lauantai 31. toukokuuta 2008
Very mineral, true MSR aromas; good fruit and minerality, not as severe and charmless as most MSR trockens in my experience have been. A very pleasant little wine.
Pieropan Soave Classico 2007
12% abv; 16,76€. Lovely minerality, bright citrussy aromas, with a sweeter, heavier note of fruit and that nutty scent I find in even unoaked Soaves. Crisp but fruity, citrussy, mineral, quite long. Very lovable - I can't wait to try the '07 Calvarino.
Joseph Drouhin Beaune 1er Cru Clos des Mouches Rouge 2005
Not as voluptiously fruity as many other '05s, quite bright and transparently Beauny actually - except I noticed more new oak than I have previously noticed in Drouhin's reds. Lovely structure. A pity about the oak - maybe I'm just being paranoid (as usual) about that...
Weingut Willi Bründlmayer Zweigelt 2005
12,5% abv; 12,21€. Pleasantly leafy and peppery scent, dark fruit, very ripe and sweet, almost liquorous - I still like this, but did prefer the elegance of the '04. Ripe and sweet fruit, juicy, not as bright as the '04 but still well structured. I will certainly buy more of the '05 also.
This is a property that puzzles me a little bit. In the all too few vintages I have had ('88, '97, '01) I have really liked it though they were in a big and masculine style whereas my preferences usually go toward a more elegant, feminine style.
I remember being blinded on the '88 in December '07 and thinking it was something made this millennium as though it was impeccably balanced, there were no evolved aromas at all and the structure was still very strong! The blind '97 was a classic Graves in being a "transitional" form between the Right and Left banks - but a burly example of such.
I was happy to share a bottle, decanted a couple hours before dinner, of La Mission Haut-Brion 2001 13,5% with just two other people. This gave ample time to see how the wine evolved over a few hours (a couple of other wines were also enjoyed). This is also a very masculine wine, just like the '88 and '97 and shows a very similar over-all profile to them. It has lots of sweet fruit which makes it surprisingly approachable though very young. Just after decanting it showed more oak than I am comfortable with, but by dinner time it had calmed down and the dark, masculine, burly fruit was foreward.
This was again a "transitional" wine like the '97 in that there was a softer, Merlot-dominated aroma that countered the baked-bean and hard, almost Pauillac-like aroma, and all this was enveloped in a classically Gravesian earthiness.
It is big and masculine and burly, but the acidity is refreshing and the tannins are plentiful and ripe. The aftertaste is long and has that refreshing, leafy, autumnal character that is perhaps the main reason I love Bordeaux and Loire Cabernet Franc. Very nice.
This was a pretty special bottle so I am sorry I never had the money to buy a bottle or two when it was available here.
torstai 29. toukokuuta 2008
A Port-style wine from Kaliningrad, it was toffeed and grapey, quite a bit like the white Ports I've had - clean and moderate in sweetness. The first wine from Kaliningrad I've had! If anyone knows Russian and wants to tell me more about what the label says, I'd be interested to hear...
Then we tasted the non-joke stuff. Throughout my vinous life I have had a hard time with Sangiovese, but I think I am beginning to enjoy some of them. The problem largely is that we see very few well made but traditionally styled wines here. But I did like the Biondi-Santis and the Poggio Antico; and even most of the ones not to my taste had a tanginess to the palate that I really enjoyed. So who makes a no new oak, bright and tangy Brunello (or other Sangiovese) that doesn't cost as much as Biondi-Santi? Is that an impossibility?
1988 Col d'Orcia (Cinzano) Brunello di Montalcino Riserva Poggio al Vento
Dark cherry, bittersweet, slightly herbal, it showed an attractive aged character; tannic and lively palate, quite plump and still full of sweet fruit. Quite nice!
1990 Tenuta Greppo (Biondi-Santi) Brunello di Montalcino Riserva - Italy, Tuscany, Montalcino, Brunello di Montalcino (5/27/2008)
The nose at first reminded me of Cantillon's Kriek: funky, bright and cherried with some shite; it became sweetly fruity over time and developed scents of apricot. A little bit sweet, but tangy, very structured, lively and red toned palate. Very bright and transparent. Fantastic stuff.
1990 Pieve Santa Restituta (Gaja) Brunello di Montalcino Sugarille - Italy, Tuscany, Montalcino, Brunello di Montalcino (5/27/2008)
Sweet, some toffeed and vanilla notes suggesting quite a bit of oak, dark but cherried, almost over-ripe in its fruitiness. Sweet, quite low in acidity and therefore liveliness, but oddly enough after the smooth attack and mid-palate the aftertaste becomes quite tangy and shows some gripe and even some refreshing qualities. Glossy; it tastes "expensive" but leaves me rather unimpressed.
1993 Castello Banfi Brunello di Montalcino Riserva Poggio All'Oro - Italy, Tuscany, Montalcino, Brunello di Montalcino (5/27/2008)
This is showing some aged aromatics but isn't in danger of going over the hill soon. Dense, red cherry aromas, a slight touch of dung - all of this is nice. Sadly there is a strong lactic scent also that I quite dislike. The palate is very extracted, dense and herbal, tannic, quite woody. This seems to be too dense a package for me to enjoy.
1995 Pian Delle Vigne (Antinori) Brunello di Montalcino - Italy, Tuscany, Montalcino, Brunello di Montalcino (5/27/2008)
Very sweet, a bit raisiny and over-ripe, dark toned in fruit, liquorous and unrefreshing and frankly not showing much of a Sangiovese profile. Dense, sweet, dark, not really showing typicity. Glossy.
1995 Tenuta Greppo (Biondi-Santi) Brunello di Montalcino - Italy, Tuscany, Montalcino, Brunello di Montalcino (5/27/2008)
Quite a lovely wine: cherry and sandalwood, slightly herbal nose, quite primary fruit still, peachy. It shows some dried fruit character with air. Bright, lively, transparent, strongly structured palate, good length, speaks of the earth. Lovely.
1995 Castello Banfi Brunello di Montalcino - Italy, Tuscany, Montalcino, Brunello di Montalcino (5/27/2008)
Dark colour. Spoofulated and unpleasant: a wine with too much make-up on so the Brunello character is utterly lost underneath. Glossy, dark fruit - doesn't really show the characteristics of any specific grape, just lots of ripeness and lots of oak. Sweet, cloying, anonymous. I quite disliked this one.
1995 Pieve Santa Restituta (Gaja) Brunello di Montalcino Sugarille - Italy, Tuscany, Montalcino, Brunello di Montalcino (5/27/2008)
1995 Poggio Antico Brunello di Montalcino - Italy, Tuscany, Montalcino, Brunello di Montalcino (5/28/2008)
This was a very charming wine, though it did show a rather sweeter fruit profile than I expected from Brunello. Nicely herbal, with plenty of peach and sandalwood aromas in addition to the bright cherry. Well structured, bright and transparent despite the sweet fruit. Very nice.
1995 Tenute Silvio Nardi Brunello di Montalcino Vigneto Manachiara - Italy, Tuscany, Montalcino, Brunello di Montalcino (5/27/2008)
Dark fruit, new oak/toffee; sweet but lively - quite modern in style, well made but not really showing strong Brunellosity.
2001 Gianni Masciarelli Montepulciano d'Abruzzo Villa Gemma - Italy, Abruzzi, Montepulciano d'Abruzzo (5/27/2008)
Glossy, dark fruit, banana-esteryness, lots of new oak aromas; tangy palate, but sweet and oaky. If you like Kurni, this might work, but for me this was quite undrinkable.
Ridgeview Merret-Bloomsbury 2005
70% Chardonnay, 23% Pinot Noir and 7% Pinot Meunier. A very enjoyable fizz. The nose is slightly sweet (high dosage?) but with green apple and some slight hints of more red fruit aromas, but these Pinot aromatics are rather in the background now. Very slightly sweet but very crisp - again seemingly a rather high dosage -, but impeccably balanced and refreshing. I would imagine that this can age some years? Good now and I would imagine better with a few years age.
Ridgeview Merret-Cavendish 2005
38% Chardonnay, 35% Pinot Noir and 27% Pinot Meunier. Elegant nose of clover, apples, red fruit and minerals. Fruity and quite full bodied but with high acidity and great balance. Finishes very mineral. Lovely wine.
Ridgeview Merret-Fitzrovia 2005
58% Chardonnay, 14% Pinot Noir and 28% Pinot Meunier. Salmon pink. The nose is bready and smells of earth, oranges and flowers with strong savoury notes, too. It turns more toward a sweeter, strawberry spectrum of scents with air. Elegant mousse. Quite full bodied, but tangy and moreish. Long and quite earthy aftertaste. It seems to show much Meunier character because of its prominent earthiness. I love it.
I hadn't tried it before so I bought it anyway. It has the tart tropicality of passionfruit, but very dry and mineral. Intense, long, dry. Nice!
A worthy CFE (that's not big news I suppose, since I even quite enjoyed the '03) but I hope our inept monopoly will get the '01 that they mention on their website since that was something special.
keskiviikko 28. toukokuuta 2008
tiistai 27. toukokuuta 2008
William Fèvre Chablis Grand Cru Les Clos 2004 13% abv; many€
Light gold colour. The nose was surprising: a lovely aged Chablis character of minerals and orange and flowers. It smelled as mature (and as lovely) as the Long-Depaquit '88 Moutonne we had when Wade Hostler was here this January. So certainly not like bad cooking sherry that POxed Burgundies apparently should taste like, but not at all youthful either. Rather it tasted like a Chablis at its optimum age. Needless to say, I really loved the wine and with two of us drinking it, it evaporated in just 1½ hours - quite a fierce rate, a magnum would have been welcome. Lovely, but utterly unexpected.
lauantai 24. toukokuuta 2008
Podere il Casino Montecucco 2006
Organic; 14,5% abv; 70% Sangiovese, 30% of Cab S and Merlot; very low yields (20hl/ha). This smells of ripe strawberries and wet clay - a very attractive scent, but very sweet. Though apparently some of the oak is new (30% or so IIRC) it doesn't show. Though it is very ripe and sweet, the palate is light on its feet and is exceptionally lively and bright and has very natural tasting tannins and acidity. Though a Super Tuscan blend, it is stylistically a world apart from what I expected of such a blend. Very nice.
Podere il Casino Maremma Toscana IGT2006
Very dark toned in fruit, concentrated and brooding but with very attractive cherry and sandalwood aromas, too. I get a slight hint of oak, but not to an extent that would make me worried. Full bodied, sweetly fruity, I like how honest the tannins are, yet despite there being lots of them, they are ripe and refreshing rather than overpowering. I don't get the oak notes on the palate that I did on the nose. It is very light on its feet despite the concentration and sweetness of fruit. I enjoyed it, but it is very primary.
torstai 22. toukokuuta 2008
Though I am not much of a cook, it turned out nice enough that I almost dislocated my shoulder patting myself on the back (cue all the foodies to say I did it all wrong).
With the fish I had the rest of Quinta do Ameal Vinho Verde 2006 that wasn’t used in cooking (i.e. quite a bit). A 100% Loureiro from Ponte de Lima, and gladly only 11,5% so drinking 3/4ths of a bottle isn’t quite a hazardous sport. I found the wine to be very satisfying with its strongly mineral nose and pear-like fruit. Quite full bodied and substantial for a Vinho Verde but still a lighter wine in a larger context yet it is intense. Pure, pleasantly tart and citrussy; long and mineral. Drinking this wine with the fish was like squeezing a lemon onto it.
The perfection of the wine and its unique character caused me to reflect on my brief infatuation with wine. I have been lucky in having found a loose group of wine lovers in Helsinki thanks to whose generosity I have tasted some truly exceptional wines from the classical regions. I guess all wine lovers are pre-conditioned to think of some areas as worthy of more attention than others: e.g. Bordeaux or Burgundy over, say, Jura or Madiran. As much as I love a good Bordeaux (if anyone mentions older Haut-Baillys, I start drooling), I find that if I am brutally honest with myself, I do prefer a Madiran. Or a Poulsard or Mondeuse or Gamay or.... The pleasure receptors in my brain seem to jump to a higher frequency with these well made oddities than with established greats.
I understand that it is quite a statement to say that in its proper context I get more pleasure out of a cheap Vinho Verde with some fish than from an aged first growth with lamb, so I thought that maybe it’s a psychological issue. Since I don’t have the highest income, perhaps I just subconsciously prefer the wines I can afford to the ones I can only afford to taste 5cl of. This line of reasoning quickly proved wrong because we taste so much blind with the group and I still find a Muscadet fires more pleasure receptors than more exalted whites. And whether blind or not, I do passionately love a good red Burgundy or Nebbiolo and those certainly can be prohibitively expensive. My tastes have certainly changed – unfortunately at the moment to rather anti-social styles. But I’m sure they’ll change again.
sunnuntai 18. toukokuuta 2008
Light gold. This smells of lemon curd and minerals, but it also has the slightest touch of vanilllin, but not in an offensively oaky way (producer's web site says 55% stainless steel; 45% mostly 1-3yo oak, a small percentage new). Steely, citrussy, mineral palate with a fair amount of weight and fruit. Long, steely aftertaste. Very young and assuming POX doesn't strike, I would love to try this again in a decade.
Schloss Gobelsburg St. Laurent Haidegrund 2004
I feel sad saying this since I have liked everything from Gobelsburg that has come my way before, but I actively disliked this bottle. This smelled strongly of the powder one makes hot chocolate of, i.e. toasted oak. This scent clashed with the high toned, sweet dark fruit. Nice acidity on the palate, an attractively fleshy yet elegant fruit with bright acidity and soft but noticable tannins - but sadly the oak quickly kicks in and smothers all that attractiveness. What a shame. But gladly we have a few lovely whites from Gobelsburg available.
Bodegas Muga Rioja Reserva 2004
This has strong oak just now, but also bright, lifted, berried scents. Quite full bodied, not as elegant as I remember some earlier vintages to have been, but with pleasant tanginess to it. It is a Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde wine in this primal stage: some sniffs show an utterly oak dominated wine; others show a more classical Rioja profile of brightness and vibrant red fruit. Possibly very nice if the bright side prevails.
lauantai 17. toukokuuta 2008
perjantai 16. toukokuuta 2008
This vintage is once again a very lovable wine - it seems this is every year one of the best cheaper wines available here. A little bit volatile, dark and bitter with some red berry/cherry high notes. Quite full body, tangy, strong structure but sunny and sweet fruit to counter the tannins. It is quite wild and rustic - a charming wine full of personality.
Still going strong, though I thought when I tasted it upon release that it should be drunk quickly because it wasn't terribly structured. I also remember sensing some oak on it then. But the oak has gone and it smells very much like Condrieu should: apricot, perfumed but not over the top or too obvious, slightly mineral. The longer it is open, the more savoury aromas come forward - and, I suppose oxygen related, also a plesant appleyness. Full bodied, opulently fruity, but the opulence is well judged and it never becomes overbearing. It certainly isn't strongly structured, and indeed one of the mysteries of Rhone whites is why some of them remain moreish and even refreshing when so unstructured. This manages that strange trick. Very nice.
Château Camensac 2005 27,30€; 13%
Very disjointed at the moment: a very sweet, alcoholic (despite "only" 13%) and banana-bread-like top note; inky, darker fruit and a slight stemminess bring up the bass stem - but they are playing in different keys. Atonality is more harmonious. Thick, sweet attack, rather harsh, tannic and alcoholic finish. After the big but impeccably balanced Chasse-Spleen '05 I am not enamoured by this. Perhaps it will calm down with age, but it reminds me too much of the freakish '03s that I would be comfortable buying this. Maybe it's good for fans of '03 Bordeaux? Yet I rather like that herbaceous streak in this one. Any chance it might turn around?
keskiviikko 14. toukokuuta 2008
- Camille Giroud Beaune 1er Cru Bressandes 1988
Blind: Dark red, orange at rim. Very earthy, slightly stinky/shitty, lifted and citrussy, but with a smell of root vegetables. Tannic, but with aged fruit, quite high acidity - it is very bright and well focused though the fruit is of a darker tone than I would ideally find in my Burgundies. From the rustic and tannic style, I guessed this was an old Fixin. I liked this very much, but it seemed much more advanced than the other two bottles I have recently tried.
- Domaine des Lambrays Morey St. Denis 2005
Dark. The nose is very sweet and shows much ripeness, but also some red fruited Pinosity. Full bodied, very ripe but with better acidity than I have found in the other '05s so far tried. Very nice.
tiistai 13. toukokuuta 2008
René Geoffroy Champagne 1er Cru Pureté Brut Zéro NV
50% Meunier, 40% Pinot Noir, 10% Chardonnay; 70% from 2004, 30% from 2003. Very pure fruit, earthy as typical of Meunier, vibrant; crisp and lemony yet with perfectly enough fruit to handle the zero dosage. Very nice.
René Geoffroy Champagne Brut 1er Cru NV
50% Meunier, 40% Pinot Noir, 10% Chardonnay; 70% from 2004, 30% from 2003; dosage 9g/l. Earthy, fruit forward, wide fruit; apparently no malo so it is crisp despite the wide fruit, but it isn't as pure a style as the brut zero - maybe my least favourite of the Geoffroys.
René Geoffroy Champagne Empreinte 2003
28% Chard, 39% Pinot Noir, 33% Meunier; 2003; dosage 6g/l. A delineated and mineral style with quite a bit of floral notes but not as obviously earthy as the other cuvées with more Meunier. It does show quite a bit of fruit as expected from a 2003, but what is surprising is how crisp and mineral the wine is. It is focused and not flabby at all but very refreshing instead. Very nice.
René Geoffroy Champagne Volupté 2003
80% Chard, 20% Pinot Noir; 2003; dosage 6g/l. Beautifully expressive Chardonnay aromas of white fruit and green apple; crisp despite the wide fruit; impeccably balanced and didn't show the vintage's heat in a bad way. Precise and I would almost say incisive. Very nice.
René Geoffroy Champagne Rosé de Saignée 2005
Pinot Noir; 2005; dosage 11g/l. Very sweet and primary nose of strawberry jam. Quite heavy and inelegant - I think less dosage would work better? Alongside the other lovely Geoffroys this was quite a disappointment.
René Geoffroy Champagne Millésime 2000
30% Pinot, 70% Chardonnay; Dosage zéro; 5565 bottles made. Already quite a mature nose with some oxidative elements, very floral and orange-like aromas; crisp but pure fruit despite the oxidative notes. Lovely now. I'm not sure I'd keep it much longer.
(d.) de Blanes Vin de Pays des Côtes Catalanes Le Clot Rouge 2007
50% Grenache Noir, 50% Syrah. Very tightly bound scent: garrigue and dark fruit. The palate is much more giving with lots of sweet Grenache fruit, but though fruit forward, it is very lively and light on its feet. Nice!
(d.) de Blanes Côtes du Roussillon 2006
"75% Syrah of 10 years age and 15% (typo for 25%?) Grenache Noir of 40 years age." Blue flowers, very primary dark fruit, sweet and tobacco-like. Sweet but lively and light on its feet. Very enjoyable!
(d.) de Blanes Côtes du Roussillon Hautes Bernes Rouge 2005
45% Syrah (15yo), 25% Carignan (12yo), 20% Grenache Noir (40yo), 10% Mourvèdre (12yo). Slightly animal, lifted nose with lots of cranberry or some slightly sharp red berry, but darker fruit tones underneath. Full bodied, light on its feet, sweet fruit, very lively and long. Very nice.
(d.) de Blanes Côtes du Roussillon Impressions Blanc 2006
75% Grenache Blanc, 15% Grenache Gris, 10% Macabeu. Very sweet but very mineral; though full bodied and waxy it does have some acidity and isn't as ponderous as Southern whites can often be. Actually it is very pleasant.
(d.) de Blanes Muscat de Rivesaltes 2006
50% Muscat, 50% Muscat Alexandrie. A correct Muscat de Rivesaltes, but I have to confess I rarely find them interesting: sweet, very muscatty and fresh; though sweet and not terribly acidic, it stays together. Some minerality brings a bit of interest for me. Nice in its style.
(d.) de Blanes Maury 2006
Grenache Noir from over 100 yo vines. The scent is really lovely with a true Grenache character garrigue and sweet, red fruit, but there is also a very lovable hint of tobacco leaf. Tannic, very primary, but delightfully savoury so it isn't just a simple sweet wine, but has great personality and refinement. Lovely.
Jean-Philippe Padié Côtes du Roussillon petit Taureau 2005
50% Carignan, 30% Syrah, 10% Grenache Noir, 10% Mourvèdre. This smelled so much of shite that most of the other tasters thought it had to be off - I am infamously tolerant of bretty aromas, so I found it a very lovable wine. It was vibrantly fruity despite the animal notes, with garrigue and dark fruit, light on its feet and refreshing. I found it very enjoyable.
Jean-Philippe Padié Côtes du Roussillon Ciel Liquide 2005
30% Carignan, 30% Grenache Noir, 15% Syrah, 15% Mourvèdre (and 10% of what?). This smelled of new oak/Barrique and that was an instant turn-off for me - I just do not like that scent. Some garrigue underneath. Sweet and oaky. I had trouble getting to grips with this wine.
Clos Cibonne Côtes de Provence Cuvée Tendance 2006
Rosé from the Tibouren grape. Light pink. Fresh and slightly mineral nose, with some orange and tomato aromas; medium-full bodied, refreshing though certainly not a light rosé. Long and mineral aftertaste. Nice!
Clos Cibonne Côtes de Provence Cuvée Tradition Elevage en Foudre 2005
Tibouren rosé. A dark rosé. A deep and earthy scent, red fruit; sweet fruit and full body, a little tannic - which is nice -, moderate acidity. A heavy style of rosé, but still very enjoyable.
Clos Cibonne Côtes de Provence Cuvée Rosé Spéciale de Vignettes Elevage en Foudre 2004
Tibouren rosé. Orange. Deep and almost bread-like scent with red fruit - very impressive. Tannic, deep, darkly fruity palate, weighty for rosé but still refreshing. Very impressive.
Clos Cibonne Côtes de Provence Cuvée Prestige Caroline 2006
Tibouren rosé. What a disappointment after the previous three, wonderful Clos Cibonnes. This smelled of new oak and nothing else. Bitter oak on the palate too. Others liked this very much, but I found it quite frankly unenjoyable.
Jean-Marc Burgaud Morgon Les Charmes 2006
A lovely, classic Beaujolais nose but the fruit is rather dark in tone. It is very gravelly and mineral - almost metallic, even! Quite full bodied, very intense, very primary, tannic and acidic - it is quite a wild wine just now, but I love it.
Bele Casel Prosecco di Valdobbiadene Brut NV
An attractive, rather fruit forward nose of pear and white flowers. Light but slightly sweet fruit, attractively mineral. Nice.
Bele Casel Prosecco di Valdobbiadene Extra Dry NV
Pear, white fruit and mineral aromas; elegant mousse, crisp yet with noticable sugar. Attractive but I did prefer the drier Prosecco.
Bele Casel Prosecco di Valdobbiadene Millesimato Luca Ferraro 2006
The sweetest of the three proseccos today with about 20g/l. It is correct and typical in style, but rather heavy and not as refreshing as I hope Prosecco to be. Though the sugar is kept well in check, I think I would enjoy this more with less. Nice enough as it is, however.
Entusiasmo di Palazzetto Ardi Cabernet Franc 2007
Tank sample. Very correct and typical for the grape: tobacco, some herbaceousness - a bit lactic also. Leafy and juicy and very charming. No oak.
Entusiasmo di Palazzetto Ardi Cabernet Sauvignon 2007
Tank sample. Reductive, but correct: darker fruit than the Cab F, more tannic, less juicy but still refreshing. Possibly very nice.
Entusiasmo di Palazzetto Ardi Cabernet Sauvignon 2006
I'm not sure this was the way it was supposed to be: cranberry juice, no real Cabernet aromas. Thin.
Entusiasmo di Palazzetto Ardi Garganega 2007
Very appley, a bit funky; but great fruit, a bit oxidative, mineral, lively. Nice!
Slovenia, Goriška Brda
Klinec Quela 2005
60% Merlot, 30% Cab Sauv, 10% Cab Franc; 1 year in cherry. Bright and red toned nose, very unique profile from I guess the aging in cherry, but the fruit is very pure and charming, and obviously a Bordeaux-blend. Ripe fruit, juicy, refreshing and youthfully tannic. Very nice and very lively!
Klinec Furlanski Tokaj Pikotno 2006
Tocai friulano, 1 year in acacia. The nose is floral and a little bit candied, with quite a bit of acacia notes. Full bodied and very ripe, but with mouthwatering acidity. Very interesting stuff, but just a bit on the perfumed and candied side for my taste.
Klinec Bela Quela 2004
30% Tocai friulano, 1 year in acacia; 30% Rebula (Ribolla gialla) and 40% Chardonnay, 1 year in mulberry and finally all of this for 1,5 years in oak. Despite the unique wood regimen, the nose is very elegant, mineral and though sweetly fruity, it seems very refreshing. The palate is also elegant though quite full bodied, charming and juicy acids, quite a bit of tannins - there is much going on but it is restrained. Very good.
Klinec Verduc 2004
Verduc, autochthonous grape to Goriška Brda, 3 years in acacia. A dramatic orange colour. The nose is very spicy with some citrus and apple notes, earthiness and acacia. Very full bodied, oily but acidic, a bit alcoholic, but very interesting and very nice and very different from anything else I have tasted.
France, Savoie, Bugey
Frank Peillot Vin du Bugey Montagnieu pétillant brut NV
Very mineral, grassy, ripe and charming with some strawberry hints. Soft mousse, ripe fruit, palate cleansing acidity but not sharp. Very nice.
Frank Peillot Vin du Bugey Bugey Réserve de Jean pétillant brut NV
A lovely nose of clover, strawberry and minerals; precice, delineated, mineral and very long - and also very much fun. A lovely sparkler.
Franck Peillot Vin du Bugey Pinot Noir 2007
A peppery style of pinosity, quite light but intense; a bit tart despite the sweet fruit, persistent and has quite a personality. Not bad, but I did prefer the Mondeuse.
Franck Peillot Vin du Bugey-Montagnieu Mondeuse 2006
A really lovely wine - it is very primary and smells of dark fruit and raspberries, tobacco leaf and earth and minerals. Tannic, vibrant, tangy - very lively and really lovable.
Frank Peillot Vin du Bugey Chardonnay 2007
Extremely mineral, with some citrus and sweet, pipe tobacco notes. Citrussy, mineral yet slightly sweet palate. Nice!
Frank Peillot Roussette du Bugey Altesse de Montagnieu 2006
The nose is quite mute - a bit waxy and floral. Mineral, appley, tangy palate, quite nervous but not giving very much. A bit closed? But still nice.
Frank Peillot Roussette du Bugey Altesse de Montagnieu 2007
Very expressive nose of blackcurrant leaves, rhubarb, minerals; the palate is lively and dances around, acidic but juicy, mineral - a wine full of personality and life. Lovely.
Part II with René Geoffroy's Champagnes and many other interesting wines will be posted sometime in the near future.
lauantai 10. toukokuuta 2008
2006 Cosimo Maria Masini Annick - Italy, Tuscany, Toscana IGT (5/10/2008)
Biodynamic; 14,99€; 80% Chardonnay, 20% Sauvignon Blanc; 13% abv. Though mostly Chardonnay, it is the Sauvignon character that I mostly sense on the nose with its very expressive blackcurrant leafyness and slight grassiness/greenness. This is attractively weighty and mineral. Though very ripe, it isn't a fruit forward wine but rather a full bodied but mineral and juicily citrussy one. Very nice, though the two grapes used in the wine are not amongst my favourites.
2005 Cosimo Maria Masini Nicole - Italy, Tuscany, Maremma, Maremma Toscana IGT (5/10/2008)
Biodynamic; 19,81€; 13,5% abv; 90% Sangiovese, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon. A little bit funky/shitty upon opening, but also shows bright cherry and red fruit aromas. This is very much alive in the glass and is constantly changing - but the general trend over hours seems to be that the fruit tones become darker in tone and that the Cabernet aromas become more dominant. Delightfully tannic, natural, bright despite the warm year fruit, long. Though apparently aged in big, used barrels, I do get a touch of oak that still needs to integrate. But it is a very nice wine. Try again in 2010?
An Indian style chicken in coconut obviously wasn't a great match for the wines (but was quite nice with the beers (Marston's Bitter & Twisted; Saison Dupont; Thiriez Etoile du Nord) we had!), but I did have some interesting cheeses for dessert. The peppery and sharp Monte Enebro (see here and here) was really nice with the Annick; an old Parmigiano reggiano was decent but not magical with the Nicole.
But now the question: what is it about the Cabernet Sauvignon and the Sauvignon Blanc that they so dominate the Sangiovese and Chardonnay respectively?
2006 Domaine Joseph Scharsch Crémant d'Alsace Brut Prestige - France, Alsace, Crémant d'Alsace (4/30/2008)
100% Chardonnay. White flowers; crisp and pure, lively, long and mineral. Very enjoyable.
2006 Domaine Joseph Scharsch Pinot Blanc - France, Alsace, Alsace AOC (4/30/2008)
Correct and pure, appley and mineral, quite full bodied for the grape but still light on its feet and elegant. Very enjoyable.
2006 Domaine Joseph Scharsch Muscat Vieilles Vignes - France, Alsace, Alsace AOC (4/30/2008)
A very deep scent, grapey and sweet but mineral and pure; full bodied but crisp for a Muscat with a lovable mineral aftertaste. Nice!
2006 Domaine Joseph Scharsch Cuvée V - France, Alsace, Alsace AOC (4/30/2008)
A blend of Pinots Blanc, Noir and Gris, Riesling and Gewürztraminer. Oddly enough for such an unorthodox blend, the nose is pure and focused, very "Alsace" with an elegant minerality. Ripe but refreshing, a bit of tropical fruit. Nice!
2005 Domaine Joseph Scharsch Pinot Gris - France, Alsace, Alsace AOC (4/30/2008)
The nose is very typical of the grape: glue and spice, ripe, red toned fruit. Weighty but not cloying; sweet fruit, but pure and refreshing for the grape. Mineral aftertaste. Very enjoyable.
2005 Domaine Joseph Scharsch Riesling Altenberg de Wolxheim Grand Cru - France, Alsace, Wolxheim, Alsace AOC (4/30/2008)
An elegant and ripe Riesling aroma of great purity and minerality. Good weight, dry but fruity, correct and charming.
2006 Domaine Joseph Scharsch Pinot Gris Clos Saint Materne - France, Alsace, Alsace AOC (4/30/2008)
The nose is very mineral, citrussy and elegant - but there are the typical, heavier scents of red fruit and spice also. Quite full bodied, but dry, mineral and very light on its feet for this so often heavy grape. Quite wonderful - one of the few PGs that I have tremendously enjoyed.
2006 Domaine Joseph Scharsch Pinot Noir - France, Alsace, Alsace AOC (4/30/2008)
A deep rosé. Slightly peppery, very vegetal and red toned in fruit - this has tremendous Pinosity. The palate is light, a bit tart, but has enough fruit to keep it well balanced. It has quite significant tannins, too. Very enjoyable.
2007 Domaine Joseph Scharsch Pinot Noir - France, Alsace, Alsace AOC (4/30/2008)
Very dark for rosé. This was more immediately attractive than the '06, because of an extra touch of sweetness that still retained the minerality and Pinosity. Lovely, sweet fruit, juicy acidity, refreshing tannins - a very joyful drink.
2005 Domaine Joseph Scharsch Pinot Noir Cuvée Nicolas - France, Alsace, Alsace AOC (4/30/2008)
I have loved almost all Scharschs I have had, but this cuvée hasn't pleased me. Though the fruit is ripe and there is stuffing that isn't usually seen in Alsace Pinot, I still find the new barrique aromas overwhelming - which is surprising as, IIRC, only 2 of the 9 barrels were new. Not to my taste.
2005 Domaine Joseph Scharsch Gewürztraminer Vendanges Tardives - France, Alsace, Alsace AOC (4/30/2008)
A little bit of botrytis, typically rosewatery and perfumed scent, but with a minerality to give a counterpoint to the sweetness. Full bodied, sweet but light on its feet, refreshing and mineral. It has a lovely, ever so slight bitterness that lends it an extra touch of freshness. A lovely dessert.
2006 Domaine Joseph Scharsch Gewürztraminer Vendanges Tardives - France, Alsace, Alsace AOC (4/30/2008)
Not yet a VT because needs to go through some sort of regulation still to be certified, but this is what is destined to become the VT '06. It is heavier than the '05 VT, apparently more botrytised, more obvious, but it still has a refreshing edge to it so it never becomes cloying. Pleasantly mineral. Nice, but I preferred the slightly more elegant style of the '05.
Then came the others that Carelia imports:
N.V. Henri Goutorbe Champagne Cuvée Tradition - France, Champagne, Aÿ, Champagne (4/30/2008)
A very enjoyable Pinot based Champagne: a floral and appley nose; a paradoxical palate in being both voluptiously yet reigned in/restrained - this makes for quite an exciting drink. Very enjoyable.
N.V. Vilmart Champagne Grande Réserve Brut - France, Champagne (4/30/2008)
Pinot based, floral, appley, weighty and fruity but very dry - I would assume from such steeliness that it doesn't go through malolactic? Very refreshing despite the strong fruit and weight. Nice!
2001 Vilmart Champagne Grand Cellier d'Or 1er Cru - France, Champagne (4/30/2008)
I very much enjoyed this bottle, but was told at the tasting that it wasn't as expected! A rather rustic and oxidative/appley nose, earthy but fruity, crisp and again doesn't seem like it sees malo. Very enjoyable in a rustic way.
2003 Gualdo del Re Sangiovese Val di Cornia Suvereto - Italy, Tuscany, Val di Cornia Suvereto (4/30/2008)
This smells too much of barrique, but at least the fruit isn't as horribly over-ripe as with most other Tuscan '03s I have tried. But sadly, there is no real varietal character discerible either. Ripe, fruity, some structure, very oaky. Balanced in its way, but not to my taste as it is too international in style.
2004 Podere Capaccia Chianti Classico - Italy, Tuscany, Chianti, Chianti Classico (4/30/2008)
A very enjoyable Chianti, with red cherry, tobacco and also some riper, darker toned fruit underneath. Pleasantly tart, ripe fruit but not heavy, bright.
2004 Podere Poggio Scalette Il Carbonaione Toscana IGT - Italy, Tuscany, Toscana IGT (4/30/2008)
A Super-Tuscan from the Chianti area. Chocolatey oak, anonymous; slightly cherried, sweet, international. Well made, but I found it rather boring and without personality.
2006 Quinta do Crasto Douro Flor De Crasto - Portugal, Douro (4/30/2008)
A ripe and berried scent, slightly herbal - simple but pleasant and very Douro. Ripe fruit, upright structure, a bit too primary still, so a year or so would do good for it. This isn't terribly exciting, but it is very drinkable and I would never turn down a glass.
2006 Vinařství Ilias Merlot - Czech Republic, Morava, Mikulovska, Pavlov (4/30/2008)
A little reductive (just opened for a brief taste, undecanted), but with dark and a little jammy fruit. The structure was very attractive with ripe tannins, refreshing acidity and some red berry notes to the darker, typical Merlot fruit. Not bad at all.
2006 Vinařství Ilias Ryzlink Rýnský - Czech Republic, Morava, Mikulovska, Pavlov (4/30/2008)
This is a very pleasant Riesling with typical lifted, savoury, mineral aromas of the grape but with a slight edge of crystallised fruit. Sweet fruit, but fairly dry, refreshing acidity, well balanced and moreish. Nice!
2006 Vinařství Ilias Veltlínské zelené - Czech Republic, Morava, Mikulovska, Pavlov (4/30/2008)
i.e. Grüner Veltliner. A mineral, slightly green aroma, but also a bit papery (NB! not corked as there was way too much fruit for that). Refreshing palate, with slightly peppery fruit. Typical for the grape, but not a terribly exciting example. I preferred the producer's Riesling.
2007 Casata Monfort Pinot Grigio - Italy, Trentino-Alto Adige, Trentino (4/30/2008)
A mineral nose of chilli pepper (?!? - a bit surprising) and milder spices (not so surprising anymore) and minerals. Quite weighty, but pleasantly acidic for the grape, mineral and quite long. Nice.
2007 Casata Monfort Traminer Aromatico - Italy, Trentino-Alto Adige, Trentino (4/30/2008)
Mineral, floral, rosewatery scent - very perfumed yet with steel underneath. Full bodied but refreshing and light on its feet. Mineral aftertaste. Very pleasant.
Prieler Blaufränkisch Johannishöhe 2006 Burgenland; 16,94€; 13% abv
Dark red, youthful, almost purple rim. The scent is very expressive with lots of dark fruit and pepper - almost like a Syrah in this respect -, yet with a mineral and cherried and vegetal higher note that reminds me of of a good Cru Beaujolais (though I now read that Blaufränkisch isn't a clone of Gamay as once thought, I can understand from the scent alone how that mistake was made). Medium bodied, but juicy and cherried fruit, high acidity, vegetality and minerality - again quite like Gamay, except for the rather strong tannins. The aftertaste is long, mineral and very refreshing but still continues the charming fruitiness. A very charming wine. Imported by Funky Wine and available also at Foxy Wine House at a very fair price by the glass.
Château Chasse-Spleen 2005 Moulis-en-Médoc; 34,70€ (ouch!); 13,5% (well hidden); conflicting info on the grapes: Alko says 70% Cab S, 20% Merlot & 10% Petit Verdot; the back label says 55% Cab S, 40% Merlot & 5% PV.
I don't have much experience with Californian Cabernets, but Wade Hostler has kindly brought over some old Ridge York Creeks which I thought were absolutely splendid - and they are the current ideal for the genre of that vague idea that is called typicity. They had true Cabernet aromas and even were quite Bordeaux-like to the extent that they were restrained and savoury, earthy and slightly green (this colour is positive for me) except that they had a more upfront fruitiness that shouted California instead. This 2005 seems also like my ideal of Californian Cabernet. And I really do not mean this in a bad way - I loved the old York Creeks and I really, really enjoyed this Chasse-Spleen.
There is a delightful, slightly green and herbal savouriness that counters the sweet and dark fruit aromas. It is stereotypical left-bank with its scents of pencil shavings and cassis and with the slight, savoury greenness; but the dark fruit is so sunny and sweet without being at all pruny or raisiny that it brings to my mind the Ridges. There is some new oak here, but that is just background music. Full bodied, very ripe and sunny, but not cloying at all. Rather, this is refreshing, tannic and has decent enough acidity to be very moreish. I find the tannins extremely lovable in their paradoxical soft strength. This may be a little atypical because of its ripeness; but I think the ripeness is handled well and the result is a very lovable wine. I will certainly buy a couple bottles.
torstai 8. toukokuuta 2008
I started with a small pour of Marcel Lapierre Morgon 2007. Very young - almost like a barrel sample! Glorious nose, elegantly floral with some cherried scents. Vibrant, very much alive, high acidity, classical; long and slightly balsamic aftertaste. Lovely.
José Michel & Fils Champagne Brut Pinot Meunier NV had a full on and fruity nose, very earthy, red toned and appley; broad palate, not very high in acidity but refreshing enough to carry all that fruit, weighty and quite impressive.
G.D. Vajra Barolo Bricco delle Viole 2001 Surprisingly dark coloured for such a "traditional" smelling wine! Red berries, but with some darker tarry notes as counterpoint, and also a lovely floral scent. Very perfumed. Lovely tannins, youthful and upright but juicy; vibrant acidity, refreshingly berried fruit. Palate cleansing. Excellent.
Jean-Marc Burgaud Beaujolais Osez! le Rosé 2007 A very pale pink. Stunning minerality, cool aromas, bright and pure. Very mineral and brightly acidic palate but with true Gamay-fruitiness, too. Very lovable.
Fattoria Montagliari Vin Santo del Chianti 1971 Brown. A lovely oxidative nose, refreshing, not too sweet, lingering. Very nice!
LVMH has offices close to our's and as they had a tasting of some of their stuff today, I was able to take a small break to go taste the following fizz:
Moët & Chandon Champagne Nectar Imperial NV
This had classic Champagne aromas but in a rather cloying and unrefreshing form. Attractive mousse; but the taste again was quite sweet and unrefreshing, but gladly not as cloying as the scent indicated. I haven't yet managed to find a genuinely enjoyable sweet Champagne.
Moët & Chandon Champagne Cuvée Dom Pérignon 2000
Started out rather elegantly mineral, but gained weight and sweetness quickly after opening. Sweet and fruit forward, not really as acidic or as crisp as I would hope, some attractive minerality - a nice enough Champagne, but not really anything special.
Krug Champagne Grande Cuvée MV
Complex and quite a fruit-basket nose, but more elegant and citrussy and less oaky than I remember the old label to have been - all of which I find positive. Quite densely fruity but crisp and never heavy. Very nice.
After work, my boss and I continued handling the latest crisis over a few small samples at Restaurant Loft's wine bar:
Serge Mathieu Champagne Cuvée Tradition Blanc de Noirs Brut NV
A rather vinous nose, plenty of Pinosity, lots of earth and flowers. Fine mousse. A broad and meaty palate, voluptious and fruity but refreshing enough to be very moreish - very much fun (and excellent value) even though I usually prefer a more elegant, leaner style.
Mongeard-Mugneret Savigny-lès-Beaune 1er Cru Les Narbantons 2005
Very ripe and sweet, not quite jammy but verging on it, darker fruit tones that I usually hope to see in Burgundy; very dense fruit, sweet and quite tannic. Nice if you don't mind lots of ripeness and sweetness - gladly there is little oak noticable and there is refreshing structure so I can enjoy this.
Alvaro Palacios Priorat Finca Dofi 2004
Closed. Nutty, creamy aromas, air brings out some strawberry, but mostly it is about oak-based aromas. The palate is quite a bit better with highish acidity, copious soft tannins, brambly fruit but sadly also lots of oak and extreme concentration. Thick. Impressive, but not my style at all.
Château de Beaucastel Châteauneuf-du-Pape 2004
Sweet and open scent of strawberries and tea, attractive dark fruit underneath the sweet exterior. Lovely structure: bright and refreshing acidity for a Southern wine, honest tannins, but sweet and spicy fruit, too. Refreshing and mineral aftertaste despite all the sweet fruit. A very complete CdP. Very nice.
Château de Beaucastel Châteauneuf-du-Pape 2001
Sweet and open, very concentratedly cherried scent - almost liquorous in its sweetness -, spicy and dark toned but savoury. Dense, sweet, well structured and though not as bright or refreshing as the '04 it is still a very attractive young CdP.
Alvaro Palacios Priorat Finca Dofi 2001
Very oaky, brambly and milk chocolatey aromas, some herbs, very dark fruit - lifted but unrefreshing. Tannic, brutish and highly extracted. Quite unpleasurable now, and I think it won't evolve into anything I would enjoy either.
Château de Beaucastel Châteauneuf-du-Pape 1992
This was an exceptionally lovable wine! The nose was a little bit animal, bright and red toned, cherried, lifted - reminds me quite a bit of Musar except not so volatile. Sweet, aged fruit, still a little tannic, rather soft acidity but still refreshing. Only the slightly weak aftertaste shows this to be from a lesser vintage. Lovely.
Alvaro Palacios Priorat Clos Dofi 1992
Very woody nose, but with some attractive aged fruit, secondary aromas. Still some strawberried fruit, but it hasn't really aged gracefully since the wood and tannins make this really hard and charmless - over-extracted or still too young? The secondary aromas would make me think that too much was done to this wine. Graceless.
Alvaro Palacios Priorat Clos Dofi 1995
Blueberry, oak, bramble, herbs - a mix of attractive greenish notes and international style. Concentrated and oaky, too dense, a bit hard.
Alvaro Palacios Priorat Finca Dofi 2005
Sweet, massively oaky, banana, cola and toffee aromas and nothing savoury to balance all that oak and sweetness. Another slightly sweet, oaky monstrosity - 100p.
Costers del Siurana Priorat Dol'C de L'Obac 1998
Blind dessert: Tarry, herbal, strawberried - very Grenachy aromas. Sweet, but not overly so, refreshing structure, attractively herbal. Pretty nice.
2006 Klinec Sivi Pinot - Slovenia, Primorje, Goriška Brda
A "natural" wine, strongly mineral, appley, earthy - deep and lovely yet refreshing scent. Quite heavy, but very light on its feet thanks to both high acidity for the grape and a very strong minerality. Long and lovely.
maanantai 5. toukokuuta 2008
Pangea Syrah Apalta Vineyard 2004 - Chile, Central Valley, Rapel Valley, Colchagua Valley
Very dark. Very oaky, jammy, very alcoholic, cough-syrupy but with also a slight savouryness peeking in through all the over-ripe and over the top elements. Fat, jammy and oaky, but it does have some tannins so it isn't only about the fruit and oak. Harsh and painfully alcoholic aftertaste with spiky acidity. Impressive for all the wrong reasons.
Agrapart & Fils Champagne Brut Nature Blanc de Blanc Vénus 2001 - Avize
This is the first vintage of this Biodynamic cuvée. Appley, quite red toned on the nose despite being a Bl de Bl, slightly vanillary and strongly earthy. Crisp but concentrated, dry and mineral. Very nice. Doesn't really show the signs of coming from what is generally considered a weak vintage.
Then we had a bunch of Volnays:
Domaine de Montille Volnay 1er Cru Les Mitans 2001
Pale. Pure and bright nose of red berries; elegantly earthy and mineral, leafy - fantastic Pinosity and transparency. Light but intense, very tannic, bright and pure and absolutely enchanting.
Domaine de Montille Volnay 1er Cru 2003
Dark colour for Montille. Sweet, jammy, chemical nose; soft and sweet, not flabby but doesn't really have a Montille character to it. This was just plain weird upon opening, but with air did gain focus. Shows more '03 character than anything else.
Domaine Marquis d'Angerville Volnay 1er Cru Les Fremiets 2005
Very dark. The nose was very sweet and darkly fruity, almost like raspberry-liqueur and showed more new oak than I expected from d'Angerville. Nice tannins, decent enough acidity to cope with all the dark fruit and sweetness. What I think this lacked was a clearly defined Pinosity.
Domaine de Montille Volnay 1er Cru Les Mitans 2005
Sweet and darkly fruity yet savoury nose, shows obvious warm year characteristics and doesn't have the pure, transparent brightness I so love in some other Montilles, but it still has obvious Pinosity. Sweet fruit, upright tannins, not terribly acidic but it is still lively. Very nice, but very young.
Domaine de Montille Volnay 1er Cru Les Mitans 2003
This was a very weird experience. Very dark colour. Very expressive and peachy nose, voluptious and full of dark fruit, lots of mulberry and even some tar - if there were more oak in it, it would have been like a Barossa Shiraz! Sweet, soft, plump - even a bit flat. The very opposite of what my experience with Montilles has previously been. 2003s really tend to be freakish.
And then we had a flight of Pommards:
Weingut Ökonomierat Rebholz Spätburgunder Spätlese trocken 2004 - Pfalz
Very light coloured. Slightly animal upon opening; but cleared up to become a peachy, red toned, sweet but leafy scent of pure Pinosity. Sweeter fruit than the Montilles tasted alongside this, but pleasantly structured and refreshing, mineral and bright. Very attractive.
Domaine de Montille Pommard 1er Cru Les Pezerolles 2005
A strange experience for Montille: dark colour. Dark fruit notes, quite a bit of oak also, masculine, brooding. Soft, plump, over-ripe and almost raisiny, lacks a bit of focus - single blind, I thought this was an '03!
Domaine de Montille Pommard 1er Cru Les Pezerolles 2003
Lifted and peachy, but pruney/raisiny, mulberry - no Pinosity in this one! Salty attack, refreshing tannins, but the acids are rather too soft for all that sweet fruit. It's not actually as freakish as many other '03s, but it does lack Pinosity and transparency. A decent wine; but not Burgundy.
Domaine de Montille Pommard 1er Cru Les Pezerolles 2002
This was just stunningly pretty! Bright, pure, transparent, mineral and elegant despite plenty of vegetal but red toned, ripe fruit. Ripe but bright, mineral and elegant. Long and refreshing though not as strongly acidic as I expected from the nose. Lovely.
Domaine de Montille Pommard 1er Cru Les Pezerolles 2004
Pleasantly vegetal, but ripe and pure Pinosity, quite dark toned fruit. Full, ripe fruit, slightly vegetal, stronger tannins and softer acidity than I expected, but well balanced and very lovable.
General remarks: I still find '03 Burgundies to be freakish. These really had no Pinosity and no real Montille-isity either. I am afraid that the '05s mostly also showed more of the vintage than the grape or area or producer - but at least there was better structure. These characters might emerge sometime, but since they are pushing the ripeness levels that I find comfortable, I might skip buying these wines even if they were available here. I wonder if it is a more widespread phenomenon that '05s taste more of '05 than anything else and that they lack transparency? I will gladly taste these wines again, because I am sure that drinking them at this stage was not a good idea, but I am a bit more hesitant in spending money on them, though I have usually loved Montille. Sadly the '01 Pezerolles was corked; but I absolutely loved the Mitans - I just love the elegant and transparent character of '01; it might be my favourite recent vintage in Burgundy!
With a wonderful dinner of calf-liver a blind red was poured:
Domaine Armand Rousseau Père et Fils Chambertin 2005
Served blind this was quite a shock. I had tasted it once before and found it rather oaky, but with genuine pinosity underneath the oak. This time, I found the oak overpowering and it was hard to find any Pinosity or Gevrey character at all. This was blocky, powerful, inelegant and frankly "international" and anonymous in style. Plump, soft, overly oaky palate. A huge disappointment compared to my previous experiences with Rousseau and of the one experience with this wine. I hope this bottle was just in a funny phase.