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  1. John Dunlap

    John Dunlap

    691 Tasting Notes

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Community Tasting Notes (105) Avg Score: 91.3 points

  • Mini-vertical of Calabretta, with an ’07 Nerello Mascalese Vigne Vecchie and Etna Rossos from ’03 and ’01. All three were delicious, savory wines in the same rustic Calabretta style, with very complex aromatics and flavors, good structure, good acid, but also plenty of mid-palate sweetness, integrated tannin, and a long finish, great QPR, and still many years ahead of them. All showed a mix of red and black fruits, especially sweet dark fruits, as well as mushrooms, tar, leather, smoke, and the typical Nerello Mascalese raw steak. All three showed some similarity to mature Nebbiolo and mature Pinot Noir.

    The 2007 NMVV was decanted two hours ahead of dinner, and was the biggest of the three wines, with a bit more barnyard and exotic spices than the others, plus a medicinal note and a finish featuring plum, bitter cherry and black cherry. Drink to 2035+. 93.

    The 2003 ER was also decanted two hours ahead of dinner, and featured more rosemary and minerals than the others, plus sweet cranberry, and a gentle liqueur aftertaste. Drink to 2030+. 94.

    The 2001 ER was decanted and served immediately and took about 30 minutes to open. It was the most balanced and silky of the three, and the least rustic, and featured bittersweet cherry, cherry liqueur, and dried herbs, and a very long, satisfying mineral and beetroot finish. Drink to 2027+. 95.

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  • It's been two years since my last bottle, and the wine has changed very little; it is a bit softer and even smoother, and I raise my vote one point. Decanted through a gravity aerator and served 90 minutes later, the wine's initial funk had, just like with previous bottles, blown away by serving time, and the wine was fully open at the two hour mark. Great structure, with very complex aromas and flavors, and a long mineral and cherry liqueur finish. Outstanding QPR.

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  • the brett on this masks a lot of flavor typicity, leaner than mature bordeaux in body, and with the fineness of tannins of a grand cru burg from Morey. absolutely stunning wine, can be drunk alongside the best of the best

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  • What a fabulous wine! This is probably my eighth bottle of the 2001, and it is better than ever. Decanted one hour before dinner, it has a typical Calabretta funkiness that dissipates with aeration, a wonderful complexity of aromas and flavors, great structure, a medium+ body, and a long, long, sappy, mineral and beetroot finish. The wine is a feast for the senses, with forest floor, leather, tar, bittersweet cherry, cherry liqueur, smoke and dried herbs. It also has the color and acid profile of a wine that will continue to be delicious for many more years. Outstanding QPR.

    Equally good on night two, but different. The wine’s aromatics are more straightforward, less complex, but it has gained heft and sweetness, and the tannins are more prominent. The acid and structure are there in spades. Magnificent.

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  • Might be my last bottle. A light bretty funkiness on the nose, but I don't find it objectionable.

    Seamless on the palate, red fruits, decent acidity & persistence. And still drinks lively, so at least IMO, no worries about immediate consumption as it nears 20 years old.

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