This is still a work in progress as I upload tasting notes and wine labels from as far as 1999... Check back once in a while to get the updates.

December 31, 2010

Wines for countdown

Counting down to 2011.

1988 Clinet - decanted about 2 hours before drinking.  Ripe and sweet nose with smoke and minerals.  A little alcoholic.

1992 Beringer Nightingale - I've been saving this for a few years and finally got around to trying it.  Nose of plastic, botrytis, honey, orange blossom, nutty and a little sharp.  Very sweet on the palate, the way I like my sweet wines.

Duval-Leroy Brut "Design Paris" - pretty classic in terms of is yeasty nose and acidity.  The silkscreen bottle was designed by American painter LeRoy Neiman and is meant to evoke the City of Lights.

2008 Cloudy Bay Sauvignon Blanc - always a crowd favorite, with its classic nose of pipi de chat, minerals, flint and muscat.

Full post on dinner is here.

December 29, 2010

Pinots and Burgs

Dinner at the Specialist's home.

Egly-Ouriet Blanc de Noirs Grand Cru - this is one of my absolute favorites when it comes to Champagne. Made from 100% Pinot Noir, which clearly is the favorite varietal for our hostess! Nose was caramelized, a little yeasty, and at the end of dinner it smelled a lot like Comté! Dry mid-palate with a slightly sweet finish. Got even drier with the briny flavors of oysters still in my mouth.

2003 Vogüé Bourgogne Blanc - this was declassified Musigny Blanc, with nose of minerals, toast and a hint of sharpness. Actually a little ripe on the palate.

1996 Mommesin Clos de Tart - Rice called it "the cheapest monopole in Burgundy." This was a bit sweet on the nose with minty notes. Interestingly this appellation is just next to that of the next bottle...

1985 Vogüé Bonnes Mares - my contribution for the evening. I realized Rice was around both times I chose to open this wine, but this particular bottle drank waaay better than the last one. Didn't decant this bottle. Really fragrant and floral, sweet and very elegant. Nose of strawberries, rose, lovely fruit, a bit farmy, caramel and cashews. Still going strong some 3 hours after opening.

1999 Dugat-Py Charmes Chambertin - fruity, sweet and still pretty concentrated. Still kinda tannic. This should continue to drink well for a number of years.

1995 Haut-Brion - smoky, brett, sweet fruit, a bit sharp, potpourri, mint, spruce, tea leaves, a little savory almost like soy sauce.

1977 Graham's - I've never been a fan of vintage port, because the alcohol in the nose is just too sharp and piercing. This had a sharp and potent nose, with blackberries and pine needle.

Full post on dinner is here.

MNSC Face-off

1985 Solaia - smoky, savory, very ripe nose, a bit cooked and minty. Smooth on the palate but I could definitely feel the tannins. Color was very dark. 94 points.
1985 Joseph Phelps Insignia - this was very funky from the start, with herbs, exotic spices, smoke, black olives and green peppers in the nose. Pretty tannic. 95 points.

1978 Bouchard Montrachet - very toasty and smoky, like smoked lardon/pancetta, with notes of rye bread. Kinda acidic on the finish.

Full post on the face-off is here.

December 27, 2010

MNSC Dinner - Hong Kong Club

MNSC dinner at the Hong Kong Club, hosted by Pineapple.  Theme was 1950 corked/not-corked Pomerols.  Pineapple was also generous enough to open a few extra bottles after the scoring rounds.

1990 Salon - absolutely lovely.  Caramel, a bit of toast, straw, citrus, sweetness, a hint of vanilla, almost marzipan.  Later plenty of salty plum (話梅) and minerals.  Very few bubbles left.  Golden hue.  Dry on the palate and finish.  Very complex and really enjoyable, but we all thought it was a couple of decades older.  Curious...

1980 Ramonet Montrachet - huge nose of toasty popcorn, a bit stinky, a bit sweet and buttery, minerals.  Deep golden hue.  Ripeness is there on the palate but the wine was acidic on the finish.  Absolutely beautiful.  97 points.

First flight:
1950 L'Eglise-Clinet - dusty, smoky, minerals, very bretty, lots of black olives, savory, soy sauce.  Velvety on the palate with a coat of tannins.  95 points.

1950 La Fleur-Petrus - smoky, farmy, tea leaves, a bit sharp, a bit pruny, salty.  89 points.

1950 Le Gay - sweet fruit, sweet grass, grilled meats, smoky, minerals.  Acidic on finish.  92 points.

Second flight:
1950 L'Evangile - pruny, a bit of stewed fruits, minerals, salty plum.  Grippy with lots of tannins.  87 points.

1950 Vieux Château Certan - rosemary, herbs, mint.  Grippy on the palate.  94 points.

Third flight:
1950 Petrus - mint, herbs, a bit farmy, sweet, almost caramel.  91 points.

1950 Lafleur - a little cloudy.  Smoke, brett, pine needle, sweet, honeydew, black olives and minerals.  90 points.

Extra bottles:
1920 Brane-Cantenac the wine was clearly much older than what we've been drinking before, both from the light and cloudy color as well as the tired palate.  Nose of coconut butter, sweet, straw, actually a little sharp, honeydew.  Very light and acidic on the palate.  

1970 Giscours - floral, sweet, tropical, kinda lychee, rose, and pandan.

1990 L'Evangile - toasty, smoky, popcorn...almost like a white Burgundy.  Sweet and a hint of floral.  Dry on the palate.

Full post on dinner is here.

December 25, 2010

1987 Beringer Private Reserve

1987 Beringer Cabernet Sauvignon Private Reserve - this was part of a 12-vintage vertical I picked up at the winery 10 years ago, and it drank very well tonight.  Big, smoky nose with minerals, sweet fruit, mint and vanilla oak.  Still pretty concentrated and full-bodied.  Very Left Bank in style.  Yummy.

December 23, 2010

2006 Selbach-Oster Riesling Fish

2006 Selbach-Oster Riesling Kabinett "Fish" - drank over dinner at On Lot 10.  Typical nose showing lots of petrol, plastic, ripe fruits, citrus rind and minerals.  Actually a little sweeter than I expected from a kabinett.

Full post on dinner is here.

Jayer-Gilles Bourgogne

2006 Jayer-Gilles Bourgogne Hautes-Côtes de Nuits Blanc - ripe nose with citrus rind, toasty oak and flint.  Surprisingly round on the palate and slightly tight on the finish.

2007 Jayer-Gilles Bourgogne Hautes-Côtes de Nuits Rouge - nose of potpourri, a bit of smoke and mint.  Still some power on the nose after 2 hours, but palate was completely dead... undrinkable like there was detergent inside the glass.

December 21, 2010

1993 Chave Hermitage

1993 Chave Hermitage Rouge - drank over dinner at Caprice.  Nose was open and fragrant, with lovely notes of prunes, floral and violet later, followed by dusty and black pepper notes.  Fabulous to drink now.

Full post on dinner is here.

2007 Ponsot

Tasting of 2007 Ponsot wines at the Press Room, organized by Altaya Wines.  Laurent Ponsot was in town, and it was good to see him again a few weeks after our visit to his domaine.

2007 Ponsot Morey-Saint-Denis 1er Cru Clos de Mont Luisants Blanc - nose of minerals and lemon.  Quite pleasant to drink.  This was labeled Vieilles Vignes as the vines were almost 100 years old...

2007 Ponsot Bourgogne Cuvée de Pinson - smoky, farmy, stinky with animal notes.

2007 Ponsot Chambolle-Musigny 1er Cru Les Charmes - farmy, minty, some fruit on the nose.  Sweeter on the palate.

2007 Ponsot Morey-Saint-Denis 1er Cru Cuvée des Alouettes - smoky with forest notes.  Very pleasant.

2007 Ponsot Chapelle-Chambertin - minty, smoky, fruity, earthy with minerals.

2007 Ponsot Griotte-Chambertin - more farmy with bacon fat, sweet, minty with herbs.  Very lovely.

2007 Ponsot Clos de la Roche Vieilles Vignes - a lovely and complex wine.  Perhaps not quite ready to be drunk tonight.

December 20, 2010

MNSC Dinner - Wagyu Kaiseki Den

MNSC Dinner at Wagyu Kaiseki Den, hosted by Juliano.  Theme was Margaux vertical.

1989 Philipponnat Clos des Goisses - very oxidized nose, dominated by salty plum (話梅), caramel, minerals, toasty oak and roasted nuts.  Absolutely lovely and beautiful.

1961 Margaux - savory minerals with soy sauce, big smoky nose but with obvious sweet fruit core.  A bit of straw, brett, lead pencil.  Surprisingly sweet on the palate but not sugary.  92 points.  Breathed for 1½ hours in bottle.

1961 Palmer - sweet, grassy, slightly herbal and vegetal nose, with a little mushroom and light smoke.  Slightly more tannic than the '61 Margaux.  94 points.  Breathed for 1½ hours in bottle.

1990 Margaux - really sweet and jammy, with minerals, a little metallic and sharp, a bit smoky, exotic and tropical fruits like lychee.  Wow!  What an amazing wine!  Finish was a little weak so this was just short of perfection.  96 points.  2 hours in decanter.

1995 Margaux - brett, medicinal, a bit of smoke, a little sharp but with some sweet fruit.  94 points.

1986 Margaux - lots of sweet grass, a bit smoky, slightly green and vegetal, smoky, brett, minty with minerals.  92 points.

1988 Margaux - smoky, brett, nose a little muted.  Slightly more tannic.

Full post on dinner is here.

December 18, 2010

Michele Chiarlo Gavi Le Marne

Michele Chiarlo Gavi Le Marne, vintage unknown - ordered a glass at Otto e Mezzo during lunch.  Ripe nose with marmalade and mineral and banana notes.  Highly floral and aromatic, but a bit heavy on the oak.

Full post on lunch is here.

December 17, 2010

A mixed bag of casual

Dinner at Tim Ho Wan.

Azienda Monsordo Bernardina La Bernardina - this was classified as brut but still a bit sweet on the palate.

2006 Grosset Chardonnay Piccadilly - as expected, with a good amount of oak and minerals.

2008 Selaks Sauvignon Blanc Premium Selection - nose was very fruity and tropical, with green apples and passion fruit.  But palate was pretty thin.

2010 Argento Malbec - pretty one-dimensional, with forward fruit.  Did I really drink a bottle of wine that was released in its own vintage year?!

West Region 5 Year (西域烈焰) - a brandy distilled from Sauvignon Blanc in Xinjiang (新疆), I was amazed to find aspartame listed as one of three ingredients...  Typically alcoholic, and soooo not my cup of tea.

Full post on dinner is here.
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