Tonight was a golden opportunity to try a few top caliber wines with some bottle age. VERY impressive to say the least.
1983 Domaine Tempier Bandol “La Tourtine”
The 1983 was fully mature with an amazing nose! With every swirl, something new seemingly opened up. I happen to love the wild & rustic character Tempier’s Bandol innately has. The fruit qualities of this ’83 had completely changed into much more tertiary nuances, the acidity levels harmonized & the tannins had almost completely mellowed out. Although this wine, I believe, can age a while, I was happy at having this bottle tonight.
1996 Giacomo Conterno Barolo “Cascina Francia”
I was absolutely blown away with this wine. It was in fact one of the very best Barolo I have ever had—mesmerizing, magnificent & so complete, while deftly combining power, structure, fine detail, balance & pedigree. WOW!
1984 JL Chave Hermitage
The nose was incredibly glorious—ethereal, stony, under brush, charred sandalwood & floral with lots of underlying musk character. I could smell a wine like this forever! On the palate, however, the fruit was somewhat tired & dried, but the nose more than made up for it all…..it reminded me truly what Syrah is capable of.
1992 Dujac Bonnes Mares
Unfortunately, this pricey Grand Cru did not show very well on this night. In the nose the oak was glaring with lots of green, herbal notes, probably accentuated because the fruit was so shut down. On the palate there is still a lot there, in terms of vigor & life, but just so sadly dis-jointed. For those who has some of this wine in their cellar……WAIT. Give it a chance to come out of this stage.
1978 Domaine de la Romanee-Conti Echezeaux
In the nose, one could readily tell this was Grand Cru, as it showed lots of pedigree, intricacy & top echelon winemaking. Again, however, the palate was very disappointing, actually quite surprisingly tired. At the same time, one can readily see & understand why DRC is still the king of hill.
1997 Dr Loosen Gold Kapsule Auselse “Erdener Pralat”
What a fabulous nose…… full of mineral & filigree. On the palate the wine was superb, still full of youthful vigor & character with a real, long finish. The fruit is still very lush & delicious, and the apparent sweetness has really started to change to the more tactile texture from the 15 years of bottle age.
1997 Selvapiana Vin Santo
This was a completely unexpected surprise! The nose was just jumping out of the glass….glorious, compelling….full of caramel, toasted nuts, toffee & aromas of Crepes Suzette (carmelized sugar & orange rind). On the palate the wine also was amazing,……..full of complexities, lavish viscosity with the original sweetness upon release, greatly tempered & more tactile because of the 15 years of bottle age. This was truly a wonderful experience!