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Cellar list for: geriksendone

2008AVE Premium - Torrontes CafayateWhite Wine - Torrontes  2012  89/ST
Pale yellow. Floral aromas of melon, mango, jasmine and rose petal. Juicy, clean, and dry; with ripe acidity carrying the flavors of this subtle, understated wine. Finishes with enticing aromatic character. - Stephen Tanzer
2005Ambullneo Mastiff CuveePinot Noir  8012  93/ST 93/RP 94/WE
The 2005 Pinot Noir Mastiff Cuvee is a blend of Pinot Noir from two vineyards in northern California’s Carneros region (Hyde and Hudson vineyards ). It boasts terrific fruit along with a rich, sumptuous perfume of raspberries, black cherries, Allspice, and woodsy notes, medium to full body, an explosive mouthfeel, and full-bodied, supple tannins. A beautiful, fleshy, round finish provides a sumptuous character to this beauty. Consume it over the next 5-7 years. 400 cases made - (5/1/2007, Robert Parker) ***** The 2005 Mastiff is a fantastic follow-up to the 2004 debut. By being even more hands-on in the vineyards in 2005 allowed us to really hone in on the greatness of what Carneros has to offer us. By visiting these vineyards every 2-3 weeks, I was able to better call the pick this year which helped in reducing the sugars (and thus, the alcohol) while maintaining a higher acid profile. The 2005 Mastiff Cuvée presents an opulent, garnet hue in the glass like its predecessor. On the nose, it is again, very much a Mastiff with loads of raspberries, black cherries and baking spices. On the palette, the wine's core explodes with black cherry, ripe black plums and hints of blueberries and raspberries enveloped by subtle notes of vanilla bean and nutmeg that extend on a long, sublime finish. I named this wine Mastiff Cuvee because it is a champion combination of both vineyards and promises to be a great addition to our kennel. - Winemaker's notes. ***** This is one of the larger, more imponderable Pinots I’ve tasted this year, meaning that it has the heft of something from the Rhone, perhaps a Grenache, although it never loses Pinot’s silkiness. It’s tremendous and forward in jammy cherries, raspberries and cola, and while it’s dry, it has the sweet finish of an extremely ripe wine. Enormously complicated, it’s an eccentric Pinot, but one you’ll probably reach for again and again. From the esteemed Hyde and Hudson vineyards. - Wine Enthusiast
2001Angelus, ChateauBordeaux  25012  93/ST 92/WS 93/RP
A brilliant performance by Hubert de Bouard, the 2001 Angelus is a more restrained and delineated version of the 2000. It has shed much of its tannin, and seems far more evolved and open-knit than I thought prior to bottling. Its deep purple color is followed by a rich nose of creosote, charcoal, blackberries, plums, cassis, and espresso roast. Elegant, medium-bodied, and rich, with a measured ripeness and moderate structure in the pure, nicely proportioned finish, it is less massive than either the 2000 or 2003, yet is also beautifully put together. Anticipated maturity: 2007-2017. - Robert Parker ***** Intense aromas of earth, spice and new wood with fruit. Full-bodied and chewy with plenty of fruit and vanilla. Rich and exciting. Long finish. Angélus is a consistent winner and did well here. Best after 2006. 6,665 cases made. - Wine Spectator ***** Deep ruby-red. Perfumed, dark aromas of blackberry, black cherry, plum, cedar, licorice, mint and violet. Juicy, bright and penetrating; less dense than the 2002 but more charming and seamless today, with bright acids giving the inviting dark berry and floral flavors excellent cut. Finishes with firm but suave tannins and excellent persistence. - Stephen Tanzer
1999Argyle BrutSparkling Wine  2012  91/WS
"Ripe and vibrant, creamy in texture, with a sweet vanilla edge to the pear and citrus flavors, rather like delicately carbonated still wine, finishing long. Reminiscent of some domaine-bottled Champagnes. Drink now. 14,809 cases made." - Wine Spectator ***** This Brut is exceptionally fresh and crisp with a smooth cream center. Aromas include an enticing combination of apple blossoms, lemon custard with a beam of both vanilla creme and roasted hazelnut, with a touch of fresh squeezed extra virgin Spanish olive oil! The flavors are a fresh, crisp version of white peach, ripe apple, baked pastry with a mango-vanilla-yeast bouquet. The tartness is pleasantly wrapped into a sweet fruit finish. Bottle aged on the yeast for three years, Argyle's flagship sparkling wine is disgorged "on demand" to ensure its freshness and vigor.
2009Auteur Pinot Noir, Sonoma CoastPinot Noir  4012  93/WS
Complex and concentrated, with a vivid mix of blueberry, blackberry, tar, cedar and berry jam. Full-bodied, spicy and floral, folding together nicely on the finish. Drink now through 2018. - (J.L. - July, 2011) Wine Spectator
2002Bahans Haut Brion, ChateauBordeaux  5024  90/WS 89/ST
Subtle and classy aromas of blackberries, fresh mushrooms and light oak follow through to a medium-bodied palate, with a good core of fruit, silky tannins and a medium finish. Second wine of Haut-Brion. Best after 2007. - Wine Spectator ***** Full, bright ruby-red. Spicy, fresh aroma of black raspberry, with a hint of smoked meat. Dense and fine-grained, with enticing, nicely delineated flavors of black raspberry, minerals and sweet tobacco. Distinctly dark fruit in character, with lively framing acidity. Finishes firmly tannic and persistent. As always, this will be one of Bordeaux's best second wines. - Stephen Tanzer
2003Barossa Valley Estate E & E Black PepperShiraz  9012  97/WS 93/ST
Dark, juicy and profound, with layer upon layer of flavor seamlessly knit into a cohesive whole, offering dark berry, black cherry, exotic spice, black pepper and licorice that sail through the long, vivid finish. Has tremendous style and intensity. 1,200 cases made. Wine Spectator 2006 Top 100 Wines (#21) - Wine Spectator. ***** Bright, round and juicy. A gorgeous mouthful of cherry, blackberry and floral flavors, lingering on the finish with a touch of dark espresso to add interest. The tannins are polished, and the wine has a keen sense of balance, grace and harmony. Drink now through 2015. - Stephen Tanzer
2003Bellevue Claribes, ChateauBordeaux  1612  90/WC
Living in an area that is dominated by the effects of the sea, the people of Bordeaux have always been drawn, mostly by necessity, to all things that are nautical. Shipyards dominate the coast and surfers flock to the Peninsula of Lege Cap-Ferret. The inland Gironde estuary attracts windsurfers thrilled by the winds and concurrent waves of the Mascaret. The Chaloupe, which graces our bottle, is a small sloop which, originally, was used to harvest the rich oysters, crab, and lobsters offshore. It is known currently as the craft-of-choice among the fashionable, young, vacationing gourmands who come to Bordeaux in search of the perfect day. The 28 acres estate is planted to both vineyards and lush floral gardens. The wine produced from the vines is 66% Merlot for fruity roundness, 20% Carbernet Franc for structure, color and spice, and 14% Cabernet Sauvignon for lush cassis flavor and tannin. It is drinkable now or can be aged for 3-5 years. In 2003, crop levels were very low, so the wines are very concentrated. With quantity low and quality very high, this is a rare bargain in an otherwise expensive vintage. ****** The reserve wine to Claire Abbaye, this packs on the fruit and the weight. Bigger, bolder and more complex, this stunning value will continue to drink well for the next 7-10 years. ***** This Merlot,Cabernet Sauvignon,Cabernet Franc blend has amazing concentration. Powerful cassis aromas, rich and fruity on the palate, with ripe tannins on the finish. Age worthy. Real value amongst pricey Bordeaux. Amazing Concentration.
2001Beringer Private ReserveCabernet  12024  96/WA 94/ST 95/WS
When all of these cuvees are blended together, the result is the finest Cabernet Sauvignon yet made by Ed Sbragia, the 2001 Cabernet Sauvignon Private Reserve (11,000 cases of truly divine Cabernet nectar). For statisticians, 44% came from the Steinhauer Vineyard, 1% from Bancroft Ranch, 17% from Rancho del Oso, 3% from Chabot, 13% from St. Helena Home Ranch, 0% from Quarry Vineyard, and the balance from Marston Vineyard. As I reported last year, the 2001 is an extraordinary effort. Large-scaled yet elegant, it boasts classic notes of creme de cassis, chocolate, and smoky oak. With extraordinary voluptuousness, great concentration, tremendous intensity, and a finish that lasts nearly 60 seconds, this saturated purple-colored, full-bodied Cabernet Sauvignon is one of the greatest wines ever made at Beringer. It is a tribute to the brilliant Ed Sbragia. Anticipated maturity: 2007-2023. - Wine Advocate ***** WS 95-100 Pts. (Barrel Tasting) - Plush and concentrated, with layers of rich currant, anise, black cherry and mocha, finishing with smoky, toasty oak. Loads of flavor and potential. ***** Good full ruby. Complex, very ripe aromas of cassis, minerals, lead pencil and currant leaf. Large-scaled and sweet, with flavors of roasted currant, blackberry and dark chocolate. This is almost too big for the mouth. A California cabernet with superb density and length. Finishes with building tannins and subtle notes of chocolate, mocha and underbrush. This wine is virtually always accessible early, but also has an excellent track record for aging. - Stephen Tanzer ***** Massive, with firm tannins and fine structure, this tightly wound young wine will need time to show its stuff, as it’s dense and concentrated, offering only glimpses of what lies ahead. Dried currant, herb, sage and wild berry flavors, with chewy tannins on the finish. Those patient enough to cellar it may be in for a pleasant surprise. Best from 2008 through 2014.— Wine Spectator
1999Beychevelle, ChateauBordeaux  4024  90/WS
The 1999 vintage is very fruity, pleasant and fleshy with high alcohol content thanks to the very ripe Merlot grapes. The tannins are ripe, mild and nicely-pronounced. This vintage appears to be of a comparable level to 1998 and perhaps 1989 with its high alcohol content, relatively low acidity, or similar to 1983 for its pleasant character. It should, however, offer better aging potential than the 1983, thanks to the stricter selection processes applied in production. - IWC ***** Plum and smoky aromas follow through to a medium-bodied palate, with light tannins and a smoky finish. Very pleasant. Best from 2003 through 2008. 22,500 cases made. - Wine Spectator ***** Wow! What a great example of the beauty of cabernet sauvignon. The aromas of cherry, strawberry and Asian spice is nice and exotic, with classic cab notes of black currant, cedar and licorice coming through on the palate. This is very elegant stuff and will age gracefully for another 8-10 years. - Wine News ***** 22,000 cases produced; 43% Cabernet Sauvignon, 43% Merlot, 8% Cabernet Franc, 6% Petit Verdot - Beychevelle Website
Purchased 2 cases 1/06. Brought first 2 bottles upstairs 1/20/2006. Also, one of the wines served at my 50th birthday party. Bottle after bottle consistently polished, structured, and elegant. This is one of my favorite Bordeaux wines for $40 or less - wish I had purchased many more cases!!!
1995Bollinger R.D. Extra BrutSparkling Wine  2503  95/WS 91/ST 92/WE
A dry, oxidative style, with whole-grain bread, ginger, roasted hazelnut and yeast notes lending complexity. Its structure comes into relief due to the dryness, but overall this is balanced and well-integrated, with a very long finish and an expansive aftertaste. Ideal with seafood and rich sauces or game birds. Drink now through 2020. 60 cases imported. - Wine Spectator ***** Light gold color. Textbook Bollinger aromas of toast, lees and buttered toast, along with suggestions of fresh mushroom and white truffle. This is really about earthy tones, not fruit. Thick and fat to the point of being oily in texture, with deeply pitched sweet cream and butter tones and a slow-to-unfold singed pineapple flavor. For fans of Bollinger, this is a serious buy. - Stephen Tanzer ***** Very clean, young and fresh, with tremendous aging potential. Pineapple and Golden Delicious give it primary, young-fruit flavors that need years to develop. This rating may look stingy in time. - Wine Enthusiast
2002Campo EliseoTempranillo  6012  94/WS
HIGHLY RECOMMENDED Wine Spectator - This elegant red shines in the international style, with toasty oak, polished texture and clean, ripe fruit. Blackberry, espresso and mineral notes mingle over well-integrated tannins and emerge haloed by spices on the toasty finish. Drink now through 2012. - Wine Spectator ***** Named as one of Wine Spectator's Top 100 Wines of 2005 ( # 13). This partnership between brothers Jacques and François Lurton and globe-trotting consultants Dany and Michel Rolland confirms the rising quality of the reds from Spain's Toro region. Five local growers provided the 100 percent Tinta de Toro (Tempranillo) grapes used in the wine. An average vine age of 30 years and small crops provide concentration, while malolactic fermentation in new French oak barriques followed by additional aging for 14 months lends international polish. 1,250 cases made. - Wine Spectator
2001Castello Banfi Brunello di MontalcinoSangiovese  7512  93/WS 92/ST 92/WE 91/RP
Loads of blackberry, currant and toasted oak. Full-bodied, chewy and rich. Long finish. This is big and rich. Best after 2009. 50,000 cases made. – (04/2006 - James Suckling) Wine Spectator ***** Beautiful layers of cherry-berry, anise, menthol, cedar, minerality and damp clay form an intense and elegant whole. Medium structure with earth, tea-like flavors and a melange of berries preface a smoky, spicy finish. (04/2006) Wine Enthusiast ***** Deep red-ruby. Plum, cherry, cola, sassafras and menthol on the nose. Supple, spicy, dense and classically dry, with insidious concentration; this is stuffed with material. Very suave Brunello, finishing with fine, sweet tannins and very good length. - Stephen Tanzer ***** A dark ruby, the estate’s 2001 Brunello di Montalcino offers notes of super-ripe dark fruit, flowers, spices, chocolate, sweet oak and underbrush with a round, supple personality, excellent concentration as well as length, and fine tannins. It will benefit from a few years of cellaring and drink well to at least age 15. - Robert Parker
1998Certan de May, ChateauBordeaux  15012  93/WS
Milk chocolate with blackberry and cappuccino on the nose. Full-bodied, with a brown sugar and coffee flavor. Silky tannins. Long and caressing. Reminds me of old-style Pomerols from the '40s. (88/'98 Bordeaux blind retrospective - 2008).- Wine Spectator ***** Tight, but plenty going on in the glass. Meaty, with loads of mushroom and berry character. Full-bodied, with velvety tannins and a long, slightly dry finish. Give it time. Best after 2006. - Wine Spectator (1/01) ***** Certan de May's vines (Merlot 70%, Cabernet Franc 25%, Cabernet Sauvignon 5%) have an average age of 50 years and lie on sandy-gravel topsoils, underpinned by a hard-pan clay subsoil. It is located in the east of the appellation, on the Pomerol plateau between Vieux-Chateaux Certan and Pétrus, and directly opposite Le Pin.
Opened a first bottle for Della's birthday. Decanted several hours before drinking due to its relative youth and reputedly heavy (but fine) tannins. Powerful bouquet of red and black fruit (including notes of blackberry, cherry, and raspberry). Rich and supple, it is well-focused and drinks well now, but has the balance and structure to drink well for at least another decade. Oh, the complexity and elegance it will have after another 5 years of cellaring ... if only I have the patience.
2001Chateau St. MichelleCabernet  1524  92/W&S
Rich, ripe and powerful in flavor, yet beautifully refined to show off delicate jam, loganberry, plum and blueberry notes. A seductive wine, with pretty integrated oak and aromas of honey, cinnamon and chocolate. Velvety tannins linger on the long and lingering finish. - Wine&Spirits ***** More expensive than some, but the only very good cabernet in our tests (for cabs under $25). Our tasters said: a monster of black fruit, black spice, and wood; firm tannin. Should improve in interesting ways. - Consumer Reports
Purchased 24 bottles 9/05.
2000Clos Des Jacobins, ChateauBordeaux  4512  91/RP 91/WS
Sweet oaky nose, stylish. medium bodied but concentrated, tight, tannic, balanced, impressive fruit, powerful, raw but has fine potential...decanter award - 4 stars. - Decanter 9/03. ***** This wine showed loads of fruit, with the typical plushness of 2000 coupled with some backbone. Dark cherries, cedar, chocolate, and truffle, broad across the palate with well tucked away acidity, the size is deceptive and the wine quite complete. This St. Emilion is 70% Merlot, 30% Cab Franc. ***** Lots of tobacco, berry, earth and cedar on the nose. Full-bodied, yet refined and silky. Balanced red. Best after 2007. 1,830 cases made. (JS) - Wine Spectator
Purchased 12 bottles 9/05.
2006Clos de Los SieteMalbec  2024  92/RP 91/WS 90/ST
The 2006 Clos de los Siete is a slightly different blend with 50% Malbec, 30% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon, and 10% Syrah. Opaque purple-colored, it has a similar expressive nose including fragrant plum, blueberry, and black cherry. Ripe, sweet, and seamless, it admirably hides its tannin under all the fruit. It will evolve for several years but who will have the willpower to defer gratification? It is an awesome value. Clos de los Siete is a project of Michel Rolland. The vineyard, located about 60 miles south of Mendoza at about 3000 feet of elevation, has 300 acres in production with another 875 planted. - Wine Advocate ***** Dark and powerful, with layers of fleshy plum, boysenberry, black currant, cocoa and mineral. Lots of toast, too, but the impressive core of fruit is worth waiting out. Malbec, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Syrah. Best through 2009. 15,000 cases made. - Wine Spectator
Purchased 2 cases 01/08 from Garnet Wines. Had first bottle Feb 2008. Lots of dark fruit and berries on the nose and attack through mid-palate. Well integrated, fine, and tannins provide lovely structure through to the finish.
1997Col Solare Red Table WineBlend  7512  92/WS 91/ST
Plump black stone fruits combine with intense aromas of black currant and blackberry. These dark fruits are prevalent mouth flavors along with rich coffee, mocha, vanilla and tobacco. An elegantly structured wine with great depth and a generous finish. Piero Antinori, 26th generation Italian winemaker, was enthusiastically introduced to Washington's Columbia Valley wines by none other than legendary Napa Valley winemaker Andre Tchelistcheff. After tasting some of the wines and seeing some of the vineyards, Piero sought out the winemaking team at Chateau Ste. Michelle to discuss forming a partnership. Col Solare is the result, made in the style of the very best Tuscan Antinori's (Piero Antinori crafted Wine Spectator's 1998 pick for #1 Wine of the Year). Blend: 84% cabernet sauvignon, 13% merlot, 3% syrah. - Winemaker notes ***** Rich, round and distinctive for its earthy, meaty overtones around a supple core of berry, currant and floral flavors. The firmly tannic finish enriches and expands, echoing fruit and spice with flair. Best after 2002. Tasted twice, with consistent notes. 3,000 cases made. - Wine Spectator
Purchased 12 bottles 11/05. Had bottle with Colleen, Gary, Helene, Ken in March 2006. Decanted for 3 hours prior to drinking. Rich, luscious and lovely. Wow. Subsequent bottles lovely with consistent notes. Significant sediment, so MAKE SURE to decant and strain when opening. Also, take care with cork since last two bottles the cork is fairly fragile when opening. Drinking lovely now (2005/2006), completely open now and equally inviting on the attack, mid-palate, and finish; but probably peaking out - so finish 3 remaining bottles within the next 2-3 years before the wine becomes a little long in the tooth. *** Still drinking lovely (10/2006) - remember to decant because of sediment.
2001Columbia Crest Grand EstatesMerlot  1212  90/WS
Ripe, plump and generous with its fresh cherry, dried cherry, dark plum and sweet spice flavors, nicely framed with toasty oak as the fruit persists impressively on the long finish. Drink now through 2009. - Wine Spectator ***** #52 of Wine Spectator's Top 100 Wines of 2004
Purchased case 10/05.
2001Columbia Crest Grand EstatesCabernet  1312  89/WS
A medium-bodied wine with supple tannins that is packed with intense black cherry, cocoa and smoke. Complex, rich and aromatic, this stylish wine offers balance and finesse from start to finish. - Winemaker's Notes ***** An open, clear-eyed style, nicely packed with black cherry, berry and spicy oak notes melding harmoniously as the flavors last on a long, silky finish. Drink now through 2010. - Wine Spectator ***** Dark fruits and spices are found in the aromatic profile of the 2001 Cabernet Sauvignon Grand Estates (195,000 cases). A friendly, expansive wine, this 100% Cabernet Sauvignon is soft and supple in the attack, revealing ripe black fruits, before compressing in the finish, exhibiting firm tannin. Drink this fine value over the next 4 years - Robert Parker.
2010Cutrer Vineyards, Estate BottledChardonnay  3512  92/WS
Distinct aromas of ginger and lemon zest are joined by toasty coconut, melon and caramel alongside a mineral, flinty cedar chest oakiness overlaid by notes of honeysuckle. Well-balanced with a solid acid backbone, the wine is rich and medium-heavy with a broad, yet firm, mid-palate. The long, lingering finish displays a touch of spice and lively acidity. Flavors of lemon, apple, pear, pineapple and cantaloupe.
2003D'Arenberg The Dead ArmShiraz  10012  95/RP
One of this estate’s flagship wines, the 2003 The Dead Arm Shiraz appears to be better than the 2002. A deeper, richer, fuller-bodied offering that spent time in equal parts French and American oak, it possesses an opaque purple color, great intensity, and a fabulously sweet nose of blackberries, cassis, asphalt, earth, and oak. Powerful, super-concentrated, and obviously fashioned from low yields and old vines, this is a classic McLaren Vale old vine Shiraz that should age nicely for 15+ years. - Wine Advocate ***** Bright medium ruby. Ripe plum and mulberry aromas requiring aeration to reveal complicating notes of espresso, licorice and tar. Rich and thick, with roasted cherry and dark chocolate flavors. Dense, ripe and weighty on the finish. - Stephen Tanzer
2004Di Majo Norante San GiorgioSangiovese  1018  90/RP
"One of the world’s best values in Sangiovese is the 2004 Sangiovese IGT. Aged six months in large foudres, it offers up aromas of strawberries, black cherries, damp earth, spice box, and fruit cake. This expressive, medium-bodied, fleshy Italian red is meant to be drunk over the next 1-2 years. Buy this one by the case! 90" - (09/05) Robert Parker
2000Dominus NapanookBlend  4012  91/W&S 90/ST
In 1996, Christian Moueix first released Napanook, a wine specifically intended to be enjoyed in its younger years. Eight years later, Napanook has achieved near legendary status in Yountville with its blend of four varietals from vineyard lots chosen for their finesse, lively fruit and subtle tannins. Harmonious in balance, this wine is truly a pleasure to drink. ***** Stylish, with attractive plum, cherry, wet earth and mushroom flavors. Turns elegant and polished on the finish, with ripe, integrated tannins. Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Merlot and Petit Verdot. Drink now through 2009. 4,200 cases made. - Wine Spectator
1986Dominus Estate - Christian MoueixBlend  1504  93/RP 92/WS
Still a young, rich, blockbuster wine. One of the richest, densest, most concentrated offerings in the entire tasting (1986 Cal Cabernet Retrospective), it also proved to be one of the best-balanced, with better integration of acidity and tannin than many 1986s exhibited. The color remains a deep, dark ruby, with purple hues. Dense, concentrated, and pure, with copious quantities of cassis fruit intermingled with earth, spice, and minerals, this large-scaled, concentrated wine appears to have aged at a glacial pace since I first tasted it. Accessible because of its well-integrated, low acidity, this wine should continue to evolve and drink well for another 15-20 years. Very impressive." - (8/96) Robert Parker ***** The 1986 Dominus Estate is the fourth vintage produced by the John Daniel Society, and, as always, made solely from grapes grown on the historic Napanook Vineyard in Yountville, California. The 1986 vintage marks the first wine produced in the “second series” of Dominus Estate. Cabernet Franc was added to the final blend for the first time, introducing a floral character and a complexity that was not found in the previous wines. - Winemaker Notes ***** A big, thick, full-bodied Cabernet that's packed with cherry, currant, chocolate and spice flavors in a tight, tannic shell. Has an earthy, leathery overtone that defines its style. Needs cellaring until 1997 to begin to show its best stuff. 6,300 cases made. - Wine Spectator
Purchased 4 bottles from POP's 10/05. First bottle opened on July 27, 2007 .... simply a wonderful and lovely bottle ... ullage still at bottom neck and cork exhibited no leakage ... wonderful nose on the attack, with choclate and spice notes. Plenty of fruit still - cherry, currant, dark fruit with forest floor accents. Richly textured and complex. This has the stuff to last at least another decade before declining. Truly wonderful and elegant. ***** Subsequent bottles present similarly, with final bottle being opened for New Year's day dinner, 2010.
2000Dominus Estate - Christian MoueixBlend  11012  93/W&S 91/ST 92/WN
There are 6,500 cases of the 2000 Dominus. It is a medium-bodied, tightly-knit offering displaying more complex aromatics than the score might suggest. Notes of cedar, saddle leather, tapenade, dried herbs, coffee, and sweet cherries and plums are present in the impressive aromatics. Anticipated maturity: now-2012." - Robert Parker, The Wine Advocate ***** Bright, full medium ruby. Highly complex nose combines plum syrup, minerals, tobacco and shoe polish. Lush, full and fleshy, but with terrific minerally verve underneath. Strong flavor of black plum. Perhaps sweeter and more pliant today than the '99. "From a vintage with a more normal skin-to-juice ratio," notes Moueix. A distinctly adult-styled Bordeaux blend, with excellent length and grip. - Stephen Tanzer ***** The 2000 vintage has a deep ruby color with a complex nose of cloves, blackberries and dark chocolate. The structured tannins are enrobed with an enticing aroma. This wine explodes in the mid-palate, with essences of spices and worn leather. The long, lingering finish displays a harmony of tobacco, coffee and fruit. The 2000 blend comprises 83% Cabernet Sauvignon, 9% Cabernet Franc, 5% Merlot and 3% Petit Verdot. This wine will age gracefully. We recommend decanting the wine prior to serving, to allow it to develop its full potential. This is especially important when serving young Dominus wines. -Winery Notes
2006Drouhin, Joseph - Pouilly-FuisseChardonnay  3024  90/WS
Joseph Drouhin Pouilly-Fuissé has a beautiful emerald-golden hue - extremely brilliant indeed. The bouquet is seductive : floral and fruity with a dominance of ripe fruit and fresh almonds. Although it can be appreciated immediately - after some time in the bottle, it will develop a lovely, complex bouquet. On the palate, the wine is round and dry. As such, it is a nice expression of the Chardonnay. The wine should be served around 55 F and will go well with shellfish, fish, quenelles, white meats in creamy sauce, poultry and sweetbreads. - Wine Spectator ***** The area of production of this famous appellation is South of Macon. This is where the contours of the hills become more marked, the cliffs of Vergisson and Solutr forming an impressive back-drop. The vineyards completely blanket the slopes and are located on "cirques", facing East and South-East, at 250 to 350 meters above sea-level (750 to 1 050 feet). The soil is a mixture a clay and chalk from the Jurassic era. The geographical area comprises the villages of Fuisse, Solutr, Vergisson and Chaintr. The only grape variety used there is the Chardonnay. Every year, Robert DROUHIN makes a careful selection of several cuves of Pouilly-Fuisse. Brought to the winery in Beaune, the wine matures in the cellars before being bottled in the Spring.
2010Du Mont, Domaine - Vire-ClesseChardonnay  32    
Smooth, silky, nicely textured and a focused balance with really nice mouth watering fruit. Generous fruit including spiced pears, meyer lemons, and melon, with beautiful limestone minerality.
Purchased case on 9/2012 from WTSO.
2010Duboeuf, Georges Pouilly FuisseChardonnay  3012  90WE
This Pouilly-Fuisse can compete with the great wines of Burgundy, it is the ”jewel” of the Mâconnais region ; its color is an unrivaled golden green. A bouquet of roasted almonds, lime-tree and verbena with a hint of vanilla is apparent. Once stored in oak casks, it develops a real bouquet of flavors. A full, supple and fruity wine which ages quite well.
Purchased a case from Pop's September, 2012
2003Equis Terra De CastillaRed Wine  2012  90/RP
This incredible value is made from 20 to 80 year-old vines and was bottled without filtration. The yields average 35 hectolitres per hectare. ***** A custom cuvee assembled by importer Eric Solomon, this blend of 40% Bobal, 20% Merlot, and equal parts Syrah, Grenache, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Tempranillo exhibits a dense ruby/purple color, full-bodied, inky, concentrated, black fruit flavors, wonderful sweetness and purity, and a heady, long finish. A big, stylish red made on the border of Yecla and La Mancha, it is undeniably a fabulous value. Drink it over the next 2-3 years. - Robert Parker ***** Full medium ruby. High-toned aromas of blackberry, pepper, graphite and smoky oak, along with a faint greenness. Sweet and rather fine-grained in texture; suave and nuanced for such a superripe, distinctly warm wine. Finishes with substantial but nicely ripe tannins. - Stephen Tanzer
1995Feuillatte, Nicholas - Cuvee Speciale BrutSparkling Wine  8024  95/WS
Brilliant. Full of biscuit, spice and mineral aromas and flavors. Full-bodied and forceful, yet its vivid structure and chalky intensity are well-integrated. Vinous and definitely a wine for food. Drink now through 2020. 400 cases imported." 95 Points - Wine Spectator, November 15, 2004 ***** The vintage expresses the typical qualities and characteristics of the year. This blend, which respects the grape-varieties, emphasizes the delicacy of the Pinot Noir and Chardonnay, the Pinot Meunier lending it balance and homogeneousness. The nose with its subtle predominant note of red fruit, often allows hints of slightly spiced dried fruit to appear. The palate is long and persistent. Blend: 40% Pinot Noir, 40% Chardonnay and 20% Pinot Meunier. - Winemaker Notes
Purchased 13 bottles in Sept/Oct 2005. (10/30/05) Opened first bottle with Dave and Melinda. Everyone loved this one, beautiful nose of spice and apricot, and what a finish. Consistent notes with subsequent bottles.
2002Firestone Santa YnezSyrah  2036  92/W&S
Some vines are just meant to grow in a certain place, and syrah seems to be the vine for the Santa Ynez Valley's rocky mesas. From the vibrant black cherry color, to the warm spice of bay laurel and green peppercorn, this beautifully balanced wine makes a light yet lasting impression. The flavors are heady, yet transparent, witha lingering sense of fresh red fruit, and leaving room for the kinds of food you'd serve with a young Crozes-Hermiage, such as a long-cooked pork shoulder with a crispy, herb-rubbed skin. A great value to buy by the case." - Wine & Spirits ***** Named one of 12 "5 Star Wines" and "Best Value". Big, ripe, blackberry and spice nose; big, rich, ripe, plush, pure, succulent, blackberry and chocolate flavors. In the movie, Sideways, Jack, Stephanie, Miles and Maya find the Firestone tour guide a bit boring and sneak into their room.
Purchased a total of 3 cases of this wine in August and September 2005. Had first bottle 10/30 w/ Dave and Melinda. We all loved this wine, and thought it drank much bigger than the price. Rich, luxurius, bold, fruit-forward, and velvety - meant to drink NOW. Consistent tasting notes on subsequent tastings.
2002Flora Springs TrilogyBlend  7012  93/RP 92/WS 91/CG 92/WE
Powerful and textured, with great unctuosity as well as richness, and huge reserves of fruit in the finish. It appears to be the finest example from this vineyard that Flora Springs has yet made. It should be accessible young, and last for 15 years. - Wine Advocate ***** Tightly focused on a rich, vibrant beam of blackberry, wild berry and black cherry, this wine is intense and concentrated, finishing with firm, ripe tannins and a long, intricate aftertaste. Drink now through 2012. 7,700 cases made. - Wine Spectator ***** No longer made from just three varieties, this Trilogy has all five Bordeaux grapes. Complex but young in cassis and oak, with a dry, dusty spread of tannins. Those tannins will play well now with well-marbled smoky, grilled beef, but the wine should hold through 2012. - Wine Enthusiast ***** 50% Cabernet Sauvignon; 29% Merlot; 13% Cabernet Franc; 4% Malbec; 4% Petit Verdot.
2005Foley, Robert - ClaretBlend  13012  94/RP 93/ST 93/WS
The prodigious 2005 Claret possesses a dense purple color in addition to beautiful aromas of creme de cassis, smoke, graphite, and cedar. Full-bodied, opulent, and voluptuously-textured with superb depth and purity in addition to a savory mouthfeel, and a surprisingly fleshy, forward personality, it should last for 10-15 years, but who will be able to resist it for that long? - (December 2007) Robert Parker ***** a 90/10 blend of cabernet sauvignon and merlot) Saturated bright ruby color. Liqueur-like aromas of black cherry, raspberry and mocha; high-toned in a positive way. A sweet, powerful fruit bomb on the palate, with perfectly integrated acidity giving shape and grip to the dark berry and cherry flavors. Firm underlying minerality contributes to the wine's very fresh impression. Finishes with terrific aromatic persistence. - (June 2008) Stephen Tanzer ***** Smooth, showing spicy currant, dried berry and a hint of prune, with mocha, sage, cedar, dried berry and herbal scents, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. Drink now through 2013. 1,700 cases made. - (May 2008) Wine Spectator
Purchased a case 01/09 from Grapes.
2002Francois Pelissie Croix du Mayne CahorsMalbec  2024  90/WS
Powerful, dense nose of dark plum, smoke and a hint of blackstrap, with flavors to match. This is a robust, deeply colored and intense, tarry red that is made in a no-holds-barred style. Finish is filled with Bourbon and spice. Best from 2006 through 2010. -Wine Spectator Smart Buy ***** The Ch. Croix du Mayne is a vineyard of 20 hectares situated on a gravelly soil on a second terrace of the Lot Valley, exposed south, south west. Fruity wine with spicy tannins and elegant woody notes. Mostly Malbec, this inky black wine of Cahors is not for the faint of heart. Robust, rich berry and bing cherry flavors and a spicy finish make for a wine that is made for charred, medium rare red meat. Grape varieties: Malbec: 85%, Merlot: 15%.
Purchased 12 bottles 9/05. Purchased 12 more 12/05. Also, one of the wines served at my 50th birthday party.
1999Haut Batailley, ChateauBordeaux  5012  90/WS
Fresh and vivid red, with floral and berry character throughout. Medium-bodied, with fine tannins and a focused, clean aftertaste. A fine claret. Best after 2004. 9,165 cases made. - Wine Spectator (03/02)
Purchased case 1/06 from Binny's.
1982Haut Marbuzet, ChateauBordeaux  10012  94/RP 94/WS
This wine has been decadent and seductive since it was first bottled. It continues to offer copious quantities of vanilla-tinged, sweet, opulent, black-cherry and currant fruit with intriguing aromas of coffee and cedar. Thick, juicy, succulent, not to mention thrilling to drink, this multi-layered, plush, fat wine is almost too much of a good thing. Intense, with no hard edges, this is a glorious example of Haut-Marbuzet and is at its peak and should hold there for another decade. It has been one of the most consistent and crowd-pleasing wines of the vintage. I have never seen this wine perform less than brilliantly. Tasted 19 times since bottling with consistent notes. - Robert Parker (1995) ***** A beautiful, sexy red. Dark ruby with a slightly garnet hue. Lovely floral, berry and spice aromas. Full-bodied, with lovely silky tannins and a fruity, complex aftertaste.--1982 Bordeaux horizontal. – JS (1998)
Purchased case from JJ Buckley in 11/06.
1997Kendall Jackson Stature Cabernet SauvignonBlend  1506  94/RP 93/WS 92/ST
One of the most beautiful wines in the Stature series is the impressive 1997 Cabernet Sauvignon Stature. Sourced from vineyards such as Veeder Peak and Andy Beckstoffer's To-Kalon Vineyard, it offers up creme de cassis aromas intermixed with new saddle leather, vanilla, spice box, and minerals. Full-bodied, rich, and seamless, this voluptiously-textured, thick, juicy Cabernet Sauvignon can be drunk now or cellared up for two decades. - Robert Parker ***** Remarkably elegant and polished, with ripe, sweet, juicy plum and wild berry, turning elegant and sophisticated, with a long, detailed finish. - Wine Spectator ***** Red-ruby. Very ripe, slightly briary aromas of raspberry, cherry and smoky oak. Large-scaled and mouthfilling; very ripe but not at all heavy. This offers impressive sweetness and depth of flavor. Finishes long and smooth, with sweet tannins spreading out to coat the palate. - Stephen Tanzer ***** Produced from mountain grown fruit, this Cabernet Sauvignon features ripe cassis, blackberry and plum aromas while aging in French Chateau barrels provides a vanilla/oak impression in the palate. Small quantities of Merlot and Cabernet Franc were added to compliment the Cabernet Sauvignon base of this rich, full-bodied wine. Grape Source: Howell Mountain, Mt. Veeder, Rutherford and Oakville; Napa Valley Oak Aging: 22 months in 100% French Oak (45% new) Harvest Brix: 25º Skin Contact: 45 days Alcohol: 14.5% TA: 0.62 g/100 ml pH: 3.54 Production: 3,055 cases - Winery's Tasting and Technical Notes
Purchased and drank 6 end-of-bin bottles from POP's in January 2006. Requires decanting due to sediment, but very smooth and food-friendly. Too bad I couldn't get more.
2002Lagrange, ChateauBordeaux  6048  92/WS 92/ST
Good full medium ruby. Explosive, ripe aromas of black cherry, espresso, bitter chocolate and cedary oak. Rich, broad, dense and sweet, with a supple texture for a young Lagrange. Large-scaled and complete. Finishes with broad, fine tannins and excellent length. This will be outstanding given a few years of cellaring. - Stephen Tanzer ***** Pretty aromas of blackberries and currants, with hints of lead pencil. Full-bodied, yet very balanced, with a solid core of fruit and ultrafine tannins. Really well-crafted wine. Lagrange often excels in less than easy vintages, like 2002. Excellent. Best after 2008. - Wine Spectator ***** Named to Wine Spectator's "Top 100 Wines of 2005" (# 35): Lagrange remains one of the most consistently outstanding producers of Bordeaux for the money. Only the top châteaus made outstanding wines in the 2002 vintage, which saw a deluge of rain in August and less-than-perfect weather during the harvest. Yet Lagrange worked hard in its 280 acres of vineyards to produce the best possible grapes. 54 percent Cabernet Sauvignon, 33 percent Merlot and 13 percent Petit Verdot. 23,000 cases made. - Wine Spectator
1982Lagune,Chateau LaBordeaux  20012  95/WS 93/RP 92/ST
This is a sumptous La Lagune that has hit full maturity but shows no signs of decline. The color is a dense, opaque dark garnet. The wine offers up smoky notes intermixed with jammy black cherries, currants, licorice and earth. The wine is thick, unctuously textured, with still some moderate tannin to shed. The wine is loaded, very rich, thick and juicy, with very complex aromatics and surprising weight and power in the mouth. To my thinking, there has never been a more powerful, concentrated La Lagune ever produced. - Robert Parker (11/02) ***** Very dark garnet-red, with an inky center. Ripe berry and tobacco aromas. Medium- to full-bodied, with tobacco, raspberry and light toasted oak flavors. Silky finish. Outstanding - Wine Spectator, 1982 Bordeaux horizontal - JS (11/98) ***** Good red-ruby color. Expressive, Burgundian aromas of red raspberry, redcurrant, cherry, smoked meat, coffee and earth. At once dense and penetrating; rich but uncompromisingly dry, with lovely clarity of flavor. Long, resounding finish offers excellent grip. A superb vintage for this chateau, perhaps the best ever. Drink now to 2015 - Stephen Tanzer (08/02)
Purchased 12 bottles 11/07. Chateau Lagune is a classified growth as listed in the 1855 Napoleonic classification system and has been around much longer than this (since 1715). The 1982 and 1990 (which I also have in the cellar) represent two of the finest vintages ever for this venerable and historic chateau. ***** Had first bottle in September 2009. Wonderful - showing no signs of decline. Very deep ruby-red color, even at nearly 30 years old. Just a barely hint of bricking on the rim. Complex floral and dark fruit notes on the nose. Still scads of raspberry and dark cherry on the attack and mid-palate, with notes of toasted oak. Ultra-long and rewarding finish. Although tannins fully resolved,should still hold up nicely for another 10 years or so; so don't be in a rush to finish remaining 3 bottles. Don't forget to decant, as a decent amount of sediment has developed over the years. And be careful when opening, as the cork is showing signs of deteriorating after nearly 30 years. First bottle had cork break in half while trying to extract and easily crumpled and broke apart with moderate force after extraction. Ullage still great, above shoulder and still in the neck.
1990Lagune,Chateau LaBordeaux  12512  95/WS 91/RP
A wine to linger over. The aromas are opulent with new oak and ripe fruit, mint and black currant; and follow through to the palate. Full-bodied and velvety-textured, with lots of fruit and a long, long finish. Exceptional.--1990 Bordeaux retrospective. Drink now through 2010. 25,000 cases made. – (JS) Wine Spectator (8/31/2000) ***** Like so many 1990s Bordeaux, this wine appears to have put on more weight and added a dimension or two to its personality. The color is dense ruby, with no lightening at the edge. The sweet nose of grilled nuts, smoked herbs, sweet, lavishly ripe black currant fruit, and chocolate is followed by a gutsy, medium-bodied wine that is about as fleshy as La Lagune can be. Nearly the equal of the the 1982 Lagune's intensity, fat, and power (the greatest La Lagune I have ever tasted), it is a gorgeously proportioned, velvety-textured, sweet and expansive wine. Anticipated maturity: Now-2010. - Robert Parker
Purchased case as end-of-bin from POP's. Had two bottles before the end of 2007 - Dave, and I shared a bottle on New Year's eve. Dave proclaimed this his favorite wine ever. I concur that it is very fine indeed - still with lots of fruit - but with finesse, earthiness and complexity you would expect from the best of the Medoc - a truly awesome wine. Chateau Lagune is a classified growth as listed in the 1855 Napoleonic classification system and has been around much longer than this (since 1715). The 1990 and 1982 (which I also have in the cellar) represent two of the finest vintages ever for this venerable and historic chateau. Dave and I followed up (May, 2008) with another bottle to go with dinner at the Downtown Club - consistent with earlier notes, beautiful - but only 2 bottles left. Finished last of bottles with Dave and Melinda as we brought in the 2011 New Year.
1996Lanessan, ChateauBordeaux  4024  90/WS 89/RP
A sleeper of the vintage, impressively saturated dark ruby/purple color, and knock-out aromatics of melted chocolate, asphalt and cassis. Deep, rich and medium-bodied, with excellent concentration and purity, this impressively-endowed, flavorful, well-structured wine should be at its finest between 2004 and 2016. - Robert Parker ***** A pretty nose of currants and blackberries. Medium-bodied, with firm tannins and plenty of fruit. An excellent wine from Lanessan. Best after 2000. 20,800 cases made. - Wine Spectator
Chateau Lanessan estate is planted Haut Medoc varieties in tranditional percentages: 60% Cabernet-Sauvignon, 30% Merlot, 5% Cabernet Franc and 5% Petit-Verdot
2002Larcis-Ducasse, ChateauBordeaux  5024  92/WS 91/RP 92/ST
Aromas of plum tart and vanilla with hints of wild forest fruits. Full-bodied, with lovely silky tannins and bright fruit. Pretty wine. This is the first year that Nicholas Thienpont and Stéphane Derenoncourt took over, and it shows. Serious stuff here. Excellent length. One of the surprises of the vintage. Best after 2008. - Wine Spectator (March 2005) ***** Open-knit, charming, earthy, and herbaceous, with abundant quantities of sweet black cherry and currant fruit as well as a tremendous fragrance, this is a sensual, lush, rich claret that transcends the vintage characteristic of hard, tannic, structured wines. Ripe, this enormously appealing 2002 should be drunk over the next 6-7 years. This is a fabulous terroir (just down the street from Pavie), with a brilliant south-facing exposition on pure clay and limestone soils, with vines averaging 40 years of age. Larcis Ducasse is a blend of 75% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Franc, and 5% Cabernet Sauvignon. - Robert Parker (April 2005) ***** Medium red. Exotic aromas of raspberry, sandalwood, smoke, game, truffle and leather. Sweet and pliant, with the lush, full-blown flavors of smoked meat, leather, truffle and exotic spices enlivened by sound mineral spine. - Stephen Tanzer (May 2005)
Purchased 2 cases 9/08 from JJ Buckley. Lovely expression of St-Emilion, representing our go-to wine when we wanted to drink a serious, elegant, beautifully crafted Bordeaux without taking out a second mortgage. Last bottle finished February, 2010.
1998Latour a Pomerol, ChateauBordeaux  15012  94/WS 94/RP 93/ST
90% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Franc - Tar, berry and dry stone aromas, with wet earth. Full-bodied, thick and chewy, with velvety tannins. Big and rustic, but I like this textbook Latour à Pomerol. Best in decades. Best after 2008. 3,000 cases made. (JS) - Wine Spectator ***** Shows serious complexity, with cherry, vanilla, spice and earth character. Full-bodied, compacted, with full, chewy tannins and a long finish. Best Latour à Pomerol ever. - Wine Spectator (Barrel Tasting) ***** This wine boasts an opaque purple color in addition to highly extracted black cherry, mocha, licorice, and Asian spice flavors infused with a black fruit liqueur-like character. Sweet, explosive, medium to full-bodied, tannic, and powerful, this sensational effort has added layers of flavor in the mid-palate and finish. It appears to be an enthralling and profound Latour a Pomerol. Anticipated maturity: 2006-2025. - Robert Parker ***** Medium red-ruby. Superripe, almost surmuri aromas of cherry, raspberry, minerals and meat. Big, very rich and expansive; lovely firm-edged acids give the wine surprising vinosity and insinuating flavor. Impeccably balanced. The tannins are thoroughly buffered on the long finish. As superripe as this is, it still finishes with verve and grip. - Stephen Tanzer
2005Louviere, Chateau La - (Blanc)Sauvignon Blanc  5012  91/WS 90/RP
The 2005 Chateau La Louviere Blanc possesses crisp acidity as well as serious weight, richness, and texture. This is one of the top 2005 dry white Bordeaux wines. Lemon zest, white peach, honeysuckle, and a touch of wood smoke emerge from this medium-bodied, attractive white Graves. Consume it over the next 7-8 years. - (April 2008) Robert Parker ***** This chateau handpicks the grapes from 20 year old vines planted in deep gravel and fine limestone soils and ages the wine for 12 months in oak (50% new). A blend of 85% Sauvignon Blanc and 15% Semillon, this is a very fresh and lively wine with an enticing nose of lime, lemon, white flowers and minerals. Has vibrant citrus, mineral, and green apple flavors. Full-bodied with a lively bright acidity; and a long mineral driven finish. Perfect partner with a wide range of fish and seafood dishes. - (March 2008) Wine Spectator
2000Louviere, Chateau La - L de la Louviere (Rouge)Bordeaux  2524  91/RP 91/WS
Vivid aromas of blackberries and minerals, with a hint of flowers. Full-bodied, with a solid core of fine tannins and ripe fruit. Medium finish. This is the best La Louvière in years. - Wine Spectator ***** This opaque ruby/purple-colored 2000 exhibits plenty of earthy, black currant, vanilla, graphite, licorice, and smoky cherry aromas as well as flavors. Medium-bodied with sweet tannin, good acidity, and a long, concentrated finish, this is the finest La Louviere since the 1990. Anticipated maturity: 2005-2015. - Robert Parker
2003Macchiole Paleo RossoCabernet Franc  11012  92/RP 92/WS 92/ST
The 2003 Paleo (100% Cabernet Franc) is unquestionably one of the vintage’s successes. Plump and juicy, it presents attractive suggestions of super-ripe dark fruit, sweet toasted oak and minerals with outstanding length and plenty of personality. Over the last few months this wine has continued to improve, integrating its tannins and gaining greater focus. Best between 2007 and 2015. - Robert Parker ***** A full-throttle red, with lots of plum, berry and vanilla character and Indian spices underneath. Full, silky, wild and long. Cabernet Franc. Best after 2008. 1,600 cases made. - (October,2006) Wine Spectator
2004Marquis Philips Sarah' BlendShiraz Blend  166  91/RP 90/WS
The dense ruby/purple-hued 2004 Sarah’s Blend is composed of 62% Shiraz and the rest equal parts Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. It offers abundant black cherry and cassis fruit in its smoky, earthy bouquet along with hints of licorice, dried herbs, and chocolate. Full-bodied, opulent, fruity, and long with surprising complexity as well as depth, it should be drunk over the next 3-4 years. - Robert Parker ***** Soft, supple, ripe and generous with its currant, cherry and wild berry aromas and flavors, lingering nicely on the spicy finish. Immensely appealing stuff. Only 6,000 cases imported. - Wine Spectator ***** #87 on Wine Spectator's list of Top 100 wines of 2005.
Purchased 6 bottles 12/05. First bottle drank in Dec 2005. - No wonder Parker liked this, it is big and powerful and packs a whollop. Alcohol content is fairly high, but this wine has the structure to handle it well. Had another bottle in March, 2006 and I must remember to decant because it had thrown off a lot of sediment. Actually, since it is so young, it must have been unfiltered, but it doesn't say that anywhere in the wine notes or on the bottle.
2006Mollydooker Blue Eyed BoyShiraz  6012  96/RP 93 /WS
The 2006 Shiraz “Blue Eyed Boy” is predominantly Padthaway fruit. Purple-colored, it has an intense aromatic display of smoke, violets, mulberry, blueberry, and chocolate. This leads to a full-bodied, plush, wine with layers of ripe, spicy black fruits, excellent focus and delineation. The tannins are well-concealed but this wine has enough stuffing to evolve for 6-8 years. Drink it through 2025. Mollydooker is the Australian equivalent of “Southpaw”. - Wine Advocate ***** Rich and ripe, with a powerful blast of blackberry, licorice and smoky spice flavors rocketing through the long finish against highly polished tannins. Yet somehow this strikes a deft balance. Needs some roast meat to tame it. Drink now through 2016. - Wine Spectator
2003Monbousquet, ChateauBordeaux  6012  93/RP 91/ST 90/WS
From a mixture of sand, gravel, and clay soils, this unheralded terroir produces wines well-above its pedigree thanks to the extraordinary efforts of proprietors Chantal and Gerard Perse. The wines are given a 4- to 5-week maceration in both stainless steel and oak, and are aged sur-lie in new oak. The dark ruby/purple-colored 2003 offers up notes of smoky meats, melted licorice, jammy black cherries, spice box, earth, and cedar. This plump, fleshy, sexy, unfined, unfiltered wine represents a classic blend of 60% Merlot, 30% Cabernet Franc, and 10% Cabernet Sauvignon. Yields were 32 hectoliters per hectare, and the alcohol is 13.5%. Anticipated maturity: now-2016. - Robert Parker ***** Full red-ruby. Expressive, vinous aromas of redcurrant, tobacco, leather and smoke. Sweet, supple and fat with fruit; dark and red berries are complemented but not overshadowed by hints of leather and smoked meat. This plump and satisfying wine has just enough acidity to maintain its shape. Finishes with sweet, surprisingly supple tannins and noteworthy persistence. Very easy to drink already but has the stuffing to give pleasure for another decade or so. - Stephen Tanzer ***** Essence of blackberry here on the nose with a hint of cream. Full-bodied yet silky and refined, with lovely texture and length. Delicious and long. Gorgeous. Best after 2010. 7,000 cases made. (JS) - Wine Spectator
Purchased 12 bottles 11/05.
1999Mondavi, Robert - Cabernet ReserveBlend  12512  96/WE 95/WS 93/ST
Cigar ash nose, blackberries, oak. A big, firm, assertive wine, fairly tannic. Scads of juicy cherries and blackberries. Very fine, lots of character and elegance. Drinks well now with rich fare through 2020. 68% To Kalon fruit. - Wine Enthusiast (6/1/ 2005) ***** An enormously complex and sophisticated wine that combines great flavors with uncommon finesse. Dark, sleek, rich and polished, with a delicious core of concentrated cola, currant, plum and blackberry. Tremendous finish. Best from 2004 through 2014. 20,000 cases made. Named as Wine Spectator Cellar Selection. Also selected by Wine Spectator as a top 100 wine for the year 2002 (#12) - Wine Spectator (6/30/2002) ***** This flagship wine shows impeccable balance and finesse. It’s well put together, and drips with lavish, minty French oak. Soft tannins add interest as well as ageability. The flavors are beautifully restrained and subtle. Very high quality, and worth holding through 2015. - Stephen Tanzer
Purchased case from JJ Buckley 9/08
2001Mondavi, Robert - Cabernet ReserveBlend  12512  95/RP 94/WS 94/ST
Smooth and sophisticated, with complex, graceful mocha, espresso bean, dried berry, currant, black cherry and plum woven together in an open knit style that's deceptively deep and penetrating. At a perfect drinking intersection, where the fruit is at times youthful yet maturing. 2001 California Cabernet blind retrospective. Drink through 2018. (June 2011 - 2001 Tasting Retrospective) - Wine Spectator ***** Wonderful intensity, beautifully crafted, with richness, focus and purity of flavor, offering layers of rich, smoky, mint- and spice-laced currant and blackberry fruit. Persistent, potent aftertaste. Score: 95-100 Barrel Tasting (JL) - Wine Spectator ***** Deep ruby. Reticent but highly nuanced nose hints at black raspberry, cassis, smoke, espresso and minerals. Very complex, rich and sharply focused, with captivating flavors of cassis, bitter chocolate, menthol, tobacco and earth. Rather backward wine, yet suave and seamless; this is balanced from the start but has the structure to develop in bottle for 15 to 20 years. Juicy finish features big, broad tannins and a sweet suggestion of chocolate. Wears its 14.6% alcohol gracefully. - Stephen Tanzer ***** The best Reserve offering since 1994 is the 2001 Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve, a 13,000-case blend of 88% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Cabernet Franc, and 2% Malbec and Petit Verdot. Half of the fruit emerges from the To-Kalon Vineyard. It possesses a pH of 3.7, and the alcohol is over 14%. Reminiscent of such vintages as 1990, 1991, and 1994, it boasts a saturated purple color as well as a sumptuous perfume of white chocolate, flowers, black currants, blackberries, and cigar smoke. Powerful, rich, and concentrated with admirable purity, a layered texture, and a 45+ second finish, this is a superb effort. Anticipated maturity: 2007-2020+. Score: 95. - Robert Parker
2001Mondavi, Robert - OakvilleCabernet  4024  93/WE 92/ST 90/WA
The Oakville District of Napa Valley has produced Napa Valley's most sought after Cabernet Sauvignons for 130 years. Perhaps the most famous of all the district's producers, Robert Mondavi has been producing Oakville District Cabernet Sauvignons for 50 years. Designated an American Viticultural Area (AVA) in 1993, the Oakville District region is noted for well-drained soils that allow deep rooting and the development of complex flavors in the grapes. After grapes were gently destemmed and crushed, we fermented the must with a combination of native (wild) and cultured yeast for layers of complexity. To naturally soften the grape tannins and develop varietal complexity, we gave the wine 37 days of skin contact. A long malolactic fermentation conducted entirely in barrels enhanced the wine's depth and body. During 17 months in small French oak barrels (45% new oak), the wine was racked barrel-to-barrel several times and lightly fined with fresh egg whites. Between rackings, the wine was left undisturbed for optimal clarity. These gentle winemaking techniques allowed us to bottle this Cabernet Sauvignon without filtration to fully retain its complex flavors and long aging potential. This is a blend of 80% Cabernet Sauvignon, 14% Cabernet Franc, 5% Merlot and 1% Malbec. ***** Readers looking for power and muscle should check out the 2001 Cabernet Sauvignon Oakville. Its deep ruby/purple color is followed by a classic bouquet of creme de cassis, tobacco leaf, sweet chocolate, and Asian spices. There is impressive fruit on the attack, good breadth, and plenty of muscle and tannin. Give it 4-5 years of cellaring, and drink it over the following 15-16. - Wine Advocate ***** )Good full ruby. Cool, complex aromas of black fruits, bitter chocolate, violet, licorice and espresso. Sweet and lush but also quite vibrant, with captivating flavors of cassis, minerals and mint. Finishes with big, horizontal tannins and excellent persistence. More suave and harmonious today than the young 2002. - Stephen Tanzer (June 04)
2005Mondavi, Robert - OakvilleCabernet  4512   93/RP 91/ST 92/WS
Powerful and persistent, this is a big, bold wine with dense flavors and refined tannins. Expresses rich, muscular Oakville character, with aromas of black fruits and anise. In the mouth, concentrated flavors of blackberry, black cherry and cassis mingle with a hint of underlying mint typical of the appellation. – Robert Parker ***** Medium ruby-red. Currant, tobacco and menthol on the nose: classic Oakville cabernet. Then broad, lush and sweet, with very ripe flavors of plum, currant, chocolate and tobacco nicely lifted by minerality. Finishes broad, with huge but ripe tannins and noteworthy length. (May/June 2009) – Stephen Tanzer ***** Seductive nose of juicy berries, violets, earth and black truffles. On the palate the wine displays the tell-tale Oakville flavors of blackberry, plum, black olive and chocolate nuances. There is excellent balance, structure and harmony here with enough oak to give it a rich, subtle flavor without overwhelming the layers of complexity. 79% its grapes are sourced from the famed To Kalon vineyard, while the remaining fruit comes from nearby vineyards on the Oakville Bench. It's a blend of 89% Cabernet Sauvignon, 6% Cabernet Franc, 3% Petit Verdot and 1% each Malbec and Merlot, aged in French oak barrels for 18 months. Should develop and soften in bottle over the next five to eight years. – Wine Spectator
2001Montus, ChateauTannat  3512  92/WS
Brooding, full-flavored red, with loads of character and power. Starts with aromas of smoked meat and flavors of dark plum and ham hocks. Tannins build on the finish, which is filled with plenty of decadent earth and mushroom notes. Madiran quality-leader Alain Brumont and his wife, Catherine, own this estate, as well as Château Bouscassé. The soils at Montus contain large river stones, alluvial deposits from the Pyrenees. Brumont keeps his yields low—about half to two-thirds of the 60 hectoliters per hectare (4.4 tons per acre) authorized by the appellation—resulting in dense, concentrated reds, which are made from the Tannat grape. 20,950 cases made. --Wine Spectator (Number 72 on Wine Spectator Top 100 Wines of 2004)
Purchased 12 bottles 9/05. Produced from 100% tannat (tah-naht) grapes, this is a big and robust wine - like most tannat wines, it is a big, packed, tannin-laden wine (well-resolved though). Not for the timid. My tasting notes, consistent through multiple bottles are: Full-bodied, with loads of dark plum, blackberry, dark cherry and spice flavors. This is a finely sculpted red that packs plenty of punch as well. Espresso and dark chocolate notes linger on the finish.
2006Norton , Bodega Privada MendozaMalbec  3012  92/WS
This polished Argentine red has lots of spice and fruitcake notes up front, followed by an ample core of raspberry ganache, fig bread and mocha. The long, well-rounded finish lingers with poise, despite the overall concentration. Malbec, Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon. Drink now through 2012. 8,000 cases made. – Wine Spectator (Oct., 2008, JM)
2004Oliverhill Jimmy SectionShiraz  3612  95/RP
The outstanding 2004 Shiraz Jimmy Section (100% Shiraz aged in French oak, of which one-third was new) exhibits a big, sweet nose of blackberries, licorice, pepper, and flowers. It’s a stacked and packed, opulent, moderately tannic effort with superb density and richness as well as a multidimensional mouthfeel and persistent finish. It should age beautifully for 10-15 years. - Robert Parker
2002Opus OneCabernet  20012  92/ WS 99/WW 93/WA
Joint venture between Robert Mondavi and Baron Philippe Rothschild. By 1985-1987 Opus One had become known as America’s first ultra premium wine. Opus One thinned the 2002 vintage to the lowest per-acre yield in a decade, encouraging quality and concentration of flavors. The 2002 Opus One shows aromas of dried strawberry, vanilla bean and mocha with flavors of cassis, black cherry, plum and espresso. Offering a lean, vibrant entry with profound mid-palate density, the wine finishes with bittersweet chocolate and a hint of smoke. 86% Cab. Sauv., 6% Merlot, 3% Cab. Franc, 3%Malbec and 2% Petit Verdot." - Winemaker Notes ***** Simply incredible, the captivating '02 Opus One excels with it is own iridescence; beautiful aromas of ripe pomegranate, perfumed violets and black currants; will cellar to 2032. - (99) Wilfred Wong, SF Chronicle ***** An exquisite, complex, stylish wine, wearing a cloak of earthy, leathery tannins around flavors of mineral, currant, earth and blackberry. Gains intensity and shows its depth and concentration on the finish, which is long and detailed. Best from 2007 through 2020. 24,000 cases made. (JL) - Wine Spectator ***** The 2002 Opus One boasts a dense ruby/purple color as well as an attractive bouquet of damp earth, cassis, licorice, and spice box. Medium-bodied with noticeable, but supple tannin, excellent purity, and a moderately long finish, it is outstanding...It will last for 10-15 years. - Robert Parker
2004Pahlmeyer RedBlend  1206  95/CG 93/WS 93/RP 92/ST
A blend of 79% Cabernet Sauvignon, 11% Merlot, and the rest Cabernet Franc, Petit Verdot, and Malbec, the outstanding 2004 Proprietary Red Wine possesses a deep ruby/purple color in addition to notes of vanilla, espresso roast, black currants, plums, and licorice. This rich, full-bodied, flamboyant, lush, heady red is best consumed over the next 12-15 years. - Wine Advocate ***** Well-focused on a rich, vibrant core of ripe blackberry and wild berry fruit. Elegant, balanced and deep, yet well-structured, ending with a long, complex finish that's trim and tight. Best from 2009 through 2015. - Wine Spectator ***** Bright medium ruby. Black fruits, violet, graphite and wild spices on the nose. Sweet and lush, with concentrated flavors of crushed dark berries and spices; a whiff of menthol adds freshness. The long finish features sweet, broad, tongue-coating tannins and a suggestion of sour candy. - Stephen Tanzer
2002Phelps, Joseph - Cabernet SauvignonBlend  6024  92/WS 91/RP 92/CG 91/ST
Concentrated ripe sweet fruit is complemented by roasted red and black fruit flavors and a smoky oak component. This powerful wine will continue to evolve for many years. The 2002 Cabernet Sauvignon (19,000 cases) is one of the finest made since the mid-1970s. A gorgeous nose of black fruits, licorice, and smoke is followed by a wine with tremendous flamboyance, loads of fruit, a velvety texture, and low acidity. The final blend was 86% Cabernet Sauvignon and 14% Merlot, and the wine performed out of bottle considerably better than it did from barrel. Drink it over the next decade. - Wine Advocate ***** A rich, dense and deeply concentrated young Cabernet, with layers of currant, plum, spice, cedar and blueberry notes that are tightly focused and supported by firm, ripe tannins. Impressive, too, for its balance and amplitude, it should reward immediate to midterm cellaring. Drink now through 2011. - Wine Spectator ***** In a vintage that is showing mixed results, Phelps has somehow found the key to success with its Cabernet. Its impressive aromas of cocoa, creme brulee, ripe black cherries, currants and rich, loamy notes reach for the sophistication of the top Napa Cabernets while its caramel-enriched, deeply fruited flavors come wrapped in a well-woven spine of firming tannins. Ignore temptation with this one and put it away for five years. - Connoisseurs' Guide ***** "Attractive garnet hue with a ruby rim. A heady bouquet imparting raspberry, mint and a black earth nuance. Forward flavors of cherry, mocha, oak and prominent tannins. Vibrant, spicy oak adds to the fruit-driven finish." - The Wine News (6/04)
Purchased 24 bottles in Sept/Oct 2005. (003500) Brought 2 bottles upstairs ( 2/21/06). Had 1st bottle and all the high reviews are dead-on. Definitely loaded with fruit, yet not a "fruit bomb", it pairs well with food. Truly wonderful. ... Subsequent bottles offer consistent notes.
1998Phelps, Joseph - InsigniaBlend  15012  93/WS 92/RP 92/CG
A great achievement, ... a fabulous wine...Evolved, with a saturated ruby/purple color, it possesses a sumptuous bouquet of smoke, cedar, licorice, and cassis. This full-bodied, fat, succulent effort reveals admirable purity and symmetry, and a soft finish with remarkably deep flavors that caress the palate. It can be drunk now as well as over the next 15-16 years. - Robert Parker ***** One taste of this lovely, supple, rich bottling makes the strong point that Phelps has succeeded in 1998 when so many others have not. Fairly concentrated and well-fruited with scent of cherries and currants pushing forward of loamy, oaky, root beer-like nuances, the wine is wonderfully polished and rounded on the palate yet displays a background of firming tannins that can stand the wine in good stead for four to seven years of patient cellaring. - Connoisseurs' Guide ***** A dark, deliciously rich and complex youngster, brimming with layers of curant, blackberry, plum, mineral, spice, chocolate and cedar. Finishes with a gush of flavors, yet maintains its finesse and grace. Best from 2002 through 2012. - Wine Spectator
1999Phelps, Joseph - InsigniaBlend  17012  94/WS 93/ST 93/WA
Deep ruby. Roasted aromas of currant, black cherry syrup, licorice and grilled nuts. Powerful but smooth and sweet, with superb, extremely unevolved dark berry flavors and a strong mineral note of graphite. Excellent acidity contributes to the impression of intensity. Very long, mounting finish features firm tannins and lively dark berry flavors. This bottling has been consistently superb in recent years, even in the difficult 1998 vintage. - Stephen Tanzer ***** Dark, rich and intensely concentrated, with a firm, tightly wound core of currant, black cherry, mineral, anise, sage and mocha-laced oak. Well-focused, with firm acidity and firm yet supple tannins. A young blockbuster in need of cellaring. Best from 2004 through 2016.15,000 cases made. - Wine Spectator *****There are 15,000 cases of the 1999 Insignia, a blend of 71% Cabernet Sauvignon, 21% Merlot, 6% Petit Verdot, 1% Cabernet Franc, and 1% Malbec. The core of this offering tends to come from Rutherford-grown fruit. The saturated dense purple-colored 1999 offers a tight but promising nose of incense, spice box, black fruits, and vanilla. This elegant, stylish, and medium to full-bodied offering is made in a more French-like, finesse style than such blockbusters as 1997, 1996, 1995, and 1994. Give it 3-4 years of cellaring and consume it over the following 15-18. - Robert Parker
2000Phelps, Joseph - InsigniaBlend  15012  94/WS 93/ST 92/WA
Deftly balanced, with dark color and rich fruit. Elegant, with tiers of currant, mocha, blackberry and espresso bean. Firms up at midpalate and flexes its tannic strength on the finish. Best to cellar a year or two. Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Petit Verdot, Cabernet Franc and Malbec. Best from 2004 through 2012. 15,000 cases made. - Wine Spectator ***** The 2000 Insignia is a blend of 77% Cabernet Sauvignon, 19% Merlot, 3% Petit Verdot, and 1% Malbec. A strong effort for the vintage, it possesses a dense ruby/purple color in addition to a powerful nose of licorice, espresso roast, and black currants, medium to full body, a lush mid-palate, and a sweet, concentrated finish with no hard edges. It is a forward, precocious Insignia to enjoy over the next ten years. The bulk of the fruit for the Insignia cuvee comes from vineyards on Manley Lane as well as the Stags Leap area. All the Petit Verdot and Malbec utilized is from the vineyard adjacent to the winery. The Insignia cuvee has been one of Napa’s great Cabernet Sauvignon-based wines since its inception in 1974, and most of those '70's vintages are still alive. Moreover, it has been absolutely brilliant since 1991.
Purchased 4 bottles 10/05. Purchased 8 more bottles 12/05. (008000) Brought bottle on NYC theatre trip (7/6/2006). Had with our wonderful Chef's Tasting Menu at "One if by Land, Two if by Sea". Dropped off before theater and asked sommelier to decant two hours before our dinner. Good amount of sediment removed and wine really opened by the time we drank. If the 2000 Insignia drinks this well, can't wait to try the 2001 and 2002. Absolutely silky and fabulous, with a minute long finish. ***** Donated a bottle to United Way Gala Auction in Sept 2010.
1999Pira Barolo RiondaNebbiolo  1106  96/RP 93/WS 92/ST
Plenty of blackberry, licorice and plum character with full body, soft tannins and a bright fruit aftertaste. Delicious. Juicy wine. This is a new tiny-production cru. Best after 2008. 250 cases made. - (07/04, James Suckling) Wine Spectator ***** Good medium red. Sappy, liqueur-like aromas of cherry and strawberry, complicated by a whiff of sweet tobacco. Deep, large-scaled and chewy, with notes of marzipan, hazelnut, truffle, smoke, earth and roasted herbs. A big boy, with impressive flesh and palate presence. - Robert Parker
Purchased 6 bottles (5/08) from Suburban Wines in Yorktown Heights, NY.
2005Quinta Do Crasto Reserve Red Old VinesRed Wine  6512  95/WS
"Deeply colored, with intense yet refined aromas and flavors of kirsch, boysenberry, dark cherry and spice. The fruit is supported by focused notes of mineral and graphite, and the finish is loaded with dark chocolate and medium tannins. Drink now through 2015." 1500 cases imported. - (KM) Wine Spectator ***** Winery Notes: Wine from parcels of old, low yielding vines with up to 30 different grape varieties are kept back for ageing in French and American oak barrels for up to 18 months. A high proportion of the grapes used in the blend are foot trodden in lagares. The wine may be drunk soon after its release but has the depth and concentration to develop in bottle over the long term. It is a complex, powerful wine with great intensity and a richly textured palate. It is always bottled without any fining or filtration.
This is a red blend of traditional Duoro grapes. Quinta Do Crasto vineyards are planted with a high proportion of Tinta Roriz and Touriga Nacional fruit. Likely also included in this wine are smaller amounts of other traditional Duoro grapes including: Tinta Amarela, Rufete, Tinta Barroca, Touriga Francesa, and Sousao - possibly others. Cracked the 2008 Wine Spectator Top 10 - in fact claiming the title as the #3 wine of the year - quite impressive.
2004Qupe Bien Nacido Cuvee WhiteWhite Blend  202  93/W&S
"A 50-50 blend of Chardonnay and Viognier, this wine has a southern Mediterranean feel to its flavors. That may come from the combination of grapefruit pith and white narcissus up front, then a fresh nuttiness in the end. Each successive taste brings a different food to mind, from prosciutto with melon to trout with fennel and a dash of Pernod to singe the skin. Bob Lindquist's great white wines - and their unusually sensible prices - continue to put most of his competition to shame." -Wines & Spirits
2009Raoul Clerget Pouilly FuisseChardonnay  3012  91/W&S
This Pouilly-Fuissé has a beautiful emerald-golden hue - extremely brilliant indeed. The bouquet is seductive : floral and fruity with a dominance of ripe fruit and fresh almonds. Although it can be appreciated immediately - after some time in the bottle, it will develop a lovely, complex bouquet. On the palate, the wine is round and dry. As such, it is a nice expression of the Chardonnay. - Wine & Spirits
Purchased a case 01/2011 (001600) from Wine Chateau
2007Ravenswood Old Hill ZinfandelZinfandel  7012  96/CG 96/WE 95/ST
A throwback to another era, this venerable vineyard with its blend of Zinfandel and other varieties has been producing big, rich, deep wines for decades-and this dramatic effort from 2007 is one of the best. Starts with the blackberry focus of the variety and adds layers of rich, complex notes of cocoa, black plums and raspberry preserves and follows through on the palate with tight somewhat polished, balanced flavors that run headlong into the expected edge of astringency at the end. This powerful effort is one to lay away for up to a decade in complete confidence – (January 2010) Connoisser's Guide to California Wine ***** Bright ruby. Stony, strikingly precise aromas of redcurrant, raspberry, graphite and iron filings, with a suave undercurrent of pungent incense. A strong floral note gains strength with air and carries onto the palate, adding complexity to the zesty red berry and cherry flavors. Tangy blood orange and mineral qualities linger on the impressively pure, focused finish. I really like this wine's balance and graceful touch. – (June 2009) Stephen Tanzer. Winemaker’s notes: Sonoma’s first famous Zinfandel, made in 1862 by William Hill, was grown in this vineyard. These vines - probably the oldest in Sonoma - turn out remarkable wines. Old Hill Vineyard contains 14 different varieties, but is blended to be 75% Zinfandel. It has Rhone-like intensity with striking precise aromas of blackberry, black pepper, vanilla, coffee, smoke, and mint.
2001Ravenswood Pickberry MeritageBlend  506  93/ST
As with the Rancho Salina, the Pickberry might accurately be classified as a "Meritage", but where Rancho Salina is built in the fashion of a Margaux, Pickberry is constructed more along the lines of a top Pomerol. The Pickberry Vineyard, located on the slopes of Sonoma Mountain, provides grapes of enormous intensity and complexity of flavor. Harvested separately, inpart due to the fact that they ripen at different times, the Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc and Merlot components, which make up our Pickberry blend, are fermented in open wood vats and, like the Rancho Salina, are barreled individually for a short period of time. After the secondary-malolactic-fermentation is complete, trial blends are created and sampled. From one of these blends comes the final version of Pickberry. In some vintages, the Cabernet Sauvignon has been the primary varietal; in others, the Merlot dominates. The finished wine continues to age in barrel for roughly two full years. Traditionally deep in color, with rich chocolate and cassis scents, this full fruited and amply oaked wine will benefit from a minimum of 5 additional years of bottle age, but don't hesitate to hold on to it for 10 or more years. ***** Shy yet aromatically precise aromas of blackberry, pepper, mint and currant leaf; perfumed and subtle. Then surprisingly silky and suave in the middle palate, with perfectly integrated acidity. A compelling combination of refined texture and firm structure. Finishes with very fine tannins and excellent length. Clearly the densest vintage for this bottling since 1997. Stephen Tanzer
2001Remirez de Ganuza Old Vines UnfilteredTempranillo  7012  96/ST 95/RP
Bright, saturated medium ruby. Sexy aromas of blueberry, licorice and dark chocolate, with a light gaminess adding complexity. Impressively sweet, dense and rich, with sappy, mouth-staining flavors of black fruits, spices and licorice perfectly framed by superb acids. Large-scaled and full, with terrific purity and verve. Finishes with firm but utterly suave tannins and outstanding length. This very youthful Rioja should develop spectacularly over the next decade or more. - Stephen Tanzer ***** The dense ruby/purple-colored 2001 Rioja Reserva exhibits a sweet, intense nose of melted licorice, road tar, truffles, black currants, cherries, and hints of smoky, toasty oak. Dense and medium to full-bodied, with moderately high tannin, it should be cellared for 1-2 years, and drunk over the following decade. This large 72-acre estate’s youngest vines are 33 years old, followed by a parcel of 45-year old vines, and two large parcels of 73 and 96-year old vines. The wine is kept one year in tank and then moved to small barrels where it spends another two years before being bottled unfined and unfiltered. - Robert Parker (April 2004)
2000Ridge Monte BelloBlend  13512  96/CG 94/ST 91/RP 92/WS
Young Montebello cabernets are rarely if ever the picture of polish, but, in this vintage, Ridge has come up with a wonderfully refined working whose brilliant cassis and cherryish fruit is carefully infused with rich oak and graced with highlights of chocolate and sweet loam. Striking in its depth, but that much more remarkable insofar as its compelling range and richness comes with a mere 13.5% alcohol, it makes comparison with the finest wines of Bordeaux unavoidable, and its stylish, neatly balanced stance points the way to handsome maturity in five or six years. It is unique among the bevy of more bombastic and highly ripened wines that join it in the "Hundred Dollar Club", and, for us, it sets a standard for the vintage that will difficult to equal. - Connoisseurs' Guide ***** Bright, saturated ruby-red. Exotic aromas of black raspberry, chocolate and black licorice. Deeply sweet, sappy and ripe, with heady, mouthfilling flavors of black cherry, cassis, cola and incense. Finishes with broad tannins and mouthcoating persistence. - Stephen Tanzer ***** The 2000 Monte Bello Proprietary Red (75% Cabernet Sauvignon, 23% Merlot, and 2% Cabernet Franc) is a surprisingly forward example of a Ridge Monte Bello. Its dense ruby/purple color is accompanied by sweet toasty oak along with creme de cassis, licorice, and resin-like aromas. Medium to full-bodied, nicely textured, and elegant with soft tannin as well as a forward style (surprising in view of winemaker Paul Draper’s typical style), I would not be surprised to see it firm up considerably in the bottle, and last for 12-13 years. Anticipated maturity: 2005-2016. - Robert Parker ***** Complex aromas of ripe plum, blackberry, black cherry and enticing flowers and herbs. Concentrated and vibrant, with fine balance and well-integrated tannins. Should age well over the next decade. Best from 2004 through 2012. - Wine Spectator
2000Rodney Strong SymmetryBlend  556  91/WE
Celebrating the esteemed art of blending, the spirit of Symmetry is truly the essence of Sonoma County. With nearly 40 years experience growing classic French grape varieties here, we select our best cabernet sauvignon, merlot, and cabernet franc from mountain and hillside vineyards in Alexander Valley, where well-drained, volcanic soils combine with warm, sunny days and cool nights to provide ideal growing conditions for Bordeaux varieties. Each vineyard is hand harvested individually, fermented separately, and aged for two years in French and American oak barrels. Every barrel is tasted and graded, and only the highest graded barrels are considered for the final blend. Once this careful blending is complete, we bottle and age the wine for an additional two years prior to release. - Winemaker Notes ***** The 2000 Symmetry greets you with an opulent bouquet of blackberries, ripe dark plums and sweet spices. The wine opens generously on the palate with layers of blackberry, cassis and plum framed with accents of dark chocolate and spice. The finish is persistent and supple. This wine is at once rich, harmonious, powerful, and elegant; a wine intended to be enjoyable on release, yet destined for years of further evolution in the bottle. Savor it! Varietal Blend: 62% Cabernet Sauvignon, 27% Merlot, 11% Cabernet Franc. ***** Smooth and polished, with a great, velvety mouthfeel, this balanced wine shows intense cassis flavors modulated with sweet herbs and toasty oak. It's really quite elegant now, and should hold through the decade. - Wine Enthusiast
Purchased 6 bottles 11/05. One of the wines served at my 50th birthday party. Luxurious and velvety on the attack, wonderfully elegant Bordeaux-style blend.
1999Rouget, ChateauBordeaux  6024  90/WS 89/RP
Well done. Pretty blackberry, mineral and floral aromas. Medium-bodied, with a solid core of fruit, polished tannins and a smoky, fruity finish. Best after 2004. 3,330 cases made. - Wine Spectator ***** The 1999 is an excellent, textbook Pomerol with notes of roasted coffee, mocha, cola, and black cherry liqueur. This lush, sexy, tasty, medium-bodied offering is low in acidity with plenty of ripe tannins. - Robert Parker
Purchased 2 cases from Binny's (end of bin) in Jan 2006 Chateau Rouget wines are produced under the care of oenoligist Michel Rolland. Vineyards are 85% Melot and 15% Cabernet Franc.
1999Silvio Grasso Barolo Ciabot ManzoniNebbiolo  8012  93/WS 92/ST 91/RP
Smashing aromas in this wine, with crushed berries and Indian spices. Full-bodied, with velvety tannins and a lovely fruity, spicy, cinnamon finish. Best after 2007. 250 cases made. - (11/2003 James Suckling) Wine Spectator ***** Full medium red, deeper than the Luciani. Brooding but thoroughly ripe nose of redcurrant, plum, tobacco, smoke, mocha and camphor. Sweet, full, concentrated and lush; more mouthfilling today than the Luciani. Finishes with big, rich, ripe tannins and superb persistence. This is stuffed with fruit. - Stephen Tanzer ***** The 1999 Barolo Ciabot Manzoni, impresses with its power both on the nose and on the palate, a blast of leather, oak spices, and kirsch, well concentrated and intense in its flavors, slightly backward in its tannins and in need of time. - Robert Parker
2000Spinetta, La - Barbaresco Vigneto GallinaNebbiolo  1406  96/WS 94/ST 93/RP
Wonderful bright fruit, with hints of minerals and fresh flowers. Full-bodied, with fine tannins and a long, long finish. Concentrated and powerful, showing layers and layers of fruit and tannins. The best I have had from this fantastic winemaker. Best after 2008. 1,125 cases made. - (11/03 James Suckling) Wine Spectator ***** The 2000 Barbera d'Alba Gallina was aged 16-18 months in new French oak. It offers an explosive bouquet of tobacco, sweet black fruits, licorice, and earth. Full-bodied, intense, and velvety-textured, with great palate presence, it should be consumed over the next 5-6 years to take advantage of its exuberance. - Robert Parker ***** Saturated ruby. Aromas of black cherry, blackberry, cassis, violet and bitter chocolate. Lush and dense but vibrant and delineated, with mounting sweetness leavened by a violety floral character. Oaky but also impressively primary. Finishes very long, with scented flavors of black fruits. - Stephen Tanzer
2001Stag's Leap Cask 23Cabernet  17012  96/WE 92/WS
Classic Napa Cab, right up there with the greats. Somehow manages to combine monsterous power with understated elegance. The strength is obviously in the ripe fruit and elaborate oak, while the subtlety lies in the soft tannins and impressive balance. It's a wine you return to over and over, trying to figure it out, but it's always a step ahead. Drink now, with rich fare, or age through 2020. - Wine Enthusiast ***** At first it reveals an earthy, gamy flavor, but grows into a very distinctive wine, with rich layers of earthy currant, coffee and mocha. Shows a supple texture and excellent depth and length, all the while maintaining a sense of elegance. 2,183 cases made. - Wine Spectator
Shared first bottle with Tom and Kitty (March 2008) and decanted 2 hours prior to drinking. Absolutely rich, mellow, smooth, and silky. Soft, yet powerful, a well-balanced representation of Napa Cabernet. Although not containing a large quantity of Merlot to soften the edges, still tastes as if it does, as if it were a top Pomerol or St. Emillion. Tom and Kitty both really loved this wine too - a favorite of theirs during their visit.
2004Tait The Ball BusterShiraz  2524  93/RP
As it has been in previous vintages, the value-priced 2004 The Ball Buster Proprietary Red is a classic Barossa Valley effort in terms of bigness, boldness, and a dramatic display of fruit and intensity. If you want something delicate, restrained, and understated, steer clear of this locomotive that crashes over the palate with a flamboyant display of blackberry and cassis fruit, licorice, tar, and spicy oak. Explosively rich with formidable intensity, this blend of 70% Shiraz, 15% Cabernet Sauvignon, and 15% Merlot is an amazing wine for the price. Readers should be forewarned that it possesses 15.6% alcohol, but carries it well. - Robert Parker (Oct 2005)
2003Tapanappa Wrattonbully Whalebone Vineyard Cabernet ShirazBlend  7012  93/WS
Vibrant ruby red. Ripe aromas of blackberries and cassis with subtle scents of chocolate, clove and gingerbread. Rich and smooth on the palate, with flavors of black fruit, toast and spice against a backdrop of ripe tannins. An elegant wine that nicely balances elements of Old and New World styles. ***** Fine, elegant, beautifully focused, a supple, refined mouthful of black cherry, dark plum and dusky spices, persisting gently on the long, polished finish. Gorgeous stuff, and it should do nothing but improve. Drink now through 2015. 150 cases imported. (Harvey Steiman, December 15, 2005). - Wine Spectator
2003Tua Rita Giusto di NotriBlend  8012  92/WS 91/RP 91/ST
The 2003 Giusto di Notri, is a blend of 60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 25% Merlot and 15% Cabernet Franc, and is outstanding. Boasting an attractive set of super-ripe fruit, earth, herb and well-integrated oak sensations, it is a plump, juicy Giusto di Notri that should provide its best drinking within the next few years. Anticipated maturity: 2007-2013. - (10/2006) Robert Parker ***** Deep ruby-red. Superripe aromas of chocolate-covered raspberry, quinine and coriander. Broad, spicy and palate-staining, with strong plum and mocha flavors and impressive density. - (09/06) Stephen Tanzer ***** This is very jammy on the nose, but impressive with lots of raspberry and blackberry aromas. Full-bodied, soft and round, with loads of opulent fruit. Lots of vanilla on the finish. Thick and caressing. Flamboyant red here. Best after 2006. 1,915 cases made. - (10/2005) Wine Spectator
2000Verite La DesirMerlot  906  94/ST 92/RP
Good full ruby-red. Superripe aromas of black fruits, minerals, licorice and roast coffee, with floral, roasted and medicinal elements. Minerally, lush and sweet; dense and very long. A very large-scaled 2000, more filled in than the overwhelming majority of red wines from this vintage. - Stephen Tanzer ***** A dense saturated purple color, a phenomenal bouquet of dried Provencal herbs, sweet black fruits, spring flowers, and scorched earth, and medium body. - Robert Parker ***** Le Désir, French for "Desire", was inspired by the ideal of marrying the classic approach of the French vigneron with the exquisite potential of Sonoma County fruit. A significant percentage of Cabernet Franc from the mountains of Knights Valley is what gives this wine its unique character. The 2000 Le Désir is a deep, saturated purple color with a tremendous bouquet of sweet black fruits. Complex and alluring, 2000 Le Désir can be enjoyed now and over the next twenty years. Composition: 51% Merlot, 33% Cabernet Franc, 16% Cabernet Sauvignon. - Winery
2001Verite La JoieBlend  12012  96/RP 94/ST
I was thrilled by the awesome quality of the 2001 La Joie, a blend of 71% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Merlot, and 9% Cabernet Franc. Aromas and flavors of roasted espresso, grilled herbs, scorched earth, blackberries, and cassis liqueur are accompanied by an unctuously-textured, full-bodied, expansive, dense, phenomenally concentrated, pure blockbuster. It should be at its finest between 2005-2020+. This is an out and out brilliant wine! - Robert Parker ***** Bright ruby. Roasted, medicinal aromas of currant, espresso, bitter chocolate and minerals. Thick, fat and sweet, with compelling opulence for a cabernet-dominated wine and an almost exotic berry flavor. Finishes with sweeter tannins than the 2001 Muse, perhaps a testament to the superiority of high-quality cabernet sauvignon. - Stephen Tanzer
2006Villa Maria Sauvignon Blanc Cellar Selection, MarlboroughSauvignon Blanc  2024  92/NYT 90/WS
The most welcome example of the freshness and liveliness associated with New Zealand sauvignon blancs was found in our No. 1 bottle, the 2006 Cellar Selection from Villa Maria. This wine had the classic tart pungency that wine writers so often liken to gooseberries. For the gooseberry-deprived among us, let's just call it an instantly recognizable flavor that combines lemon, lime and tropical fruit with a sort of grassy herbaceousness. - New York Time, Wine of the Times - Best Tasting and Best Value (June 27, 2007) ***** Tart and lively, with green apple, grass, mineral and quince flavors. Gooseberry tanginess grips the finish. Drink now. 100,000 cases imported. - Wine Spectator
Purchased 2 cases 9/07 from POP's.
2006Vincent & Fils Marie Antoinette Pouilly FuisseChardonnay  2612  91/ST 91/W&S 90/WS
Green-gold. Strikingly pungent bouquet suggests ripe pear, nectarine, iodine and smoky minerals. The smokiness carries onto the palate, which offers deep orchard and pit fruit flavors, chewy texture and a long, sappy finish. This is sourced from Vergisson fruit and went through a full malolactic fermentation, but is in no way fat. - (March 2008) Stephen Tanzer ***** This tasty white is fresh and round, sporting apple, melon and honey aromas and flavors. There's just a hint of oak influence and a mineral accent on the finish. Drink now through 2012. 3,600 cases imported. - (September 2008) Wine Spectator ***** Melon, apple, and grapefruit mingle on the nose and palate, and a combination of bright citricity and chalky, stony nuances reminds one that this is from high-elevation Vergisson terroir. Very polished in texture, with a hint of creaminess, the wine finishes with a lovely balance of honeyed richness, citrus brightness, and mineral persistence. - (August 2008) Wine & Spirits
2003Wild HorseViognier  206  91/W&S
The Wild Horse style of Viognier captures the aromatic charm and richness of this varietal. The 2003 displays aromas of ripe apricot, nectarine and honeysuckle blossom. Similar lush flavors are complemented by a hint of ginger and spice. The wine is well-balanced by bright acidity and the minerality characteristic of their Central Coast vineyards. This wine is a perfect aperitif. Its crisp, aromatic character holds up well to typically spicy cuisines.
1999Yalumba The MenziesCabernet  5036  93/W&S 91/WA 93/ST 90/WE
"...Aromas and flavors of menthol, saddle leather, spice box, and red as well as black currants are offered in a full-bodied, concentrated intense style. Made from 100% Cabernet Sauvignon and aged 22 months in French Oak, it will drink well for 10-12 years." -Wine Advocate ***** "Saturated, bright ruby-red. Very primary aromas of black cherry, raw berries and licorice; slightly medicinal in a positive way. Concentrated, intense and penetrating; extremely youthful, especially considering the fact that it's already five years old. Possesses a tight core of sappy, spicy fruit complicated by a note of fresh herbs. Finishes with a powerful tannic spine but avoids hardness. This should evolve in bottle for many years." -Steven Tanzer ***** "There's black currant density at the core of this cabernet... the fruit is surrounded by black walnut scents of oak, lifted by the floral spice..." -Wine & Spirits ***** "This Cab is serious business, and could not be mistaken for any other variety. It’s excellent... fruit is big and black, ripe but not sweet. Medium red in colour with purple hints. Lifted ripe Coonawarra Cabernet, sweet and stalky, underpinned with nougat, chocolate and spicy oak. The palate displays upfront sweet berry fruit of medium weight with long grainy tannins and a firm finish. Cellaring potential of up to 10 years." -Wine Enthusiast
2001Yalumba The SignatureBlend  5012  95/RP 92/ST
The dense purple-colored 2001 Shiraz/Cabernet The Signature (60% Cabernet Sauvignon and 40% Shiraz) offers sweet aromas and flavors of blackberries, earth, cassis, and vanilla. The Signature offering spends 22 months in both new and used French and American oak. With considerable power, flavor intensity, and structure, the big, serious 2001 should hit its prime in 2-3 years, and last for two decades. - (10/05) Wine Advocate ***** Australia's oldest family-owned winery can still teach the new kids a thing or two about quality. The 'Siggy', their acclaimed Cabernet Sauvignon and Shiraz blend is a shining star of the Barossa. The Parker review included some choice superlatives: 'sweet aromas and flavors of blackberries, earth, cassis, and vanilla? considerable power, flavor intensity, and structure, the big, serious 2001 should last for two decades.' (Those after its youthful exuberance should enjoy it much sooner). The Signature represents a reserve selection of the finest grapes from Yalumba's impressive holdings, and its track record since its inception in '62 speaks volumes. ***** Deep ruby. Spicy, intense aromas of cherry, cassis, cigar box and mace. The wine's bitter cherry, licorice and sweet tobacco flavors are held in check by juicy acids and solid structure. The cherry and licorice notes continue through the fresh, pliant, long finish. Quite impressive. - Stephen Tanzer
Purchased case 11/05.
2002Yalumba The SignatureBlend  5012  96/RP 95/JH 92/WS 94/ST
Inky ruby. Dense, powerful nose offers redcurrant liqueur, cherry preserves, licorice, tobacco, saddle leather and dried rose. Sweet, supple and silky, with red and dark berry flavors expanding to saturate the palate. The combination of concentrated sweetness and precision here is really impressive. A serious, complex, deep red blend with excellent potential for cellaring. - Stephen Tanzer ***** Exhibits smoky, blackberry, incense, charcoal, and floral characteristics along with tremendous glycerin, richness, purity, and teeth-staining levels of extract. Remarkably, there are no hard edges, and the acidity, tannin, and alcohol are beautifully integrated. This cuvee should drink well for 15 years. - Robert Parker ***** Bright and generous, a lively mouthful of red berry, cherry and black pepper that gets meaty and rich as the finish sails on and on. Tannins are well-integrated. Cabernet Sauvignon and Shiraz. Drink now through 2012. 1,750 cases imported. - Wine Spectator
Case purchased 01/2008.
2001Yangarra Park Appellation SeriesMerlot  219  90/WE 90/WS
Deep aromas of ripe plum and wild berry are distinguished by hints of spicy nutmeg in this lovely wine. On the palate, there is plenty of sweet black fruit, subtly layered with complex spice and toasty oak. Rich and luscious, the wine finishes with an elegant impression of soft tannins and long-lasting flavor. Young and vibrant now, with a great burst of fresh acidity, but with scads of fruit. Explodes on the palate with waves of sweet cherry, blackberry and plum flavors. Tannins are thick and fancy. This is an ager but it would be a shame to miss the youthful vivacity. - Wine Enthusiast ***** Ripe and distinctive for its gamy, spicy character, a fleshy Shiraz with fine tannins wrapped around the generous berry and licorice flavors at the core. Finishes long. - Wine Spectator *****This Kendall-Jackson project from Australia debuted with the 2000 vintage; beginning with the 2001 vintage they introduced the Appellation Series to showcase regional Australian character (the original Varietal Series blends grapes from different sources).
Purchased 9 bottles. First bottle opened 10/8/05 with Dave and Melinda - very fruit forward, but might benefit even more from 1-2 years in bottle - very good wine considering how inexpensive it is. 10/20/05 - brought 1 bottle upstairs.
2002Yangarra Park Appellation SeriesShiraz  206  93/W&S 91/WS 90/WE
Situated in the eastern hills above the McLaren Vale basin, our estate vineyard is planted in 60 million-year-old sands — some of the oldest soils in Australia. These ancient soils produce wines with lifted fruit, good colour and rich, soft tannins. This steadfast respect for our unique terroir is reflected in the name of our estate: Yangarra in Aboriginal means “from the earth.” ***** This Kendall-Jackson project from Australia debuted with the 2000 vintage; beginning with the 2001 vintage they introduced the Appellation Series to showcase regional Australian character (the original Varietal Series blends grapes from different sources). Winemaker Peter Fraser blends grapes for this wine from two different subregions of McLaren Vale: the cooler Foothills/Blewitt Springs subregion and the warmer Seaview Hilltops region. 5,000 cases made. From Australia. A rich flood of fruit, with powerful blackberry, plum and a touch of peppermint, all echoing through the long finish. - Wine Spectator (Wine Spectator's Top 100 Wines for the 2003, #36)

Cellar contains 1248 bottles, 88 wines, 89 entries

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