Comments on my notes

(18 comments on 14 notes)

1 - 14 of 14 Sort order
Red
2011 Saxum James Berry Vineyard Paso Robles Red Rhone Blend
1/17/2019 - guitarguy wrote:
87 points
I was disappointed by this wine given JB’s critical acclaim. It was boring, muted, didn’t give much at all. I’m thinking Saxum’s may be best in their infancy. Just had a decent Paderewski but again, maybe less a mouthful than I expected.
  • Redguy commented:

    1/18/19, 11:34 AM - I believe what you're noticing are the vintage characteristics from West side Paso. 2011 was the "shatter" vintage - unusually cold growing season, many vines in the area experienced a freeze after bud break, causing fruit to drop and/or not set properly. And much of what was produced from the vintage was thin and uninspiring. Cumulatively these conditions are termed shatter. Grenache in particular was hit hard, which is a staple in the JBV. Nicora and Torrin are two exceptions from the area that come to mind. My suggestion is drink all '11s over the short term. I have had the '11 JBV and it is a particularly weak effort. I have 1 bottle left... I should follow my own advice but just haven't found the desire to drink an $89 mediocre wine.

Red
2015 Domaine Lucien Lardy Morgon Côte du Py Gamay
12/20/2018 - RWG Likes this wine:
89 points
Nice young Rhone. Would like to see how this evolves over time. Over the course of 2H it opened up and resolved a bit. Blackberrys, cassis, rocky soil. Liked it.
  • Redguy commented:

    1/15/19, 11:37 AM - Rhone? This is a Cru Bojo.

White
2015 Domaine Huet Vouvray Sec Le Haut-Lieu Chenin Blanc
10/26/2018 - neruda11 Likes this wine:
94 points
Mamma mia, sublime! First Huet sec we’ve ever had and we both have a new favorite white wine! Can’t wait to try another of Huet’s vineyards to compare!
  • Redguy commented:

    10/26/18, 2:13 PM - Thanks for the great note! I completely agree, Huet consistently provides some of the most thrilling white wine experiences in the world, and at a reasonable price. And they age fantastically. Welcome aboard!

Rosé
2016 Proprietà Sperino Lessona Rosa del Rosa Nebbiolo Blend, Nebbiolo
So, so good. From the first smell and taste you pretty much know you're in for a treat. But, for me, it's when those aromas carry over to the palate, just as they should - but then they get turned up a few notches, and it's all just heavenly. So much freshness on the palate, the energy of mineral, strawberries, tingly kiwi - even the dusty earth is exciting. It's many things at many different temperatures, and I fully encourage you to explore. 85% Nebbiolo with 15% Vespolina. This is the total package; stock up before they're gone. 13,0% abv., thru 2020. recommended+

https://www.ItalianWine.blog
  • Redguy commented:

    8/1/17, 1:46 PM - Just a quick thank you. I have been a fan of your notes (and palate) and purchased a case of this blind, based mostly on your rave reviews. The wife and I are huge rosé fans and this is clearly a top shelf rendition that is right up our alley. CT is such a remarkable tool. Cheers!

  • Redguy commented:

    8/2/17, 11:08 AM - Had the same thought Tim. I prefer concentrated, structured rosé with an additional year of bottle age and the intensity and acidic grip of this Rosa beg for more time to soften. Already placed 6 bottles in the cellar for next spring/summer, where they'll rest along side the '16 Tempiers. And thanks for the red reco. Will definitely search out a sample bottle. Cheers!

Red
2005 Château Lanessan Haut-Médoc Red Bordeaux Blend
1/13/2016 - cbuhlman wrote:
magnum, decant.
Saturated garnet, medium- full bodied, high quality cabernet fruit with currant and tobacco and graphite. Really singing.
This is traditionally made and faithful to the terroir. This producer represents the kind of wine that got me interested in Bordeaux. It's a testament to what kind of owners they are, where they completely ignored the fruit bomb trend of the past two decades and did their own thing.
Evolved into something more as the night went on, taking on secondary notes of spice and slight garrigue- which tells me it still has a lot of stuffing to go another 10 years.
90-92
  • Redguy commented:

    1/13/16, 11:41 AM - You have this rated as "flawed" though your note sounds anything but. Maybe an errant mouse click? Cheers!

White - Sweet/Dessert
2001 Château de Rayne-Vigneau Sauternes Sémillon-Sauvignon Blanc Blend
5/6/2015 - johneagle Likes this wine:
89 points
OK but given how good 2001 is, far from the heights of Rieussec or Suduiraut. A bit one dimensional. Don't leave these too long
  • Redguy commented:

    6/1/15, 11:30 AM - Couldn't agree more. Been following these for the past few years and they are losing both fruit and energy. I keep passing over them in favor of better options though with 12 splits left in cellar I really should start thinning the heard more aggressively.

Red
2009 Epoch Estate Wines Authenticity Paderewski Vineyard Paso Robles Red Rhone Blend
7/5/2014 - Redguy wrote:
92 points
Decanted 20 hours. Opened up quite nicely. A bit simple from a flavor standpoint with its dark blackberry and plummy fruits and flashing earthy and herbal veins. Woven in is a pleasant streak of integrated acid that keeps the wine fresh. But it is the mouthfeel where this shines with its completely round and generous presence, where the silky texture belies the full body, concentration, and power. Nothing wowed here, but a well balanced big ole boy that drank quite well after the decant. Hopefully additional cellar time will add some complexity.
  • Redguy commented:

    7/8/14, 3:43 PM - A fair question. The wife and I get industry discounts at local wineries as she is the tasting room manager at one of them. As such prices for the Central Coast "Elite" are much more palatable. Epoch is priced in line with its peers but I tend to place Torrin above them in both quality and value, Booker can be as well when they get it right, while Nicora and to a lesser degree Paix Sur Terre are the best quality to value on the Central Coast in my opinion. To answer more succinctly, I do not think I would buy much Epoch at retail.

Red
2010 Talley Vineyards Pinot Noir Rosemary's Vineyard Arroyo Grande Valley
2/28/2014 - SMZ wrote:
94 points
Spectacular. Beautiful nose of vanilla and berries. Everything is in perfect harmony. I've now had the Talley Rincon and Rosemary's vineyards ... Both excellent, really high end, bursting with flavor.
  • Redguy commented:

    3/3/14, 12:30 PM - I couldn't agree more SMZ. I'm lucky enough to live ten minutes from Talley and am blown away how this top shelf pinot and chard producer can remain so under appreciated. Tasted their '12 estate wines last weekend and they were excellent. The buzz i'm hearing is to expect greatness from their '12 svd's. We shall see.

  • Redguy commented:

    3/3/14, 2:34 PM - Talley is open for tastings 7 days/week. No appt needed. Tastings and wines by the glass. Nice little picnic area. Usually their svd pinots are released in the fall. Right now they are pouring their estate wines and second label, Bishop's Peak (which I do not recommend as spending up to the first label is a big jump in quality, imho). They have some intereting less expensive wines on tap, like a SauvBriesling (SB/Riesling blend), but again, the real reason to go is the estate and especially the svd's.

    If you're looking for strictly pinot in the area I recommend going to Lompoc (thirty miles south of Talley). Brewer Clifton is one to try as is The Lompoc Wine Ghetto. A dozen or so producers in one industrial building. Of course 40 miles north of Talley is Paso. Lots of great options there. My wife is the tasting room manager of Sans Liege, an excellent Rhone Ranger producer in Pismo Beach, which is 10 minutes north of Talley. Lots of great options. Feel free to drop me a note if you have any questions as we're pretty well dialed in to the local winery scene.

  • Redguy commented:

    3/3/14, 3:11 PM - Forgot to mention: Clos Pepe is a good stop as well.

Red
2007 Tablas Creek Esprit de Beaucastel Paso Robles Red Rhone Blend
12/1/2013 - fdaner wrote:
flawed
2nd one that was full of spritz and VA. Undrinkable and down the drain. NR
  • Redguy commented:

    12/4/13, 1:57 PM - You're right about the spritz...these have shown co2 since day one. I've had quite a few encounters with this wine and all have had it. I can also say in all of them it has blown off with a few hours air time. I can't speak to the va but I can say these are years away from their prime window. TC's website lists these in a closed phase currently. I would decant atleast twenty four hours... fwiw.

Red
2009 Herman Story Grenache On The Road Santa Barbara County
Huge, fat, and sluggish...massive extract, lots of wood, and the warmer aspects of the vintage are taking over and pushing this into Willy Wonka land. This is a 10+ on the richness scale, and shows little poise or balance and even less freshness. At this point the profile is dominated by brown sugar, dark wood, basalmic, and earthy notes. Similarly port-like and portly as the '09 Larner Grenache I had a month ago. Loved these 2009 HS wines on release but I do not like they way ageing...at least the grenache based ones.

All that being said is not enough to tarnish my overall appreciation for Russel and his wines. A top flight producer of outstanding wines that are a great value and pale only to the warmth, friendliness, and generosity of the man himself. One of Paso's finest.
  • Redguy commented:

    8/30/13, 3:44 PM - Fingers, I agree completely. Interestingly though the Tablas Creek, Booker, and Epoch reds from Paso have shown little to no growth at this point. Makes me wonder if they too will fall apart before reaching maturity. That was a wierd vintage on the Central Coast.

Red
2009 Herman Story Grenache Larner Vineyard Santa Ynez Valley
8/21/2013 - The Wine Write wrote:
89 points
Popped and poured. A bit disappointing. There just wasn't the oomph I expect in HS.
  • Redguy commented:

    8/21/13, 9:26 AM - Randy, your experience with this wine was eerily similar to mine last month and confirms my fears that this is heading in the wrong direction. The 2009 vintage seems to be a strange one on the central coast. Booker, Torrin, and Epoch 2009's have shown very little development since bottling, while some HS and McPrice Myers I've tasted recently seem to be falling apart already. I plan to pop a 2009 HS OTR soon as I'm curious see if this is isolated to the Larner or more widespread. We shall see...In the meantime, keep tasting and writing the great notes!

Red
2010 M. Chapoutier Côtes du Roussillon Villages Latour Domaine de Bila-Haut Occultum Lapidem Red Rhone Blend
1/23/2013 - TSBWine Likes this wine:
91 points
91+ Points. Honestly, this wine was a real trip and very enigmatic in the glass. Serially tasted over about 3 hours with ever-changing characteristics and seriously dynamic fruit characteristics. My view is that this is a quality wine that is not quite resolved in the bottle. There's a power struggle here between the Syrah and Grenache that feels like a constant wrestling match. At this point neither grape is quite complementary to one another and until the Grenache takes a back-seat with bottle age the only real enjoyment of the wine will come as an academic exercise.

At first pour the wine is intensely "grapey" on the nose with some pleasing meat/animal notes behind it. On the palate the wine the Syrah is very dominant with intensely dark fruit, dusty gravel, graphite and a fine limestone sinew running throughout. Clearly very primary, the fruit can't seem to get out of its own way and pushes off some of the secondary characteristics that seem to be lurking on the midpalate. With some additional aeration the fruit takes on a very wild character that speaks of both ripe blackberry and raspberry. The wine touches briefly touches on some baking spice notes but the wine is a bit brawny to show any sophistication.

Over time the wine evolves in a somewhat unstable way. Fruit notes drift back and forth between wildberries, blackberry, grape, black currant, raspberry, red currant and black cherry. On the mid-palate the gravel notes came and went along with characteristics of limestone, graphite/iron, faint notes of licorice, cola spices, thyme and oregano (never got to "garrigue" for me which is far more distinctive). With extensive aeration there were also some notes that were difficult for me to decipher on the palate. My best approximation is oil cured black olive but at that point many of the characteristics weren't quite delineated.

My perspective is that this is a quality wine with lots of potential but isn't quite "there" yet. It's overly primary at the moment and it needs some bottle age before it comes together in a harmonious way. It's too disjointed and suffers from a lack of focus. At the same time, it has a fine textural elegance that speaks to a finer, more sophisticated wine. There's enough acid here to keep it fresh and a vein of limestone that helps lift it from being too heavy on the palate. An intriguing wine that could be going places. I would give it another 2 years for the Grenache and Syrah to come together in a more harmonious way. Possibly a much better wine with maturation, right now though it comes across as an angst-ridden teenager.
  • Redguy commented:

    1/23/13, 12:43 PM - That is a seriously well thought out and constructed tasting note. I've got a case maturing in off-site storage so I found this most helpful... thank you.

White
2006 Château de Beaucastel Châteauneuf-du-Pape Blanc White Rhone Blend
12/22/2012 - gmbdds wrote:
flawed
Oxidized. Apple cider color upon pouring was the first bad sign and the taste was just not right. Too bad.
  • Redguy commented:

    12/23/12, 3:25 PM - I have this same wine so thanks for the heads up. If you have any remaining bottles I wouldn't open them for a few years. Sounds like it may just be going thru its roussanne closed phase, which these tend to go through. They get very dark and nasty... oxidized like. I have experienced this several times with other vintages. If curious, look at recent notes from the '04 Beau Blanc. In the mean time be patient

  • Redguy commented:

    12/24/12, 9:16 AM - Yes, when roussanne based wines emerge from their slumber the color will absolutely lighten (lighter than before their closed phase) and the flavors will be less intense but more refined. This wine was rocking in its youth so should be exquisite when it comes out the other side. Going to take some time though. I made the mistake of dumping some that I thought oxidized before.

Red
2004 Château Malescot St. Exupéry Margaux Red Bordeaux Blend
11/28/2012 - beezer6 wrote:
92 points
Yummy pink peppercorns, balanced palate. Feminine character.
Some sweet modern styling with softer tannins. Drinking well now.
Great fruit on the attack then lends a more rustic back end. Really nice showing of an underrated vintage in my opinion.
  • Redguy commented:

    11/29/12, 11:37 PM - Agree completely... about both the wine and the vintage. There's a beautiful gravelly perfume and a certain politeness about this wine. Lovely stuff.

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