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. These are wines that were not sent as samples—in most cases, I actually paid for these wines (although a few have been given as gifts).
This week, I got a text on Wednesday night that a good friend, whom I was scheduled to meet on Thursday in Austin, had his plane rerouted to Houston due to some pretty nasty storms over the state’s capital. The airline told him that the flight was cancelled and he would not be able to get to Austin until the following morning. We decided that he should grab an Uber into town and spend the night here, after opening
1999 Domaine Borgeot Pommard 1er Cru La Chanière: Retail $80. 100% Pinot Noir. I bought a couple of bottles of this wine while leading a bike tour in France, and I kept it in a temperature controlled environment since. It was moved to a different house in Philadelphia and then 1500 miles to Houston, TX. Finally, when a good friend was in town for just an hour or two, it got the call.
I know, it happens, but I could tell that this wine had some really fantastic fruit underneath that less-than-lovely wet basement acrid-ness. I debated opening the second bottle on the spot, but demurred. There was only so much disappointment I was willing to endure. Flawed, not rated.
2001 Trimbach Gewurztraminer Cuvée des Seigneurs de Ribeaupierre, France: Retail $45. After the Corton-Charlemagne (below) left me a bit underwhelmed, I decided we needed another choice once our take-out Chinese order arrived. What better place to go than back to Alsace, where I studied for a year while in college. Golden and rich with petrol, floral notes (jasmine, acacia), and a touch of citrus. The palate proves why one should hold onto Alsatian wines for more than a heartbeat. Fruity, quite tart, and with depths that are rarely seen with whites this age. Whoa. Excellent to Outstanding. 92-94 Points.
2004 Domaine / Maison Vincent Girardin Corton-Charlemagne Grand Cru, Burgundy, France: Retail $100. 100% Chardonnay. When we ventured into the cellar looking for a bottle, this was the first bottle I grabbed, completely at random. We figured it was a good place to start. The last bottle of this I tried was stellar, but this was, well, not so much. Dark golden color in the glass with oxidation setting in, for sure. Honeyed tree fruit (pear and peach) with a bit of glycerin. The palate is tart and inviting–the good side of a white Burg on the downward slope. Not what it should be, but I have had far worse (and better). Very Good to Excellent. 89-91 Points.
2004 Domaine Bernard Morey et Fils Beaune 1er Cru Grèves, Burgundy France: Retail $50. 100% Pinot Noir. After the Borgeot Pommard was corked, I was more than a bit hesitant to open another Burgundy, but I figured they were taking up valuable space in the cellar—better weed out the bad and make room for the (hopefully) good. So I opted for this Beaune, which hails from just a few kilometers north of Pommard. I popped and poured: relief. A quintessential Burgundian nose of dried cherries, earth, leather, and truffles. The palate is even more enticing with still ample fruit, incredible acidity, and impeccable balance. Still going strong and I am loving it. Whoa. Excellent to Outstanding. 92-94 Points.
WINE OF THE WEEK: Since I started doing this “What We Have Been Drinking” however many years ago, I think it is safe to say that never before had all of the wines from a given week come from the same day, let alone the same hour. Well, these four did, and I guess that is an advantage to having obsessively bought wine over the last couple of decades—you tend to have a lot around that you need to drink. The Wine of the Week (or is it a Wine of the Night) this go-around came down to two contenders since the Pommard was corked (sob) and the Corton-Charlemagne was less than what it should have been (which is sadly my experience with far too many older white Burgundies). That leaves the 2001 Trimbach Gewurztraminer Cuvée des Seigneurs de Ribeaupierre and the 2004 Domaine Bernard Morey et Fils Beaune 1er Cru Grèves in contention. After sitting at my keyboard for a while trying to decide which was “better” I decided that the real “winner” this week was me—I got to share a few bottles with a friend, which is the way I hope to drink every bottle I open.
What was your Wine of the Week?