Comments on my notes

(47 comments on 41 notes)

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Red
2009 Kutch Pinot Noir Savoy Vineyard Anderson Valley
Ready to drink. Plummy, rich and mature. I will be drinking this sooner rather than later.
  • tarheel17 commented:

    5/7/18, 8:29 PM - I do not have the experience with Burgundy that I would like, but no, I do not see it aging like a burgundy. The acidity wasn't there for that. I have always appreciated Kutch's ability to bring out the best of the fruit, and that was still there, though seemed to be fading slightly.

    Having said all that, I am not Kutch expert, and I imagine his winemaking has improved every year, so maybe his more recent wines would age differently.

Red
2013 Burgess Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley
12/24/2017 - tarheel17 Does not like this wine:
79 points
I am almost ashamed to admit to the wine drinking public that I paid $40 for a glass bottle of wine with a plastic cork. But this shouldn't be my embarrassment, this should be the producer's. WTF, people? Plastic? Seriously? Are your consumers not even worth a cork composite? Who buys this slop anyway? I've no idea how it found it's way into my K&L cart. I think I searched "Napa cab under $50" or something akin during a holiday gift-giving spree.

OK, closure aside, the wine is still a disappointment. The nose is intriguing: herbal and menthol-lite, with ripe dark fruit to compliment. The attack is strong and confidently tangy and got my hopes up, but the midpalate is like a big fat kick in the face with both sour and over ripe fruit, unwelcomingly abrasive tannin and an unmistakable greenness. To add insult to injury, it tails off with a finish of nail polish remover. AVOID. I'd give it an 80 with a real cork.
  • tarheel17 commented:

    4/16/18, 4:35 PM - well, then, I take back all I said about the cork. I appreciate environmentally mindful producers. The wine itself was disappointing as noted.

White
2007 Louis Jadot Corton-Charlemagne Domaine des Héritiers Louis Jadot Corton-Charlemagne Grand Cru Chardonnay
Oxidized. 5 bottles out of 6 for thr sink. And the sixth was only average ...
  • tarheel17 commented:

    1/27/18, 9:56 PM - I understand your disappointment. Still, shouldn't this be marked "flawed" rather than 50 points?

  • tarheel17 commented:

    2/15/18, 9:11 AM - yeah, I gotcha. I hadn't read all your previous notes when I wrote that comment, I def see where you are coming from. Premox is so frustrating!

White - Sparkling
2006 Veuve Clicquot Ponsardin Champagne Brut La Grande Dame Champagne Blend
THIS is what I hope and dream of when I open prestige champagne. And so young! Terrific stuff. (It was NYE so I don't have better notes than that, too busy saying goodbye to 2017!)
  • tarheel17 commented:

    1/3/18, 6:22 PM - yes! I heard the same thing, and I'm glad I listened. :)

White - Sparkling
2007 Bollinger Champagne La Grande Année Champagne Blend
6/10/2017 - drwine2001 wrote:
Champagne Flight (K&L Wines, San Francisco): Slighter deeper color than the 2005, relatively few bubbles. Pear and far less oxidative notes. Medium weight, brighter, high toned citrus, excellent minerality, lots of soil, and the oxidative tone just provides an additional touch of complexity toward the finish. Truly excellent and I preferred it to the 2005 hands down. Should keep well given its focused core.
  • tarheel17 commented:

    7/7/17, 4:42 PM - sorry, trying to get this straight - you preferred the 2005 or the 2007?

  • tarheel17 commented:

    7/17/17, 3:48 PM - that's what I suspected. Thanks for the clarification!

Red
2007 Cadence Ciel du Cheval Vineyard Red Mountain Red Bordeaux Blend
Popped and decanted. Consumed over a few hours to see how it developed. Really interesting nose on this with aromas of soy sauce, red currant, mushroom and salted caramel. The palate was very fruit forward (but not sweet) with flavors of currants and raspberries along with a hint of coriander. Well structured body without being aggressive with the tannin. For the most part I think that 2007 wines are destined for early drinking, but this is one that I will tuck my last bottle into the corner of the cellar to see what it does "someday". Would purchase again.
  • tarheel17 commented:

    5/29/16, 8:32 PM - Hey Brian - I have a mag of this. What do you think - pop soon, or let rest? I may shuffle it out to the front for holiday drinking this year...

  • tarheel17 commented:

    6/10/16, 1:04 PM - great to know, thanks! I have not been drinking much 2007 WA wine for obvious reasons... :)

Red
2007 Betz Family Syrah La Côte Rousse Red Mountain
5/18/2015 - tarheel17 wrote:
As before, this performed admirably on day one with coffe and dark fruit, but after 2 days it was barely drinkable.
  • tarheel17 commented:

    5/20/15, 9:17 PM - That's because you don't have 2 kids under the age of 4. ;)

White - Sparkling
N.V. Charles Heidsieck Champagne Brut Réserve Champagne Blend
2/5/2015 - tarheel17 wrote:
92 points
Fantastic. Mis en cave 2008, disgorged 2012. Going back to buy more.
  • tarheel17 commented:

    2/20/15, 4:30 PM - You're right - this was probably based on 2007 - my bad. Still great, though. Bet the 2008-based one will be even better!

White - Sparkling
1996 Taittinger Champagne Brut Blanc de Blancs Comtes de Champagne Chardonnay
11/1/2014 - tarheel17 Likes this wine:
95 points
yay! back to drinking real wine!
In celebration of daughter #2, we opened this with family and take-out Thai.
The wine has a rich, sensual nose, with aromas softened in intensity, though still defined. There is bread, apple, citrus, and something spicy smeared across a blurred pastel palette of aroma (yes, the painter's palette - this is a metaphor, not a misspelling). I am reminded of something candied at first taste, but the mid-palate and finish are fruited without being fruity. The finish is long and, again, sensual. At room temperature a light caramel sensation emerges and it is super yummy. While a pretty amazing glass, this tastes like it has its entire life ahead of it. So an appropriate bottle to celebrate a 2-day old baby, I guess!

(Two family members said it was the best champagne they had ever tasted, but that might be my fault for not sharing amazing bottles with them on a regular basis...)
  • tarheel17 commented:

    11/2/14, 1:30 PM - It is in a nice spot right now...but there is absolutely no rush to drink one. Also, my mood *may* have been colored by the circumstances in which it was opened, so take from that what you will.

  • tarheel17 commented:

    12/5/14, 5:34 PM - nice! A good reason to have more kids - all the celebratory wine! (kidding. we're done now.)

Red
2009 Cadence Tapteil Red Mountain Red Bordeaux Blend
Pnp'ed. Very tight upon opening. Ended up getting distracted and not coming back to it until a few hours later and amazing the difference. It was a very meaty Syrah. Still too young, but we were craving something Washington and onsite and so not a ton of choices. Great value. Will hold on our other one for a few more years.
  • tarheel17 commented:

    11/21/14, 5:27 PM - This isn't a syrah?

Red
2010 Frederic Esmonin Ruchottes-Chambertin Ruchottes-Chambertin Grand Cru Pinot Noir
10/20/2012 - Winestein wrote:
93 points
Dark purple. Truffles. Rich forest fruits. Tasted all 9 Chambertin grand crus and this was the best of the night.
  • tarheel17 commented:

    7/31/14, 5:21 PM - so...should this note be under the 2010 vintage then?

Red
2009 Dashe Cellars Zinfandel Old Vines Todd Brothers Ranch Alexander Valley
2/10/2014 - tarheel17 wrote:
nose: dust, dried fruit. not too exciting.

palate: most surprising (not having tasted the producer before) is the med-high/high acid. It has a straightforward palate that is neither heavy/plush nor light/dynamic - rather staid, really. The long finish brings mostly tart red fruit with just the faintest bit of spice. Low-ish alcohol for a zin, though it is not entirely minimized.

I don't know that I would peg this as zinfandel necessarily. I like the low-octane persona, but the wine is just kinda boring. Perhaps travel-shocked - received it in the mail 2 days ago. Will hold final judgement until it has "settled" (although I'm not entirely sure that travel shock exists in wine, I remain willing to be disproven).
  • tarheel17 commented:

    2/11/14, 8:18 AM - agreed. Not what I was expecting from 5 year old fruit.

White - Sparkling
2006 Hervieux-Dumez Champagne Special Club Champagne Blend
7/1/2013 - tarheel17 wrote:
79 points
unfortunately, notes are from 3 days open in the fridge (corked with a FAT CORK re-usable champagne cork which exploded to the ceiling upon opening, so I can at least attest to its ability to maintain pressure). Don't ask why we left previously opened champagne in the fridge that long...

Anyway, the wine has lost some oomph in that time, and tastes watered down compared to what I remember from last week. Though the nutty, Sherry-light almond flavor is present, it is weak and easily overcome by an unexciting lemon citrus that only toys with herbal complexity. It is not wonderful now. It was better then, but not good enough for me to rush to writing a tasting note. Ah well, you can't win them all.
  • tarheel17 commented:

    1/2/14, 2:34 PM - I appreciate your input. I think the CT database is an invaluable source of tasting notes, and I do strive to be fair, accurate, and truthful in my notes. I should have been clearer in my text - the rating of 79 is from my experience on night 1, soon after opening. I sat down to write the note 2 nights later, re-tasting at the same time, in order to present a more thorough note (i.e., tastes/aromas from day 1 and day 3 experiences). My opinion is that this added information makes the note more useful than just "79".
    And to be clear, I do use the rating system widely recognized in the wine community and on this website, so 79 translates to "Average" which is what I thought this wine was, both on night 1 and night 3. We often taste champagne 24 or 48 hours after opening, and some of the best wines actually improve over that time. I hope that is helpful to you and other readers of this and other of my notes.

Red
2007 Betz Family Syrah La Côte Patriarche Yakima Valley
12/31/2010 - tarheel17 wrote:
nose: both red and dark fruits. Also slate and a touch of funk/barnyard, though it's not distracting.
palate: very tight. offering hardly anything. I get some coffee, some fruit, and a mouthful of tannin. This needs a lot of time sideways. Boo. Eric said it would be fun baby-killing! I'll try this again tomorrow (it was a virtual pop & pour...so sue me).
  • tarheel17 commented:

    11/21/13, 9:29 PM - I just saw this comment! :)
    Don't worry, I don't actually blame you for my baby killing in 2010. THough I think I'm simply too sensitive to alcohol to enjoy Betz wines these days. Tonight it was like a kick in the face!

White - Sparkling
N.V. Jacquesson & Fils Champagne Cuvée No. 736 Champagne Blend
9/18/2013 - tarheel17 wrote:
91 points
nose: pretty intense, with apple, orange rind and a festive, holiday nuttiness.
palate: high acid, but with a very plush and fruity feel to it, this was really quite lovely. The fruit was full and bouncy, like a happy 2008 should be. Long, long finish of nutmeg and lemon. Well done. .... at $65 this is a little on the high side for me, but it is so tasty the other drinker in the house doesn't even realize it is low dosage (shh...don't tell!). 91+

disgorged Oct 2012.
  • tarheel17 commented:

    9/19/13, 1:15 PM - yeah, I was really surprised at the price tag - good to know it's just K&L and not a producer-driven increase.

Red
2009 Ridge Geyserville Sonoma County Zinfandel Blend, Zinfandel
9/8/2013 - rocknroller wrote:
87 points
Dark red color. PNP, followed 1 glass plus over 2-3 hours. To call this an utter disappointment would be a gross understatement. Upon opening this was an alcoholic nightmare. The nose reeked of alcohol and the palate was alcohol, oak and more oak. Placed in decanter and checked at various points over the next 2 plus hours in addition to the original glass. After about 40 minutes this improved to the point where the nose became better, somewhat Port-like with raisin, plum, kirsch and some earth with oak and spices. The palate became marginally better, thin on the palate, medium body at best, heat, pepper, black raspberry, red plum, oak, firm tannins. Day 2 was mildly better, the nose improved, showing cedar, tobacco, red plum, spice, oak. The palate was still thin but had a bit nicer mouthfeel, pepper, heat, kirsch, plum, oak. 87 may be pushing it. not quite sure what to make of this, hopefully an aberration with this bottle, we shall as there are more to come.
  • tarheel17 commented:

    9/11/13, 9:38 PM - wow. that does sound dissappointing. I'm very sensitive to alc so this sounds like a lot of experiences I have had with other wines, but never geyserville. I haven't tasted the 09 yet, though. Do you mind if I ask at what temperature you drank it? I find that high alc wines I have to drink at well below 'ambient' temp (75-77 F) or the alcohol takes over.
    In any case, appreciate the warning.

  • tarheel17 commented:

    9/12/13, 8:01 AM - really great to know, thanks. I hope for both our sakes it proves to be an outlier! (I have 6 bottles somewhere....)

White - Sparkling
2002 Dom Perignon Champagne Champagne Blend
9/7/2013 - Eric wrote:
96 points
Wow, simply stellar. A very full, rich and easy vintage of Dom that reminds me a great deal of the 1996. Unusually toasty and bready and, well, easy. Approachable and round and vinous. Where Dom is usually edgy, a little creamy and fairly citric, this was expansive, complex and incredibly approachable. Truly delicious.
  • tarheel17 commented:

    9/11/13, 9:43 PM - So do you have a preference between the 2? Just curious, not that I have the option to buy any more of 1996....

    And Happy New Year!

Red
2003 Il Palazzone Brunello di Montalcino Sangiovese
Tarheel17, it's not your cellaring. This was less enjoyable than my bottle of a couple years ago, more of a hot mess, a victim of the vintage - and perhaps also of pop 'n pour, though it didn't improve appreciably over 2-3 hours. Came across to the missus and me as a a bit of a boozy, pruney mess, without any of the acidic tension that would've stood this in better stead with the tomato-sauced pasta and meatballs. Ah well, 'twas my last bottle of this, and I have only two more European '03s.
  • tarheel17 commented:

    8/30/13, 8:24 PM - Ha. Good (?) to see someone else had a similar experience. Not too excited about my second bottle, though! Oh well, you wine some, you lose some.

Red
1991 R. López de Heredia Rioja Gran Reserva Viña Tondonia Tempranillo Blend, Tempranillo
8/28/2013 - Papies wrote:
For us this wine is a story of one good bottle and 5 bottles looking for a repeat of that experience but to no unveil. We tried we promise.
Today the wine was light in colour and looked way older than a 91. Sweet Rioja core, good fruit , spice, delicate wine. A lot of earthy, mushroom notes. Good wine but given bottle variation we are not sure how characteristic of the wine this bottle was.
  • tarheel17 commented:

    8/28/13, 8:03 PM - do you mind sharing where you purchased your six bottles from? I only have 2, and now I'm scared to open them!

  • tarheel17 commented:

    8/29/13, 12:49 PM - Thanks for the information. Guess I"ll just have to hope for the best...

Red
1988 Opus One Napa Valley Red Bordeaux Blend
8/12/2010 - phenricsson wrote:
70 points
1988 Opus One. This was unfortunately slightly corked. Still possible to drink and OK in the mouth but there was definitely the wet cardboard smell on it. 70p.
  • tarheel17 commented:

    8/2/13, 7:10 PM - Why not mark it as flawed instead of giving it a numerical score?

Red
2009 Domaine du Pavillon de Chavannes Côte de Brouilly Cuvée des Ambassades Gamay
Had dominant notes of spoiled apple cider. Yuk.
  • tarheel17 commented:

    7/22/13, 2:45 PM - Do you think it was spoiled/flawed? Sounds like it.

Rosé - Sparkling
N.V. Lanson Champagne Brut Noble Cuvée Rosé Champagne Blend
4/14/2009 - tarheel17 wrote:
91 points
nose: strawberry milkshake, menthol cherry (normally that would be an unpleasant aroma for me, but it was quite nice in this instance)
palate: strawberry tart, lemon finish. Brisk, refreshing and delicious.
  • tarheel17 commented:

    5/7/13, 7:43 AM - I"m not sure what score you are referring to - my 91? I quite liked the wine, so to me that score seems fair. This was also 4 years ago that I tasted it, so I'm afraid I can't do much better than what is already written unless I tasted it again.

Red
2010 Domaine du Pavillon de Chavannes Côte de Brouilly Cuvée des Ambassades Gamay
8/6/2012 - Epic Tale wrote:
83 points
3/18/13 - another bottle, opened a day ago - taste: like licking tart strawberry essence from a (very clean) rock, to paraphrase a previous review, and followed by a medium-length vegetal flinty finish; overall: while I respect that this pour may please other palates, it's not a style I favor

8/6/2012 - 86 points - color: bright raspberry x light purple -- nice! nose: faint floral and candy; taste: lean mouth feel, cranberry taste, medium-length finish consisting of tart apple and chalk; overall: balanced Old World pour, probably better served with food (smoked salmon or cheese?) than by itself -- but, ultimately, neither my style nor a great value ($19).
  • tarheel17 commented:

    12/4/12, 7:33 PM - I have to say...I think smoked salmon would kill this wine deader than a doornail - the metallic underbelly of this beast would clash with the salmon skin to me. But palates differ - that's the beauty. If you try the pairing, let me know how it goes.

White - Sparkling
1996 Pol Roger Champagne Vintage Brut Champagne Blend
4/30/2011 - Racer117 wrote:
95 points
Tarheel17 described it perfectly, ".... appley goodness...." I had this along with the NV Pol Roger. This had a brilliant golden color, much darker than the NV. I found sweet apple (fuji?) aromas along with a wonderful mushroom note. Acidity is apple based with a good dose of minerality in there. Still moderately bubbly. I find this wine very complex but also singular (regarding a distinct aroma and/or flavor). A perfect match with oysters. Slurp, sip, repeat. I could get used to drinking this.....
  • tarheel17 commented:

    4/30/11, 8:46 PM - you know, we '17s' should stick together... Thanks for the shout-out!

Red
2006 Betz Family Cabernet Sauvignon Père de Famille Columbia Valley
2/16/2011 - Vinsant wrote:
Ok, went in with an open mind still looking for my Betz aha moment. Not a lot of luck with his Syrahs or Grenache. Lots of concentrated fruit, oak, and a little heat after a short decant. Tons of other wines at the table so I moved on. Well...took the leftovers (about a half full bottle) home the next day to share with the wife at dinner. AHA!!! The fruit had mellowed and tasted perfectly ripe with nice florals weaving in and out. The oak/chocolate had melted into the background to become a nice second or third thought instead of my first. An enjoyable enough bottle that I look forward to my next Betz experience.
  • tarheel17 commented:

    2/18/11, 5:19 AM - I'm so glad you liked it!

Red
2007 Betz Family Syrah La Côte Rousse Red Mountain
1/23/2011 - Anonymous wrote:
93 points
Tight, full-bodied blackberry fruit with toasty, smokey, and plum flavors, excellent structure, ample tannins, was much better and more expansive one day after openning, seemed to lack the clearly distinctive Walla Walla terroir flavors of other Washington wines, i.e. Cayuse
  • tarheel17 commented:

    1/25/11, 5:10 PM - That's probably because it's from Red Mountain, not Walla Walla. :)

Red
2000 Massolino Barolo Margheria Nebbiolo
4/17/2010 - traderspartan wrote:
61 points
Nasty, nasty stuff. Purnes and raisins. If you like prune and raisin juice, you will love this wine. Terrible. Was going to bring to dinner with friends, but it was so bad, I took another bottle after decanting for 2 hours.
  • tarheel17 commented:

    10/29/10, 11:15 AM - I think this may have been spoiled...I didn't get any prunes or raisins at all in my bottle. Do you think that may have been possible? How did the cork look? The descriptors sound like possible heat damage. In any case, I'm sorry you didn't enjoy the wine. I thought it fabulous.

Red
2003 Benjamin Romeo Rioja La Cueva del Contador Tempranillo
4/27/2010 - z_willus_d wrote:
93 points
Today seems a good time to evaluate this wine, despite a prevailing head-cold. Purchased over a year and a half ago for $68 and stored in a Eurocave since arrival.

85-min open in wide Riedel glass @70F--
COLOR- dark ruby red with a galaxy of particulate grape-must matter floating around and clinging to the glass sides (must be unfined/unfiltered); looks like a picnic on the beach, glass buried to the stem in sand when the wind blows hard on it all. NOSE- perceptible from 2 feet away. This smells of something serious and something a bit different from the usual Spanish fare -- great depth to the sweet cherry candy nose; floral aromas in the vein of wash detergent; plum-cherry reduction of a high-caliber restaurant style, red-meat or veal demi-glace in the saute pan; no perception of heat; makes you feel like you need to open your mouth on sniffing. PALATE- ho! this is interesting and, to be honest, exactly what I expected per reviews. Tangy, sour red cherry flavors dominate the palate and promote a copious amount of mouth-watering -- the focus of these flavors is rail-straight front-to-back. This is the kind of wine where you really need to keep your nose open through entry on sipping -- the transition from nose to palate is really quite remarkable. This is medium bodied, and I like it that way. Stated otherwise: "there's absolutely no fat in this wine. The mouthfeel is pristine and just a tad silty owning less to any perceived tannins and more, I think, to that galaxy of wine particles hanging around. I want to call the finish medium+ to long, but when you factor in the salivation response where the flavors rejuvenate themselves over and over with each gush, this really deserves to fall in the long-finish category. To recap on the flavors, besides the sour cherry bonanza, this expresses a nice flair for the floral in ways that make me think of fresh violets. What I don't get much of are dirt components or too much mineral. On full disclosure, I should mention the empty-glass sniff produced obvious sweaty, men's locker-room aromas that weren't apparent to me when there was wine in the glass (a serious funk that might turn the head of your lady friend or woman; kind of like an old a dying Christmas tree). This wine would be amazing with so many foods -- baked chicken of various sorts really pops to mind. I have to keep sniffing the empty glass -- it continues to evolve in such interesting ways! I can see how this scored in the lower 90's with the Pro's... tasting this alongside any number of other Spanish or "New World" derived wines, this one could easily be lost and only noted for it's spectacular finish. That's too bad, because this strikes me as a unique style (or perhaps one lost in recent times) most worthy of exultation. I've only had one wine in memory that showed similarly styled to this, and that was an older Rioja that I purchased at a restaurant for ~$45-. (Oh wait, I found it in my notes history - thank you all powerful CT. It was the 2001 R. López de Heredia Rioja Crianza Viña Cubillo.) That wine wasn't as well made as this, but it had a similar expression. As far as age-ability and relative drink-ability, I'm not sure... this wine has undeniable balance, but I don't pick up much in the way of tannin-structure. But there's all kinds of other structure here, so I could easily imagine this sailing on for many years, but I'm not the one to make the call. I think I'm addicted to the sour cherry. 94 points now; I'll check back in on it later tonight.

5-hours open in decanter @67F--
N: even more expressive, prettier, more floral (like expensive hand-soap), same serious depth and meatiness. P: t ta Ta Tangy sour cherry and very dry. Love the acid. Other than the outward exploding bouquet, this palate seems about the same as at init tasting; if anything, perhaps a touch more dry and austere. This is just screaming for a nice plate of cheese – high-end blue in particular would seem a good pairing, despite the more obvious Spanish cheese alternatives. This is one of those wines that boggles the mind in a search to explain just exactly how it was that GRAPE fruits were somehow managed in such as way as to produce such a thing. 93+ points now.

Day2, evening (having stored a half-glass at the bottom of a vacuumed-sealed decanter in the frig)--
N: At first, not popping as much, probably due to the cold liquid temp. As it warmed, the nose started to open back up, although never to the explosive levels displayed yesterday. But this is in no way tired or oxidized, and all the familiar aromas of cherry, bloody meat, violets, plum, and sweaty socks remain in motion. P: seems meatier and more integrated. The sourness persists but with less obvious fruit character (previously cherry), darker oriented. Long sour finish. Black currant. Bitter juice. Very, very dry. Overall, slightly less beguiling than yesterday with less pop and obvious fruit specificity, yet still a virtuoso of a wine. 92-points for the dregs on day2. I'm so glad I have more of this. Everything considered, this was a 93+ point bottle of wine. It can be fully enjoyed now (if this is your style), but I bet this will stay great and perhaps evolve some over the next decade.
  • tarheel17 commented:

    10/25/10, 4:41 PM - Wow. Is this the longest note in the database? Thanks for the detail!

Red
2005 Edmunds St. John Rocks and Gravel California Red Rhone Blend
9/23/2010 - tarheel17 wrote:
sweet and one-dimensional after a pop and pour, as others have noted. I will set aside and re-taste tomorrow. It's not bad, just not an embodiment of rocks, gravel, terroir, or anything particularly remarkable, except perhaps a California fruit stand.
  • tarheel17 commented:

    10/3/10, 9:52 AM - didn't get around to a re-taste until Day 3. By then it was dying. C'est la vie.

Red
2005 Fall Line Winery Red Wine Horse Heaven Hills Red Bordeaux Blend
8/8/2010 - tarheel17 wrote:
90 points
nose: clear, precise fruit. Bit of dusty slate to complement the red raspberry and blackberry
palate: tannin holds steady as fruit easily glides down the tongue. Berry flavors are more pronounced, with a forthright acidity down the middle. I think this is a very nice effort, with much more potential down the road. Very well done. 90+
  • tarheel17 commented:

    8/18/10, 11:24 PM - Hmmm.... I find them similar, sure. But Cadence is more refined, with a slightly higher acidity, I think. Also, I've only tasted the 2005 Fall Lines, so I'm not sure how thorough my answer can be. THough now I'm intrigued enough to stage a side-by-side tasting between the 2. Good idea!

Red
2006 Château de Beaucastel Châteauneuf-du-Pape Red Rhone Blend
8/18/2010 - ChinonRouge wrote:
I don't get it. My palate must lack the chemoreceptors for whatever people love about this wine.
  • tarheel17 commented:

    8/18/10, 11:19 PM - Love this note. I totally feel the sentiment. If not with this wine, then with others...

Red
2006 Quilceda Creek Red Wine Columbia Valley Red Bordeaux Blend
7/17/2010 - NTR wrote:
92 points
My first Quilceda Creek wine...nice nutty and cassis nose with a deep solid red color....a little astringent...perhaps young still...while a blend, the cab really comes out. I would expect with 10% cab franc and merlot that it would be a bit softer. This is a solid young wine. Blackberry pronounced...still tight...I really like this. If you see it one a wine list and you are eating steak, order it....you will not be disappointed...I for one will not open another until next year and review...this may be a 93 or a 94

As an aside, has anyone else noticed that CT score avg are far far more harsh than the wine critics. I am not sure what kind of lightening in a bottle the avg drinker expects. In my opinion this particular wine has scored too low on avg. Why I am not sure...perhaps everyone is incredibly particular but if this is a 91 whatever these people see as 99 or 100 must be unworldly. I have tasted and drunk hundreds of wines...some damn near awful in my younger less affluent days when I would buy a $12 wine I know would be OK and then augment it with a few throw aways at $6-$12 to expand my palate..every now and then you would hit a winner but boy were most just awful..now..a few years later and a few years more experiene and wealth... some wines I drink are off the charts and very exclusive..I am only now trying to attempt to comment more on the wines I drink....for this wine..it is borderline 93...and I have a feeling it may be 94....my grades are what a wine is NOW....not it's potential....
  • tarheel17 commented:

    7/18/10, 9:41 AM - It's really all a matter of preference. Everyone's palate is different. I don't think there is any reason to think "this wine has scored too low on average" because an average is just that, an average score of those who post tasting notes with scores. The beauty of CT is that instead of ONE score from ONE critic, you can read hundreds of scores and notes from hundreds of people who have tasted the wine. I'm glad you enjoyed this bottles so much.

White - Sparkling
N.V. Laurent-Perrier Champagne Demi-Sec Champagne Blend
4/18/2005 - Eric wrote:
Low-key Tasting Group does Champagne at Le Pichet (Seattle, WA, USA): This was just too sweet, too weighty, fairly awkward. What does a Demi-Sec match well with?
  • tarheel17 commented:

    6/24/10, 8:44 PM - anything!
    well, anything that is slightly sweet. Like caramelized onion frittata, or dates wrapped in proscuitto, or pear and gorgonzola quesidillas....

    I cook for someone who loves sweet things, can you tell?

Red
2006 Betz Family Syrah La Serenne Columbia Valley
Wrote and lost a long critique but needed to say what some others seem to be implying but not saying out right. I'm going to be much shorter this time.

Apparent flaws (and I mean apparent): H2S (more than should be forgiven, even in Syrah); vinegar from acetobactor infection; too much sulfite (ostensibly to control the previous flaw)

issues: alcohol out of balance to level that will never fade before the fruit does; aroma/flavor profile dominated strongly by coffee and grape/wood tannins (too much French oak and on the skins too long). These components do not balance one another but rather push each other more out of balance; the fruit is cooked, stewed and muddled. A fresh component might have saved this wine.

On the plus side: nice anise and brush tones well-integrated.

Day 2: flattened out, but then was totally unremarkable and ordinary if big.
  • tarheel17 commented:

    6/13/10, 6:16 PM - Actually, I think Hank was referring to my note. He 'called me out' so to speak. I actually was pretty disappointed with this bottle recently, and though I did not give it a numerical score, my notes closely aligned with Hank's. I'm really bummed, and hoping time greatly improves the bottle, as I own a lot of Betz, and a lot from 2006. For the record, the 2005s and 2004s I've had from this producer have rocked my world. Don't know what the deal is with this vintage. Granted, I only have 2-3 2006 sample points, so I'm withholding any serious evaluation until more data is available.

Red
2005 Betz Family Cabernet Sauvignon Père de Famille Columbia Valley
5/16/2010 - WaWineFan in TX wrote:
87 points
What the heck happened? Had this wine about a year ago and it was wonderful, would have given it around a 95 at that time. Opened another today with a steak and decanted for a couple of hours. It was flat, unidimensional, and completely uninspiring. Not at all the wine I remembered and definitely not worth the $65.00. I hope that the 3 I have left turn around with time or I am going to be very unhappy.
  • tarheel17 commented:

    5/16/10, 7:03 PM - I had a similar experience with a few of betz's 2006s. I was frankly shocked at how boring and actually alcoholic the merlot and syrah (la serenne) tasted recently. I, too, am socking them away in hopes that time will reveal true beauty. keep those fingers crossed!

Rosé - Sparkling
2000 Vilmart & Cie Champagne Premier Cru Grand Cellier Rubis Champagne Blend
11/30/2009 - Alex H wrote:
83 points
Spritzy olive oil and fishy tomatoes and mature cherries.Got some rotten eggs too. On the palate though, it is fresh with tomatoes and chickadees. More focused tasted out of a flute than a normal glass. A bit short but rather balanced effort.Towards the end, this really changed to a different beast and displayed weigthier red fruits and satisfying mouthfeel.
  • tarheel17 commented:

    4/19/10, 12:02 AM - I have never eaten a chickadee. Did it taste like fowl?

Red
2008 Loring Wine Company Pinot Noir Shea Vineyard Willamette Valley
4/15/2010 - jbfitts wrote:
85 points
As a fan of Loring this bottle fell a little short for me. The wine was very one dimensional and didn't have the "slow burn" I would like to see in a good Pinot. Admittedly I drank this on the young side but I don't see it developing in to anything special with aging. For the money it was a decent buy.
  • tarheel17 commented:

    4/15/10, 10:48 PM - I'm curious: what is a "slow burn"? Why would you want it in your pinot?

Red
2008 La Vieille Ferme (Perrin & Fils) Ventoux Red Rhone Blend
4/4/2010 - tarheel17 wrote:
84 points
nose: very cranberried. Simple.
palate: Drinks above it's $8 price point. Dirty and earthy, it still features tasty, though pruney fruit. Food wine.
  • tarheel17 commented:

    4/6/10, 10:34 PM - after 48 hours (screwed cap back in and stuck in fridge) this remained palatable and tasty. I would buy this again for $8 - kicks the pants off most CA/aus blends

Red
2008 Loring Wine Company Pinot Noir Russian River Valley
3/2/2010 - tarheel17 Likes this wine:
89 points
The good: straightforward, bright fruit, silken texture. Handled its own with steak tip chili. Simple, but simply pleasant.
The bad: At times, akin to metallic cherry juice, with a slight alcoholic edge.
The summary: very nice for $26. Makes me wonder why I shell out for 'regular' Lorings for $20 more. Definitely worth the $. 88-89 pts
  • tarheel17 commented:

    3/25/10, 10:39 PM - agreed. Sadly, I think Brian Loring may have shot himself in the foot after this one. That $46 feels like a steep climb at the moment...

Red
2004 Northstar Merlot Columbia Valley
3/7/2010 - tarheel17 wrote:
90 points
K&S shared this with us over dominoes. THere was a LOT of sediment in the bottle, just FYI for anyone preparing to drink one in the future.
Good stuff all around, a little smokiness and mocha-like oak flavors. I would definitely drink again.
  • tarheel17 commented:

    3/25/10, 10:34 PM - STV - sadly, I was in no position to judge future potential of this wine at the time of drinking but it certainly wasn't showing signs of a downward slope. SOmetimes it's harder for me to evaluate when sediment comes into play, too. If I had some in the cellar, I would certainly be in no rush to open the bottles.

Rosé
2006 Domaine Tempier Bandol Rosé Mourvedre Blend, Mourvedre
3/12/2010 - tarheel17 wrote:
91 points
minerals, meet strawberry. strawberry, meet minerals. now have a blast, you two, locked up in this bottle, and try not to fight too much amongst yourselves OK? You're both equally delicious, I assure you.
  • tarheel17 commented:

    3/25/10, 10:31 PM - greenblanket - I had no idea you commented. Is there an alert system?

    Anyway, this wine was fabulous and I"m jealous that you have more awaiting your whimsy. So easy to pair with, and so delicious on its own. Enjoy it when you do open it!

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