2019 Tasting Notes

2002 Piper-Heidsieck “Cuvee Rare” Brut Champagne

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2002 Piper-Heidsieck “Cuvee Rare” Brut Champagne  


Score:  96 Points 


Location:  Champagne, France 


Blend:  70% Chardonnay, 30% Pinot Noir  


The wine had an intense light gold color and a luscious bouquet of mango, kiwi, lemon, passion fruit, pineapple, honey, toffee, and marzipan.  The wine was rich and expressive on the palate with tropical fruits, baking spices, and crisp minerals.  There is a complexity to this wine with intricate layers of decadent fruit that swim in the powerful and intense baking spices.  The acidity is perfectly balanced and gives air to the richness of the wine.  The wine is drinking outstandingly but has the ability to continue cellaring for another decade; however, it brilliant right now!  Extremely Highly Recommended!  


Tasted:  January 2019

2002 Nicolas Feuillatte Palmes d’Or Brut Champagne

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2002 Nicolas Feuillatte Palmes d’Or Brut Champagne  


Score:  92 Points 


Location:  Champagne, France 


Blend:  Pinot Noir & Chardonnay  


The wine had a bright gold color and a bouquet that gave off hints of ripe apple, white flowers, anise spice, almonds, lemon zest, and pie crust.  The wine was focused with soft acidity that balanced the palate profile with notes of pear, apple, toasted baking spices, cookie crumble, and smoke.  The wine was complex with fresh fruits that harmonized with the layers of smoke and baking spices.  The wine has a nice depth and beautiful focus of richness.  This wine is in its drinking window now and is showing quite nicely.  Highly Recommended!  


Tasted:  January 2019

1992 Moët & Chandon Champagne Cuvée Dom Pérignon

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1992 Moët & Chandon Champagne Cuvée Dom Pérignon  


Score:  92 Pointes


Location:  Champagne, France 


Blend:  58% Chardonnay, 42% Pinot Noir  


This wine had a deep gold color and a fresh classically aged champagne bouquet of crème brûlée, caramel, roasted hazelnuts, lemon, lime, ginger spice, vanilla, toast, and chalky minerals.  The wine was rich on the palate with beautiful acidity and a luxuriously racy finish giving off creamy notes of caramel, lemon curd, macadamia nuts, green apple, almond paste, ginger snaps, toast, and crisp minerals.  The wine was drinking quite nicely, with lovely layers of ripe fruit and complex secondary notes that were brilliantly intriguing and delicious.  The wine is just starting that inevitable decline, but is still quite drinkable and showing well.  Recommended!    


Tasted:  January 2019

2013 Sebastiani Cherryblock Sonoma Valley Cabernet Sauvignon

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2013 Sebastiani Cherryblock Sonoma Valley Cabernet Sauvignon


Score:  99 Points


Location:  Sonoma Valley, California 


Blend:  96% Cabernet Sauvignon, 2% Merlot, 2% Malbec  


This beautiful opaque velvety red wine was made from old Cabernet Sauvignon vines planted in 1961, with a small amount of Merlot and Malbec being sourced from nearby sites with similar soil and climate conditions.  Wafting from my glass was a decadent bouquet of crème de cassis, black cherry, blackberries, licorice, iron, led pencil, leafy tobacco, and toasted oak.  The wine was full bodied with gripping but rounded tannins that gave way to a luxuriously plush palate painted in concentrated blackberries, cassis fruit, black cherry liquor, cigar box, refined dusty earth, and toasted oak.  The wine is complex with composed layers of fruit and earth that brilliantly blend together in harmony.  The wine is absolutely outstanding and is drinking beautifully right now; however, this wine can easily last another two decades.  I see this wine really blooming in another 10 years and will reward those with the patience to leave it in the cellar.  Extremely Highly Recommended!  


Tasted:  January 2019

2006 Château Cos d'Estournel

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2006 Château Cos d'Estournel


Score: 93+ Points


Classification: Second Growth in 1855


Location: St-Estèphe, Bordeaux, France


Blend: 78% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Merlot, 2 % Petit Verdot

This dark garnet-red colored wine had a classically old world bouquet of cherries, black raspberries, currants, rosemary herbs, cigar box, graphite, and toasted oak. The wine was medium ++ in body with firm rounded tannins that gave way to concentrated cassis fruit, cherries, currants, leafy tobacco, pencil shavings, dried herbs, soft spice, iron, toasted oak, and a hint of mint.  The wine is complex with supple layers of earth and fruit that harmonize beautifully together. The wine was showing a little closed and decanting it is recommended, as after an hour it really started to open up. This wine is approachable now but should continue to evolve nicely for those that want to keep cellaring it. Highly Recommended! 


Tasted: January 2019 

2015 E. Guigal La Doriane Condrieu

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2015 E. Guigal La Doriane Condrieu


Score: 97 Points


Location: Condrieu, Rhone, France


Blend: 100% Viognier


This beautifully golden clear wine had a lovely decadent bouquet of apricots, peaches, apple blossoms, papaya, mango, ginger, white flowers, honey, river rock, soft exotic spice, and toasted oak. The wine was full bodied with nice acidity and a clean palate painted with layers of tropical fruits, orchard fruits, hazelnuts, crushed river rock, flint, soft exotic spice, piecrust, creamy honey, and toasted oak. This wine has freshness to it, yet that does not take away from the power of the wine. The wine is elegant, yet rich with layers of fruit and minerals that swim in a cloak of toasted oak.  Truly a beautiful wine that is absolutely brilliant! Extremely Highly Recommended!


Tasted: January 2019

2013 Domaine Louis Latour Corton-Charlemagne Grand Cru

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2013 Domaine Louis Latour Corton-Charlemagne Grand Cru 

  

Score: 96 Points


Location: Burgundy, France


Blend: 100% Chardonnay 


This beautiful yellow wine had a concentrated bouquet of peaches, apples, pineapple, marzipan, soft spice, flint, and lemon curd. The wine has amazing depth and brilliantly harmonizing layers that are seductively intriguing.  The wine was rich with nice acidity and a creamy palate painted with hints of pear, peaches, citrus, wet minerals, brioche, toasted almonds, and honeysuckle. This is a wonderful wine and I am glad the Latour Family decided to replant this vineyard with Chardonnay vines, as it once had Pinot Noir vines that had to be removed due to phylloxera. Extremely Highly Recommended!


Tasted: January 2019

2007 Orma Toscana IGT

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2007 Orma Toscana IGT 

  

Score: 96 Points


Location: Tuscany, Italy


Blend: 40% Merlot, 40% Cabernet Franc, 20% Cabernet Sauvignon


This amazing wine was still quite youthful and gave off a rich bouquet of blackberries, blueberries, coffee, chocolate, herbs, licorice, and toasted oak. The wine was full bodied with rounded tannins that still had a little grip, but gave way to a decadent palate giving off notes of concentrated crushed dark berries, licorice, exotic spice, grilled herbs, mocha, and soft beautiful oak. The wine was complex with a plethora of layers that brilliantly harmonized together. The wine is rich and bold yet sophisticated and polished with an unmistakable old world classic style. The wine is in its drinkability window but is showing no signs of going into decline anytime soon. This wine has the ability to continue cellaring for another 8 to 10 years but why bother, drink it now! Extremely Highly Recommended!


Tasted: February 2019

2015 Antinori "Tignanello" Toscana

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2015 Antinori "Tignanello" Toscana

  

Score: 97 Points


Location: Tuscany, Italy


Blend: Sangiovese, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc


This opaque powerful wine had a robust bouquet of blackberries, black currants, violets, herbs, exotic spice, cigar box, leather, incense, and toasted oak. The wine was full bodied with rounded tannins and a decadently plush palate painted with hints of black currants, blackberries, crushed cassis fruit, cherry, graphite, grilled herbs, spice, tobacco, and toasted oak. The wine was incredibly intense with a rich boldness and concentration of dark fruits that blend and enhance the supple terroir notes. The wine is complex with a polished structure that empowers the layers to brilliantly harmonize together. The wine is extremely young and tight; thus, it needs another 10 years in the cellar before it reaches its window of drinkability. Extremely Highly Recommended!


Tasted: February 2019

2006 Clos du Marquis

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2006 Clos du Marquis

  

Score: 92 Points


Location: Saint Julien, Bordeaux, France


Blend: 44% Cabernet Sauvignon, 41% Merlot, 13% Cabernet Franc, 2% Petit Verdot


This dark red wine had a classic old world bouquet of blackberries, black cherry, violets, licorice, tar, cigar box, soft spice, and toasted oak. The wine was full bodied with velvety tannins that gave way to a palate painted with juicy blackberries, licorice, cedar, soft spice, herbs, toasted oak and a hint of cassis liquor. The wine was still bright with fresh dark berry fruits, and sexy layers of terroir notes. The wine has a seductive complexity of fruit and dusty earth that blend nicely together. The wine was showing no signs of going into decline, but is in its window of drinkability. Highly Recommended!


Tasted: February 2019

2007 Castelgiocondo (Marchesi de' Frescobaldi) Brunello di Montalcino

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2007 Castelgiocondo (Marchesi de' Frescobaldi) Brunello di Montalcino

  

Score: 93 Points


Location: Tuscany, Italy


Blend: 100% Sangiovese


This dark red wine had a rich bouquet of black cherries, licorice, plum, exotic spice, tobacco, chocolate, and oak. The wine was full bodied with chewy rounded tannins that gave way to a layered palate giving off hints of black cherry, plum, toasted herbs, exotic spices, cigar box, oak, and dusty earth. It’s supple with a decadent ripe fruit profile that balances nicely with the terroir notes and complex layers of the wine. Still showing off its youthfulness and displaying no signs of decline; thus, the wine should easily cellar for another 8 years. If you prefer your wine more fruit forward then drink it now as time will empower the secondary notes to mature nicely. Highly Recommended!


Taste: February 2019

2005 Chateau Arthemis Cotes De Castillon

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2005 Chateau Arthemis Cotes De Castillon

  

Score: 90 Points


Location: Bordeaux, France


Blend: Red Bordeaux Blend


The wine had a nice garnet color with hints of bricking at the edge. The wine was giving off a typical old world bouquet of cherries, plum, green pepper, truffles, licorice, soft spice, minerals, and toasted oak. The wine was medium ++ in body with plush tannins that polished the palate with hints of plum, concentrated cherry, coffee, graphite, pepper, truffles, dusty minerals, and soft toasted oak. The wine was lush but lacked depth and complexity. Overall it was a nice bottle of wine and is in its drinking window right now. Recommended!


Tasted: February 2019

2012 Emidio Pepe Pecorino Colli Aprutini IGT

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2012 Emidio Pepe Pecorino Colli Aprutini IGT

  

Score: 92 Points


Location: Italy


Blend: Pecorino


The wine had a beautiful soft gold color and an intriguing bouquet of lemons, flint, yeast, honey, and a funkiness I couldn’t really identify. The wine had nice acidity with complex layers of citrus and floral components that blended nicely with wet flinty minerals, savory honeysuckle, and a soft bitterness on the finish. The wine is quite unique with a rustic sophistication and soft creaminess that is balanced with the crisp acidity. Overall I truly enjoyed this wine and look forward to trying more of them. Recommended!


Tasted: February 2019

2014 Lucien Le Moine Corton Charlemagne Grand Cru

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2014 Lucien Le Moine Corton Charlemagne Grand Cru

  

Score: 95 Points


Location: Burgundy, France


Blend: 100% Chardonnay

 

This yellow gold beauty is still in its infancy, giving off a bouquet of lemon zest, orchard fruits, crushed granite, minerals, smoke, and other citrus notes. The wine has a crisp acidity that cuts through the creamy palate that is painted with hints of lime, orange peel, peaches, wet river rock, granite, and a touch of sweetness on the finish. The wine is complex with lush layers of fruit and minerals that blend and harmonize nicely together. The wine is still quite youthful and will benefit for more time in the cellar, but started to open up nicely after a few hours. Highly Recommended!


Tasted: February 2019 

2015 Chateau de la Tour Clos Vougeot Grand Cru

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2015 Chateau de la Tour Clos Vougeot Grand Cru

  

Score: 94+ Points


Location: Burgundy, France


Blend: 100% Pinot Noir


This beautiful dark ruby wine had an expressive bouquet giving off aromas of violets, black raspberry, plum, blackberries, cherries, black tea, soft spice, vanilla, graphite and a nice earthiness. The wine was medium ++ in body with rounded but gripping tannins that gave way to a luxurious palate painted with hints of blackberry, black raspberries, licorice, chocolate, herbs, and savory briny minerals. The wine was complex with concentrated layers of fruit and earth that blended harmoniously together. The wine was intense with a nice level of acidity and should evolve brilliantly over the next decade or so, for those with the patience. Extremely Highly Recommended!


Tasted: March 2019

2008 Orma Toscana IGT

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2008 Orma Toscana IGT 

  

Score: 94 Points


Location: Tuscany, Italy


Blend: 40% Merlot, 40% Cabernet Franc, 20% Cabernet Sauvignon


This big bold wine had an expressive bouquet of blackberries, blueberries, chocolate, cigar box, incense, tobacco, herbs, spice, earth, and toasted oak. The wine was full bodied with rounded tannins that gave way to a concentrated palate with hints of blackberries, plum, licorice, cedar, black tea, spices, tobacco, chocolate, dusty minerals, and oak. The wine is impressive with its seductive lush layers of textured fruit and earth that blend and harmonize perfectly together. The wine is powerful and rustic while maintaining an old world sophistication. This wine is in its plateau of maturity and is drinking beautifully right now, but has the ability to age for another 10 years or so. Highly Recommended!


Tasted: March 2019

2015 Aubert Larry Hyde & Sons Vineyard Carneros Chardonnay

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2015 Aubert Larry Hyde & Sons Vineyard Carneros Chardonnay

  

Score: 98 Points


Location: Napa Valley, California


Blend: 100% Chardonnay


I was at lunch with some Sommelier friends, and Master Sommelier Will Costello decided to join us and blinded the table on this beauty. The wine had a beautiful gold color with an extremely aromatic bouquet of lemon zest, pink grapefruit, orange blossoms, peach, candied ginger, and vanilla.  The wine was full bodied with a nice crisp acidity that gave way to a palate painted with hints of pear, honeydew, lemon oil, brioche, tea, soft spice, and toasted oak. The wine was complex with lush citrus and orchard fruits that harmonized perfectly with tangy minerals. This wine was spectacular, and beautifully balanced with a new world sophistication and elegance. The wine is in its plateau of maturity and is drinking quite nicely right now, but should last another 5 years or so. Extremely Highly Recommended!


Tasted: March 2018 

2013 Antinori Guado al Tasso Bolgheri Superiore

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2013 Antinori Guado al Tasso Bolgheri Superiore

  

Score: 95+


Location: Tuscany, Itlay


Blend: 55% Cabernet Sauvignon, 25% Merlot, 18% Cabernet Franc, 2% Petit Verdot


This beautiful opaque wine had a ripe bouquet of black cherries, blackberries, plum, currants, blueberries, chocolate, tobacco, lavender, spices, and toasted oak. The wine was full bodied with gripping tannins that puckered the palate and gave off notes of ripe dark berry fruits, toasted herbs, dark chocolate, savory baking spices, supple minerals, and toasted oak. The wine is still in its infancy and requires more time in the cellar, yet should be absolutely stellar once it reaches its window of maturity. The wine is complex and powerful with bold layers of fruit and earth; that, give off a rustic old world style that is elegant and harmonious. I would enjoy revisiting this beauty in another 10 years or so. Extremely Highly Recommended!


March 2019