Comments on my notes

(20 comments on 18 notes)

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Red
2013 Arkenstone Cabernet Sauvignon NVD Napa Valley
7/29/2017 - mrmedoes wrote:
Chiseled, structured, yet impossible to break into at or near open which leads me to think it is drinking "younger" than many of the recent reviews suggested. I adjusted my window to 2020 start as my preferred beginning to the window. Drank 1/4 day one and the rest on day two. Not a ton had changed, leading me to think you're looking at a decade plus of good life ahead of it. Absolutely killer nose that softened a smidge day two, yet is still all I will remember of it.
  • mrmedoes commented:

    7/29/17, 8:12 PM - You're right... I didn't expect this to act how it did, but I can tell you there's too much on the nose for it to lose everything. It just is front end tannic, which is odd for where it is sourced from. May just be a little wonky right now. I saved a half glass for tomorrow just to play along with more air.

  • mrmedoes commented:

    7/30/17, 4:26 PM - Good news. That final portion of a glass finally broke to let some front to mid palate fruit through. It's still not Schrader or Maybach but it is something more than it was showing.

Red
2012 Maybach Family Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Materium Oakville
2/14/2016 - mrmedoes Likes this wine:
97 points
Drank the 2013 alongside the 2012 (that's the joy of 375s being available). Day 1 was just to open, taste and give air for day 2. On day 1, 2012 was supremely fruit forward on the nose, while 2013 wasn't quite ready, but much more complexity was in it. The initial day 1 taste reflected as much (what you smell is what you got). On day 2, the 2012 was pure hedonistic heaven, having lost a bit of the fruit off of it to show acid that really stood out, while the 2013 was damned near perfection, showing a balance of fruit, acid and finish that just absolutely sang.

In summation:
2012 - Fruit forward that air knocks down (it got a little wonky about 12 hours in, then gorgeous at 24-36) to show a ton more structure and acid that works amazingly with the big fruit. This is probably the best balance of "people pleasing" and "geek pleasing" that you'll find. (97)
2013 - Screams "serious" right at opening, with an absolute amazing nose on it, but is definitely not at "pop and pour" stage on day one as the tannins are still a bit much. Day 2 reveals a balance that pretty much every California cabernet should aspire to get. An absolute masterpiece. (99)

To be clear, both 2012 and 2013 benefit from a ton of air, but both are absolutely undeniably amazing wines. The 2012 is awesome while the 2013 is awe striking. If I was choosing a winner, it'd be 2013, but seriously, it's like Sophie's choice of amazing Cali cabs.
  • mrmedoes commented:

    2/15/16, 7:10 AM - Thanks for the feedback - I too maxed out on the 2012 & 2013. I literally would've done a second mortgage to get more of the 2013, and that's saying a ton as the 2012 is outstanding as well. Just be sure to give it that air and get the reward that it'll give! Enjoy!

  • mrmedoes commented:

    7/19/16, 10:22 AM - Hey Dave -
    I opened the bottle, poured down to the shoulder, then recorked in the cellar for a day. You basically want to allow a bit more air (and taste it at its opulent initial pour with the small amount of poured out).

Red
2013 Maybach Family Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Materium Oakville
2/14/2016 - mrmedoes Likes this wine:
99 points
Drank the 2013 alongside the 2012 (that's the joy of 375s being available). Day 1 was just to open, taste and give air for day 2. On day 1, 2012 was supremely fruit forward on the nose, while 2013 wasn't quite ready, but much more complexity was in it. The initial day 1 taste reflected as much (what you smell is what you got). On day 2, the 2012 was pure hedonistic heaven, having lost a bit of the fruit off of it to show acid that really stood out, while the 2013 was damned near perfection, showing a balance of fruit, acid and finish that just absolutely sang.

In summation:
2012 - Fruit forward that air knocks down (it got a little wonky about 12 hours in, then gorgeous at 24-36) to show a ton more structure and acid that works amazingly with the big fruit. This is probably the best balance of "people pleasing" and "geek pleasing" that you'll find. (97)
2013 - Screams "serious" right at opening, with an absolute amazing nose on it, but is definitely not at "pop and pour" stage on day one as the tannins are still a bit much. Day 2 reveals a balance that pretty much every California cabernet should aspire to get. An absolute masterpiece. (99)

To be clear, both 2012 and 2013 benefit from a ton of air, but both are absolutely undeniably amazing wines. The 2012 is awesome while the 2013 is awe striking. If I was choosing a winner, it'd be 2013, but seriously, it's like Sophie's choice of amazing Cali cabs.
  • mrmedoes commented:

    2/15/16, 7:11 AM - Thanks for the feedback - very much appreciated!

Red
2011 Hammell Wine Alliance True Believer Santa Maria Valley Grenache Blend, Grenache
11/22/2015 - Loren Sonkin wrote:
92 points
Another Saturday at Cooking School - California Wines (ICASI): My first time trying this wine. Charlie said it was the first vintage. A GSM blend. Outstanding. Ruby at the rim, purple at the core. The nose has black cherries, black raspberries, black pepper, licorice and spice. On the palate, this is very balanced. Black raspberries, black cherries layered with some earthiness. Seems to be young and in need of time still. Should improve.
  • mrmedoes commented:

    11/22/15, 6:29 PM - This needed a full day plus and you'd see where you were just probably starting to see. Really hedonistic the first day, but the goal is days 2-3 right now.

Red
2012 Maybach Family Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Materium Oakville
3/27/2015 - mrmedoes Likes this wine:
95 points
Opened a 750 with those of us receiving multiple bottles. First night, super duper fruit driven and primary. Tasty, but honestly almost "Caymus like" in some ways. Killer nose, but not there... but wait there's more. Day two, where the other two thirds of the wine that slow o'd over 24 hours, it is out-freaking-standing. Really shows a depth that was not even close to there. If anything, I can't peg a date yet to get this effect from bottle age, but a lot of other TRB wines carry a similar young profile (and that's a great thing). The finish on day two (day one is just soft tannins) is really great - mild tannins lay it out to 30ish seconds. Killer wine, but give it time.
  • mrmedoes commented:

    9/6/15, 11:50 AM - I think that'd be my initial run if I was looking for a straight pop and pour. That said, two things:
    #1 - I have no idea if the '12s will go into a dull period or not. Thus far, nothing tells me they will, but you just never know
    #2 - This was amazing with a day of air. You really could do that and likely not have to wait that long!

Rosé
2014 Hammell Wine Alliance El Crue Rosé Santa Maria Valley Rosé Blend
6/18/2015 - mrmedoes wrote:
flawed
Corked. Musty/wet cardboard killed the nose entirely. Really a shame as this is killer stuff. Finish fought through it a good bit, but lost the "full experience."
  • mrmedoes commented:

    6/22/15, 5:41 PM - Thanks - Chris and Dayna are awesome, I know as much. That said, not going to take them through the PITA of replacing a bottle of rose. I'm sure we'll get even some day!

Red
2007 L'Aventure Estate Cuvée Paso Robles Red Blend
6/19/2015 - mrmedoes Likes this wine:
94 points
Consumed as a side-by-side with the '08. Compared to '08, this is a chiseled and structured cab blend. '08 is super round and fruity, this has a core acidity to it that really can stand up with food or by itself (the '08 is more of a standalone drinker, though a great one at that). This really shined at about 4 hours of air - many years ahead of it, but at a really nice point balancing strength (which will likely always be there) and finesse.
  • mrmedoes commented:

    6/19/15, 6:55 PM - I should clarify. The cab shines through in the '07, while the '08 shows a big syrah despite similar blends.

Red
2009 Epoch Estate Wines Ingenuity Paso Robles Red Rhone Blend
4/19/2015 - Stevo-the-wino wrote:
flawed
Purchased directly from producer and sat still in my cellar until today. Cork saturated and wet under the foil. Corked.
  • mrmedoes commented:

    5/2/15, 2:54 PM - Corked as in flawed with TCA or "corked" as in cork failure? I have one, just interested in whether there might have been a problem in quality.

    Edit: I actually opened it today (hence why I was looking at your review) and both (the seal) and smell/taste were fine. You may want to follow up with Epoch. I know that's where mine was purchased, so storage doesn't seem to have been an issue.

Red
2002 Anderson's Conn Valley Vineyards Right Bank Napa Valley Red Bordeaux Blend
4/24/2015 - La Cave d'Argent Likes this wine:
92 points
This well-cellared bottle was presented as a "ringer" at a Right Bank Bordeaux tasting. With a youthful deep ruby/red color, this blend of 60% Cabernet Franc and 40% Merlot has changed very little since last being tasted 7/9/13. The nose flaunts intense aromas of red currants, Asian spices, dried herbs and graphite, while the medium-bodied palate shows similar flavors. Freshly acidic, seamlessly alcoholic (13.7%) and with silky tannins, it stays solid in the middle and concludes with a medium-to-long, supple finish. This proved to be a credible Right Bank knock-off with the added benefit of beautiful Napa fruit. Properly cellared bottles should last longer than I previously estimated. Drink now-2020.
  • mrmedoes commented:

    4/24/15, 3:00 PM - So how long do you think my 6L of it will go? Have a 750 for a side-by-side experiment, but thinking they may not match up in window.

Red
2012 Caymus Cabernet Sauvignon 40th Anniversary Napa Valley
3/20/2015 - pdxwinefan wrote:
89 points
Following the banter on this wine is really fun. From "It's awful--tastes like Kool-Aid." to "Best Cab I've ever had--99 points!" This wine lives on the extremes.

So, my view. Decanted for an hour and consumed over another 90 minutes. Dark, dark purple. Powerful plummy aroma. On the first sip, the first thing you notice is the sugars--this wine is in fact awfully sweet. But it's also pretty smooth and accessible, with a nice balance and a long finish.

Served with a spicy, slightly sweet Thai beef dish. Without the food, the wine's sweetness is a bit overwhelming. But the pairing worked great, toning the wine's sweetness levels down while the sweetness balanced out the spiciness of the food. It's not an awesome wine, I don't see it improving over time, and it's probably too expensive for what it is. But still, it's enjoyable.
  • mrmedoes commented:

    3/20/15, 5:07 PM - Great job of balancing the good and the bad and reflecting your taste! May you have many great wines to come.

Red
2012 Carlisle Zinfandel Papera Ranch Russian River Valley
2/14/2015 - mrmedoes wrote:
91 points
First things first - Carlisle is the pound-for-pound king of wine for the price. You'd have a tough time coming up with a more consistent quality wine from California. The 2011 Papera, which was super approachable at purchase, kind of fooled me into opening this. This, on the other hand, needs time. On day one (90), it was a big boy - drinkable, sure, but a bit disjointed. Day two (93) revealed a much different wine, with many of the aspects I've grown to love. As such, 2-3 years at a minimum, and 4-5 is probably ideal.
  • mrmedoes commented:

    2/14/15, 5:09 PM - I hadn't read Mikes note (found here: http://www.carlislewinery.com/wines/2012/zinfandel_rrv_papera.html), but agree wholeheartedly now that I have. Only difference is I'm thinking late '16 as early window. Given how much I love his wines I will need to pay more attention to these notes, as a light review of them showed a ton of alignment in our tastes/views.

Red
2012 Becklyn Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley
2/14/2015 - mrmedoes Likes this wine:
93 points
I think the time of drinking this young may be closing. There's no doubt that it is a killer QPR vs other Napa cabs, but what you're now seeing is air really opening up the wine to tannins. That's a good thing for longer term, but short term may present an issue. I tasted over 8 hours and found it more appealing right at open - just a killer nose and awesome texture. Great structure to it, and if I had more, I'd be sitting down for 3-5 years. That said, next opportunity, I will back up the truck at this price point.
  • mrmedoes commented:

    2/14/15, 12:12 PM - First off, thanks. I really think this may be heading towards a closed phase, at least that's the hope on why it is losing character with air. That could be the reason for a disappointing day two. The 2012 cabs in general have been interesting in how approachable they've been. I wonder if some of the high scores will not hold up in retrospect. '07 was similar, and some of those are just starting to come back together.

Red
2008 Anderson's Conn Valley Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Estate Reserve Napa Valley
11/14/2014 - Wine_in_HD wrote:
91 points
Wow, can't believe my impression is so far off from RP who scored this wine a 98 and the other reviewers who have had this wine here on Cellar Tracker. First day impressions were that this is a very ordinary wine and actually a little below ordinary, an 89 for me. I have had Anderson's 2011 of this same wine and loved it. 2 hour decant, flavors seemed subdued, mouth feel was diluted and watery. It did not improve with time that evening. Don't think brett was the issue, there was no funk in the taste. A puzzler. Hopefully, the wine is going through a shut down phase and will reopen with more time in bottle. Second day, the wine was some improved with dark fruit flavors consolidating and coming forward. Second day was a 92. Overall score is a combination of the two.
  • mrmedoes commented:

    11/14/14, 4:02 PM - Not sure if it's in a bit of a "dumb" period right now, but as a non-apologist of Parker (I struggle knowing that I'm defending him), I will tell you that this thing sang in its youth. I am usually a helluva judge of young wines, and I'd have told you that it would have been the best ACV they've made. It had a silk to it that wasn't there in my revisit - I'm just hoping it returns - even close to it would be a huge QPR play.

White
2011 Rivers-Marie Chardonnay B. Thieriot Vineyard Sonoma Coast
4/12/2014 - fdub Likes this wine:
92 points
Very impressive mineral and stone fruits with a pure lemon oil character. Pairs well with blueberry pancakes, bacon and maple syrup!
  • mrmedoes commented:

    7/10/14, 6:57 PM - I completely hope that was breakfast wine! Love the pairing

Red
2010 Denner The Dirt Worshipper Central Coast Syrah Blend, Syrah
1/12/2014 - Loren Sonkin wrote:
96 points
Awesome Dinner with Friends (Erasmus, SQN, Saxum, Pride, Dehlinger++) (Out and about): Wow. My first time trying this wine IIRC. Wow. The nose is big but not over powering. Ripe black raspberries, Framboise, black pepper and a bit of wet, moist earth. On the palate, this is smooth and complex. Lush, lush texture. Great red and purple fruit. Nice balance. Long finish. Everyone's favorite fro this flight it seemed.
  • mrmedoes commented:

    1/12/14, 6:15 AM - I've been trying to explain the virtues of this one for a while now. Just a killer wine. This and '10 ditch digger were both killer.

Red
2008 Anderson's Conn Valley Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Estate Reserve Napa Valley
3/2/2013 - schaphow wrote:
93 points
Amazing. In a local wine bar and grabbed off the shelf for $38. Young, tight, tannins prominent, medium complexity, 60 sec after taste. My wine deal of the year.
  • mrmedoes commented:

    3/2/13, 3:45 PM - That's a fantastic buy/price - congrats!

Red
2010 Alpha Omega Cabernet Sauvignon Beckstoffer To Kalon Vineyard - North Napa Valley
8/22/2012 - clayfu wrote:
Two Burgundy lovers and their weekend in Napa Valley (SF/NAPA): Right before bottling. Guess they split up the To Kalon this year between North and South. The north is LIGHT years ahead of the south. Has this beautiful texture to it with ripe tannins and sweet dark fruit with a touch of cigar. Really nice to-kalon, might be my favorite of the trip.
  • mrmedoes commented:

    2/24/13, 3:06 PM - Hadn't read your comment prior to posting mine, but "cigar" was spot on... Almost a smoky spice to it.

Red
2004 Copain Syrah James Berry Vineyard Paso Robles
12/28/2012 - mrmedoes Likes this wine:
91 points
Very nice in that it "softens the blow" of some of the biggest Syrahs out there, but it lacks the depth and complexities of the best JBV products, which may be a reflection of the varietal more than the winemaker.
  • mrmedoes commented:

    1/1/13, 7:44 AM - If it was me sitting on a mag, I would easily be looking 2-3 years as hopefully the less O2 has given a slower integration curve which will pay off in the long run. Good drinking to you when you do choose to partake.

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