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Tasting Notes for Eudemis

(1,343 notes on 782 wines)

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13.5% alcohol. Diam5 closure, incredibly dense. From a half bottle. Bright hay coloured hue with a suggestion of a greenish tinge.
The nose is pleasant with yellow flowers and some lanolin; stronger on purity than on individuality. In the mouth, the wine has a similarly fresh character with good acidity and a slight bitter note in the aftertaste. No oak at any stage.

I am not sure if I do not prefer the ostensibly lower ranking Mâcon-Fuissé, Mâcon-Solutré and St Véran at this address.
That being said, I am happy to give more time to the present wine to give it a chance to develop into something less generic.
12.5% alcohol. The cork is long and dense but also full of defects. Light to medium colour, normal for Gamay.
The nose is very enjoyable with vibrant red berries and a hint of raspberry. Similar in the mouth with no excess acidity; an earthy feel in the mid palate adds interest to what might otherwise be veering to the over smooth side (relatively speaking).
A vg Fleurie of the easy going type; a repeat purchase at the special offer price of 14€, but at the full price of 18€ I am less sure.
13% alcohol. Short cork completely free of defect (to the point of suggesting that it is synthetic, but no it is natural cork of very high quality). Light translucent cranberry juice colour.
Reduced nose from the neck of the bottle, but this dissipates quickly after pouring; pure redcurrant aromas after that, very enticing. The mouth is similarly red fruited and endowed with considerable acidity bordering on sharpness.
I am probably less enthused by this wine than I used to be, as there is no denying its one-dimensional aspect; can't complain though, it is only a Beaujolais Villages after all and the fruit is very pure.
Probably a wine to buy in riper vintages unless you are after high acidity.
13.5% alcohol. Long cork with a tolerable amount of defects. Youthful colour of medium density.
Very engaging nose with wild cherry dominating redcurrant in a stunning display of purity. No oak, vg intensity and oodles of class; a calling card for Burgundy Pinot. The mouth is very lively with the same feel of purity; the acidity is high but not piercing. Highly satisfying, and a great match for roast duck. This has the stuffing to age a good few years (the wine, not the duck...) but it is irresistible in its glorious youth.
An excellent burgundy of the nimble, elegant and high pitched variety. Very successful in this instance, but if the winemaking produces a wine of such acidity in a ripe year, I wonder what leaner vintages like 2021 will yield.
1/28/2023 - Eudemis wrote:
13% alcohol. Long cork of vg quality. Light gold luminous colour.
The nose is reticent, with some floral notes. The mouth is better with good vivacity and some yellow fruit, but still lacking in character and intensity.
Correct and innocuous but understated to a fault. Very far below the best renditions of Mâconnais Chardonnay, even in the most modest AOCs. That said, the wine is in vg condition and it could last another few years; however, I don't see it improving, the stuffing simply ain't there. I can't help wondering about the yield (the "rendement butoir" is a very comfortable 70hl/ha like in Chablis).
This bottle probably ended up in my cellar when I found myself short as a result of the first Covid emergency. Well stocked up now, and so this wine is not a repeat purchase.
14.5% alcohol. Very good long cork. This is the "22 mois d'élevage" version. Rich golden colour, enough to cause concern.
Indeed the first sip suggests oxidative tendencies, but these obligingly recede to the background.
The nose is broad with quince and exotic fruit; the oxidative note is there but it does not spoil the party. Very rich in the mouth in a way that is reminiscent of a liquoreux, but of course the wine is fully dry. Perfect match for pan fried black sole, a huge specimen.
A very good P-F in the rich-rather-than-elegant vein.
Drink soon. According to my own rule, this should have been finished last year. Since you are asking, the rule that I have evolved from bitter experience with all dry white wines (not just Burgundy) is : danger zone from year 7, and from year 10 all bets are off.
This producer has increased his prices more than most, so the repeat purchase question is moot at best.
2018 Rapet Père et Fils Corton-Charlemagne Corton-Charlemagne Grand Cru Chardonnay (view label images)
13.5% alcohol. Half bottle; Diam5 closure. Poured a glass 30 mn ahead by way of aeration. Pale straw colour, pretty luminous.
The nose is intense, more flowery than fruity, with both fresh and dried flowers; very stylish and very pure. Yellow plum appears eventually. The mouth is similarly impressive, displaying power without opulence; not unlike a top Chablis but without the steel. Still all muscle and no fat; no oak either. Superb length with an extravagant display in the finish.
Marvelous with scallops roasted in their shell. So intense is the experience that you don't feel short changed by the half bottle.
Talking about change, this cost me about 40€, and it is nearly worth the price (and I am notoriously stingy...). Certainly my most memorable white since Dauvissat's 2015.
In perfect condition now and hopefully for the next five years at least.
Maybe give it a full decant the next time.
2016 Château Caronne Ste. Gemme Haut-Médoc Red Bordeaux Blend (view label images)
13% alcohol. CS 65%, M 30%, PV 5%. From a half bottle. Very good dense cork essentially free of defect; tartrate deposits but no wine penetration. Decanted an hour ahead. The colour is deep enough but not ink dark.
The nose is appealingly red fruited, youthful and without complexity. No perception of oak. The mouth is in the same vein with an irresistible juicy quality; no unresolved tannins, but yet no lack of grip. Very well made and a celebration of CS.
Had this in parallel with the remnants of a bottle of Pontet Canet 1999; clearly the present wine is simpler but the pleasures offered by the two wines were sufficiently differentiated to allow them both to shine.
The chateau has since been acquired by B Magrez, and I fear the worst.
1999 Château Pontet-Canet Pauillac Red Bordeaux Blend (view label images)
13% alcohol. Cork of average length and slightly above average quality; no wine penetration though. Lots of deposit in the neck of the bottle, easily removed at the opening stage. Decanted an hour ahead. Dark colour with some thinning (but no bricking) at the rim.
The nose is very enticing, classic maturing Médoc with a good deal of blackcurrant left; tertiary aromas include some leather, but really the fruit dominates and no complaint. No oak in evidence.
The mouth is consistent with the nose and it adds an unexpected nimble quality more reminiscent of St Julien than Pauillac, but who cares? Some tobacco leaves and plenty of energy. Resolved tannins but good grip nevertheless; menthol in the finish adds to the lively feel.
I would put this bottle a notch below the Haut Bailly 2001 that I had yesterday. Nevertheless highly satisfying and surprisingly youthful.
I have had a good run with my Bordeaux recently, so I am perhaps turning into a spoilt child...

PS: interesting to note that I enjoyed this bottle a lot better than the one I had in 2020.
2001 Château Haut-Bailly Pessac-Léognan Red Bordeaux Blend (view label images)
12.5% alcohol. The cork is of medium length but of excellent quality and it shows no wine penetration at all. Decanted an hour ahead. Dark colour all the way to the rim.
The nose is just superb with vivid blackcurrant mixed with some tertiary notes of tobacco, leather and incense; a subtle ink-like sensation develops over time. As classy as Bordeaux gets, and no direct oak. The mouth is even better because it adds a marvellous silky quality allied to great vitality. The Pessac smokey/ashy/hot brick character is in evidence too (but I have the benefit of knowing what I am drinking...). Menthol in the finish contributing to the overall feel of freshness. The tannins are resolved but there is no lack of grip. A very complete wine, intense but without anything forced about it; this is what Bordeaux is all about.
Certainly the equal of the Poyferré 2002 that I had recently, and maybe even slightly above (and the present wine is much less evolved).
Fine to drink now and for the next fifteen years.
1/20/2023 - Eudemis wrote:
13% alcohol. No collar sleeve, so the Diam5 closure is exposed, and it is as short as it is dense. Light gold colour.
The nose has the terpenic notes that I was hoping to avoid and these tend to mask timid floral aromas, and maybe some even more elusive pear. In the mouth, the wine is similarly flavoured with a commendable combination of austerity and richness; bone dry and free of oak.
I will say that the wine is very well made, but it is not for me; I will add that I am not receptive to the petrochemical sensations associated with Riesling. So what am I doing drinking this bottle? Well, first I am always trying to expand my tasting territory, next I was hoping to eschew these dreaded flavours by drinking the wine young and finally my supplier assured me that even with age these were unlikely to develop in this specific wine; not so on the evidence of this bottle.
Probably a good to very good wine in its own way, but largely wasted on me. If I understand the back label correctly, only 400 bottles were produced.
13% alcohol. Long cork of good quality. The colour is dark for Pinot but not particularly deep.
The nose is very pretty and quite intense with a cocktail of wild red berries, including redcurrant; a hint of darker fruit at the back end adds complexity. I could sniff this all day. The mouth is similarly balanced with great purity of fruit and a silky feel; very good length.
Probably capable of ageing, but irresistible in its youthful glory.

I bought this wine around 30€, and no quarrel with that, but it looks like it is now heading to 40€, getting outside of my price range. A pity as Lumpp is one of a handful of producers who showed that Givry is capable of so much better than the anaemic over acidic brew of yesteryear.
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14% alcohol. Touriga Franca, Touriga Nacional, Sousão, and Tinta Amarela in unspecified proportions, according to a secondary source. Elongated brown bottle, elegant but a pain to store. Transparent collar sleeve. Excellent cork of medium length with no wine penetration. Deep colour with a youthful purple tinge at the pouring stage.
The nose is ripe and rich but not quite heavy; the fruit here is dark if not cooked, somewhat reminiscent of Southern Rhône, only more so. The overall effect is very pleasant if you are in the mood for a cuddle.
The mouth is even more extreme in its suavity with absolutely no edge and little acidity. Cooked dark fruit but no residual sugar and no oak (either of those would have sunk the wine).
Long on smoothness and short on structure; dangerously close to being cloying (not in the sugary sense but as a result of the quasi invertebrate aspect of the wine) but just about on the right side of the line.
I don't see what this wine could possibly gain by ageing, assuming that it has the ability to do so.
Interesting and original but probably too suave for me in the end.
My retailer described this wine as energetic (among other things), and that it is not. Maybe more suited to people who prefer a bath to a shower, or those who insist on their partners being completely shaven (uh ho, I am drifting...).
1/15/2023 - Eudemis wrote:
An awful pity as what I could perceive before the taint developed fully was quite promising.
My first encounter with this producer.
13.5% alcohol. Top quality cork, not that long but virtually free of defect; wine penetration is uneven, between 2 and 5 mm. Decanted an hour ahead. Dark colour all the way to the rim.
Superb nose marrying lively dark berries with some tertiary notes of tobacco; the oak is barely perceptible in the background, contributing to the overall harmony. The mouth is joyful and juicy in a way that Médoc rarely is; glorious and unstuffy. The tannins are resolved, but the wine is not lacking grip.
Incredibly youthful at age twenty and capable of much longer ageing.
I don't expect to drink a better Bordeaux this year.
3 people found this helpful Comments (2)
14% alcohol. Excellent long cork. The colour is sustained gold and luminous.
Rich nose with yellow fruit and dried flowers with some quince added. The mouth is opulent but not in any way flabby; there is an uncommon intensity to this wine and tremendous length too. I detect Chenin-like qualities here, and this is not meant as a negative.
At maturity now, and probably to be drunk sooner rather than later.
A top Mâconnais wine unfortunately too expensive now (currently 35€ at my supplier).
2009 Château Serilhan St. Estèphe Red Bordeaux Blend (view label images)
13.5% alcohol. CS and CF combined make 2/3 of the blend, with 1/3 M. The cork is of average length but extremely dense (this is already obvious at the extraction stage). Decanted an hour ahead. Medium colour with no fading at the rim.
The nose has great purity with CS dominating and not a whiff of oak; a great start. Blackcurrant mostly with a softening creamy aspect. The mouth is nearly as good with a winning juicy character, but at this stage the relative youth of the wine shows somewhat, with some tightness in the finish. Good grip but no green tannins.
A textbook Médoc in the classical style and an undoubted success. This wine seems to me to have twenty years of life left and room to become even more harmonious in the next five to ten years.
Thanks are due to the generous donor.
I hope that the 2010 is going to turn out as well, as I have a good few bottles in the cellar.
13% alcohol. The cork is long but soft, and it is imbibed a quarter of the way. Decanted an hour ahead. Deep colour with remarkably little thinning at the rim for a twenty years old wine; no bricking whatsoever.
The nose has intense blackcurrant rounded with spices and leather, pretty classy; no direct oak influence. The mouth is a step behind on account of a certain amount of austerity, nothing exaggerated, but maybe more reminiscent of Estèphe than Julien (let's keep the saints out of it, I don't see this as a church matter); still very enjoyable if you like wines with more grip than easy charm. Likely to live on for ten years at least, but I am less sure about softening up (never mind, there are other wines for that...).
A classic Médoc and a useful reminder of the style of yesteryear's Bordeaux. I like it.
15.5% alcohol, uh ho.... The cork is short with a pretty high density of defects. Medium colour with limited thinning at the rim.
Good dark fruited nose with liquorice. Similarly balanced in the mouth, though slightly more red fruited; the alcohol does not impinge unduly.
From memory, I would put this wine a notch below the corresponding offerings of Charvin and Balthazar. Accordingly maybe not a repeat purchase, although taken on its own terms this is pretty good and reasonable value at 12€ or thereabout.
My first encounter with this property, and I cannot say that I am overly impressed, between the uncontrolled alcohol and the middling intensity of flavour.
Let us hope that the gap between this wine and their CndP is outsized.
2014 Château du Champ des Treilles Vin de Passion Sainte Foy Bordeaux Sémillon-Sauvignon Blanc Blend (view label images)
It is Vin Passion, not Vin de Passion. 13% alcohol. One third each of Sauvignon, Sémillon and Muscadelle. Short cork with a complicated structure (body is reconstituted with discs of a different aspect, maybe natural cork, at either end); elaborate and apparently of good quality.
Attractive medium gold colour (the wine, that is...).
The nose is rich with the Sémillon coming out at this stage without dominating unduly; yellow fruit and gorse. Much more high pitched in the mouth with refreshing acidity complementing the fruit.
In superb condition at age 8, and apparently capable of another few years of ageing. A very well made white Bordeaux and a bargain as well.
13.5% alcohol. Long cork of reasonable quality. The colour is medium deep, pretty dark for Gamay.
Lovely nose of dark cherries and assorted red berries, very pure. Elegantly red fruited and balanced in the mouth with just the right amount of acidity. Pretty good grip in spite of the easy going aspect.
A super Morgon capable of ageing for a good few years, and a repeat purchase. In the top tier of producers of the area in my view.
15% alcohol. G 77%, S 20%, Mrvdr 3%. Average age of vines 55 years. Long cork of reasonable quality with little wine penetration. Deep colour with no thinning at the rim.
Lovely dark fruited nose with a super bright aspect and no oak. Surprisingly fleet of foot in the mouth thanks in part to a tingly sensation (at least initially); strawberry in evidence, in addition to garrigue and a generally more red fruited aspect than on the nose. The alcohol does not call attention to itself because there is so much else going on.
Fine to drink now, although it could evolve into an even more refined drink.
An excellent Gigondas and a repeat purchase. Shame to think that for a while I was deterred by the similarity of the estate's name with a rather dreadful (to me) property from the same general area.
14.5% alcohol. Pale gold colour.
The nose is captivating with yellow flowers, a honeyed aspect and above all a rather special earthy quality. Similar sensations in the mouth with an exceptional volume, and yet nothing overdone. Superb length and vg mouthfeel.
Only my second encounter with this estate, and they are already in the top tier of my Chenin producers.
13% alcohol. This is "ouillé", ie non-oxidative. Typical embossed Jura bottle, lovely to look at but a pain for stacking. Long dense cork with a fair amount of defects and noticeable damage from the bottling machine. The colour is pale gold with a greyish aspect initially.
The nose is immediately gripping with beeswax and a pleasant smoky aspect evoking turf. Just as good in the mouth, with a flowery aspect and excellent acidity; very good length.
This wine packs quite a punch and it would be fun to serve it to people who profess to be tired with Chardonnay.
A repeat purchase, but not a style that I want to have too often.
14% alcohol.Marsanne dominated. Short natural cork of excellent quality; The colour is pale gold and not entirely limpid.
Very original nose with yellow flowers, melon and honey. Substantial in the mouth but saved from clumsiness by good acidity in the finish. This is not a nimble wine but it has interesting aspects including a note reminiscent of turf.
Intriguing and nearly convincing.
13.5% alcohol. The wine penetrates the long cork 2/3 of the way.
Pale translucent colour with significant fading and some browning at the rim.
The nose is mostly tertiary with leather, forrest floor and a hint of caramel. Similarly balanced in the mouth, with spectacular length; an initial quasi-acetic feel dissipates over time. There is a good bit of elegance here.
Interesting and complex but probably too far removed from recognisable fruity sensations for my taste; trouble is that it was tough and unready for a long time.
White - Sweet/Dessert
2010 Château Nairac Barsac Sémillon-Sauvignon Blanc Blend (view label images)
14% alcohol. Good long cork. Rich golden colour.
Dried flowers and yellow fruit (including quince) on the nose.
Honeyed and multilayered in the mouth with a superb palate coating quality; rich but absolutely not cloying and with a marvellous uplift in the finish.
One of my favourite Sauternes, and I have JMQ to thank for bringing it to my attention.
2006 Domaine Arlaud Clos de la Roche Clos de la Roche Grand Cru Pinot Noir (view label images)
13.5% alcohol. Very long cork, imbibed 4/5 of the way. The colour is light but not translucent due to substantial turbidity; significant thinning at the rim.
The nose is mature with tertiary notes of forrest floor and just a remnant of red wild berries. Similarly balanced in the mouth with substantial acidity in the finish; there is clear oak influence, but its direct effects are digested at this stage. Very smooth and with a commendable length.
A vg mature pinot from Burgundy, but not the ecstatic experience that you might expect from a Grand Cru. Barely acceptable value for money when I bought it en primeur, laughably overpriced nowadays.
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14% alcohol. Short reconstituted cork, not Diam but pretty dense. Medium deep colour with no thinning at the rim.
The nose is dark fruited but very fresh, with violet and liquorice added. Similarly balanced in the mouth with black olives and a winning juicy quality.
Gloriously Syrah dominated to my palate and of a breed well above its status.
A repeat purchase.
12/19/2022 - Eudemis wrote:
12.5% alcohol. Pretty good cork of above average length (just). Light translucent colour.
The nose is most engaging with a heady mix of red beries and fresh flowers; similar in the mouth with excellent mouthfeel. There is a fleeting perception of alcohol, but this does not persist; good balance with plenty of acidity in the finish.
Given that this bottle sits at the bottom of the range of the producer and that the vintage is not the most promising, it has to be rated a great success.
13% alcohol. Good cork. Medium colour, pretty deep for Gamay.
The first whiff from the neck of the bottle is superb; a tone below from the glass with assorted red berries; very fresh but not exuberant. In the mouth the wine is lively and fruity with borderline excessive acidity. Not for the first time with this producer, I find a stern quality and a slight deficit of charm. Still a vg Morgon.
13.5% alcohol. Very short anonymous cork, but the quality is vg. Opened 90mn ahead and poured a glass to provide exposure to air (not the approved method, I know, but I will be able to report on the state of the rest of the bottle tomorrow after 24 h of exposure to air). Pale hue, half way between rosé and red, and not quite limpid; browning at the edge of the rim.
Enchanting nose with a cocktail of red wild berries, grenadine and rose petals. The mouth is not far behind with a concentration that belies the colour, good mouthfeel and superb acidity; only at times does the alcohol protrude a bit, giving an impression of fruit macerated in spirit.
Went very well with veal in a creamy mushroom sauce, but even better on its own afterwards.
If acquired at source (or close to it), this bottle costs low to mid double figures in €, which has to be vg value. Still a style to be experienced sparingly for me, as I would grow tired of quickly enough.
PS:the next day, the remaining half of the bottle has not improved significantly; if anything it is slightly worse than the first half in that it has acquired a slightly bitter component in the finish (nothing major, but still something that I could do without).
13.5% alcohol. Superb cork free of defect. Attractive medium gold hue.
The nose is most attractive with melon-like aromas lurking behind fresh and dried flowers. The mouth starts very well, but the acidity dominates unduly from the mid palate, leading to a reduced degree of enjoyment for me. Still, there is an impressive concentration in this wine, and no sign of oak.
I forget what I paid for this (single) bottle, but I suspect that it was north of 30€, maybe well north of it, in which case I would not consider repurchasing.
13% alcohol. Very good long cork with few defects. The colour is light gold and very attractive.
Clean appealing nose of fresh apple and yellow flowers with no influence of oak. Mouth-filling without any hint of heaviness or buttery notes; stylish with a pleasant infused quality. In superb condition and likely to remain so for another five years, I would guess.
Excellent match for scallops two ways.
A repeat purchase unless prices escalated unduly (which I fear might be the case, unfortunately).
13% alcohol. Long cork of above average quality with completely anonymous inscription. The colour is pale straw.
Intense nose of yellow flowers (including gorse), lanolin and even a hint of wild strawberry (not for the first time in a Chablis 1er cru); superb complexity here. In the mouth, the wine is properly lean but not in any way austere or steely; sappy, very long and refreshing.
One of my best Chablis ever. Probably worth decanting the next time to increase exposure to air (as recommended by the producer).
Great value and a repeat purchase.
The bottle is heavy, but not ostentatiously so. Pretty dull drawing by Ilya Kabakov on the label, let us hope that it is not a reflection on the wine! 13% alcohol. CS 77%, M 12%, CF 10%, PV 1%. Impeccable long cork of superb quality with no wine penetration whatever. Decanted 75mn ahead. Dark colour with no sign of ageing.
The nose is glorious with a harmonious mix of fresh dark fruit, tobacco, ink and a pleasant herbaceous component; I could smell this all day. The oak is perfectly integrated in that it adds richness without calling attention to itself. A textbook Pauillac in its glorious early adulthood. Luckily, the mouth is just as good with flavours that match the aromas, and a precision that is not so frequent in Bordeaux; menthol in the finish giving a lovely uplift. Classy and harmonious without a doubt, with freshness ahead of opulence.
Even though I went to some trouble with the food match (rack of lamb), the wine revealed itself fully only afterwards, on its own.
Now to the thorny question of value for money; well, I paid around 80€ for this bottle around 2004 as a result of a combination of factors, two of them being the bad reputation of the vintage (quite wrongly as far as Pauillac and St Julien are concerned) and the decision by the kingmaker critic of the time (what's his name again?) not to attend the primeur tastings. Even at that price, I am not sure that I would buy again; as for paying the IdW-quoted 434€, you have got to be joking! The point is that the wine is excellent, but it is not revelatory. I am not even sure if it is the best Bordeaux that I ever tasted. Probably in the top 10 though.
Delighted to have tasted this wine and I enjoyed every mouthful.
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White - Sweet/Dessert
12.5% alcohol; 50cl bottle with a long cork of vg quality. The colour is that of a youngish cognac.
The nose is intense with caramelised apple mixed with lemony aromas and some wax; really lovely stuff. Possibly less complex in the mouth where the lemony aspect dominates, but still very enjoyable; absolutely not cloying.
In my usual frame of reference, this is much closer to a top Layon than to a Sauternes.
However, in the present wine, the acidity hits you much earlier than in either Chenin or Sémillon based liquoreux from France (at least those that I have experienced); in these, I generally find that the acidity does not appear until the finish when it provides a glorious balance to the rich flavours that preceded. By contrast, here, the acidity is quite marked from the mid palate; it is also pretty high overall contributing to the paradoxically fresh aspect of the wine.
A very interesting discovery, with thanks to the generous donor.
12/8/2022 - Eudemis wrote:
13% alcohol. Superb long cork with very limited wine penetration. Decanted an hour ahead. Dark but not impenetrable colour with some thinning at the rim.
The nose is rich and harmonious with dominant red fruit mixed with some spices, leather and the harmonious remnants of oak, now fully integrated; a very classy feel. Disappointingly rustic in the mouth with a pronounced acidity which tends to dominate unduly; grippy tannins, but not bitter ones.
As a result, not a great match with côte de boeuf (or for anything else, I would guess).
If the mouth matched the nose I would be much more positive about this wine but on this sampling it is not a repeat purchase especially as it is not cheap.
That being said, there is probably an argument to be made in favour of more time being needed, but I am not sure if I have the patience for this.
From a half bottle. 13% alcohol. Diam5 closure. The colour is a youthful purple, very bright and appealing with some thinning at the rim.
Very fruity and immediate nose of red cherries with a winning purity of fruit. The mouth is similarly engaging with a juicy quality that is reminiscent of a cross between Pinot and Gamay (and I do not mean this in a negative way at all).
Not a complex wine (at this stage at least), but irresistible nevertheless.
A success without a doubt, and it will be interesting to monitor the evolution of this wine over years to come.
12/5/2022 - Eudemis wrote:
13.5% alcohol. Heavy bottle. Impressively long cork with about a quarter of wine penetration. Poured a glass 30 mn ahead to provide a modicum of exposure to air. The colour is light upon pouring but it darkens with exposure to air; some bricking at the rim but nothing major.
The nose is undeniably rich with mostly tertiary aromas of spices, leather, "encaustique" and some ash; some bright red fruit emerges at times. Similar in the mouth with good acidity and reasonable length; good grip but unfortunate glue-like notes in the finish.
The richness here comes at the expense of purity, and I am less and less convinced of the value of this trade off; probably a waste of a very good juice subjected to heavy handed élevage.
Not a repeat purchase.
14.5% alcohol. G 80%, Mvdr 10%, S 6%, Cinsault 2%, Counoise 2%. Excellent long cork with no wine penetration whatsoever. The colour is dark with very marginal thinning (but no bricking) at the edge of the rim.
The nose has good energy with a mix of dark fruit, mostly fresh but with a small raisiny component which is actually pleasant and adds complexity. The mouth is a bit alarming initially in that it has a porty component, but in time this seems to settle down to give way to good fruit; plenty of grip. However, the port-like notes eventually return; not a problem at this stage because they do not dominate, but surely a sign that the wine is entering the final stage of its life.
Very enjoyable now, but drink up within three years.
13% alcohol. Transparent collar sleeve. Diam10 closure, very long. The colour is medium gold.
Intensely fruity (apricot mainly) on the nose, with some sweaty aromas developing as temperature rises (nothing problematic); some verbena too. In the mouth, the wine is very assertive with good volume and strong flavours of apricot and some mango. Reasonable acidity for Viognier.
As usual a great match for freshly cooked brown crab.
For me, wines like this are an adequate substitute for Condrieu at half the price.
2005 Château Latour-Martillac Pessac-Léognan Red Bordeaux Blend (view label images)
13% alcohol. CS 65%, M 32%, PV 3%. Very good cork with no wine penetration. Decanted a short hour ahead. The colour is dark and impenetrable with very limited thinning at the edge of the rim.
The nose is very appealing with fresh fruit (mostly blackcurrant) mingling with inky flavours, all in a sightly subdued mode. In the mouth, the feel is of an even less evolved wine with lots of energy, good fruit and good grip; the tannins are beginning to resolve, and the overall feel is smooth and classy.
This is already very enjoyable, but my feeling is that the best is yet to come.
Compared with the SHL 02 that I had yesterday, the contrast could not be higher. The LM shows much fewer traces of oak and much less evolution (taking into account the 3 year age gap). In a line up, the contrast would be nearly unbearable, and one or the other would come across as the clear winner, but in fact I like them both and isn't it great that we can enjoy the variety of styles still available from Bordeaux?
High potential here.
PS: finishing the bottle the next day, the oak comes across more prominently without actually compromising the overall balance. Not the first time that I find the perception of oak to depend on the circumstances.
2002 Château Smith Haut Lafitte Pessac-Léognan Red Bordeaux Blend (view label images)
13% alcohol. Between the embossed bottle and the lavish label, this is one of the most striking packagings in Bordeaux, just about on the right side of overdone. Shortish cork of good quality with some superficial penetration on the side, but nothing deep.
Decanted 90 mn ahead. The colour is deep with marginal thinning at the rim.
The nose is reduced when pulling the cork; later mostly tertiary with leather and tobacco, but there are vivid remnants of fruit aromas, mostly blackcurrant. Similar in the mouth, adding good mouthfeel and a very vivid high pitched aspect; no direct oak, but the influence of élevage is undeniable. Menthol in the finish; good grip and resolved tannins.
Maybe not the last word in harmony, but still a super Pessac, and nowhere near the end of its life.
Outside of my price range now, so the repeat purchase question does not arise.
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14.5% alcohol. Short anonymous cork of reasonable quality, but hey it did the job as there is virtually no wine penetration. Dark impenetrable colour all the way to the rim.
Lovely dark fruited nose (mostly fresh but some lightly stewed too) with liquorice in evidence too. Juicy and energetic in the mouth with a substantial uplift in the finish thanks to superbly judged acidity. The alcohol does not impinge, and the overall impression is of a much fresher wine than typical for Gigondas; good grip too. True to the Montirius style which downplays opulence.
A success without a doubt, and in perfect condition at age ten.
13.5% alcohol. Diam10 closure. The colour is pale gold with crystalline purity.
Very nice floral nose (both dried and fresh flowers). The mouth has a lovely pure feel with fresh apple and lanolin; very good length.
Compared to the Mâcon-Fuissé of the same vintage and producer, there is possibly a small gain in refinement here, but not in intensity. Taking price into account, the Mâcon-Fuissé comes out on top, at this stage at any rate. Will they develop differently? It will be interesting to monitor, but at the moment the price differential is hard to justify (34€ vs 20€ in the currently available 2020 vintage).
A vg wine anyway.
13.5% alcohol. Diam10 closure, reassuringly dense. Pale straw colour with a hint of a green tinge.
Lovely nose of fresh apple with white flowers and some lanolin; very pure and enticing. Elegant and fulfilling in the mouth with more than adequate length.
This wine may sit near the bottom of the hierarchy in the staggeringly diverse Ferret production, but it is still a stunner (for those who like the unoaked Mâconnais style).
Vg with cod and scallops.
A repeat purchase.
13% alcohol. Annoying thick soft wax; good cork underneath. Medium colour, just about translucent with limited thinning at the edge.
Lovely nose of redcurrant with a depth that would put a good few Burgundies to shame; great purity without being simplistic, thanks in part to an earthy feel. Similarly satisfying in the mouth with no perception of oak; fruit coulis which I tend to associate with old vines. Good grip with no excess acidity.
Very successful.
From memory, I enjoyed this wine a lot more than on my previous encounter (which after checking was the 2013 vintage).
Now rated a repeat purchase.
13.5% alcohol. Pure Carignan. Long cork of excellent quality. Youthful colour of medium intensity.
Intensely aromatic nose with strawberry dominating floral notes and a hint of liquorice; refined and special. Plenty of energy in the mouth with substantial acidity and good grip but no tannic charge; liquorice more in evidence than on the nose.
Lovely to drink now but with potential to round up in the next five years or so and add velvet to the mouthfeel.
The best rendition of Carignan that I know. Superb.
2016 Castello di Volpaia Chianti Classico Riserva Chianti Classico DOCG Sangiovese Blend, Sangiovese (view label images)
13.5% alcohol. Cork of excellent quality with no wine penetration and very little staining. Decanted an hour ahead. Bright colour of medium depth, just short of translucent.
The nose has an appealing mix of dark and red fruit with spices added; bitter cherries and a powdery aspect that I could do without. In the mouth, the wine has excellent freshness and bright fruit; plenty of grip including some barely resolved tannins.
I enjoyed this wine a lot more than on my previous encounter. It could still evolve into an even more harmonious wine.
A possible repeat purchase.
Compared with the Colle Massari Montecucco of the same vintage that I had recently (same broad area and same dominant grape), there are plusses and minuses, but taking price into account the Montecucco comes out on top.
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