Comments on my notes

(30 comments on 24 notes)

1 - 24 of 24 Sort order
Rosé - Sparkling
2016 Argyle Brut Rosé Willamette Valley Champagne Blend
10/16/2020 - Rick & Ilsa wrote:
91 points
First bottle from half case. This is a bit bigger than the 2015. Nice pink color, raspberry and citrus on the nose. Same on the palate, very dry, lots of acidity, crisp, flinty, and probably a little early. This should improve some with a little more time in the bottle.
  • Rick & Ilsa commented:

    10/18/20, 2:38 PM - Don't drink a lot of rose' but like Argyle in general. These are enjoyed by my friends and go for around $35 per bottle.

Red
2009 Château Beausejour (Duffau Lagarrosse) St. Émilion Grand Cru Red Bordeaux Blend
9/17/2020 - JonnyG Likes this wine:
98 points
Bordeaux Night with a Wonderful Mix of Friends New and Old (A suitably spaced tasting room in Los Olivos, CA): My winner amongst a killer flight of three 2009s, the others being Pichon (Baron) and Trotanoy, though a majority of the others had it third (though still delicious). Decanted for 6+ hours. Intense, enticing aromatics of dark fruit, gravel, some floral and herbal elements and sweet spice. Concentrated and intense on the palate as well, suave, pure and silky, with plum and herbal notes well balanced by a mineral backbone. The oak is fully evident. Sweet tannins on the lengthy finish. I could see this approaching perfection with time.
  • Rick & Ilsa commented:

    9/20/20, 6:18 AM - Enjoyed reading your tasting note as I completely agree. This wine seems to be somewhat divisive, so it is refreshing to see someone extoling the virtues of this excellent wine.
    Sante'

Red
2000 Château Saint-Saturnin Médoc Red Bordeaux Blend
9/5/2020 - PIntag wrote:
13.0% abv.
Started out funky and reduced (practically undrinkable) so I let this sit overnight in the fridge. This helped get rid of the funkiness, but this was not very pleasant, with coarse tannins and mouth feel and some bitter notes. Maybe this bottle is drying out and leaving tannin. Not sure about the previous poster declaring no wood to be a "modern" style - I'm under the impression that Bordeaux "modern" style is what Michel Rolland is doing in St. Emilion, with 200% new oak and micro-oxygenation, not concrete egg fermentation (or is this maybe post-modern style?) . In any case, given the previous recent notes, I've got to think this is an advanced or flawed bottle.
  • Rick & Ilsa commented:

    9/7/20, 5:39 PM - Hello Pintag,
    My understanding of the modern style is the same as yours. When I said "slightly modern" in style, I was referring to the fact that to me, the wine seemed slightly fruit forward. Sorry your bottle was flawed.
    Sante'

  • Rick & Ilsa commented:

    9/9/20, 6:24 PM - Got to admit, I think that's the right call.
    Sante'

White
2012 Secret de Grand Bateau Blanc Bordeaux Sauvignon Blanc
9/4/2020 - Rick & Ilsa wrote:
88 points
Soft and easy Bordeaux Sauv Blank that still shows pretty well for what it is. White stone fruits, lemon, mixed citrus and a slight grassy element, this has enough acidity to still maintain some balance. Been drinking these for years and the fruit and brightness that showed when younger is starting to fade a bit. Drank 2 bottles with friends (distancing) with both bottles showing the same.
  • Rick & Ilsa commented:

    9/5/20, 7:28 AM - Used to spend some time there when I first sighed up. Now I usually just check "Community notes on my wines" as there are usually several new notes each day. Easy to spend an hour or so on this site reading thru all the notes. You can always contact me thru my email posted on my profile.
    All the best..

Red
2009 Château Lyonnat Lussac-St. Émilion Cuvée Emotion Red Bordeaux Blend
9/2/2020 - Rick & Ilsa wrote:
90 points
This is why I usually buy some of the lesser chateau in great vintages. Nice right bank that over delivers. Black fruits and berries, some leather and forest floor, tannins resolving with some still noticeable cedar. Not complex, but a solid wine for the price. Will outlast the ct drinking window it seems.
  • Rick & Ilsa commented:

    9/3/20, 7:07 PM - Hello Mhbeaune,
    Glad you enjoyed the brief note. For my palate (and pocketbook) buying lesser Chateau in excellent vintages that are also highly reviewed by professionals I respect, ie. Jancis Robinson, Lisa Perrotti-Brown, etc, has been a good strategy for me. Of course nice to have some of the big boys around, but these are nice to drink while they sleep, and help give me an early window into the vintage. For example, recently the 2018 Chateau Laroque may well be such a wine.
    Stay well,
    Sante'

  • Rick & Ilsa commented:

    9/4/20, 5:54 PM - Appreciate that. I do get to Europe every year or two. Don't be surprised if I reach out before the next trip, especially if France is on the agenda.

Red
2009 Domaine de Chevalier Pessac-Léognan Red Bordeaux Blend
8/6/2020 - chatters wrote:
Coravin fun - Domaine de Chevalier rouge; 8/4/2020-8/12/2020 (My place, Kent Street): From Coravin. Aromas of plums, blackcurrant, a little cassis, sweet spice and a smidge of black cherry. Under this is a touch of pencil shavings, cedar and a touch of wood glue. It's a little ripe and a little soft on the palate for me and, arguably, it's a touch anonymous. Flavours are quite Ribena with a lick of black cherry, tannins are quite soft and all carries long. I would hope that time will help here as the nose promises much.
  • Rick & Ilsa commented:

    8/11/20, 9:41 PM - Appreciated your notes on the '09 and '10 Domaine de Chevalier. Sounds like at this point you preferred the '10 to the '09. Curious which you thought holds the higher potential for the future and maybe a time line. Thank you.
    Sante'

  • Rick & Ilsa commented:

    8/12/20, 6:32 AM - Just went thru your tasting notes and saw your vertical of DdC, impressive, and I'm a little jealous. I do have a fair amount of the 2009 and a few bottles of both the 2010, and the 2015 in my cellar. I've been holding off because in general I prefer secondary and tertiary characteristics in wines from the left bank, whereas I seem to enjoy the right bank wines earlier. The Cabernet vs the Merlot component I suppose. I have been an early adopter of the coravin, but in at home experiments I found that bottles compared, after 1 - 2 years after being coravined, with others not coravined seemed much more advanced and in a couple of cases, corked. I've been reading your "coravin fun" notes for several years and almost reached out before to see if you've had any problems. Anything you're doing different that you've learned thru that process?

    Anyway, thanks for the response, keep up the good work with the coravin fun notes. Guess I'll dust off the coravin and check out the 2009 at least.

    All the best.

  • Rick & Ilsa commented:

    8/13/20, 6:05 AM - Thanks for the advice, makes good sense. I'll adopt some sort of a similar program to accomplish the same, and try it on a few bottles. Added myself to your fan list to help highlight your notes.

    Stay healthy,
    Sante' Dave

White - Sparkling
2006 Dom Pérignon Champagne Champagne Blend
8/11/2020 - Tgroenne wrote:
Perfect harmony already, very easy drinkable - no need for food. Light, inviting ...just far to small a bottle (normal size)
  • Rick & Ilsa commented:

    8/11/20, 9:54 PM - Hello TGROENNE, If you wish to edit or change your tasting note, at the top right of your home screen you will see "My tasting notes." If you click on that your notes will come up and in the top line at the end, you will see "edit." Click there and change to whatever you want. Welcome!
    Sante'

Red
1998 Château Haut-Bergey Pessac-Léognan Red Bordeaux Blend
8/10/2020 - pavel_p Likes this wine:
90 points
Pnp with dinner at home. Was hoping for a surprise but not expecting one as I have found Haut Bergey to have too much oak for my taste in the past. I recall drinking 2000/2006/2007/2009/2010 without being too impressed in the context of the respective vintage. 1998 was of course a much better vintage for Graves than the rest of the left bank, and this is my kind of food wine. Still a fairly dark garnet in the glass, forest floor and dark fruit on the nose, this wonderful freshness on the palate, oh, how I miss those 12.5% alcohol in my Bordeaux of recent years. Oak has been perfectly absorbed, and the tannins are equally well integrated. Short to medium finish - but does it really matter when you are reaching out for the next sip already?
  • Rick & Ilsa commented:

    8/10/20, 6:44 PM - Appreciated and agree with your note on the HB. I've still got a few bottles of the '96 and '98 and they're fine. The '05 was a timberfest to me and I sold my bottles. Still sitting on some '09 and '10 with the same problem and hope time will help.
    Sante'

White - Sweet/Dessert
2007 Château Rieussec Sauternes Sémillon-Sauvignon Blanc Blend
3/23/2020 - Mhbeaune Likes this wine:
93 points
for a number of years I have felt I have too many really sweet top quality dessert wines in my cellar. The problem is they are just such great vallue and just so good. Occasionally I share a half bottle(37.5cl) over 2 days or so with my wife 'en homage' to the recently passed Michael Broadbent.
So tasting note, I blend some very strong blue cheese with equal cream cheese for a sort of mouse and it was just the perfect accompaniment to a sweet complex wine with dark honey colour, dried fruit with a marmalade lift towards the end. The length even with the very strong blue cheese mouse was substantial and well over 20 seconds.
  • Rick & Ilsa commented:

    7/27/20, 5:51 AM - Hello MHBEAUNE, I was reading thru some of Jancis Robinson's tasting notes of her highest rated wines when I came upon your note, and I had to let you know you are not the only one with this problem. I too, find the incredible value of high quality Sauterne (and Port too) hard to resist, and also have trouble finding like minded people to help me finish a bottle. A 375 I can get away with if I have 6 or more people in the room, I have no idea what I will do with all my 750's. At the end of the day, not a bad problem, and if I end up drinking it all myself, there are certainly worse things. Too bad we don't live closer. Sante'

Red
2009 Château Meyney St. Estèphe Red Bordeaux Blend
7/20/2020 - Rick & Ilsa wrote:
92 points
After reading previous notes, I decanted this for 4 hours before dinner, and believe this improved the experience. First bottle from case bought on release. Tasted initially and the wine was closed and not showing much. After the extended decant, the wine opened up into a beautiful wine showing nose and notes of cassis, plum, dark berries, tobacco, tomato leaf, forest floor and spices. Medium to full bodied and definitely ripe with the tannins still resolving, this wine seems at the beginning of its drinking curve. This is one of those cases that you bought and stored, hoping it would turn into something more than it was, and it did. Isn't that why we cellar these wines? Served with rare filet, this was very well received by the group. Nice.
  • Rick & Ilsa commented:

    7/21/20, 8:20 PM - Hi John, Appreciate the kind words. I still have Meyney in the '86 and '89 vintages, but haven't had anything in between those and the 2009 so it was nice to enjoy it as much as we did.
    I see by your profile that you have a lot of wine experience, especially with areas (Bordeaux being an exception) that I don't get to sample too often, so I'm going to add myself to your fan list to help me highlight your notes and help expand my knowledge on these locations. All the best,
    Sante'

White - Sparkling
2008 Dom Pérignon Champagne Champagne Blend
6/20/2020 - coremill wrote:
90 points
I totally don't get the hype here. Slight reduction, but not overwhelmingly so like some young Dom I've had before. Pretty and complex, with good acid, but where's the depth and intensity? A perfectly nice bottle out of context, but in context it left me very confused.
  • Rick & Ilsa commented:

    6/25/20, 12:53 PM - Hello Coremill,
    Thanks for your note. I felt similarly when I opened my first bottle of this, (tasting note 11/29/2019) and didn't score the wine, which I almost always do. I hope this comes around as I bought quite a bit based on the almost unanimous hype. Maybe my bad..

Red
2010 Château Léoville Poyferré St. Julien Red Bordeaux Blend
6/14/2020 - Rick & Ilsa wrote:
94 points
After reading previous posters notes, decanted for 4 hours. Reticent nose at first that became richer over time. On the palate this smooth, silky wine shows layer after layer of rich, concentrated fruit. Cassis, graphite, licorice. loads of black and blue fruits and some quality oak. The quality of the ripe fruit is obvious and the wine has a silkiness that isn't common. As others have noted, this is still very young and has a long way to go, but seems like there will be nothing but upside. I prefer this to the '09 even at this stage. Good stuff.
  • Rick & Ilsa commented:

    6/17/20, 7:24 AM - Thanks JDEE. Actually just ordered 6 more to enjoy over the coming years.

    Sante'

Red
2016 Château Cap de Faugères Castillon Côtes de Bordeaux Red Bordeaux Blend
6/10/2020 - WDK Likes this wine:
91 points
Expressive nose with plum and black cherry on the palate. Better on 2nd night. My favorite qpr of all time.
  • Rick & Ilsa commented:

    6/11/20, 9:52 AM - Appreciated your note. I've been drinking this chateau in every good vintage, (05, 09, 10, 15) for years now and have always believed it over delivers for the price. Looking forward to trying the '16, the '18 is on order.
    Sante'

Red
2009 Château Cap de Faugères Castillon Côtes de Bordeaux Red Bordeaux Blend
5/31/2020 - Wineteacher Likes this wine:
91 points
Deep garnet. Only a tiny bit of sediment. Huge nose of black fruit and lead pencil. The palate is consistent with the nose. Medium full bodied. Goodly amount of tannins. A bit new world but delicious and quite complex. More time will reward. Another 5 years will be easy. Taste from the half bottle. Much more interesting than a few years ago.
  • Rick & Ilsa commented:

    6/1/20, 4:38 PM - Hello Wineteacher,
    I appreciated your note on this wine. I have been enjoying this in several vintages and own it in even more, but when I post a note I find myself scoring the wine higher than most posters. While the wine may lack a bit of a sense of terroir, it is still a good wine that represents a nice qpr. Nice to have someone with your background agreeing with my thoughts. I often wonder if the price of wines affects people perception and scores more than the wine itself..
    Also, I also live in Minnesota and am curious about your wine classes. If you want to give me more information, my contact information is in my profile. Sante'

White - Sweet/Dessert
2001 Château d'Yquem Sauternes Sémillon-Sauvignon Blanc Blend
5/29/2020 - gouldcampbell77 Likes this wine:
95 points
Dark orange gold - the colour of slightly tarnished new copper. On the nose, lots of botrytis, barley sugar, honeycomb and a hint of somthing spirity. Paraffin? So far so good and after a sip, I'm lost for words. I don't know English well enough to describe the mouthfilling unctuousness of this wine that seems to coat every corner of the palate leaving a numbing, tingling sensation. Impossibly sweet and full, but finishing clean and dry. How do they do that?

This is my first d'Yquem and ok, I get it. It's like the refined essence of Sauternes. Take any sweet wine you've ever drunk and ratchet everything up by a factor of ten and you will arrive here. I don't know enough about Sauternes to say whether this is ready or not but as Jeff Leve says, "who cares?" It's delicious now. Will it get better? I have no idea. My one concern is that it may be a little too sweet and unctious for me. It just seems to lack the balancing acidity and definition I look for in a sweet wine.

Day 2. Having finished the 2nd half of a half bottle, I don't think this wine is for me. Yes it's absolutely amazing etc etc but I can't help feeling that it's just too concentrated and too sweet for me - like drinking liquid honey. I'm glad I have tasted it and I'll tick it off my '100 wines to try before you die' list but to be honest I'd rather be drinking a top Tokaji at a third of the price. Sorry.
  • Rick & Ilsa commented:

    5/29/20, 5:34 PM - Welcome to the world of high end Sauternes my friend. Just a suggestion, in my humble opinion, the 2001 Rieussec will get you about 90% of the way to D'yquem, and a split sells for $55, vs $250 for the D'yquem.

Red
2009 Château Haut-Bergey Pessac-Léognan Red Bordeaux Blend
5/22/2020 - Nutty08 wrote:
89 points
Didn’t have this vintage young, but seems quite similar to recent ‘14,’15, 16’s—in short other than softening tannins, I doubt this has evolved much. Has a surprising herbaceous character that sticks out from dark fruit and chocolate notes. Palate is dark, lush, seems merlot driven and quite concentrated. Has a bit of bitter oak character on back end. Smoke and flint on the finish. Not harmonious at this point, maybe could use some more time but also may just be a better wine young. Don’t know the answer.
  • Rick & Ilsa commented:

    5/23/20, 7:21 PM - Enjoyed and agree with your tasting note. I bought a case each of this in '09, and '10 and while I enjoyed the '09 in its youth, time hasn't been kind to either. Haven't opened either one since I started posting as they have both seemed green and disjointed in the last 5 years, with very little, if any development. Don't understand the higher CT scores and don't know what I'll do with my remaining bottles. Anyway..
    Sante'

White - Sparkling
N.V. Bollinger Champagne Special Cuvée Brut Champagne Blend
5/7/2020 - Ortiz Brown Likes this wine:
91 points
What can I say about this champagne that others haven’t said. I’ll just share my champagne story. You see, I come from peasant roots, proletariat at best. I’ve enjoyed, more or less, champagne around the $20 price point. And surprise! It was unimpressive. So I’d written off champagne as something that just wasn’t worth my time. Better to imbibe with Chardonnay or even Sauvignon Blanc. Even all the somms saying, “Champagne is my favorite! Blah blah blah…” didn’t impress me. (You wouldn’t be wrong to judge me.)

But then my wife changed my life. She splurged $60 on this Bollinger, and we’ve held onto it for the last couple of years. With the Covid stay-at-home brouhaha and her birthday smack dab in the middle of it, we decided to open ‘er up last week.

And boy oh boy oh boy, were we pleased! It’s really good, as others have already said. I’m sure there’s even better champagne out there, but this one has a vibrancy and complexity that we haven’t experienced with cheaper bottles. (Duh.) I think my wife drank most of it, so I didn’t get to enjoy as much as I would’ve liked, but it was her birthday, so there’s that.

I leave this Bollinger experience disappointed and angry. Disappointed because we don’t have any more in the cellar (basement), and angry because none of you thought to tell me that I really, really needed to up my game in the champagne department. Lesson learned, though. We have much to explore.
  • Rick & Ilsa commented:

    5/10/20, 6:57 PM - Welcome!

    Sante'

Red - Fortified
2017 Niepoort Porto Vintage Port Blend
11/12/2019 - OhPorto Likes this wine:
98 points
Surprisingly restrained fruit for such a young VP, with huge tannins that grip your tongue for nearly a minute. Despite that power, it hints at its future complexity, with hints of coffee and aromatic bitters. By day three this became richer and even more powerful but mostly shut down - tannins barely softened at all. A knockout built for the long haul.
Word to the wise though, buy with care and keep them in a case away from UV and blue-spectrum lighting. Niepoort uses much thinner and less opaque glass than the major houses. Rather shortsighted for such a wine. Otherwise this wine is a refined rock-star.
  • Rick & Ilsa commented:

    5/6/20, 3:55 PM - From one port lover to another, thank you for the information about the Niepoort bottle. I remember this now from previous experiences many years ago, but don't own or drink a lot of Niepoort. I had forgotten until your timely reminder as I have some 375's (2017) on the way to see if larger formats make sense.

    Salud!

White - Sparkling
N.V. Bollinger Champagne Special Cuvée Brut Champagne Blend
3/31/2020 - Rick & Ilsa wrote:
From split. Seemed more advanced than previous bottles. Initially it seemed to come across more like sparkling apple cider than a nv champagne. Not necessarily bad, but just not as crisp or clean as usual. I know you can tell the base wine and bottle date by the number on the neck, maybe someone can let me know. No score.
L1430865
  • Rick & Ilsa commented:

    4/1/20, 7:46 AM - Thank you FredericoWines. I appreciate it.

Red - Fortified
2011 Fonseca Porto Vintage Port Blend
3/14/2020 - Rick & Ilsa wrote:
96 points
From 375 previously coravined. Of course not even close to being ready, but still so well balanced and utterly delicious that it doesn't seem a waste to drink it now. This port is rich, silky and concentrated with lots of acidity and tannins to support the huge fruit. The flavor descriptors seem to change with each sip. Found a dozen more 375s so that I can continue to drink it decades before its ready and watch its evolution. Still the best "young" VP I've ever tasted.
  • Rick & Ilsa commented:

    3/15/20, 7:37 AM - Completely agree with both of your points regarding 375's, especially the faster aging point. With a Port this huge, that's going to be a good thing.

    Sante!

White - Sparkling
2008 Dom Pérignon Champagne Champagne Blend
2/19/2020 - NickA Likes this wine:
90 points
Gareth's blind 2008 Grand Marques (Chez Bruce): Tasted blind. Didn't make as much of an impact as the bottle I drank last October, perhaps because we weren't drinking the label, perhaps because it followed some lower-dosage Champagnes. Very reduced on the nose, like a white Burgundy, and savoury. Palate sweeter and flabbier than expected, and overall the wine came across slightly simple and too friendly. Strange given this has previously seemed so tightly wound.
  • Rick & Ilsa commented:

    2/25/20, 9:21 AM - Enjoyed your tasting note. When I first tasted the '08 Dom, I was also a little let down. Perhaps we are sometimes "drinking the label," or our level of expectation is influenced by having read others enthusiastic notes. I have noticed this before on several highly rated wines that I wondered why I just didn't seem to get it, or perhaps my palate is not as educated as others.

    Either way, all the best.
    I added myself to your list of fans.

Red
2009 Château Domeyne St. Estèphe Red Bordeaux Blend
12/27/2019 - jamesdoeser wrote:
50 points
Felt pretty dead. Tasted alongside '10 St Estephes from superior winemakers. Two more bottles in cellar. Lets see if they are any better. Will try again very soon.
  • Rick & Ilsa commented:

    1/5/20, 12:55 PM - 50 points? Perhaps the bottle was flawed in which case a "flawed" or "NR" might be more appropriate.
    All the best.

  • Rick & Ilsa commented:

    1/5/20, 2:20 PM - My apologies. That was not my intent.
    Sante'

White - Sparkling
N.V. Bollinger Champagne Special Cuvée Brut Champagne Blend
8/20/2019 - Rick & Ilsa wrote:
First bottle from a new shipment, doesn't show quite the same as previous bottles. Has to be from a different bottling/year, etc. Have to agree with "wetrock" that this was darker, riper, further along in terms of age, and not as balanced as many previous bottles. Not going to score until I can try another bottle or two.
  • Rick & Ilsa commented:

    8/21/19, 5:44 AM - Hello Frederico,
    I should clarify that I have re-bought this wine several times so I can't say for sure if this was from a new shipment, or an older one. Unfortunately the cork was tossed so I can't get you the code number of this bottle but will happily post it on my next note, especially if the bottle shows like this last one.
    Sante'

  • Rick & Ilsa commented:

    8/27/19, 7:26 AM - Hi Frederico,
    Sorry for the delay in getting back to you, out of town. Bottle also long gone, but I will try to remember to post it in my next tasting note. Also appreciate the information, thanks.
    Sante'

Red
2015 Château La Fleur Morange Mathilde St. Émilion Red Bordeaux Blend
9/3/2018 - Rick & Ilsa wrote:
89 points
Coravin sample, no glass time. This wine smells of warm, dark fruits, black cherry, and a little smoke. On the palate, the tannins, herbs, and smoke mask what seems to be huge amounts of sweet fruit underneath. Coming across as a little bitter, with mouth drying tannins and medium acicity, this full bodied wine doesn't seem close to being ready to drink. This is the biggest vintage from this chateau since 2010 and that is just now starting to show well, despite the estimated CT drinking window. I know this chateau well, own multiple vintages, and am a fan, but this is going deeper into my cellar. I think this needs 2 - 3 years before it will begin to show its potential, and will continue to improve long after that. If you decide to try this, would suggest a long decant. For a Saint Emilion, 100% merlot wine, this is pretty big. 89 for now.
  • Rick & Ilsa commented:

    9/5/18, 5:34 PM - Hello Mikaelbe,
    I own and drink this in '05, '09, '10, '11, and now the '15 vintages. Based on how those have progressed, I would suggest 3-5 years before it begins to show its best. I still decant the other vintages now, the '10 for at least 3 hours, as it is the biggest and I think, the closest to the '15.

    All the best, Sante!

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