Tasting Notes for aaronfullen

(17 notes on 17 wines)

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Red
2/17/2020 - aaronfullen Does not like this wine:
75 points
Complete plonk. Accidentally drank a bottle of this apres-ski and needed a beer to wash the taste away.
Red
1989 Château Cantemerle Haut-Médoc Red Bordeaux Blend (view label images)
10/16/2018 - aaronfullen Likes this wine:
94 points
This was an unexpected treat. Purchased bottle at auction. Fill was great. Cork was almost too pristine leading me to believe that the bottle was stored standing up for at least most of its life. Based on first taste, didn't decant as I didn't think it would benefit the wine. Let the bottle sit (with two small glass poured) for a half hour open on the counter.

Wine was delicious. Expressive nose of flowers and graphite. In the mouth (early in the night) the tannins had almost disappeared, the acidity was there and the wine had an almost ethereal weight on the palate. Got a bit of a soy sauce note that was pleasing. Fruit was definitely in the background. Finish was lovely and demure.

An hour later, this was a completely different wine. Tannins mysteriously reappeared and asserted themselves. Fruit came to the surface in a lovely way as the wine gained a sweetness that paired beautifully with the acid.

Last glass tasted like a young wine. First glass tasted fully mature. Pretty much the exact opposite of the evolution I expected over two hours for such an old wine.

Great experience sipping this one. Wish I had more.
Red
3/9/2018 - aaronfullen Likes this wine:
91 points
This was delicious. Almost an electric, candy apple purple color in the glass. Just sat there looking at it for a while as it was beautiful in the glass.

On the nose, smells like a basket of mixed fresh fruit (think Carmen Miranda)

Palate was super surprising. Medium minus body. Not peppery or heavy or astringent as Malbec can sometimes be. Just pleasing red fruits, gentle smooth tannins and refreshing acidity.

Really liked this wine and very different from South American malbecs I've had. Fresh, delicious, food-friendly and gone in a hurry.

I doubt Lagier Meredith has ever made a bad bottle of wine.

Plan to buy more soon.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
3/8/2018 - aaronfullen Likes this wine:
86 points
Had this last night with steak and endive.

I think this wine is in a "dumb" phase right now. Decanted for about 90 minutes before dinner and drank over two hours. Smelled funky in the decanter but the funk blew off by the time it was in the glass. First sip seemed very hollow on the mid-palate. This is ordinarily a powerful, albeit balanced, wine. Not so tonight as the ribeye absolutely dominated the wine.

Wine developed weight over the course of the evening. This was the first bottle of two cases so will probably wait at least a year before popping the next one.

86 tonight but potential for low-nineties over time.
Red
1978 Château Beychevelle St. Julien Red Bordeaux Blend (view label images)
3/8/2018 - aaronfullen wrote:
flawed
This was a bottle purchased on auction with good fill. There was some mold (or something greenish) between capsule and cork. Cork was ok aside from the top.

For me, this bottle was way, way past its prime to the point that actually finishing a glass was a tough call. Color was good; a faded garnet. Not very aromatic.

Palate was leather, old wood, potentially a bit of TCA.

Not going to rate this wine as it isn't the bottle's fault I drank it much too late.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
10/31/2017 - aaronfullen Likes this wine:
94 points
This was a beautiful bottle of wine in its prime drinking window.

Nose of florals and mint.

Palate is medium plus body, perfect balance of remaining tannin and acid, flavors of candied red fruits, mint, roses and the blood undertones I find so alluring with Seavey wines.

We popped and poured (no decant) and it improved and then stabilized after about a half hour in the glass. I wouldn't expect further improvement with more cellar time. This wine is ready to go and if you still have some, I'd say now is the time to pop a cork and enjoy.

-af
1 person found this helpful Comment
White
4/10/2017 - aaronfullen Likes this wine:
93 points
This wine blew me away. I've never tasted Torrontes before so I don't know if it's the producer that's special of the varietal, but wow, I wasn't expecting this.

If you had one word to describe this wine, it would be "fresh."

Same color as lemon juice in the glass. Most aromatic white I've ever smelled. When we opened the bottle, our kitchen smelled like we just brought big bunches of clean white flowers in to put in vases.

Nose is white flowers and a hint of white pepper and peach.

Delicious on the palate. Beautiful acidity and tastes like someone put honeysuckle and peaches in the Vitamix.

Spectacular white wine. Best QPR of any wine I've ever had.

Kicking myself for only buying six of these on Wine Access when shipping was free. Just bought another 18 @ $11/bottle but got dinged for $60 in shipping.

Whatever. This should be a $40 wine. Gorgeous and unlike anything I've tasted before. Get some. 93+
1 person found this helpful Comments (1)
Red
3/30/2017 - aaronfullen Likes this wine:
90 points
This was was absolutely delicious. Nose of red fruit and graphite. Palate is all red fruit and a little baking spice.

Medium body, fully integrated tannin and a medium length finish.

Wasn't expecting to like this wine (needed to clear my six out of the cellar to make way for "good" stuff) but this bottle provided a ton of enjoyment.

This wine is in a perfect spot. Not too early; not too late. Drink 'em if you got 'em.
Red
2014 Chimney Rock Elevage Stags Leap District Red Bordeaux Blend (view label images)
3/24/2017 - aaronfullen wrote:
84 points
I know I drank it too young but a pretty unremarkable. Nothing to write home about.

Wife (who has a better palate than I) really dug it and claimed to taste sweet cherry. I just tasted California wine done in a "just like everyone else" style.

I've had these with age on them and they're nice, but at almost $90 bucks, rotten QPR. Seavey Merlot is cheaper and far superior, IMO.
Red
3/24/2017 - aaronfullen wrote:
90 points
I was stunned this thing still had life in it. But it definitely did.

Cork and fill were great. Wine had a foundation of tart cherry with some balancing earthy flavors and a little tannin still hanging around.

Enjoyable bottle and very impressive that a 21 year old Crianza is still pleasurable to drink.
Red
2/14/2017 - aaronfullen Likes this wine:
85 points
Unfortunately, this one is at the beginning of its decline while still being interesting and enjoyable.

Bought at auction and looks to have been stored properly. Cork and fill were both good. Wine is showing some light signs of bricking in the glass. Left open for about a half hour and then consumed over 90 minutes

The nose is great smelling, but not especially strong. I picked up cherry, raisin and forest floor with a bit of menthol.

In the front of the mouth you can tell the fruit is still hanging in there and the tannins have fully resolved. The wine still has a nice acidity.

The problem is the finish. It fades quickly and the note I picked up over the others was a cherry Ludens cough drop. It leaves your soft palate feeling as if you've been sucking on one, too.

The other thing about this wine that stood out was the alcohol and how it came across as a distinct flavor on its own rather than coloring the other flavors. It was as if the tongue said, "okay, alcohol on this side; all other flavors on the other." It wasn't something I'd tasted in a wine before. It wasn't unpleasant (or particularly pleasant), just different.

The first glass was better than the last re: the finish which leads me to believe I made the right call by not decanting.

I feel like I just missed the window on this one. It was still a nice experience and there's still plenty to think about in the glass but if you still have some of this, I'd drink up.
2 people found this helpful Comment
Red
12/1/2016 - aaronfullen wrote:
87 points
Not a great showing for this wine and was particularly disappointed based on how well the '99 drank a few nights ago.

It seems the structure outlasted the fruit on this one. Didn't get the expressive plum nose and flavors in this one like I did with the '99 and the mineral element was absent also.

Certainly wasn't a bad wine but seemed a bit monotonic without the layers and complexity of the '99. Could have been a bad bottle but it was my only one.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
11/28/2016 - aaronfullen wrote:
94 points
This is a gorgeous wine, just entering it's peak drinking window. There were no signs of age and the wine was a very dark purple all the way to the edge.

Nose of dried plum, cherry and tobacco. Similar palate with ad added mineral component.

Tasted immediately after opening and then decanted and consumed over the next 2.5 hours. The wine definitely improved over time with the flavors loosening and singing on their own rather than drowning each other out as on opening taste.

Tannins are still firm but polished. Fruit and structure should allow this to improve in the next five years an age well for at least an additional ten.

Very elegant, enjoyable wine.
3 people found this helpful Comment
Red
10/28/2016 - aaronfullen Likes this wine:
99 points
I tasted this wine at the vineyard two weeks ago. Although I haven't tasted every wine in Napa, I've done 85% of the cabs CT'ers swoon over.

In my opinion, this is the finest example of Napa cabernet in the 2013 vintage. It's special.

It looks like thinned blood in the glass and swirls in lush waves of purple with red highlights. The smell is a lot easier to compare with emotions than it is with standard foods. There's mineral there, some iron and some strawberry. I also got hints of burnt butter and tiny New England blueberries. In truth, though, the best way to describe this wine's nose is to call it equal parts joy and grief.

The joy and grief translate beautifully from nose to mouth. It's concentrated like a laser. There are notes of dark chocolate-dipped strawberries dipped again in cognac. There are chalk notes and dried cranberries and bramble and slate. Ultimately, though, what you're drinking is concentrated joy and later, a lasting grief in the finish because wine, even truly great wines like this one are fleeting, with us long enough to magnify a moment and consigned to memory the next morning.

I encourage you to buy as much of this as you can put your paws on. It's a steal at just over $100 and price aside, is (and will be in 35 years) a better wine than the "cult" bottles which have less finesse, less style and ultimately, less joy and grief than the 2013 Seavey Cabernet.

The 2013 Seavey Cabernet is a perfect example of what wine, given the right weather and care and thoughtfulness and courage, can be.

-af

9 people found this helpful Comments (2)
Red
10/25/2016 - aaronfullen wrote:
85 points
Decanted for a half hour and then poured and allowed to rest in the glass for another fifteen minutes. Had a second glass after an hour break.

This one isn't giving up much yet. Very faint nose of licorice and RC Cola but certainly not bursting with aroma at this stage in its development. Tannins are still the most dominant feature of the palate and they're pretty rough hewn. I had difficulty discerning much beyond the tannins.

Finish was medium.

Either decant for a couple hours (vs. the 30 minutes I gave it) or wait another year to open the next one.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
10/19/2016 - aaronfullen wrote:
84 points
There's nothing glaringly wrong with this wine. There's nothing particularly good that stands out either. It doesn't have much of a nose, light to medium body and a good bit of dusty fruit on the palate. It has a short, fairly pleasant finish.

At $12, it's a decent value and a good match with afternoon burgers and hot dogs on a weekend (during cooking and eating) where you plan to drink a few glasses over the course of the day.

-af
2 people found this helpful Comment
Red
2013 Ridge Monte Bello Santa Cruz Mountains Red Bordeaux Blend (view label images)
10/18/2016 - aaronfullen wrote:
97 points
Tasted at the Monte Bello Vineyard.

This is one of the top five cabs in California. Wine will only get better with time but is completely in balance now. Smells like toasted almonds, violets, dark fruits and herbs.

Tannins are perfectly round and the wine has a great acidity.

Not any kind of "bomb." Just an exceptionally well balanced wine with great aromatics and a lovely finish that will appeal to those whose tastes run more Beethoven than Wagner.

-af
5 people found this helpful Comment
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  • Tasting Notes: 17 notes on 17 wines
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