Comments on my notes

(65 comments on 63 notes)

1 - 50 of 63 Sort order
Red
2014 Scarecrow Cabernet Sauvignon Rutherford
1/25/2019 - AEROSMITH wrote:
97 points
just amazing! thats it
  • RockinCabs commented:

    1/26/19, 6:48 AM - ... and I'm say'n a prayer for the desperate hearts tonight!

Red
2009 Château Haut-Bailly Pessac-Léognan Red Bordeaux Blend
9/22/2018 - RockinCabs wrote:
93 points
Classic Pessac with black cherry, chocolate, tobacco and brick/mineral notes, yet a very modern fruit profile is dominant. There are two personalities to this as it unwinds alternating modern and giving and tannic and unyielding phases.

Beautiful nose, and good overall composition, but there are blueberry/balsamic and cherry reduction notes that are cause for pause.
  • RockinCabs commented:

    1/6/19, 8:00 AM - Decanted 3 hours. My worry is the balsamic/figgy VA notes. Of the three wines on the table it showed the most ripeness, and had some bizzare times when is smelled/tasted like balsamic reduction. I would just check in on it every few years. Did not strike me as a wine that will be 100% certain 30 years on.

White
2009 Château Smith Haut Lafitte Blanc Pessac-Léognan Sémillon-Sauvignon Blanc Blend
9/16/2018 - whitmanlholt Likes this wine:
92 points
Stored in the main refrigerator for a bit and then popped and poured from split. This is a medium-yellow wine with notes of marmalade, honey, and wax on the nose. In the mouth, the wine is mid-weight with a distinctive stone-fruit flavor, all leaving a rich and lingering finish. Overall, this is pure class with a lot of good years left. 92 points.
  • RockinCabs commented:

    11/3/18, 10:02 AM - Hi Whitman. This is Phil Barr from Bates. I like your note on this, and have seen a number of your notes crossing my feed in the past few months. Please get in touch the next time you are back east and I would love to open some wines with you.

Red
1983 Château Gruaud Larose St. Julien Red Bordeaux Blend
8/26/2018 - englishman's claret wrote:
92 points
So very 1980s Gruaud in its unapologetically masculine style and, luckily, with only a small amount of Brett. Seamless now, this shows off a blackberry compote, sous-bois, leather, mushroom nose with light Brett. Meaty and strapping on the palate. At or just past its apogee, these are great drinking now. 91-2.
  • RockinCabs commented:

    9/3/18, 1:29 PM - You know me and the 83 Cordier Wines ... Back up the truck and drink until they fall apart. Great grab!

Red
1991 Seavey Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley
7/10/2018 - drmarc61 wrote:
95 points
Took time to open up. A mature and complex wine that was wonderful to consume.
  • RockinCabs commented:

    7/11/18, 12:45 PM - Glad to see you enjoyed this wine. Tanzer review released at Vinous today had me concerned this might be over the hill. I just love the 91-96 CA Cabs right now.

Red
2011 Château Angélus St. Émilion Grand Cru Red Bordeaux Blend
6/25/2018 - englishman's claret wrote:
95 points
I must admit I felt a certain sense of disappointment when the 2011, a wine which had not previously crossed my path, was on the table at the chateau. But, nose in glass, I recant! This is utterly fabulous. Blackberry, plum, hints of violet poking out, a refreshing mineral streak, leather accents, and beautifully integrated oak. I admit to having had doubts about where the chateau was headed based on some quite oaky 2004 and 2007, but this doesn't bear any resemblance to those wines. I usually detest wines > 13.5%, but I never in a million years would have found the 14.5% in this wine. It's that well balanced. This brilliant modern rendition of Angelus should be laid down for another 10 years (minimum) unless you're curious and have a bunch. Bravo, bravo.
  • RockinCabs commented:

    6/26/18, 9:15 AM - Wowza! .... Dizzy, falling, blackout ....

    Okay, I'm back after the head injury caused by Englishman's agreeing with James Suckling on a wine review and score. This must be good stuff. Now only if you could source it for a reasonable price....

Red
2005 Château de Villars Fontaine Bourgogne Le Haut du Village Pinot Noir
6/9/2018 - RockinCabs wrote:
89 points
Nose: Sour cherry, sous bois, mushroomy earth and some floral tones. Palate: fresh red fruit, loamy earth and game. Some herbs and more raspberry/red cherry notes Finish: great finish driven by acidity with game, rosemary, cherry skins and floral/leather tones.

The tanin is still quite strong on the finish here. Grippy and dry in the finish, but a good table wine at this point. The 99 and 01 showed the potential here, so I would cellar a bit longer.
  • RockinCabs commented:

    6/12/18, 4:47 PM - The value here is incredible. Seriously good wine for such short money.

White - Sparkling
2010 Roses de Jeanne / Cédric Bouchard Champagne Blanc de Noirs Cote de Bechalin Pinot Noir
1/15/2018 - RockinCabs wrote:
93 points
Great starter wine with beautiful fruit, freshness and a creamy finish. Excellent!
  • RockinCabs commented:

    5/4/18, 10:48 AM - Depends on how you like your champagne. I recently had the 2007 as well and the bottle age has added complexity and brioche/almond notes. The 2010 is more fruit driven with good minerals and lemon creme notes. Either way you will enjoy. Hard to say "value" at 85+ but it compares with far more expensive cuvees

Red
2003 Château Duhart-Milon Pauillac Red Bordeaux Blend
1/27/2018 - kdubler wrote:
EBLC Does Bordeaux (SLC): Was a little bit disappointed with this bottle. Drank the last one about 2 years ago and this seems to be in the decline. Not as fresh and taste a little bit overripe bordering on syrupy. Just didn't have the acid structure to balance it out. This tasted older than any of the 2001s. May have been an off bottle, but no obvious notes of a flaw.
  • RockinCabs commented:

    2/1/18, 7:15 AM - Thanks for the note on this. I too have been working through a stash of this wine over the past 5+ years. Sad to hear it is falling off. I'll pop another one soon and see if the freshness is an issue in mine as well.

Red
1990 Vieux Château Certan Pomerol Red Bordeaux Blend
12/3/2017 - englishman's claret wrote:
92 points
Another somewhat disappointing experience with the 1990 VCC, which is typically a chateau whose wine I really enjoy. But this bottle of the 90 (perhaps others are different) shows a fair amount of herbaceous notes (curious to see the cepage - how much CF?) without a lot of the plummy, sandalwood, lavender I typically associated with VCC. This bottle has nowhere to go but down - are there wildly better bottles out there? This tastes much older than a 1990. Curious.
  • RockinCabs commented:

    12/4/17, 2:26 PM - I had a similar experience with a bottle about two years ago. Chalked it up to PNP and not much time to open, but I think this is just the wine. Not super pleasant. I think VCC just whiffed on this one.

Red
2014 Château Montrose St. Estèphe Red Bordeaux Blend
11/28/2017 - wineotim wrote:
91 points
I agree with Keith L. Except for the funk, there was no significant aroma to speak of with my bottle.

This had the usual Montrose precision, acid, and grip, but it was tight as a drum. I'm baffled by the high scores from others.

The '14 Cos blows this away.
  • RockinCabs commented:

    11/28/17, 10:11 PM - I decided to lock my 14 Montrose away, and bury them for a decade. Cos tends to be the more accessible wine and is sexier in most respects. Both will be excellent at maturity.

Red
1996 Château Cos d'Estournel St. Estèphe Red Bordeaux Blend
2/19/2017 - chablis28 wrote:
96 points
My hands down WOTN and dam, wish I owned some of these! This is in a very nice spot with zero signs of slowing down. There is still some upside here. Do I play roulette and buy some now? Tempted. This had a terrific tobacco leaf nose, perfect balance and weight with a cornucopia of flavors. An excellent wine! Thanks Kevin! See R&Rlers note for more details.
  • RockinCabs commented:

    2/21/17, 6:14 AM - My recommendation is to go long, and do it now. The quality of this wine is so evident and it has years ahead. Case buys at auction can still be gotten for $130-$150/bottle, and while that is not cheap it is very fair for a wine of this quality.

    1996 in the northern Medoc was exceptional, and I think the praise will only grow as the wines of the 2003-2009 era age and do not show the complexity or pedigree of these classics. Look for this to be even better over the next 20 years.

Red
1990 Château Léoville Barton St. Julien Red Bordeaux Blend
1/25/2017 - RockinCabs wrote:
92 points
Leoville Barton Tasting Seminar - (1986 - 2011) (Gordon's Wines - Waltham, MA): Nose: Blackberry, Cassis, Truffles, Sage and Cigar box. A bit of bottle funk on this initally, but it cleaned itself up. Palate: Nice fresh blackberry, dark cherries, herbs, green pepper and cedar. Finish: Lengthy and full of dark berry, eucalyptus and tomato leaf.

Very enjoyable, but I was looking for more power from the 90 vintage. I don't suspect this was decanted, and I think it would have benefited greatly from more air. I'll have to revisit this based on the reputation.
  • RockinCabs commented:

    2/2/17, 6:47 AM - Thanks for the note on decanting Guy. I agree, judging decanting time on wines at 20+ years can be tough as each bottle is a bit different. I'm looking forward to more events.

White - Sparkling
2013 Jérôme Prévost Champagne La Closerie Extra Brut Les Beguines Pinot Meunier
12/5/2016 - RockinCabs wrote:
93 points
Checking in on a bottle of the 2015 disgorgement. What a beautiful champagne. Very fine aromas of pear, lemon peel, florals and a smokey pain grille note. Palate is very fine and lively with lifted lemon pastery, matchstick and some really nice raspberry/strawberry notes in the mid palate. Finishes long with an elegant presence and more florals.

I'm with Antonio on this one.
  • RockinCabs commented:

    1/3/17, 6:48 AM - Hi LittleHorse, and thanks for the comment. You actually picked up an typo/error in my note here. Prevost does one disgorgement approximately 18 months after the production, therefore the LC13 would have been disgorged in 2015.

    That said, I had to do some reading about the producer to figure this out. I love these wines and will be adding more to the cellar for future drinking.

Red
1990 Château Pichon-Longueville Baron Pauillac Red Bordeaux Blend
11/4/2016 - WineGuyDelMar wrote:
90 points
Way past it's prime (obviously) but still decent fruit and little tannin. Certainly this wine will not get better with more again. Typical barnyard Bordeaux nose with lots of earth, tobacco, spice and leather. I'm not a huge fan of 25 plus year Bordeaux in general. I like to drink the in the 10-15 years of bottle age area. This was overshadowed by the 2009 Larkmead Cab we also had. Drink up !!
  • RockinCabs commented:

    11/4/16, 10:58 AM - Hard to serve these older Bordeaux next to more powerful youthful CA cabs. As you experienced they get more delicate as they get older, and I find drinking them together the nuance gets lost.

    Personally, I love this profile on older bordeaux, and the 90 Baron is a favorite of mine. Also glad to see you carrying the Kobalt flag. One for my new world/cult favorites.

Red
1982 Château Lynch-Bages Pauillac Red Bordeaux Blend
6/27/2016 - Lord Rayas wrote:
97 points
Kevin's MNSC (Amuse Bouche): decanted for an hour. absolute revelation. everything you want from a claret drinking at its peak. lovely sweetness and harmony - hard to believe it's not from Pomerol.
  • RockinCabs commented:

    10/31/16, 6:34 AM - This is the experience I have been waiting for with 82 lynch. The last two bottles were a bit underwhelming however, so I am hoping my next bottle from a different source shows this well.

Red
2013 Trefethen Double T Napa Valley Red Bordeaux Blend
10/26/2016 - wineotim Likes this wine:
90 points
This was forgettable on the first day, next day it comes together nicely, generally rather soft, smooth, and ripe, dark fruit. The blend works well and will probably get better down the road, feeling generous so giving this 90pts.

Update: full disclosure, on the first day of opening this I wanted to return it to the store or dump it because it was so soft, sweet, and boring. On the third day this was quite amazing, dryer, firmer, serious. Give this a long decant if you open soon.
  • RockinCabs commented:

    10/28/16, 1:51 PM - I had a similar experience with a bottle of the 2012. Really needed air, but was very impressive for its price in Napa. Great cab under $50 is getting quite rare in CA.

Red
1985 Château Cos d'Estournel St. Estèphe Red Bordeaux Blend
10/15/2016 - RockinCabs wrote:
95 points
Consistent with my last note. This wine is very graceful and balanced. Plummy Cos fruit with classic earth/mineral tones and just a bit of Cos Spice. Choosing between vintages 85 is currently superior to the 86 with a much more direct approach and clear personality.
  • RockinCabs commented:

    10/15/16, 7:53 PM - Neck fill and acquired from a NY collector that had the wines professionally stored since EP. Don't get me wrong, the 86 is beautiful. However it is more overt with ripeness and oak. The 85 really nails balance while retaining the Cos markets that you love.

Red
2007 Alain Hudelot-Noellat Bourgogne Pinot Noir
Head cold obscured the nose somewhat, but jolly and elegant on the palate. I suppose the grapes come from Chambolle which makes sense. Easy re-buy.
  • RockinCabs commented:

    4/4/16, 6:16 AM - Ha. I was just about to post a note on the 2012 Hudelot Bourgogne that I had over the weekend. Similar approached, but showed some vosne spice in the mix. Good Producer = Good Bourgogne.

Red
2009 Tenuta Caparzo Brunello di Montalcino Sangiovese
3/13/2016 - englishman's claret wrote:
90 points
Red cherry, prune, prosciutto, a little dusty. Not particularly complex but clearly Brunello. Got less interesting with more time in the decanter.
  • RockinCabs commented:

    3/14/16, 8:29 AM - Suckling goes crazy over this producer, and I don't get it. I tried both the 07 and 07 Riserva and both were very nice wines, but not anything exceptional. However I found more complexity that I think you saw here.

Red
1981 Château Talbot St. Julien Red Bordeaux Blend
2/3/2016 - englishman's claret wrote:
92 points
The last time I had this a few years ago I thought it was at its apex and I think this bottle supported that judgment. Of course, where's the surprise in that? At 35 years of age, this is doing quite well for a relatively weak year. I find the fruit less vibrant, the geriatric furniture polish notes starting to creep in, the structure a bit more anemic. Still not a bad bottle, but not what it was. Drink them fast.
  • RockinCabs commented:

    2/3/16, 5:35 PM - No great wines, just great bottles. I would agree that average ones are likely on the slide but there are rare exceptional bottles still around

Red
2008 Kristine Ashe Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Entre Nous Oakville
1/4/2016 - BCharlieG Likes this wine:
91 points
Seemed flat. Giving the next one more time. Elegant but didn't hold up to price point.
  • RockinCabs commented:

    1/4/16, 1:36 PM - Ouch. Lay it down a bit longer. I would have expected a better showing, but I am learning that lesson on some of the 07/08 Napa cabs. For me 7-10 years from vintage is not long enough anymore.

Red
1989 Couly-Dutheil Chinon Clos de l'Olive Cabernet Franc
11/26/2015 - nortonnose wrote:
90 points
This was nice. But I was mildly disappointed, if only because I expected a lot. To be fair, this was served next to '02 Raffault Les Picasses, which showed better on the Thanksgiving table. This exhibited a wild forest nose, and very vegetal on the palate - all a good thing. Meaty and herbaceous. Yet also a touch medicinal, which I found distracting. I'm eager to try another one in a different context sometime soon.
  • RockinCabs commented:

    12/11/15, 6:43 AM - I have one more, and I know that Ian has been hiding some of the remaining stock for folks that want it. Definitely try this again. I suspect bottle variation, or perhaps a loose cork. Sounds a bit accelerated compared to the one I had.

Red
2011 Corra Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley
12/10/2015 - Superjack29 wrote:
92 points
This is showing much better than it did a year ago, a lot less green and a lot more of the Celia Welch style that I love. Not quite the weight of her other vintages but that is to be expected when drinking any 2011.
  • RockinCabs commented:

    12/10/15, 6:45 AM - Thanks for checking in on this for the Corra fan base. I was very concerned upon trying my first bottle last year and decided to give them time as well. Glad to see that the pieces are coming together.

Red
1999 Château Ducru-Beaucaillou St. Julien Red Bordeaux Blend
7/25/2007 - RockinCabs wrote:
Nice wine just coming into drinking peak drinking. Ultra luxurious Bordeaux. The bottle opened with lush cherries, sweet fruit and beautifully smooth cocoa. As it developed more earhty licorice blackberry, and mineral began to come through. This was truly a fantastic bottle, and right in the same range as the Leoville Barton 2001 that I drank early this year.
  • RockinCabs commented:

    10/6/15, 12:28 PM - Looking back at my own note here, with 7 years of exploration under my belt I would now say that this was an interesting peek at the wine. My how we change as we learn more about wine.

Red
1986 Château Ducru-Beaucaillou St. Julien Red Bordeaux Blend
8/14/2015 - Eric Tang Tsz To wrote:
89 points
It's a recorked-ex-chateau version. It's medium bodied with ruby red colour. It comes with fresh fruits then plums and res berries accompanied by chocolate and oak. Tannin are resolved and the wine is beautiful, smooth, mature. Enjoyable now.
  • RockinCabs commented:

    9/29/15, 6:17 AM - 89? Surprising. Our bottle was from the same lot released ex-chateau and I thought it showed really well. Perhaps a bit young, but certainly not a B+ bottle.

    Did you decant? I felt it benefited greatly from some air.

Red
2005 Robert Foley Claret Napa Valley Red Bordeaux Blend
7/16/2015 - nortonnose wrote:
92 points
Always so consistent! I haven't been drinking much Napa in the past year or two, so returning to old friend Bob Foley is never disappointing. Stood bottle for months, decanted and served. Black currant, medium finish, solid stuff. No rush on these but fully mature now.
  • RockinCabs commented:

    7/19/15, 6:56 PM - Agreed. Love these wines.

Red
2003 Château Léoville Barton St. Julien Red Bordeaux Blend
7/6/2015 - tp096255 wrote:
85 points
I like it because I can drink it, but I hate it because I have been cellaring this freaking punk-a** bottle for a decade and just now realized this is the same stupid kind of bor-dough plonk I've been wasting my time on all along. How did James Suckling rate this a NINETY-EIGHT in 2006 and then change that to a 92 (NINETY-TWO!!!!!) in 2011?!? It's not even a 92 in my book. This is drinkable but it has the same ol stupid bor-dough funk in the nose, insipid ash-tray mouth muddled with some blackberries, followed by more ash tray in the mouth. Oh man, I am angry. I am so glad I stopped buying any bor-dough wines about 5 years ago. I know, not all of them SUCK, just most. Yikes. What an utter disappointment. I am going to sell off every single bottle of bor-dough in my cellar. Left-bank, Right-bank, and all the other banks. Oh, that's what it is! They are all used to going to the "bank" after I buy their wines en primeur! Well, maybe in some future century when bor-dough catches up to Napa in the making of fine wines I will entertain a purchase or two. Pretty sure I'll be dead by then.

Bye bye and good riddance bor-dough!

Sincerely,

Troy Peterson

(Epilogue: This is only a rant about RED bor-dough, not white/sweet ones. And this was no PnP willy nilly tasting, it was a full-on decant with tastings every hour for several hours and at a consistent temperature. And yes, I am still waiting to taste Petrus, any vintage!)
  • RockinCabs commented:

    7/7/15, 7:01 AM - Troy, I love the brutality and I am sure you are well aware of how widely this wine is owned. This is in large part due to the suckling 98 that was put on the board upon release.

    I must admit that having popped a bottle of this when it was just a screaming newborn this was a really nice wine. Subsequent tastes did not live up to early expectations, but in a hot vintage across the pond you just don't know how the wines are going to hold up.

    Clearly your palate is not adjusted to what the bordelaise offer, and the market needs more consumers like you to throw the wines out to auction and let prices re-adjust to some semblance of reality. For drinkers like me Bordeaux can be a love hate relationship, but when a wine delivers big I am head over heels for it all over again.

Red
2002 O'Shaughnessy Cabernet Sauvignon Howell Mountain
Lambert's bottle; purchased 2nd hand at Wades Wines in So Cal. Too evolved and mature for an 02. No primary fruit, all end-phase secondary--brownish black color, tons of sediment. Must have been passively stored in its prior life. A shame--they charged him close to $200 each for these.
  • RockinCabs commented:

    6/26/15, 11:28 AM - I have had my bottles passively stored since release, and just checked on a bottle that still needs time in the cellar. This sounds more like heat damage to me, and I would contact Wades and get a refund for the cooked bottle. Maybe return the others as well.

Red
2006 Domaine Georges Mugneret-Gibourg Nuits St. Georges 1er Cru Les Chaignots Pinot Noir
6/20/2015 - englishman's claret wrote:
93 points
Super. Young wine still, just starting to come around - ideally needs a few more years. Plush, powdery dark cherry, mineral earth, faintly animale, touch of blue floral notes. Beautifully integrated and polished; I think this is probably the most well-mannered Nuits St Georges I've ever had.

This was also the subject of an experiment; the Zalto Burgundy glass vs the Riedel Vinum Burgundy. The Zalto was the clear winner. In the Riedel, this was tight and coquettish... but not in the Zalto where the wine was opened up with the details on its constituent parts easily seen.
  • RockinCabs commented:

    6/22/15, 7:13 AM - I have done the same side-by-side, albeit using Zalto universal glasses. I must say that the Zalto shows a more acid/crisp fruit driven profile to the wine, whereas the Reidel accentuates the oak/smoke/spice.

    Chaignots is a favorite site of mine in NSG, so I am not surprised that this was great.

Red
1990 Vieux Château Certan Pomerol Red Bordeaux Blend
12/28/2014 - Captain Haddock wrote:
flawed
Bought from Farr Vintners this year and two bottles consumed at Christmas had quite dry corks and were dead on arrival, with only vestigial fruit. Not the first disappointment with this supplier.
  • RockinCabs commented:

    3/27/15, 12:19 PM - I visited Farr in London when I lived there in 2003, and really could not take the hard sell approach in the store. Then read Billionaire's Vinegar years later and the coffin was sealed on these guys before I spent a dime with them.

    So many better ways to find top rated gems from the 60's - 90's in Bordeaux.

Red
1983 Château Margaux Red Bordeaux Blend
3/22/2015 - englishman's claret wrote:
92 points
I love Margaux - the 1990 is one of my all time favorites. I bet the 86 will get there eventually. I was hoping this would show up, but found only a decent wine, not more. Dark, blocky, unsophisticated, inelegant - basically the opposite of what you'd expect from Margaux and all the more so from a great vintage.
  • RockinCabs commented:

    3/23/15, 2:44 PM - This might be a slightly unfair beat down of the wine. Honestly the bottle did have good elegance, but it may not have been prime Margaux. Always another bottle around the corner.

Red
2003 Kobalt Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley
2/5/2015 - Geaux Likes this wine:
92 points
Big heavy chewy cab with fully integrated tannins, smooth, but not overly long berry finish; had 3 bottles with significant variation, this was heads above the rest, wish I had more like this one....hope 2005 is this good
  • RockinCabs commented:

    2/6/15, 6:56 AM - Hey Ball Coach. In my opinion the 2005 consistently delivers above the level of the 2003. You need to decant it for about 2-3 hours still, but it is a great bottle to follow over the course of an evening with a good steak.

Red
2012 Failla Pinot Noir Keefer Ranch Russian River Valley
1/2/2015 - BCharlieG Likes this wine:
93 points
This wine is beautiful - softly floral, great baked bread characteristic and excellent balance. The nose: sweet cherry, floral red apple, young toasted oak, hints of menthol and marshmallow. The taste: tart raspberry, soft cherry/tart cherry, red apple. The texture is burrata w/ obvious hints of malo / lees stirring. Smooth and supple - no hit from alcohol or acid. Great balance. I was hesitant to open this too early but gave it an hour decant and was wonderful. Outstanding wine. Wish I could get more.
  • RockinCabs commented:

    1/2/15, 7:17 AM - Glad we have the all clear to start opening these. Sounds like another fantastic Keefer Ranch from Erhn.

Red
2009 Château Lilian Ladouys St. Estèphe Red Bordeaux Blend
11/30/2014 - jmrife Likes this wine:
91 points
Fantastic value for under $20 / bottle. I've had them in cellar for 32 months.
Recommend decant for at least an hour - I think they have only perhaps 18-24 months of window before they fade. Good now with decant - moderate flavor profile 48 hours later.
They seen pretty type specific (St. Estephe) to me - typical bordeaux. Not similar to Cal. wine at all - subdued fruit, good body.
I wish I had bought 12 instead of 6 !
I don't see these lasting beyond 2016 - time to serve them with a good grilled something.
  • RockinCabs commented:

    12/1/14, 9:18 AM - I am sitting in the majority of my 2009 Lilian Ladouys for at least another 8-10 years. The best years with this wine are well ahead of it. Perhaps the patina of age is not something that you like on wines, but I can tell you that some lower tier 2000 Bordeaux that i have been holding onto are just getting into a nice drinking window now.

    The elegance that could come from this later in life could be worth hanging onto one of your bottles 15+ years for.

Red
2000 Château Quinault L'Enclos St. Émilion Grand Cru Red Bordeaux Blend
11/21/2014 - Rollerball wrote:
94 points
To the 2000 Quinault L'Enclos! One if my favorite ever wines. It's at once openly welcoming and refreshing and at the same time complex and fascinating. A fresh baked mineral pie. Copper tobacco and smoked anise. Dry-aged black cherry. Its signature with each sip is a slow build to a gentle thrill and a sweet density that's a layer just beneath.
  • RockinCabs commented:

    11/24/14, 6:32 AM - Agree 100% .... this is one of the great values in the 2000 vintage and is starting to drink really nicely.

Red
2007 Anderson's Conn Valley Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Estate Reserve Napa Valley
10/19/2014 - nortonnose wrote:
94 points
Terrific Napa Cab! Stood 750ml for days, then slow-o for 30 minutes before dumping into decanter to serve with grilled ribeye. Dark, almost purple hue and a lovely nose of cedar and chocolate. Lush, very dark fruit dominated palate, with a ton of structure and a long finish. Drinking beautifully right now and a superb QPR choice. Wish I owned more of this!
  • RockinCabs commented:

    10/20/14, 7:01 AM - Looks like we both did Napa Cab and Rib Eyes last night. I will give you the download on tonight's event later this week.

Red
1995 Spottswoode Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley
This is still 5 years away from its fullest potential. It's easier to say that in the company of a fully mature, a point 1991 Dominus served just prior, as one gets serious confirmation as to what's possible given time and proper raw materials. More medium-bodied than full, thanks to plenty of fresh acids, this nonetheless also has the fruit and tannins required for another 5 (min) or 10 (max?) years of ageing that's needed to get past its secondary qualities and bloom in the tertiary stage where the entire effort will become more clear, purposeful and enjoyable; to my palate, anyway. ABV not listed on bottle, though it's fully integrated at this stage. recommended

Aerated to decanter for sediment, immediately returned to bottle and Audozed 7 hours, served non-blind. If you're opening one anytime soon, I strongly recommend 2 hours of aeration in decanter as the last glass had significantly improved over the first one (which was pretty, but also somewhat simple), with it eventually revealing a bright, vivid explosion of red fruits, spice and floral perfumes.
  • RockinCabs commented:

    10/9/14, 2:24 PM - Agreed on this one Wine Strategies. This is one of the best wines from the 1995 Napa Vintage. It is pre "cult styled" wines and really just shows the complexity of a good St. Helena vineyard site on every level. To me this is a scaled down Abreu Madrona Ranch in the classic style.

Red
2005 Château Canon-la-Gaffelière St. Émilion Grand Cru Red Bordeaux Blend
9/3/2014 - theusualsuspect wrote:
95 points
Very much I think a benchmark wine for the estate - all of a piece - plenty of extract, beautiful red fruity notes with some wood, and great balance. Just beautifully made.

Let me editorialize about "modern" style Bordeaux being too "over the top". Well, the first modern style Bordeaux produced across the region were produced in 1982. If you want to go back to the last real "old style" Bordeaux vintage, that would be 1975. Had any? No? Then what is your frame of reference? Not to be too unkind, Actually the 1975's are very different. They by and large have this wonderfully incisive powerful fruit that when compared to a modern style Bordeaux comes across as ungenerous. That said, a good well stored 1975 will cut through any modern style Bordeaux.

So it is "too modern"? My question would be what is your experience with old style Bordeaux? Taste a good well stored 1975, and my guess is many would say "not modern enough".
  • RockinCabs commented:

    9/4/14, 5:26 AM - Well said. I think too many tasters criticize "modern style" when comparing their Bordeaux to California and upon seeing 14%+ alc assume the wines lack balance or finesse. I have had a number of pre-75 bordeaux and agree that the modern techniques have allowed ripeness and balance to be replicated year after year.

    61's go from an anomaly to something that can be achieved in more vintage conditions. What should be criticized is what has happened at some mid/upper tier Pomerol and St. Emilion estates where ripeness has been pushed at all costs, and the wines lose a sense of place (ie Le Gay/Troplong Mondot).

Red
2004 Corra Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley
Corra Vertical: Corra Vertical tasting. Very pretty, with lots of Mocha on the nose. After an hour or so it develops an interesting bitterness near the finish, before it smooths into great length.

On day 2 it has lost lots of fruit and is a little bit off balance. It is still a wonderful wine but has fallen from WOTD pedestal.
  • RockinCabs commented:

    8/11/14, 6:18 AM - Awesome vertical event S1! I love these wines, and consistently find them to be among my favorites from Napa in their peer group.

    What was the wine of the day on Day 1? The 2004 you seem to suggest was excellent. I have always found this to be one of my favorite Corra's despite the fact that the fruit is from a completely different source.

    I also agree with you on the 2008. Only vintage I own in Mag as I think it will be really killer down the road.

Red
1990 Château Grand-Puy-Lacoste Pauillac Red Bordeaux Blend
7/13/2014 - englishman's claret wrote:
92 points
Tough to assess... I almost don't want to put a score on this one. Tight, even after 4-5 hours of air and a double decant followed by a long open air decant. Kept checking in on this, so I know we didn't miss peak. What's poking through is good Pauillac; blackberry, currant fruit with allspice, oak, and earth. But it's shy. I gather from the community notes that this is either a very shy bottle or, less likely, so faintly corked that it was stripped without showing TCA aromas. Hm.
  • RockinCabs commented:

    7/14/14, 6:28 AM - For me this bottle of 90 showed better than you suggest here. The palate was somewhat tight and not allowing all of the flavors that are there to show, but the nose was just sublime.

    It was clearly a few steps ahead of the 82 tonight, but the 82 was shockingly tight.

Red
2004 Merus Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley
6/10/2014 - dfresh wrote:
91 points
Driving more like a Camaro than a Ferrari. Less exotic and streamlined; more muscle and throttle. Hoped to experience a slightly more structured and refined wine with wow factor. 20 second finish.
  • RockinCabs commented:

    6/12/14, 12:31 PM - Any experience with a Mark Herold cab, esp. Merus, should be approached expecting an enormous wine that is very forceful. They are impressive wines, but not for elegance. Sounds like you would appreciate the Bond/Harlan cult style a bit more.

Red
2012 Le Roc des Anges Côtes du Roussillon Effet Papillon Grenache
6/5/2014 - BCharlieG Likes this wine:
92 points
This wine is absolutely delicious for the money. The flavors are all sorts of red apple/green apple and peach/pear/nectarine. Amazing white orchids and fruit loop in a granacha blanc/viognier type of way. Extremely floral. Acid is HIGH on this wine. beautiful bottle.
  • RockinCabs commented:

    6/5/14, 12:17 PM - Agreed. This was a killer wine.

Red
2008 Rivers-Marie Pinot Noir Occidental Ridge Vineyard Sonoma Coast
4/27/2014 - gregg g wrote:
And the RM excitement continues. Recently had the '10 So Co and really enjoyed it. This was steps above in both complexity and enjoyment. Savory and plush, exotic and generous, this wine was drinking as good as a domestic PN can get before tertiary development. An exquisite perfumed nose with animal, leather and raspberry aromas. Wonderful raspberry and cherry fruits with some mild baking spice on the palate. Long on the back end with a full mid palate punch, the wine just showed beautifully. Backroad says it's the best PN he's had all year. Cudos TRB!
  • RockinCabs commented:

    5/6/14, 5:13 PM - Great to know this is in a seriously nice place right now. I have loved this pinot from the time of release, and I waiting to open my last two bottles within the next 2-4 years to get some of the next layer of aged nuance from the wine.

Red
2004 Viader Proprietary Red Napa Valley Red Bordeaux Blend
3/2/2014 - MaximusT Likes this wine:
94 points
The day we bought this wine we drove on ice and snow up a mountain to the Viader winery. Now, 11 years later we sit by a warm fire with the wine decanted in front of us. Definitely the adventure we had getting to Viader adds to the greatness of this wine. Unlike the icy road this wine is easy. You can almost forget what you are drinking, it is subtle, it is clean...just easy. Dry, it coats your palate and lingers well after you swallow. The strawberries are ever so present, but the long linger begins to darken into something more seductive. Deep fruit, fig, pomegranate and cloves take hold. We would happily climb the icy mountain again to have more of this juice, as this is our last bottle. (We had our pregnant friend drive us back down, in case you were concerned about our safety).
  • RockinCabs commented:

    3/3/14, 6:07 AM - Great Story. I love visiting that winery, but have not been back in years. The 2004 is one of thier best wines of the 2000's. The restraint shown here in a hot vintage where many producers were overripe really helps this wine shine.

Red
2010 Hobel Wine Works Cabernet Sauvignon Engelhard Vineyard Napa Valley
2/16/2014 - RockinCabs wrote:
93 points
Visiting Napa (Feb 13th - 17th); 2/13/2014-2/17/2014 (Napa, CA): Nose: Red Plum, Dark Cherry, Raspberry and Bubble Gum. Notes of celery root, mint and baking spice emerge as well. Palate: Dense and elegant on entry with a very broad palate feel. Cherry, Raspberry and anise right up front and some vanillin, mint and mineral notes run throughout the midpalate. Finish: Svelte and round with some fine tannin showing, but this is quite plush.

- BYO at Bottega Yountville
  • RockinCabs commented:

    2/19/14, 6:48 AM - SBrick - I would suggest letting this age for another 2-3 years. I decanted it for about 2 hours before drinking and it definitely improved, but I think there is much more in the wine. A marked improvement was seen about 3+ hours into dinner.

    Extended slow ox would be my move if opening another one.

Red
2004 Château de Fieuzal Pessac-Léognan Red Bordeaux Blend
2/6/2014 - englishman's claret wrote:
88 points
Decent as red wine, but unassuming and a bit anonymous as Pessac.
  • RockinCabs commented:

    2/10/14, 9:19 AM - You seem pretty down on this. Do you think time will help it come around? I had a similar experience with a 2010 Chateau Brown this weekend. So under whelming and unidentifiable I didn't bother with a note or rating on it.

Red
2003 Château Duhart-Milon Pauillac Red Bordeaux Blend
1/18/2014 - NostraBacchus Likes this wine:
93 points
Small Coravin session @ home. Pretty dark garnet/purple color. Jumps out of the glass with dark fruit (blueberries, black currant), sweet toasted oak and some graphite and tobacco. On the palate there are again plenty of dark fruits (blueberries, some dark cherries and cassis/black currant) as well as some oaky spicyness, a touch of dark chocolate and some lead pencil/graphite as well as a touch of herbs. Full-bodied and dense without being heavy, with medium acidity and medium tannin that is perfectly ripe. Medium finish. I was never the biggest fan of Duhart-Milon but they hit it out of the park with their 2003. It's full-bodied and opulent, but very balanced and doesn't have any sur-maturité or oxidative notes like many other in that vintage.
  • RockinCabs commented:

    1/18/14, 9:55 PM - I just had this today as well and concur 100% with this note. Duhart Milon made a truly incredible wine in 2003 that is not overdone or falling apart due to excessive ripeness.

Red
2010 Shafer Cabernet Sauvignon One Point Five Stags Leap District
Now hey, this is a Napa Cabernet. I had heard the vineyard was wet-footed but this is still darn good stuff.
  • RockinCabs commented:

    8/6/13, 8:32 PM - Agree. Real crowd pleaser, and nails the Stags Leap flavor profile quite well. I better be loving it cause I am sitting on nearly two cases after serving it at my wedding.

Red
1982 Château Giscours Margaux Red Bordeaux Blend
7/19/2013 - f22nickell Likes this wine:
89 points
Seattle Wine Group - July 2013 Wine Tasting Event - Theme: Old World Whites ABCR (Freelon's house - Kent/Covington Area): Color: very dark, slightly browing rim
Aroma: earth, black fruits, anise, medicinal
Palate: silky, rust, earthy-copper notes, touch of leather.
Moderate length

Jason brought this to the tasting. Interesting aroma - an intellectual exercise.
  • RockinCabs commented:

    7/24/13, 11:49 AM - Had one of these not too long ago. Agree that it is a great exercise in older wine, and definitely shows the margaux character you would expect in a wine of this age.

  • RockinCabs commented:

    7/24/13, 11:49 AM - Had one of these not too long ago. Agree that it is a great exercise in older wine, and definitely shows the margaux character you would expect in a wine of this age.

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