:35 PM - Have you tried their NV Rose? It is our favorite in that arena

Red
1994 Markham Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley
8/25/2018 - FXDeLoneJR Likes this wine:
90 points
Well preserved
  • rustyRudy commented:

    8/26/18, 7:42 AM - I have one left that has been forgotten. I have been surprised at how well some of the moderately priced Californian cabs have held up!

Red
2015 Bedrock Wine Co. Heritage Wine Nervo Ranch Alexander Valley Red Blend
8/25/2018 - BrunelloBob wrote:
87 points
Meh. I remain unimpressed by Bedrock wines.
Drank over three nights. just not a lot there.
  • rustyRudy commented:

    8/26/18, 7:38 AM - I do agree with Rich, they perform better after some cellar time and I have several bottles that rocked.

Red
2015 Saxum James Berry Vineyard Paso Robles Willow Creek District Red Rhone Blend
8/25/2018 - patwjr wrote:
93 points
As others suggested, decanted for 1 hour. Didn't reveal much. Smooth but a bit flat/tight. Thinking this still needs much more time to open.
  • rustyRudy commented:

    8/26/18, 7:28 AM - Justin thinks the 2009's are drinking well now, hide the others for later if you can.

Red
2014 Realm Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon Beckstoffer Dr. Crane Vineyard St. Helena
8/25/2018 - slywka7 Likes this wine:
100 points
Dinner with Friends (Home of the Slywka's): Tasted blind. We were told this was one of the Pinot's but my friend and I quickly pointed out this was not a Pinot. This had a fantastic nose of cherry, currant, boysenberry, bit of earth and something very distinctive I could not put my finger on. Flavors of black cherry, earth, blackberry and currant. The finish on this lasted 55-60 seconds and seemed to go one forever. This is really an unbelievable wine that had some distinctiveness to it which made it special.
  • rustyRudy commented:

    8/26/18, 7:23 AM - My family visited and tasted through their line up this May. Juan is making some great wines, however the price of admission is steep. I really do like his super concentrated style of cab. Beautiful location and winery, visit if you can!

Red
2007 Marcassin Pinot Noir Marcassin Vineyard Sonoma Coast
8/25/2018 - slywka7 Likes this wine:
94 points
Dinner with Friends (Home of the Slywka's): Tasted blind. Decanted prior to serving but unsure how long. Aromas of cherry, sassafras, brown sugar and a touch of sarsaparilla. Flavors of dried cherry, brown sugar, earth and herb. My friend mentioned an Aubert but this wasn't big enough to be that. A great Pinot for sure but can't say I wasn't a tad disappointed when the bag came off. With a Marcassin I expected a little more considering the pedigree.
  • rustyRudy commented:

    8/26/18, 7:13 AM - I have found the Marcassin Pinots in general to be more elegantly styled, less acidic, more earthy, and less showy fruit wise than the Auberts. I love them both, but they are different .

Red
2008 Anderson's Conn Valley Vineyards Éloge Napa Valley Red Bordeaux Blend
8/21/2018 - drrobvino wrote:
92 points
3rd of 6 bottles. PnP on the first nite, tasting note on the 2nd nite. The wine was far better on the 2nd nite.
These were way pricey, I pd $100 per bottle directly from the winery. Pretty wine, but I would not spend that fee on these wines today.
Nose of cassis, plum, bright raspberry, and mint.
The palate shows off a velvety mouthfeel, with firm but rounding tannins and nicely supportive acidity. Echoes plums, cassis and mint from the nose, leading into a long, bright and spicy finish.
Drinking beautifully now, and should continue to do so through 2025+.
  • rustyRudy commented:

    8/22/18, 4:45 AM - I am with you. I purchased several bottles of their different offerings back in the day because of their press. For me they are okay, solid Cabs but not exceptional and not worth the price of admission.

Red
2012 Andremily Syrah No. 1 Santa Barbara County
8/3/2018 - csimm1161 wrote:
95 points
Calistoga Inn Restaurant & Brewery - Aubert, Shafer, Bevan, Sea Smoke, Togni, and more... (Calistoga): From magnum. A wonderfully complex and intriguing Syrah, with blackberry core fruit; notes of olive brine, railroad tie, black and blue river rock, oyster shell, garrigue, and some funky, saline driven soil. More mineral-based than earthy barnyard, but certainly showing some hints of old-world Rhône characteristics; a Cornas-Cote Rotie hybrid. Perfectly balanced, with a medium finish.

A cerebral wine that also reminded me of some of the 2007 and 2008 SQN Syrahs in their current states (albeit a little less interesting than the SQNs).

Drinking great now with a little bit of air, but definitely has some room to age. Drink now and over the next 3-5+ years.
  • rustyRudy commented:

    8/11/18, 10:58 AM - Haven't cracked one of mine yet, thanks for the heads up.

White
2014 DuMOL Chardonnay Isobel Charles Heintz Sonoma Coast
8/9/2018 - lvjohn Likes this wine:
93 points
Very crisp with a bright acid note and lots of lemon and a bit of grapefruit. I could not detect oak or butterscotch flavors at all. Showed good mouthfeel and persistence. It was thoroughly enjoyable right down to the last mouthful.
  • rustyRudy commented:

    8/11/18, 10:50 AM - I haven't touched my 14's yet, but I find the vanilla and butterscotch flavors to show up with more cellar time in past vintages. For me these are very enjoyable young or older.

Red
2012 Shafer Relentless Napa Valley Syrah Blend, Syrah
8/10/2018 - Breaktheory Likes this wine:
91 points
Not the big bold Syrah I was expecting
  • rustyRudy commented:

    8/11/18, 10:37 AM - Alas the current trend towards more elegance and less concentration!

Red
2010 Saxum Broken Stones Paso Robles Red Rhone Blend
7/15/2018 - Tannic Monster wrote:
89 points
This was decanted for several hours and never opened up. The nose was boring and restrained. It had no real personality or charm...very one dimensional. It had a nice plush mouth feel and an attractive rich body but other than that not much else. I just don't get it. CT 93.6? C'mon really?
  • rustyRudy commented:

    7/15/18, 8:11 AM - Since you live in Tampa how certain were you about the shipping, storing and heat exposure it may have received? Reviewing your tasting notes there are several wines we agree on so I don't think we have markedly different taste preferences. I also love 2004 Aalto PS. I am admittedly a big Saxum fan and recently visited the winery in May. I have been drinking and collecting their wines for years. I have served Broken Stones to wine savvy friends blindly and they typically love it. You may want to try a second bottle sometime before writing them off completely. Otherwise... to each his own!
    An unapologetic groupie!

  • rustyRudy commented:

    7/16/18, 5:29 PM - Tannic Monster. The nice thing about Cellat Tracker is that it gives us each the opportunity to keep track of our wines, to document our personal tasting notes and to express our personal opinions on the wines we drink. It allows others to benefit from other people's experience, positive and negative. I was disappointed that you edited and changed your initial note. I respected your opinion and just wanted to relay my opinion as well. Stick to your guns next time! You are entitled to your assessment.

White
2014 Aubert Chardonnay CIX Estate Vineyard Sonoma Coast
7/6/2018 - mflesh wrote:
94 points
Lots of acidity on the nose and the front of this wine, with more of a citrus dominated palate on this wine. For a 2014, this tastes like I would imagine the 2016 would taste like, which makes me think that this wine is really going to be even more of a beast in 2 or 3 years. I've heard mixed things about single vineyard Aubert chards, but I see at least another 5 years in this wine easily. IMO the Eastside edged this one out (which wasn't necessarily the consensus of the group) but I wouldn't kick this one out of bed for eating crackers.
  • rustyRudy commented:

    7/8/18, 9:41 AM - I do personally think that they age very well, I also enjoy the fact that the different single vineyard wines have a definite since of place and do NOT all taste alike. Fun to do horizontals with friends.

Red
2007 DuMOL Pinot Noir Ryan Russian River Valley
8/23/2015 - Burgundy Al wrote:
88 points
I have a love/hate feeling about this wine. Sensational fruit with lots of red and black cherry and enticing baking spice. Dense and powerful. Love all that. But too much sweet cherry cola and a finish that smacks you in the face with heat. Don't love that part at all. Love/ hate.
  • rustyRudy commented:

    7/1/18, 4:59 PM - With the extra 3 years the heat and sweetness did integrate and resolve. This was really good tonight. Still very RRV without any mushroom or earthy component so I don’t think Andy Smith is trying to achieve a “ Burgundian “ profile.

White - Sparkling
2014 J. Rochioli Pinot Noir Blanc de Noirs River Block Russian River Valley
6/28/2018 - ColluraJ wrote:
95 points
Tasted at the winery.

Amazing! Supple flavors and extreme balance. Really like it.
  • rustyRudy commented:

    6/30/18, 7:12 AM - We had a similar experience. Bought two bottles and shipped them back. I hope they continue and expand their production. Well made and lovely bubbles!

Red
2015 Carlisle Zinfandel Carlisle Vineyard Russian River Valley
6/28/2018 - tomherer Likes this wine:
94 points
This wine is one of several Carlisle 2015s that seem to be a moving target. I.e., out of two bottles of the same wine, purchased from the same source, one will provide a much different experience than the other. I don't think it's bottle variation either -- maybe more like bottle...evolution?

Anyway, opened a bottle of this about six months ago, and it was pretty closed down. Very nice, and plenty of fruit, but not as generous as you'd expect. This bottle is freaking en fuego. Gobs of ripe raspberry, black cherry, strawberry, cocoa powder, cinnamon, and some orange peel trimming. Absolutely loaded with delicious fruit, but it's light and energetic, not jammy. One of the best zins I've had so far this year, and as always, a price that puts most other producers to shame.
  • rustyRudy commented:

    6/30/18, 7:07 AM - They are hard to leave alone early, but I personally find they really do integrate and start to shine 2 to 3 years after release. Great wine for the price. I love all of Mike's wines.

White
2008 Marcassin Chardonnay Marcassin Vineyard Sonoma Coast
6/22/2018 - galewskj wrote:
93 points
Guys night - You know the drill: Pop and pour, and we let it warm up a tad from refrigerator temperature. This is a burly and bold chardonnay. It is big, and there is oak, and a lot of fruit. There is, surprisingly, a saline almost chablis quality to the NOSE, but the palate only has a whisper of limestone to it. Rather, the palate is a whack by a 2x4 made of oak and wrapped in butterscotch. Smoky, ash, limestone, and a really big mouthfeel. I truly enjoyed this wine, as noted by my score, but must admit that it surpasses my threshold of acceptability for how big, oaked and ripe a chardonnay should be. At least one person at the table liked it less than me, and one person at the table was very vocal at how amazing this wine was. For sure, it is a wine worth drinking.
  • rustyRudy commented:

    6/24/18, 7:37 AM - Although I may be wrong and just a taste preference difference I suspect you may have tasted it when it was still too chilled. When just barely below cellar temperature I find the vanilla oak softens, integrates well and the tropical fruit and apple flavors really amp it up.

Red
2010 Epoch Estate Wines Tempranillo Paso Robles
6/23/2018 - fournet Likes this wine:
93 points
I generally don’t enjoy Tempranillo, but I really liked this wine. First, it is ready to drink now, though appears to have many years ahead for an appropriate drinking window. There are obvious Epoch “fingerprints” on this wine in terms of style even though this varietal is quite different from their typical Rhône reds. Tannins are modest, fruit is prevalent, and finish is long.
  • rustyRudy commented:

    6/24/18, 7:15 AM - Based on a recent trip to Paso , and Epoch while there , I think they and Booker are doing exciting things with Tempranillo and that the quality continues to go up even higher with upcoming releases.

Red
2015 Bodegas El Nido Jumilla Clio Red Blend
6/4/2018 - drdan8 Likes this wine:
91 points
A powerful Murcia offering tailored for the fruit forward aficionados. Forceful attack of blackberry, boisenberry, and most other conceivable dark berries. Somewhat enjoyable as a full force fruit onslaught. This might develop some complexity and nuance once the baby fat melts away. Hold.
  • rustyRudy commented:

    6/4/18, 4:57 PM - My experience dating back to the 2002 vintage is that these do age incredibly well and do calm down and integrate. They do however remain big wines throughout.

Red
2007 Produttori del Barbaresco Barbaresco Riserva Ovello Nebbiolo
3/17/2018 - dagij Likes this wine:
88 points
The Produtoris riservas are always quite restrained, traditional and elegant (perhaps not the Montestefano), and this is no exception. Light brick colour with a darker core. Classic aromas of dired prunes, cherries, tobacco and some minerals (iron). Medium bodied, quite dry attack, sweetness and fruit emerge after a while. Lacking some fruit, so the tannins and acidity dominate the aftertaste. Some tobacco and dried fruit in the finish, but mostly dominated by dry wood adn minerals. Quite challenging to drink, much better with food (calf tenderloin), but have some problems in matching even this mild meat. I don't feel that this is too old. Is it just a bit weak? Very good wine, but I expected more.
  • rustyRudy commented:

    5/26/18, 7:28 PM - I agree with most of your sight , smell and taste discriptions but I think that I just enjoyed it more as the reason for my higher score. I rarely drink Italian reds for the shear pleasure of the wine by itself, but to accompany food which I believe we both thought it did admirably well. Great food wine for boldly flavored foods, especially if a red sauce is involved.

White - Sparkling
N.V. Veuve Clicquot Ponsardin Champagne Brut Champagne Blend
5/24/2018 - csimm1161 wrote:
85 points
My previous note from March 23, 2018 applies. Unfortunately, I find very little interest to be had here with this Champagne. It doesn’t do much to offend necessarily, but it sure ain’t trying to win anyone over with any kind of would-be charming personality.

A flat attack flavor-wise, with near-absences of complexity and depth. It has bubbles (which try as they might to conjure up some semblance of energy and verve); it has some white stone fruit and maybe a tinge or two of diluted lemon flavors, but everything else is nothing else. There are much more interesting and flavorful examples of Champagne in the $40-50+ price range.

I don’t hate this wine, but it has to be one of the most boring dates I’ve ever been on. ...Like hanging out with a librarian and discussing the Dewey Decimal system over a glass of room temperature water... (FYI for the Millennial folk: a library is a place with “books;” books are like long text messages and are literary works bound in a fibrous paper material; paper is derived from wood; wood comes from trees; trees are found in a mysterious place called the outside...)
  • rustyRudy commented:

    5/26/18, 6:57 AM - Brilliant and funny discourse, loved it!

Red
2014 Shafer Relentless Napa Valley Syrah Blend, Syrah
2/7/2018 - csimm1161 wrote:
90 points
3-Day Napa Cab Taste-Off: Vice Versa, B Cellars, Memento Mori, Alpha Omega, Purlieu, Janzen, Realm, Myriad, MACDONALD, Maybach, and more...; 2/7/2018-2/9/2018 (Napa): Wild blackberry, plum, asphalt, wood, charcuterie, and some garrigue. Some quasi-interesting flavors trying to self-identify, but overall lacking much-needed complexity and finesse. Powerful and clumsy, like a three-legged Anatolian Shepherd trying to herd sheep.

88-90 points for now. Hopefully time helps this one. I’m a huge fan of the 2010 Relentless; this 2014 doesn’t seem to be on the same career track as its older sibling. Maybe it’ll be the brother who just ends up listening to old Iron Maiden albums and working at Little Caesars.
  • rustyRudy commented:

    2/18/18, 7:44 AM - Clever tasting note, enjoyed it, thanks !!

  • rustyRudy commented:

    5/21/18, 4:47 AM - After tasting this on the winery tour I have to agree. It doesn't seem to have the spice and complexity of previous vintages that I had tasted at about the same time in their youth as well. Less Petite Syrah ?

Red
2011 Occidental Pinot Noir Cuvée Catherine Occidental Station Sonoma Coast
6/18/2017 - bonedoc wrote:
95 points
This is just so good, great fruit without being overdone, great balance. I think this may be some of the best Pinot in cali... if not the best.
  • rustyRudy commented:

    5/20/18, 5:26 PM - A year later and this is still simply marvelous!

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