Over the course of a week, I taste a bunch of wine, usually with friends, and almost always with my wife. Here are some of the wines we tasted over the past few weeks:
As I sat down last week to compile my weekly tasting notes, I realized that there were quite a few still in the “hopper”. I became a bit worried that I might have a bit of a wine drinking problem, but then I noticed that I had not written a “regular” one of these posts in over a month. That does not mean that I do not have a bit of a problem, but it does mean I can ignore it for at least a while longer….
2001 Chateau St. Jean Cabernet Sauvignon Cinq Cépages: Retail $65. Maybe I waited too long but this is still oh so good. Rather dark, surprisingly, with faded red berry fruit and earth. On the palate certainly old world in style and the fruit is faded but still evident. The acidity has taken over, though, and is a bit one note. Still? Very Good. 88-90 Points.
2004 Domaine / Maison Vincent Girardin Meursault Les Narvaux: Retail $75. Whoa. After another oxidized white Burg, this was well beyond a delight. Of the four of these I bought two were badly oxidized, the other two fantastic. Lemon curd, flint, vanilla, and oak. Whoa. After my recent disasters with Burgundy, this was magical. Outstanding. 92-94 Points.
1988 Heitz Cellar Cabernet Sauvignon Bella Oaks: Retail $80. Well, it seems as though the extra age has helped this wine (because there is no such thing as bottle variation, right?). Green pepper and cassis on the nose that morphed into black pepper and then back. Ten minutes later intense vanilla. And back to green pepper. Whoa. I don’t think I’ve seen so many transformations in such a short period. I thought it was dying but it is clawing back to relevance. We all reminisced about 1988, which underscored how special this is. Whoa. Outstanding. 92-94 Points.
2014 Passaggio Barbera Rosé: Retail $28. I visited the winery this past Spring when I called this the “Wine Geek’s Rosé” and I stand by that. I bought a couple of bottles at the time, determined to hold on to them for a while, but, well, that plan did not work out all that well. I had to pop another. Rule #1 don’t serve this very cold. Once it warms up this is really unlike any rosé I’ve had. Tropical (mango) when it’s cold, but that fades as it warms and becomes more rhubarb with a savory element that I just can’t place: umami? Chicken stock? On the palate? I think this gets a whoa as there’s fruit, tartness, and intrigue. And the finish lasts for minutes. I only bought two of these and the other I’m going to try to hold for at least two (and hopefully five) years. Outstanding. 91-93 Points.
2006 Turley Zinfandel Salvador Vineyard: Retail $50. Big. Wow big. A bit stewed and certainly dark fruit but this is big. Rich and a bit stewed but wow. That might even be a whoa. I have little experience with wines this big but… me likely. I am not sure what meal would work here, but it is fine on its own. Outstanding. 91-93 Points.
WINE of the WEEK: When I went into the basement and grabbed the bottle of 2014 Passaggio Barbera Rosé, I was close to certain that it would be the wine of the week–I am really fascinated by the wine. Add to it that the wine will likely not be made again, well, I thought it had it wrapped up. That was not the case, however. There was the 2006 Turley Zinfandel Salvador Vineyard, which was big, rich, and not really my style of Zin, but it was oh so good. Then there was the 2004 Domaine Vincent Girardin Meursault Les Narvaux, which also could or even should be the wine of the week, but I am so disappointed with white Burgundy right now, that I just could not stomach giving it such a prestigious and world-renowned honor (yes, there was considerable tongue in my cheek there). No, in the end, I opted for the wine that surprised me the most this week. I bought two bottles a few years ago and popped the first one in 2013. It was stellar, but the bottle I popped this week was at a different level altogether. I am kicking myself for not having bought more than the two….
What was your Wine of the Week?