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.

August 31, 2023

Katsuyama dinner

Katsuyama Sake dinner at Man Ho, organized by Berry Brothers and Rudd. Twelfth generation kuramoto Isawa Heizo in attendance with wife Julie and son Isawa Heiki.

Katsuyama Junmai Ginjo Ken (勝山 純米吟醸 献) - seimaibuai (精米歩合) of 50%. Very fragrant nose of starchy rice, along with fermented notes and a hint of umami.

Katsuyama Tokubetsu Junmai Sensho Masamune (勝山 特別純米 戦勝政宗) - seimaibuai of 55%. Bigger nose, also showing some starchy rice. Rounded and soft on the palate but ends up a bit dry on the finish.

Katsuyama Junmai Daiginjo Den (勝山 純米大吟醸 伝) - seimaibuai of 35%. More lean on the nose, definitely more dry and spicy on the palate. Drinking after the soup actually made it show much sweeter on the palate.

Katsuyama Junmai Daiginjo Akatsuki (勝山 純米大吟醸 暁) - seimaibuai of 35%. Nose was kinda big, while the palate was very soft.

Katsuyama Junmai Daiginjo Hyojuku (勝山 純米大吟醸 氷熟貯蔵酒) - seimaibuai of 35%. More rounded and viscous on the palate, very nice. Slightly more fermented on the nose and showed some umami. Also a little sweet, pretty rich and starchy. I love aged sake and this is exactly why.

Katsuyama Tarujuku Junmai Ginjo (勝山 樽熟 純米吟醸) - seimaibuai of 55%. This was aged in oak barrels for 2 years, and showed lots of vanilla notes thanks to the wood. Pretty sweet and definitely toasty oak.

Full post on dinner is here.

August 26, 2023

Kurahikari Soujyu

Dinner at Ishiyama.

Kurahikari Tobintori Tokubetsu Junmai Soujyu (倉光 斗瓶採り 特別純米酒 双樹), R3BY - seimaibuai of 60%. Very fermented flavor profile on the palate, definitely dry and spicy. With additional chilling this showed a little sweetness on the finish after dry and spicy notes.

Full post on dinner is here.

August 25, 2023

2009 Massandra

Drinking at home.

2009 Massandra Alushta Red - decanted for 1 hour before drinking. Definitely still has fruit here, although the wine is showing signs of advanced aging, and the palate was getting pretty flat. Nose showing plummy notes, but clearly oxidized and showing woodsy notes. Savory like soy sauce and black olives, with a reasonable fragrance after additional aeration. Past its prime.

August 22, 2023

2011 Napa

Dinner at Koji Charcoal Grill.

2011 The Mascot - double-decanted and served around 1½ hours later. Lots of sweet, jammy fruit on the nose while decanting. Pretty soft on the palate now, and still very sweet on the palate. Definitely has the Harlan style where there's a lot of sweet fruit, but also not quite warm and hot like other Napa cabs... just slightly "French".

2011 Kapcsándy Estate Cuvée - decanted by restaurant staff with all the sediment and drank 1 hour and 15 minutes later. Very ripe and jammy, with lots of vanilla oak on the nose. Much more sweet, candied nose.

Full post on dinner is here.

August 20, 2023

2013 de Montille Malconsorts

Drinking at home.

2013 Domaine de Montille Vosne-Romanée 1er Cru Aux Malconsorts - pretty fragrant nose with some leather and grilled meats, but the palate was lighter and rather diluted. Acidity was higher than expected, but the palate was really not great, showing obvious tartness and astringent. Showed some spices on the nose a little later, with more fruit like black cherries and cassis, along with what almost seemed like grilled corn. Sadly I really did not like the palate at all.

August 19, 2023

2008 Hello Kitty Pinot Nero

Drinking at home.

2008 Torti Lady Pinot Nero - lots of sediment on the first pour and the color was a little brownish. Very ripe and sweet fruit on the nose, like prune juice, with that little savory profile on the nose. Actually there were fermented notes on the nose like soy sauce. Despite being only 15 years old, this smelled and tasted like a much older wine, and oxidized far beyond its age. Wonder if it had been stored properly...

August 18, 2023

2020 Cossard Pinot

Drinking at home.

2020 Frédéric Cossard Pinot Noir - a hint of sour plum soup with its complexity on the nose, with black plums, some leather, lightly smoked meats. Good acidity here on the palate. This was actually pretty fragrant and decent for a simple pinot. Kinda meaty and muscular, and not the elegant and floral type. More than 2 hours later some floral notes finally showed up, though...

August 15, 2023

Clos Ste Hune, Landonne, and Sauternes

Dinner at Caprice.

Vouette et Sorbée Fidèle, en magnum, dégorgée le 1 decembre 2021 - very metallic and mineral, flinty, like Anjou pears. Fresh and fruity nose at the same time, then a little more oxidized. Good depth on the palate.

1987 Trimbach Riesling Clos Sainte Hune - served a little over 1 hour after opening. As expected there was the nose of petrol and polyurethane, but I was surprised how fresh this was. There was a little oxidation on the palate, but it was not sweetness as it was still relatively dry. Lovely nose of white flowers. In the Riedel Winewings Riesling glass this was noticeably more fragrant and elegant, and more buttery notes came out. A little lemon on the nose, slightly savory and almost a hint of umami more than 2½ hours later. There was just a hint of ripeness but again, the palate was still not sweet. Drinking so beautifully now, stunning! 97 points.

1995 Guigal Côte-Rôtie La Landonne - I was surprised that the bottle was not decanted, but I trust the team. served a little more than 1½ hours after opening. This was soooooo beautiful! Lots of mint on the nose, peppery, halfway between green capsicum and black pepper. Definitely a little floral with violet notes, although we know there's no viognier in the blend. Good amount of ripe, black fruits. Sweet on the nose but not quite jammy and sugary. Showing lots of exotic spices about 2 hours after opening. A little savory now, with smoke and graphite some 2½ hours after opening. About 3½ hours later there was some leather and almost bacon fat. One of the best La La's I've had in the last few years and I'd put this at about 99 points.

1996 Gilette Crème de Tête, en imperiale - very fragrant nose showing orange blossom water, saffron, a bit more acetone, a little close-infused pineapple. The finish was longer with more acidity here. Also a little more savory on the nose. With more time in glass this was showing more oranges on the nose but not quite like marmalade.

1990 Yquem, en jeroboam - big nose of beeswax, honey, marmalade. More viscous and sweet on the palate. Showing more plastic on the nose, along with vanilla and some spices.

1978 Gentaz-Dervieux Côte-Rôtie Cuvée Réservée Côte Brune - this was definitely corked, which was a real shame. Showing classic wet cardboard and grassy nose, but still kinda fragrant. Palate was actually OK and drinkable, but of course it's on the light side now after 45 years. Later on this also showed some coffee notes on the nose.

Full post on dinner is here.

August 13, 2023

German rieslings

Dinner at the Chairman.

2015 Egon Müller Scharzhofberger Riesling Kabinett - good acidity together with some sweetness on the palate, which also came with some fairly strong polyurethane. Nice nose of white flowers.

2009 Joh. Jos. Prüm Wehlener Sonnenuhr Riesling Kabinett - lots of the usual petrol and polyurethane on the nose. Slightly sweet on the palate but medium-dry.

Full post on dinner is here.

August 12, 2023

Marisa Cuomo and Veuve

Dinner at home.

Veuve Clicquot Yellow Label - yeasty nose with a little savory notes.

2020 Marisa Cuomo Costa d'Amalfi Furore Bianco Fiorduva - flinty on the nose, kinda fragrant, nice and a little caramelized nose, with a little toasty oak. Good balance between the acidity and the ripeness on the palate. A very well-made wine.

August 11, 2023

2020 Blanc de Suduiraut

Drinking at home.

2020 Blanc Sec de Suduiraut - very flinty, some stone fruit like apricot on the nose. Good acidity here, and almost a little tart on the finish, but also got some ripeness, too.

August 9, 2023

Torbreck vertical

Dinner at the Hong Kong Club.

1995 Moët et Chandon Cuvée Dom Pérignon Rosé - classic nose of marmalade, really nice with just the slightest hint of Chinese salted plum, savory and mineral, really lovely with some vanilla. Good acidity here but also got the roundness as well as complexity on the palate.

2016 Kumeu River Chardonnay Mate's Vineyard - I drank this about 1 hour after this was poured in the glass. Pretty flinty, toasty, definitely buttery. More than 2 hours after opening, this was showing a really big and toasty nose. Sooooo good!

1997 Torbreck RunRig - decanted about 1 hour after opening and served 45 minutes after decanting. Lots of coconut butter on the nose, very sweet, some smoke and grilled meats. Tannins have definitely softened. Second pour 2½ hours after opening gave us a wine that was nice and very rounded on the palate, but still with great concentration. The wine was more complex now, with a little more oak and some leather on the nose.

1999 Torbreck RunRig - decanted about 1 hour after opening and served 45 minutes after decanting. Bigger toasty nose, more minty. Leaner on the palate and more concentrated, a little more closed compared to the 1997, and showing a higher alcohol level on the palate. Really sweet on the palate with a little vanilla on the finish.

2001 Torbreck RunRig - decanted about 30 minutes after opening, and served a little more than an hour after decanting. Nose was pretty metallic, sweet but not too overripe.

2002 Torbreck RunRig - decanted about 30 minutes after opening, and served a little more than an hour after decanting. Minty, sweet on the palate. Wine was mature enough now to soften it on the palate but still retained enough structure. After more than 2 hours in the decanter this improved with some acidity on the palate.

2004 Torbreck RunRig - opened and decanted about 1½ hours before serving. This was really fragrant and minty, slightly jammy on the nose, and really sweet on the palate. So well balanced after around 3 hours in the decanter - not too hot and ripe and nicely balanced with the acidity.

Full post on dinner is here.

August 7, 2023

Sake pairing

Dinner at Godenya.

Iseno Shiroki Junmai Nama Sparkling (伊勢の白酒 純米生活性), 2022-23 - served at 10°C. Seimaibuai (精米歩合) of 65%. Smell like fermented rice lees with their fruity acidity. Definitely some fermentation here and love how it perks up the palate.

Fukuiwai Junmai Ginjo Summer (福祝 純米吟醸  夏の純吟), 2022-23 - served at served at 12°C. Seimaibuai of 40%. Some roundness on the palate. A little bit sweet at first, but medium-dry in the middle, with a dry finish that brings some bitterness.

Kozaemon Junmai Daiginjo (小左衛門 純米大吟醸), 2022-23 - served at 12°C. Seimaibuai of 40%. A little bit on the dry side, lean but with slight roundness on the palate. A little savory, too.

Okunoto no Shiragiku Tokubetsu Junmai Sonomanma (奥能登の白菊 特別純米無濾過生原酒 そのまんま), R5BY - served at 20°C. Seimaibuai of 55%.

Niida Natural Kimoto Natsuyuki Nama (仁井田 自然酒 生酛なつゆき生), 2022-23 - served at 11°C. Seimaibuai of 80%. Some fermented fruity notes here, but not very strong.

Hagi no Tsuru Junmai Ginjo Omachi Nama (萩の鶴  純米吟醸  雄町 生), R4BY - served at 14°C. Seimaibuai of 50%. A little acidity here, with some fruity notes.

Tanaka Nojyou Junmai 70% (田中農場 七割), H28BY - served at 48°C. Seimaibuai of 70%. The flavors were very fermented here, definitely savory, and very nice when served warm.

Niida Natural Kimoto Nigori (仁井田 自然酒 生酛にごり), 2020-23

Full post on dinner is here.
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