Comments on my notes

(13 comments on 12 notes)

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Red
2015 Bodegas Sierra Cantabria Rioja Colección Privada Tempranillo
12/7/2019 - CheviotCellar Likes this wine:
91 points
Decanted for 3 hours then drank over the next 4 hours.

This is a very good wine, though is modern in style for Rioja. Heavy usage of American oak here somewhat disguises the underlying fruit. What I can tell though of the fruit is that its nice quality and silky.

Nose has roasted notes, tobacco, chocolate, lead.

Palate has similar along with blue and black fruits. Stronger tannins. We found them enjoyable, but you may want to wait a few years for this to settle down.

QPR at $40 seems spot on. I've heard some comparisons with La Rioja Alta Ardanza or even 904 but I don't get it; the nose complexity and tertiary flavors of LRA are a completely different class ahead. Then again, those wines don't come to market until they're 8-10 years old, so will be worth checking back on this Sierra Cantabria in 5 years to see if its matured.
  • CheviotCellar commented:

    12/12/19, 1:52 PM - Appreciate the feedback; thanks for weighing in!

Red
2015 Château La Dominique St. Émilion Grand Cru Red Bordeaux Blend
10/5/2019 - CheviotCellar Likes this wine:
92 points
Dark body, glass staining legs. Nose has cherry kirsch, cedar, plum, sweet perfume; requires several hours decant and swirling to get.

Palate has strong tannin, plump and deep fruit palate. Heady, lots of black cherry, plum. Some heat and spice in the long finish. Should settle down and become special with more time. Would give 5 years until trying again.
  • CheviotCellar commented:

    12/4/19, 12:41 PM - I don’t think so. They way modern Bordeauxs are constructed, it will go through a shy phase and eventually bounce back with time and/or heavy decant. There is not an oppressive tannic structure holding things back. At this price point, not much downside trying one now.

Red
2009 La Rioja Alta Rioja Gran Reserva 904 Tempranillo Blend, Tempranillo
11/30/2019 - brewnello wrote:
93 points
Much better than 6 mos ago. Dried cherries with touch of layers - iodine, bark, balanced and integrated with long finish. Cucumber?
  • CheviotCellar commented:

    12/2/19, 9:15 PM - How long to decant?

Red
2014 Cimarossa Cabernet Sauvignon Rive di Cimarossa Howell Mountain
11/3/2019 - CheviotCellar wrote:
91 points
This is inky, very dark stuff. Don't be scared to give it a long decant, more than 4 hours if possible. It was rather closed through the first few hours and was more drinkable on day 2. It worked better with food than on its own. As dense and concentrated as the blue and black fruit flavors are, this wine is simply too hot to be considered high end. While this might work in a Rhone blend, in a 100% cab sav, it does not. Even with food, we felt this wine was too astringent and edgy (not in a good way). Time will tell if it gains tertiary flavors and complexity, but high alcohol typically doesn't bode well. For the price and tasting experience, I wouldn't buy this again.
  • CheviotCellar commented:

    11/4/19, 7:33 AM - Mark, I hope my comments weren’t too cautionary. My 91 rating does reflect some dense, pure fruit flavors. I just felt it lacked the smoothness of some of its competitors at this price point. That said, we’ve had very few wines from Howell Mtn. Is the higher abv common for the 2014 vintage there?

Red
2010 Château Lagrange (St. Julien) Red Bordeaux Blend
8/2/2019 - sean7711 Likes this wine:
89 points
Blind tasting Cab & Cab blends around the world
Served 6 of 9
My Rank 5 of 9
Overall Rank 8 of 9

Definite earthiness, tart cherry, light, not overly fruity. Called Bordeaux. Others did not like this, but was not surprising given what I know from their palettes.
  • CheviotCellar commented:

    8/6/19, 3:54 PM - Can you share some of the wines it was up against? I haven’t had this yet but do have some bottles in cellar.

Red
2009 Château Arnauton Fronsac Red Bordeaux Blend
1/27/2019 - CheviotCellar Likes this wine:
88 points
Pours deep garnet, brown tones show age. Nose has red cassis, stewed strawberry, chocolate, cigarette smoke, and sandalwood. Palate has red rich currant, plum, eucalyptus, light tannins, medium-light acidity. Decent finish. Slight metallic note that drops this down from a 90. Finely mature bordeaux at a great price: 88.5-89. No rush, 2-5 years left.
  • CheviotCellar commented:

    6/10/19, 6:00 PM - I suspect my bottle was not as well kept as your bottles. I only purchased it in January from a retail store where it had been on the shelf for an unknown amount of time. For a decade old bordeaux with these qualities and modest price, I agree this is a very good value.

Red
2017 Luigi Pira Dolcetto d'Alba
3/9/2019 - RobinHeimdahl wrote:
87 points
First bottle was corked.

Second botte - good.
  • CheviotCellar commented:

    3/10/19, 7:44 PM - Where did you buy it from?

Red
2015 Château Fleur Cardinale St. Émilion Grand Cru Red Bordeaux Blend
1/2/2019 - Lahontan Likes this wine:
89 points
I know it is early to drink, but even with that in mind it was a disappointment (especially after some of the dithyrambic reviews out there from well-respected tasters). Feels completely closed. Nose and palate totally muted, perfumes v. faint. The only plus is texture which reminds you that a good, high-quality wine is lurking somewhere around there. Here's hoping it will reemerge someday.
  • CheviotCellar commented:

    1/2/19, 3:58 PM - I had a similar disappointing experience. More new world than expected. We wil wait a few more years before trying the next bottle. Perhaps the one we had was off.

Red
2007 La Rioja Alta Rioja Viña Ardanza Reserva Tempranillo Blend, Tempranillo
1/19/2018 - CheviotCellar Likes this wine:
93 points
This bodega has the most amazing aromas in their wines. Recently had the 904, and the Ardanza is in the same class. The cork had enticing aromas of spruce, dark chocolate and raspberry.

Pours dark cranberry, also with orange hues like the 904. Nose has leather, brown sugar, chocolate, fresh caramel, orange peel, golden raisin and faint plum. Perfect look and nose.

Mouth feel is a little lighter than I was expecting, mild tannins. Palate still bears lots of rich fruit and appropriate acid: plum, dark cherry, brown sugar, oak. I think it's in the prime window over the next 2 years.
  • CheviotCellar commented:

    2/23/18, 11:53 AM - James, I am not sure. LRA wines don't last past day 1 in my house (unless finishing it just after midnight counts) :)

    I would not be surprised though if it degraded after 24 hours. Already more than a decade old, I think it is losing life and will not hold up like the 904.

  • CheviotCellar commented:

    7/9/18, 12:04 PM - Yes, The 2007 probably will hold up for some time. I've had a couple of bottles from this vintage and they are accessible with a 1-3 hour decant, unlike some other wines of this age that are tight are closed off on fruit. It will be really interesting to see how this further evolves a decade or more from now.

    I will also say that I am less impressed with the 2008 and am not sure about its cellaring potential.

Red
2010 Blankiet Estate Prince of Hearts Napa Valley Red Bordeaux Blend
11/13/2017 - bonedoc wrote:
92 points
Ditto last note
  • CheviotCellar commented:

    7/5/18, 8:41 PM - How long do you recommend decanting?

Red
2010 Bodegas Baigorri Rioja de Garage Tempranillo
1/29/2016 - macaujames Likes this wine:
93 points
This wine is superb value at under 30 Euros. Simple but broad aromas of raspberries, strawberries, cloves, coffee and menthol. Has a full bodied palate with superb concentration and lushness underpinned by great freshness and good oak. Ends longish, fresh and aromatic. Impressive.
  • CheviotCellar commented:

    2/23/18, 12:43 PM - Goes for $80 USD in Washington, DC bottle shop! I'm jealous.

Red
2008 Gamache Vintners Cabernet Sauvignon Columbia Valley
2/5/2015 - gorvetzi Likes this wine:
92 points
I've bought over 10 bottles of this 08 Gamache cab, and every single one has been excellent...I only have two left, and will include more detailed notes after consuming those. However, if you're a lover of fruit bombs, this is one of the biggest and most dense I've ever had, yet it carries it all very well, with great silky tannins. Perhaps it is somewhat monolithic and hedonistic, but its a very fun bottle of wine and when you're in the mood for a high quality fruit bomb, I haven't had much luck finding anything better in this price range. 92-93
  • CheviotCellar commented:

    2/23/18, 12:11 PM - I just picked up one of these. Very interested to see how its drinking now, 3 years since the last review. Have you tried it again?

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