March 04, 2007

More Wine, Admiral?

So after the initial Beaujolais tasting, there were “post pours” of broad assortment, again all tasted blind.

First a gummy Beaujolais smelling wine with nice raspberry fruit and more of the granite soil character. Tannic and full in the mouth, nice drinking sooner than later. This was the 2005 Domaine Vissoux Beaujolais Cuvee Traditionale V.V., the only non-Cru Beaujolais of the evening. Quite nice for something like $10.

Then another wine with a similar profile, but only deeper with a nice pepper note to the aroma. It’s nice, full and rich Beaujolais for sure, better than the first by a step. It’s the 2005 Vissoux Moulin-a-Vent Les Deux Roches.

Then something much older, with a mature color and gorgeous bottle sweet aromas of red fruit and sous bois, with a touch of volatility that suggests drinking sooner than later. This is the 1986 Leroy Nuits St. Georges.

To match, another old wine that looks a bit older than the previous but only slightly so. A smokey cherry, aged aroma that needs time to open preceeds the silky, spicy old pinot noir flavor. A little eggy and volatile, again I’d drink this up. It’s the 1986 Reine Redauque Corton Renards. Someone suggested it showed its Grand Cru terroir, but I didn’t think so. Still a nice mature Burgundy.

Then something I thought was certainly from the southern Rhone valley in France, probably Gigondas. A younger color compared to the previous two but still maturing. Bottle sweet with cherries, red raspberries, and a floral, herbal musky quality to the aroma. Maturing flavors with a forest floor quality that got me thinking of the mourvedre grape. But no, it’s the 1994 Adelsheim Elizabeth’s Reserve Pinot Noir from here in the northern Willamette Valley of Oregon. It was a warm vintage and it shows, but nice if you can get by the lack of “pinosity.”

Not that we needed more to taste, even with the spitting. My mouth was wearing out. But I had already opened my contribution, something I wrongly heard was drinking well. This looks no different than it did on release five years ago, young and purplish red. It’s peppery scented with grape and raspberry aromas, really nice but again hardly aged. Then the wall of tannin, with unevolved raspberry and a slightly metal quality on the finish, hold this indefinitely but still I like it. This is the 1999 Clos Roche Blanche Cot Touraine, otherwise known as malbec from the Loire valley.

Oh, but then there was dessert. First something figgy with botrytis and pure pear and apple fruit, clean and sweet smelling. In the mouth it was thick and rich with fair acid but good enough balance, pretty yummy dessert wine. I didn’t get much riesling character, but others thought it to be classic. Go figure. This was the 2005 Kerpen Wehlener Sonnenuhr Riesling Auslese***.

Then something controversial, which some thought corked or otherwise faulty. I didn’t like the mothball quality, to be sure, but otherwise this was nice spicy smelling wine with golden raisins and lychees and then thick and rich flavors of honey, flowers and pears, with nice length. This was the 1999 Pierre Bise Coteaux du Layon Beaulieu “Les Rouannieres.”

The next wine probably should have come sooner, it was light colored with a pure, light clean rainwater aroma. It was only moderately sweet, and a bit jarring after the previous two, but obviously nice wine. It was the 2003 Pierre Frick Sylvaner Bergweingarten Vin Moelleux from Alsace.

Finally, an amber colored, sherried or ranico smelled wine with nut skins and spent coffee grounds. Rich and sweet flavored, with more sherry notes, dried oranges and such. This is ok, but seems a little disjointed and a bit harsh. It’s the 1990 Joliette Rivesaltes Ambré, in a fancy 500ml bottle. Not bad mind you, but a little tough though better honestly when you know what it is. No one ever said Rivesaltes produced subtle wine.

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