Rick's Wine Journal 2nd Half 2010
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     Rick's Wine Journal and Tasting Notes for 2nd Half 2010
    New Years Eve 2010 Napa Cab Flightbtl_FR_Marquis_LaGuiche_chasssagne_montrachet_2006_remc December 31, 2010 - Schramsberg Vineyards Pinot Noir Brut Rose N.V. - http://cellartracker.com/w?1024653; Marquis de Laguiche (Joseph Drouhin) Chassagne-Montrachet 1er Cru 2006 - http://cellartracker.com/w?870885; Rudd Jericho Canyon Vineyard Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 1999 - http://cellartracker.com/w?715070; Forman Estate Bottled Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 1999 - http://cellartracker.com/w?1055699; S. Anderson Napa Valley Stags Leap District Cabernet Sauvignon Richard Chambers Vineyard 1999 - http://cellartracker.com/w?22078; Moët & Chandon Champagne Cuvée Dom Pérignon 2000 - http://cellartracker.com/w?295549; Interesting diversity in this horizontal comparison - the Rudd-Jericho (RM93) was my favorite full bodied, full flavored, complex, concentrated black raspberry, kirsch, hint of pine tar, licorice, mocha, sweet oak, full but well-integrated tannin - understandably since a blend of 50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 40% Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot.
    Dom Perignon 2000 The S. Anderson Chambers cab (RM90) appeared youthful - garnet colored, full bodied, brash, core of currant, kirsch, almost tart black cherry; the Forman ( RM89) appeared much older - deep purple color, more subdued black fruits, hints of anise, coffee, leathery creosote nuances with soft tannins.  Wine selection tasted at Bill & Beth's w/ L, & Bob & Gloria (drop-in) w/ festive artisan cheeses, shrimp & crab legs, gala dinner featuring beef roast, au jus, Yorkshire Pudding popovers, scalloped potato's, creamed spinach casserole, artisan confectioners dark chocolate desserts.
    Provenance Vineyards Napa Valley Carneros Merlot 2001 December 30, 2010 - Provenance Napa Valley Carneros Merlot 2001 - RM 87 - Ruby red color. Earthiness starting to overtake the fruit - plum, blackberry, currant, a hint of cedar and subtle but lingering mocha on a long polished mild tannin finish. L and I discovered this wine visiting the winery during our 2003 Napa Wine Experience. http://cellartracker.com/w?12106.
    Liparita Napa Valley Merlot flight December 29, 2010 - Liparita Napa Valley Merlot 2001 -  - RM 88 - Dark garnet color, medium full bodied - ripe red and black raspberry fruits predominate with nice moderate smooth tannin finish. http://cellartracker.com/w?193067 Liparita Napa Valley Merlot 1997  magnum - RM 87 Dark garnet coloured, earthiness bleeds off to reveal black cherry, ripe black raspberry and cassis with a hint of mocha blackberry and smoke on the finish. http://www.cellartracker.com/w?58790. Drank at our favorite Italian Bistro Angeli's Italian w/ L & MIT group - Dean & Kathy, Kathy & Chip, Marie & Dave.
    December 28, 2010 - Wine flight of select  non-vintage, non-estate Cooper's Hawk wines at local winery restaurant - Sauvignon Blanc (RM87), Chardonnay (RM86), Merlot (RM86), Petit Syrah (RM88), Cabernet Sauvignon (RM87) - tasted at lunch w/ L, Alec, Johnny, Erin & Lucy.
    Paloma Spring Mountain Merlot 2003 label
    December 25, 2010 - Paloma Napa Valley Spring Mountain Merlot 2003 - RM 90 - Smooth polished, complex harmonious symphony of finely integrated aromas and flavors - predominant currant, red raspberry, milk chocolate, a hint of ripe plum, sweet oak and a bit of burnt sugar caramel on the long smooth polished finish. http://cellartracker.com/w?109466  Liparita Cellars Napa Valley Merlot 1997 - RM 87 - From Magnum. Dark garnet coloured, earthiness bled off to reveal cherry, ripe black raspberry and cassis with a hint of mocha blackberry and smoke on the firm tannin finish.  http://cellartracker.com/w?193067.  Tasted w/ family w/ festive holiday surf & turf dinner - beef tenderloin, lobster tail, twice bake potatoes, green bean casserole, fresh baked rolls, selection of artisan cheeses and fruits, deserts. 
    Duran Cava Gran Reserva NV  December 24, 2010 - Duran Cava Gran Reserva N.V. - RM 87 - Sparkling wine with festive Christmas dinner at G'Ma Evelyn's & Keith's - honey baked ham, sweet potatos ... with family; L, Johnny & Erin & Lucie, Ryan, Sean, & Alec (Michelle working @ hospital) - http://cellartracker.com/w?1039334.
    Del Dotto Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 1994 December 23, 2010 - Del Dotto Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 1994 - RM 91 - Dark garnet color - full bodied, subdued nose, flavorful fruit - blackberry, black cherry, hints of currant and plum, tones of cedar and hint of alcohol and toasty oak on a nicely polished smooth finish. Amazing life in this sixteen year old - no sign of diminution whatsoever.  http://cellartracker.com/w?890759 - Tasted w/ L, with Alec serving  at our favorite Italian Bistro Angeli's Italian in Naperville.
    Marietta Cellars Old Vine Red Lot Number 52   December 20, 2010 - Marietta Cellars Old Vine Red Lot Number 52 N.V. - RM86 - Medium bodied - dark garnet color - forward almost sweet dried cherry, red berry fruit, smoke and hint and menthol, slight metal tone with moderately firm tannins on the finish. Great value wine.  http://www.cellartracker.com/wine.asp?iWine=919444
    Holiday Dinner Big Red Wine Flight
    Holiday dinner wine tasting flight
    December 18, 2010 - Gala holiday dinner - listed in order of tasting  - Taittinger Champagne Nocturne Sec N.V. - http://cellartracker.com/w?232988. Duran Cava Gran Reserva N.V. - http://cellartracker.com/w?1039334. Les Caves de la Colombe Chassagne-Montrachet Les Houillières Côte de Beaune,  Chassagne-Montrachet, Burgundy, France, 2003 - http://cellartracker.com/w?277961. Belle Glos Pinot Noir Clark & Telephone Vineyard 2004 - http://cellartracker.com/w?186243 - Fog Dog Pinot Noir 2008 - http://cellartracker.com/w?873257. Fantesca La Petite Soeur red wine 2007 - RM91 - Garnet color, medium full bodied, ripe cranberry and currant highlight the red berry fruit with a sweet toasty oak on the fruit filled finish. http://cellartracker.com/w?1045246. Joseph Phelps Cabernet Sauvignon Backus 2003 - RM94 - Dark inky color; subdued slight floral on the nose; full bodied, rich, full, complex, finely integrated ripe bark berry fruits, hints of currant turn to touch of dried tobacco ending in whisper of vanilla and sweet burnt sugar caramel on a long silky smooth chewy finish. http://cellartracker.com/w?118405. Philippe Melka Metisse Napa Valley Red Wine 1996 - RM89 - http://cellartracker.com/w?95702. Château Duhart-Milon Rothschild Pauillac Bordeaux 2002 http://cellartracker.com/w?20376. Tokaj Hétszőlő Tokaji Aszú 5 Puttonyos 2001 - http://cellartracker.com/w?441417. Drank at home with artisan cheeses, lobster tail, beef tenderloin, chocolate cake and fresh berries  w/ L, Bill & Beth, Dr Dan & Linda, Bob & Gloria.   
    Lewis Cabernet Sauvignon labelLewis Cabernet Sauvignon 1998 label rearFlinders Ranges Shiraz 2006 December 17, 2010 - Lewis Cellars Napa Valley Alec's Blend 1999  - RM 90 - Dark, full bodied, huge floral perfume - earthy leather and black fruits - hint of anise and touch of creosote on the finish - for a moment you'll think you're drinking a Bordeaux! There is still life left in this 10 year old - has several years yet. http://cellartracker.com/w?59315 - Flinders Run Shiraz Southern Flinders Ranges 2006 - RM 91 - Dark garnet color, full bodied. Mouthful of forward chewy spicy ripe plum blackberry, blueberry, notes of licorice toasty oak, and mocha followed by a long, pure finish. Slight mineral edge up front detract from the fruit a bit. Not quite as smooth as the 2005 vintage but delicious none-the-less. http://cellartracker.com/w?579974  Drank at Angelis_Italian - our favorite bistro -with L, Sean, Erin and Lucy w/   serving.
    Del Dotto Giovanni's Tuscan Reserve 1995 December 11, 2010 - Del Dotto Napa Valley Giovanni's Tuscan Reserve 1995 - RM87 - Medium bodied. Leathery, earthy black cherry, olive and tobacco box as the fruit diminishes with age.  http://cellartracker.com/w?214620. Tasted w/ L and Beth at our favorite Italian Bistro Angeli's Italian in Naperville.
    Flinders Ranges Shiraz 2006 December 10, 2010 - Flinders Run Shiraz Southern Flinders Ranges 2006 - RM 91 - Dark garnet color - full bodied. Mouthful of forward chewy spicy ripe plum blackberry, blueberry and notes of licorice toasty oak and mocha followed by a long, pure finish. Slight mineral edge up front detract from the fruit a bit. Not quite as smooth as the 2005 vintage but delicious none-the-less. http://cellartracker.com/w?579974 
    Te Kairanga Martinborough Casarino Reserve Chardonnay 2005 December 9, 2010 - Te Kairanga Cesarina Reserve Chardonnay North Island, Wairarapa, Martinborough, New Zealand 2005 - RM89: Light golden honey coloured wine - medium-light bodied. Winemaker notes say it well - Hints of white peach, citrus and grilled hazelnuts with attractive vanilla oak characters. Nice easy drinking wine - tight acidity and good length. http://www.cellartracker.com/wine.asp?iWine=642640.
    Hazyblur Kangaroo Island Cabernet Sauvignon 2006 December 4, 2010Hazyblur South Australia Kangaroo Island Cabernet Sauvignon 2006 -  RM88* RP 90- Dark inky purple color, full bodied, rich, thick black fruits, black currant and blackberry, spice, hints of olive and a slightly rough edge of metallic licorice on a moderate tannin finish. *Update - the edge softened and this wine was more approachable the next day - needs time to open and settle. Give it a 90.  Tasted at home w/ L.  http://cellartracker.com/w?730921 
    Cloudy Bay New Zealand Pinot Noir 2007 December 4, 2010 - Cloudy Bay New Zealand Pinot Noir 2007 - RM 89 - Medium, light bodied, fragrant aromas of dark plums, hints of blueberry, spicy sandalwood and smoky bacon. Palate of dark fruits and toasty oak with moderate smooth tannins on a fine velvety finish. Terrazas Reserva Mendoza Malbec 2008 -RM 87 - Medium bodied - dark garnet color - easy drinking firm forward dark berry fruit and smooth moderate tannin finish - great value in a under $15 wine.  Tasted w/ L & Ryan at world's largest Whole Foods in West Lincoln Park Chicago.
    Two Hands Brave Faces 2007 December 3, 2010 - Two Hands 'Brave Faces' Barossa Valley Shiraz Red Blend 2007 - RM 88 - Dark garnet color - full bodied - thick chewy black fruits, loganberry, hints of camphor turn to slight metallic tones reflecting the grenache with a long thick tannin finish. Shiraz 64%Grenache 18% Mataro18%. Drank at home w/ L and Bob.
    Del Dotto Napa Caberrnet Franc 2002 label on McNees.org/winesiteDouble Diamond Mayacamas Range Estate Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon 2003Schrader Double Diamond Mayacamas Range Estate Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon 2003 November 26, 2010 - Del Dotto Napa Valley Cabernet Franc 2002 - RM93; Dark garnet color, full bodied, bright cinnamon spice, raspberry, hint of cedar and mocha on a big, long silky smooth tannin finish. http://www.cellartracker.com/wine.asp?iWine=19187. Schrader Double Diamond Sonoma County Mayacamas Range Cabernet Sauvignon 2003 - RM92 - Dark inky color, full bodied, full but subdued black berry and plum fruits, hint of sweet cherry and mocha on the smooth tannin finish. http://cellartracker.com/w?97356. Tasted w/ L, Sean, Ryan & Michelle, with Alec serving  at our favorite Italian Bistro Angeli's Italian in Naperville.
    Snafu California  Red Wine 2005 November 26, 2010 - Local Wine Company SNAFU 2005 - RM 85 - Medium-light bodied, dusty dark berry, spice, leather, herb, hint of creosote and mineral on a moderate tannin finish. Complex blend of Petite Sirah 42%, Cab Sauvignon 33%, Merlot 8%, Syrah 8%, Zinfandel 6%, Petite Verdot 3%. Tasted at home w/ L and Ryan cooking lasagna.
    Robert Craig Howell Mountain Zinfandel 2006 label November 25, 2010 - Robert Craig Howell Mountain Zinfandel 2006 - RM 92 - Dark inky color, full bodied - full thick chewy forward fruits - black raspberry, ripe plum with tones of mocha,  a hint of vanilla and whisper of evergreen on a long moderate tannin finish. Purchased at the winery at the 2008 Harvest Party. Drank with family - best Thanksgiving wine ever! 
    Patrick Ryan Vineyards Colmumbia Valley Red Wine 2000 label November 24, 2010 - Patrick Ryan Vineyards Columbia Valley Red Wine 2000 - RM92 - Dark garnet color, medium-full bodied, full forward currant and black berry fruits, anise, spice and hint of cedar on a long tannin finish. 46% cabernet sauvignon, 46% merlot, 8% cabernet franc. Tasted w/ Ryan at home. http://www.cellartracker.com/wine.asp?iWine=87899
    Venge Vineyards Family Reserve Penny Lane Vineyard Oakville Napa Valley Sangiovese 2002 November 23, 2010 - Venge Vineyards Oakville Napa Valley Family Reserve Penny Lane Vineyard Sangiovese 2002 - RM 87 - Medium bodied, dark, overly ripe, raisiny black berry fruit. smoke and earthy with moderate tannins on the finish. Tasted w/ L at our favorite Italian Bistro Angeli's Italian in Naperville.
    Chateau Gruaud Larose Label - 1981- Rick McNees Winesite Photo November 22, 2010 - Château Gruaud Larose St Julien Bordeaux 1981 - RM 90 - Medium bodied, dark garnet with a tinge of rust color revealing its age. Aromas and flavors of dried tobacco and leather accented by floral violets turning to dusty rose on a full spicy tannin finish. Showing age but still life left - drink over the next couple of years.  Drinking daughter Erin's birth year wine celebrating birth of Lucy Leigh Fort, our first grandchild!  Erin and newborn Lucy Leigh Fort - 11/22/2010 

    White Rock Vineyards Napa Valley Claret 2002 label

    November 21, 2010 - White Rock Napa Valley Claret 2002 - RM 90;  Dark ink color, medium bodied, smoky leather and floral aromas - forward black berry, violets, hints of cedar, smoke, cedar and touch of tar on moderate tannin finish.
     Chateau Larmande St Emilion 2005Flinders Run Shiraz 2005 Label on Rick's WineSiteKracher #6 Zwischen Den Seen Scheurebe TBA 2002 November 19, 2010 - Chateau Larmande Grand Cru Classe St Emilion 2005: RM 91- My best of tasting pick from an earlier Bordeaux flight tasting. Medium bodied, floral perfume, flavorful red berry, plum fruits, subtle spice, cherry-cranberry, nice texture and an appealing moderately firm grip of tannin in the finish. http://www.cellartracker.com/wine.asp?iWine=351693; Flinders Run, Southern Flinders Ranges, Baroota, Australia, Shiraz 2005 - RM 93 - Dark inky colour. Full bodied, elegant rich thick chewy symphony of flavors of blueberry, sweet currant, ripe plum, red raspberry, a hint of pepper, vanilla, and spice, and a lingering essence of creme brulee' burnt sugar and cedar on the soft finish. http://www.cellartracker.com/wine.asp?iWine=421985 - ; Alois Kracher Scheurebe TBA #6 Zwischen den Seen 2002  - RM 93- Smooth, balanced, full bodied, nectar of apricot, hints of tangerine, almond, slight touch of smoke, with a honey laced finish. Tasted w/ artisanal cheeses w/ TRR and Peter B during wine cellar tour and wine pick-up/delivery.
    Roger Sabon Chateauneuf du Pape Reserve 2007 November 18, 2010 - Roger Sabon Reserve Chateauneuf Du Pape 2006 -

    Chaeau Fonguillon Enclos St Emilion Bordeaux 2006

    November 17, 2010 - Château Fonguillon 'Enclos', St Emilion, Bordeaux 2006 - Medium bodied, aromas of leather, flavors of dark berry and fresh herb with mineral undertones.; Twenty Rows Cellars Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2008 - Available by the glass at Tallulah in Arlington.
    Chahalem 3 Vineyards Willamette Valley Pinot Nor 2008Larose de Gruaud St Julien 2006 November 16, 2010 - Larose de Gruaud St Julien Bordeaux 2006 - RM 86-87 - Medium bodied, dark garnet color - a slight awkward lack of balance or polish detracts from the dusty rose floral, leathery, earthy black berry fruit. Tasted w/ George N with filet of beef dinner at Sequouia Restaurant in Foggy Bottom at Washington Harbor. Chehalem Willamette Valley 3 Vineyard Pinot Noir 2008 - RM 89 - Winemaker's notes - Bright ruby. Black raspberry and flowers on the nose, with a strong undertone of musky spices that gains strength in the glass. Pliant, palate-coating dark berry flavors are appealingly open-knit. Nicely ripe but quite light on its feet, finishing very good clarity, spiciness and lingering sweetness."  Tasted by the glass at Four Seasons Hotel in Foggy Bottom.
    Robert Craig Mt Veeder 1999 Cabernet Sauvignon Label November 14, 2010 - Robert Craig Mt Veeder Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 1999 - RM91 - Floral aromas and flavors predominate, coupled with ripe black cherry, currant, and plum fruits mixed with spice, leather, tobacco, and long smooth finish of soft tannins accented by hint of cedar and mocha. Fabulous compliment to Sunday dinner of top sirloin, sweet potato and green beans.
    Branson Coach House Greenock Block Shiraz 2004 label November 13, 2010 - Branson Coach House Greenock Block Barossa Valley Shiraz 2004; - RM 91 - Dark, full bodied, full flavors of black fruits, a hint of raspberry and blueberry, graphite & mineral on a smooth polished moderate tannin finish.
    Abeja Washington State Chardonnay 2008 Paolo Scavino Bricco Ambrogio Barolo 2003 November 13, 2010 - Abeja Washington State Chardonnay 2008; RM 92 - Butter color, very clean, crisp, nicely balanced acidity, buttery kiwi and lychie fruits, hint of vanilla, citrus on a pleasant finish.   Paolo Scavino Bricco Ambrogio Barolo 2003; RM 92 - Dark garnet color, medium bodied, complex but harmonious, polished, subdued black cherry fruit, tobacco, leather, hint of spice with refined nicely integrated tannins. Tasting of select fine wines at Binny's DG.     
    Bordeaux wine flight - Nov 6, 2010
    Desert wine flight Nov 6, 2010
    November 6, 2010 - Bordeaux wine tasting featuring Château Pichon Comtesse Longueville de Lalande, Pauillac, 1991 ; Château Beyechevelle, St Julien, 1988; Château Valrose Ste Estéphe 2000 (Lyle); and Château Bessan Segur Haut Medoc 2000 (Bill); accompanying beef rib-eye steak, sweet potatoes, green beans, red pepper-pasta, and dinner salad. Dessert flight included Warre's Quinta da Cavadhina Vintage Porto 1995 and Frescobaldi Pomino Vinsanto 1991 served with cheese cake and fruit medley. Finale was Dow's Quinta do Bomfin Vintage Porto 1995 served with artisanal cheeses - Fair Oaks Farms' five year aged cheddar, aged sweet swiss, raspberry infused Bellavitano, Belle Giosco parmesan and Rosenborg Danish Blue. Dinner party with L and I hosting Bill & Beth, Lyle & Terry, and Fernando and Samara. Despite the modest vintage year 1991, the Pichon Lalande (RM91) stood out with a nicely polished symphony of bright floral violets, red and black berry fruits, subtle accent tones of of spice, tobacco and cassis on a smooth finely integrated tannin finish. http://www.cellartracker.com/wine.asp?iWine=21632; The Valrose (RM89) exhibited bold forward black berry fruits, tones of whisky-like accent and moderate firm tannin finish. http://www.cellartracker.com/wine.asp?iWine=374910; Bessan Ségur (RM88) balanced black cherry fruit with subtle earth, leather and tobacco. http://www.cellartracker.com/wine.asp?iWine=39863;  The Beychevelle (RM88) was medium bodied, slighly brickish color, soft earthy leather and tobacco tones predominating over the black cherry fruit. http://www.cellartracker.com/wine.asp?iWine=19132. The Warre's (RM90) was unlike any vintage ports I have had with their ripe, raisin-fig tones - this exhibited flavorful forward fruits of red and black berry and currant with subtle accents of mocha, smoke and cassis. http://www.cellartracker.com/wine.asp?iWine=3721; The Dow was medium bodied, classic vintage port characteristics of ripe raisin, fig sweet black berry fruits with tones of alcohol. Ready to drink now but has lots of life left too. The Frescobaldi (RM87) exhibited a toasted almond and smokiness and alcohol with just a hint of caramel sweetness. 
    Flinders Ranges Shiraz 2006 November 4, 2010 - Flinders Southern Ranges Shiraz 2006 - RM 88
    North By Northwest Cabernet Sauvignon 2007 November 4, 2010 - North by Northwest Cabernet Sauvignon 2007; RM 88 - Dark garnet color, medium bodied, blackberry, black cherry, hints of anise, oak, spice and caramel. - Featured premium selection wine in UA Red Carpet Club tasted at DCA. Second month in a row for a UA RCC wine discovery!
    Chateau Ferrande Graves Grand Vin de Bordeaux 2005 November 3, 2010 - Chateau Ferrande Graves Grand vin de Bordeaux 2005 - Drank at Chez Andre's in Alexandria.
    Caravan (By Darioush) Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2006 November 2, 2010 - Caravan Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon by Darioush 2006 - Drank at Tallulah in Arlington
    Joseph Carr Napa Valley Merlot 2008
    Domaine du Bois de Saint Jean 2008
    October 29, 2010 - Joseph Carr Napa Valley Merlot 2008 - RM 89; Domaine du Bois de St Jean Cotes Du Rhone 2008 - RM 85; Drank at Bastille Restaurant in Alexandria.
    October 27, 2010 - Mollydooker Two Left Feet Red Blend 2008 -RM 87 - Tasted at Ray's The Steak in Arlington.
    Napanook Red Wine 2004 October 26, 2010 - Napanook Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon  by Dominus, 2007 - RM 91 - Available by the glass at Tallulah in Arlington
    Atlas Peak Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2005 October 24, 2010 - Atlas Peak Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2005
    Ladera Winery Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2003 label October 22, 2010 - Ladera Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2003 - RM 88 - Dark garnet color - full bodied, a slight funky woody cedar aroma and flavor undercurrent on opening turning to full forward spicy boysenberry - almost whisky-like, and tones of licorice and black berryon a spicy, leathery moderate tannin finish. http://www.cellartracker.com/wine.asp?iWine=99762
    Robert Craig Durrell Vineyard Sonoma Chardonnay 2005
    Domaine Serene Evenstad Reserve Pinot Noir 2003
    October 17, 2010 - Robert Craig Durell Vineyard Sonoma Valley Chardonnay 2005 - RM 90 - Crisp, medium to full bodied but nicely balanced pear and tropical fruits, almond and mineral with finely balanced acidity on a long finish. Domaine Serene Evenstad Reserve Willamette Valley Pinot Noir 2003 - RM 91 - Medium bodied, nicely balanced - huge floral and black cherry aromas - full forward spicy black berry, hints of coffee and slight pepper on a silky moderate tannin finish. Tasted at home w/ L, Don and Pat R.
    Clark Claudon Napa Valley Estate Wine 2004 October 16, 2010 - Clark-Claudon Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2004 - RM91 - JR (Jancis Robinson) 17.5 - Deep dark purple - full bodied - big mouth-full of forward spicy black and edge of red berry fruits, violets, layers of oak and a long lingering tannin finish. JR's review - "Wild mountain blackberry, herbs, menthol, forest floor and cocoa notes add up to wonderful Bordeaux-like complexity. Tasted at home w/ L with some artisan cheeses.  http://www.cellartracker.com/wine.asp?iWine=229261
    Hall Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2006
    Whalebone Vineyard Paso Robles Cabernet Sauvignon 2005
    October 8, 2010 - Hall Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2006 - RM 93 WS94 - Dark inky color, rich, dense, concentrated, style, full-bodied, fruit forward ripe sweet currant, ripe black raspberry, plum, black cherry fruits, mocha and hints of black licorice with a long soft tannin finish. Has the rich thick jammy fruit of a south Australian Shiraz. Whalebone Vineyard Paso Robles Cabernet Sauvignon 2005 - RM 88 - Medium bodied, dark, black cherry, berry, subtle mocha, hint of pepper and spicebox with a moderate tannin finish. Drank w/ ENA and Cath at Brendenwood w/ grilled pork chop dinner.
    Liparita Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 1997
    Kurt Darting Ungsteiner Honigsäckel Scheurebe Auslese 2004
    October 7, 2010 - Liparita Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 1997 - RM 87 - Kurt Darting Ungsteiner Honigsäckel Scheurebe Auslese 2004 (Germany, Pfalz) - Tasted at at our favorite Italian Bistro Angeli's Italian in Naperville w/ L, Dave & Marie, Joanne and Kathy.
    Vision Cellars Chileno Valley Vineyard Marin County Pinot Noir 2004

    October 6, 2010 - Vision Cellars Marin County Chileno Valley Vineyard Pinot Noir 2004 - RM 89 - Dark color - medium bodied - spicy black cherry and berry, smoke and burnt toast with a long tangy spicy finish. Tasted at home w/ L over seared tuna, rice and guacamole relish.

    O'Brien Estate Napa Valley Seduction Meritage 2006 label October 5, 2010- O'Brien Estate Seduction Napa Valley Red Blend 2006 - RM 92 - Dark purple color - medium full bodied - full forward flavors of blackberry, black cherry, rum, hints of mocha, vanilla, and nicely integrated firm tannins on an long smooth finish. Finishing off last of the MATTHIASSON and O'Brien Seduction (below). http://www.cellartracker.com/wine.asp?iWine=588130
    Mattiasson Napa Valley Red Wine 2003 label October 3, 2010 - MATTHIASSON Napa Valley Spring Mountain Red Wine 2003 - RM 92 - Delicious - full bodied, dark garnet colour, black and red raspberry, currant berry, essence of rum, spice and sweet oak and mint with finely integrated silky smooth tannins on a long lingering finish. Wish I had a case. This Matthiasson Family Vineyards 2003 Napa Valley Red Wine was made from grapes from 2 different vineyards in the Oak Knoll AVA - a blend of 60% Merlot from Red Hen Vineyard and 40% Cabernet Sauvignon from Meadowbrook Vineyard - aged in French oak for 18 months before bottling. Drinking my only bottle I picked up at auction, at home w/ L with Sunday beef roast dinner.  http://www.cellartracker.com/wine.asp?iWine=263248
    Hall Napa Valley Sauvignon Blanc 2009 October 2, 2010  - Spectacular dinner & wine pairing flight at Spring Restaurant in Bucktown, Chicago ... 3 course price fixe meal great in all respects; St Urbans-Hof, Mosel Germany Riesling 2009; Hope Hunter Valley Australia Verdelho 2009; Hall Napa Valley Sauvignon Blanc 2009; Pacific Rim Sweet Riesling 2009; Tasted w/ L, Johnny & Erin. 
    Hall Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2006 September 30, 2010 - Hall Napa Cabernet Sauvignon 2006 - RM 93 WS94 - Dark inky color, rich, dense, concentrated, style, full-bodied, fruit forward ripe sweet currant, ripe black raspberry, plum, black cherry fruits, mocha and hints of black licorice with a long soft tannin finish. Has the rich thick jammy fruit of a south Australian Shiraz. Duckhorn Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2007 - RM 90 - Medium-full bodied, flavors of blackberry, black currant, black cherry, hint of spice and smoky oak with fine tannins on a long finish. Slight edge, less polished and not as big as the Hall. Chappellett Napa Valley Cuvee 2007 - RM 87 - Medium-full bodied, flavors of blackberry, black cherry, hint of creosote, spice and smoky oak with a slight hard edge, less polished and not as big as the Hall. Orin Swift Prisoner 2008 - RM 88 - Medium bodied - subdued black berry fruit, hint of licorice and black cherry on a modest finish. Tasted w/ Jim K, Mike Ch at Flemings in Tysons Corner.
    Chateau LaLande St Julien Crui Bourgeois 2006 September 28, 2010 - Chateau LaLande St Julien Cru Bourgeois 2006 - RM 87 - Medium full bodied, dark berry, black cherry fruits, slightly earthy leather, moderate tannins, slight edge lacking polish. Tasted at Chez Andres in Alexandria.
    O'Brien Estate Napa Valley Seduction Meritage 2006 label September 24, 2010 - O'Brien Estate Seduction Napa Valley Red Blend 2006 - RM 92 - Dark purple color - medium full bodied - full forward flavors of blackberry, black cherry, rum, hints of mocha, vanilla, and nicely integrated firm tannins on an long smooth finish. I found this at the Vienna Wine Shop in Virginia .... find it, try it, buy it .. Tasted w/ L at Angeli's Italian in Naperville.   http://www.cellartracker.com/wine.asp?iWine=588130
    Binny's Beverage Depot - Chicagoland's SuperStore September 23, 2010 - Binny's Willowbrook California's Best Wine Tasting featuring a selection of over 80 wines. I focused solely on a selection of big Cabs that I had not yet tried or wished to compare - Bucella 2007, Caymus 2008, Darioush 2007, Far Niente 2006, Mondavi Oakwood and Reserve 2006, O'Shaughnessy Howell Mtn 2006, and Silver Oak Alexander Valley 2005. Standouts were Caymus stood out as approachable, velvety smooth and ready to drink, the Bucella was dark, big and firm but elegantly polished and refined, followed by the Mondavi Reserve. The Far Niente was big and firm but less approachable needing time to soften. O'Shaughnessy and Darioush displayed bold firm fruit as did the Silver Oak ranked in order.
     
     All were delicious and high quality offerings. I tried one Pinot Noir - the Belle Glos Clark & Telephone Pinot Noir 2008 which was the best from that selection I have had revealing more forward fruit than the 2003, 04, and 05 as I recall.
    Livingston Vineyards Napa Valley Stanley's Selection Cabernet Sauvignon 1997 label September 18, 2010 - Livingston Moffett Napa Valley Stanley's Selection 1997; RM 90 - - Medium bodied, black cherry, medium to firm tannins and acid balanced with cherry, a bit of spice and plum with a silght hint of mocha no the finish.  Clos du Bois Marlston Cabernet Sauvignons 1997; RM 88 - Medium bodied, slightly lighter and less pronounced fruit than the Livingston - earthy black cherry, black fruits, slightly tart cherry, a bit of leather on a moderate tannin finish. Fruit fell off after ninety minutes. Drank w/ L and Bill & Beth at Angeli's Italian in Naper.
    David Arthur Napa Valley Sauvignon Blanc 2007 September 12, 2010 - David Arthur Napa Valley Sauvignon Blanc 2007 - RM 88: Light color - clean and crisp with moderate acidity - flavors of soft lemon, hint of lime and honeydew melon. Drank w/ L on the summer deck w/ artisan cheese and fruit.
    Liparita Napa Valley Cabernet Franc 2002 September 11, 2010 - Liparita Cabernet Franc Napa Valley 2002 - RM 87 - #wine http://cellartracker.com/w?158451
    Elan Vineyards Atlas Peak Cabernet Sauvignon 1996 label September 10, 2010 - Elan Atlas Peak Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 1996 - RM 89 WS 88; Medium-full bodied, starting to show its age but more expressive fruit than I remember from earlier tastings. Flavors of black cherry, black currant, blackberry, hint of spice, leather and smoky oak with moderate fine tannins on a long finish. Tasted at at our favorite Italian Bistro Angeli's Restaurant. We enjoyed Elan as participants of our 98 and 99 Napa Wine Experiences.
    Joseph Carr Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2007 September 7, 2010 - Joseph Carr Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2007 - RM91 - Dark color, medium-full bodied - Forward black fruits accented by a layers of coffee, cigar box and hints of spice, eucalyptus and mocha. What a nice surprise to discover this quality wine from Napa Carneros at the Red Carpet Club at Dulles Airport! Too bad I was rushed to catch a cross country flight. Can't wait to try it again. What an ever nicer surprise to find it available at $20. I am ordering a case!
    Millenium era wine flight at Connolly's September 4, 2010 - Millenium era wine flight tasting - La Sirena Sangiovese 1999; Dunn Vineyards Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2000 Magnum, Chateau LaNerthe Chateuneuf du Pape 2000; Elan Atlas Peak Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2001; Grgich Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2004; Tasted at Bill & Beth's gala flank steak dinner party with L, Rusty & Ann, Will & Kate, Matt & Molly, Johnny, Drew and friends on the deck/patio.
     
    Del Dotto Giovanni's Tuscan Reserve Label 1997 on McNees Winesite September 3, 2010 - Del Dotto Vineyards Napa Valley Giovanni's Tuscan Reserve 1997 - RM 89 - Medium body - slight earthiness starting to show age but a couple years life left - slightly tart black cherry fruit, spice, moderate silky tannins on a pleasant finish. Consistent with earlier tasting notes. Tasted w/ L and Sean at Angelis. http://www.cellartracker.com/wine.asp?iWine=35492
    Duckhorn Napa Cabernet Sauvignon 2006 August 29, 2010 - Duckhorn Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2006 - RM 90, WE 90 WS 89-9;"Medium-full bodied, flavors of blackberry, black currant, black cherry, hint of spice and smoky oak with fine tannins on a long finish. Tasted w/ L at Mark Z and Shirley's.
    Wine Tasting - Various selections - Lorenz Summer Party 2010 August 28, 2010 - Summer party varied bottles tasting - Robert Craig Howell Mountain Cabernet Sauvignon 2002 (Dr Dan), Hidden Ridge 55 Slope Sonoma Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2006 (Rick); T-Vine Napa Red Wine 2005; (Rick); Orin Swift Prisoner 2007 (Bill); Frog's Leap Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2006 (Dr Dan); Vieux Telegraph Le Crau Chateuneuf du Pape 2004 (Carl); Domaine Santa Duc Prestige des Haut Garrigues Gigondas 1998; and (not shown) Amisfield Otago New Zealand Pinot Noir 2006 (Rick); SelbySonoma Cabernet Sauvignon 2006; Tasted at Bob's gala birthday party w/ L, Bill & Beth, Dan & Linda, and Carl & Karen..
     
    Selby Sonoma Merlot 2006 August 26, 2010 - Selby Sonoma Cabernet Sauvignon 2006;
       
    Haut Carles Fronsac Bordeaux 2005 August 22, 2010 - Haut-Carles Fronasac Bordeaux 2005 - RM 87-88, WA 89, WS91 - Deep dark inky purple. Medium-full-bodied, slight metallic edge detracts from the black raspberry and subtle blueberry fruits. with fine tannins on a moderate finish. Softened as it opened over the course of an hour. Give it some time to breath, and to age. http://cellartracker.com/w?224210
    La Spinetta (Rivetti) Monferrato Pin 2005 August 21, 2010 - 2005 La Spinetta (Rivetti) Monferrato Pin - RM88 - Dark purple color - Dense full bodied - ripe black fruits, with a slight edge and layer of cassis and subtle tar with a firm tannin finish. Might soften and settle with time. Blend of 65% Nebbiolo, 35% Barbera. Drank at Enoteca Roma in Wicker Park with L, Ryan & Michelle. http://cellartracker.com/w?395355
    Mollydooker Blue Eye'd Boy 2006 on McNees.org/winesite August 19, 2010 - Mollydooker Shiraz Blue Eyed Boy 2006 - RM 89: Dark garnet color - aromas of earth and raisin - flavors of super ripe leathery black fruit, raisin, licorice and undercurrent of slight metallic layer on a long tannin laced mineral finish. Another celebratory Mollydooker this week, Blue Eyed Boy to commemorate Alec's last night at home.  http://cellartracker.com/w?329511
    Mollydooker Enchanted Path McLaren Vale Shiraz cabernet 2007 label August 18, 2010 - Mollydooker Enchanted Path Cabernet Shiraz 2006 - RM 90: Dark inky purple color - full bodied, aromatic, thick chewy ripe black fruits, ripe plum, raisin - finely integrated silky tannins on the long finish. A hint of the cabernet structure and backbone is apparent with a subtle earthy undercurrent.  Enchanted Path wine to celebrate our anniversary. - http://cellartracker.com/w?329577  Tasted at at our favorite Italian Bistro Angeli's Restaurant w/ L w/ Alec serving.
    Vine Cliff Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 1990 label

    Michel Loriot Reserve Brut  Blanc de Noirs
     
    August 16, 2010 - Vine Cliff Oakville, Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 1990 - RM 99 - Medium full bodied. Needed decanting and an hour to open and lose its tart funk showing its twenty year age. Oaky dark berry predominates with black cherry, mocha, hints of cedar and earthy leather reminiscent of an aged Right Bank Bordeaux on the moderate tannin finish. Surprising breadth and complexity. RM 90 - Lewis Cellars Napa Valley Alec's Blend 2003 - Dark inky purple, Medium bodied, surprisingly velvety soft, smooth, sweet ripe berry accented by mocha, almond and slight vanilla on a flavorful finish.  N.V. Michel Loriot Champagne Brut Réserve Blanc de Noirs - http://cellartracker.com/w?337891  Drank Alec birth-year and namesake wines at home with L, Sean & Megan and Alec 2i5h steak and lobster tail dinner commemorating his last week at home before returning to Kelly I-Core. http://cellartracker.com/w?137398
    August 12, 2010 - RM 90 - Lewis Cellars Napa Valley Alec's Blend 2003 - Dark inky purple, Medium bodied, surprisingly velvety soft, smooth, sweet ripe berry with hints of mocha, almond and slight vanilla on a flavorful finish. Havens Wine Cellars Napa Valley Bourriquot Red Wine 2000 - RM 91 - Wow - what a surprise. This wine overpowered the Alec's Blend which we opened second. Full bodied, dark color. Complex big wine - initial black pepper gives way to spicy black fruits, black currant accented by a mocha undercurrent and subtle earthy leather starting to reveal ten year old age. I shouldn't have been surprised - this was consistent with my earlier tasting notes - Sept 27, 2005. The taste profile is certainly true revealing the 2/3 cabernet franc, 1/3 merlot blend. http://cellartracker.com/w?38260 Tasted w/ L,  Erin, Mark & Shirley for Mark's BDay at our favorite Italian Bistro Angeli's Restaurant w/ L w/ Alec serving. http://cellartracker.com/w?98918
    Marquis Phillips 9 Mclaren Vale Shiraz 2004 August 11, 2010 - Marquis Phillips 9 McLaren Vale Shiraz 2004 - RM 90 - Huge full bodied, deep dark inky color. Almost overpowering forward over ripe black berry, raisin, blue berry fruits, hints of caramel, vanilla, glycerin and cedar. Firm, full chewy unctuous tongue coating tannins that reveal more blueberry, vanilla, mocha on a long alcohol finish. Tasted at at our favorite Italian Bistro Angeli's Restaurant w/ L w/ Alec serving.
       
    Cliff Lede Mt Veeder Chardonnay 2003 August 10, 2010 - Cliff Lede Napa Valley Mt. Veeder Chardonnay 2003 - RM 86 - Light bodied - slight funky off aroma - flavors of nut, subtle apple and pear with slight citrus and alcohol heat on the finish - perhaps revealing age and decline of flavors.  http://cellartracker.com/w?132606

    Clos L'Eglise Cotes de Castillon
    August 8, 2010 - Le Serre Nuove dell Ornellaia 2007 - Best of tasting - from the cellar of Bill & Beth C. RM 91, WS 92 RP 92 - Dark color - full bodied - Complex flavors of black berry, black cherry fruits, hints of tar and licorice on a long firm finely polished silky tannin finish. The second wine of Ornellaia - a bordeaux blend of Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot. 75 (Seventy Five) Wine Company "The Sum" 2008 - RM87 - Deep dark purple color, forward mouthfull of plum, black raspberry and spice with hints of cassis, black cherry, and anise offset by a slight metallic edge. Almost like a rich Aussie shiraz. Nicely balanced with firm tannins on a long finish. http://cellartracker.com/w?881004  Clos l'Eglise Cotes de Castillon Bordeaux 2005 - RM 88, ST 90-91- Dark color - full bodied, complex black berry, cassis, kirsch, licorice, earthy leather with hint of mocha and truffle. - Cliff Lede Napa Valley Mt. Veeder Chardonnay 2003 - see review above. Tasted at home over crab legs, shrimp, artisan cheeses and steak dinner w/ L, Bill & Beth C., Bob & Gloria, Pat R., Mark & Jane.  http://cellartracker.com/w?230916 Seventy-Five Sum 2006
    Quilceda Creek Columbia Valley Red Wine 1997 August 7, 2010 - Quilceda Creek Columbia Valley red Wine 1997 - RM 90 - Medium bodied, black cherry, red currant, hints of almond, vanilla, sweet spice and soft oak with age starting to show with a subtle leather - 73% Cabernet Sauvignon, 6% Merlot, 21% Cabernet Franc - Tasted at at our favorite Italian Bistro Angeli's Restaurant w/ L w/ Alec serving. http://www.cellartracker.com/wine.asp?iWine=2253
    Marquis Phillips 9 Mclaren Vale Shiraz 2004 August 6, 2010 - Marquis Phillips 9 McLaren Vale Shiraz 2004 - RM 90 - Huge full bodied, deep dark inky color. Almost overpowering forward over ripe black berry, raisin, blue berry fruits, hints of caramel, vanilla, glycerin and cedar. Firm, full chewy unctuous tongue coating tannins that reveal more blueberry, vanilla, mocha on a long alcohol finish. Drank with bar-b-que ribs and actually overpowered Famous Ray's bar-b-que sauce!
    Bridesmaid Napa Valley Red Wine 2006 August 4, 2010 - Bridesmaid Napa Valley Red Wine 2006 - RM 92 - Dark inky color. Full bodied. Black berry fruit, black currant, mocha, nutmeg, hint of cola, mulberry, and black cherry. Needs decanting and a half hour to lose firm hard edge to reveal firm but approachable tannins. Blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Syrah. A joint negociant project from Napa notables Pam Starr (Spottswoode, Crocker & Starr) and Drew Neiman (Kongsgaard) that blends top lots from undisclosed locations - supposedly Howell Mtn fruit included. Great wine find from the winelist at Rue Domaine in Centerville - Tasted w/ George D.
      August 3, 2010 - Chateau St Jean California Merlot 2006 - RM 87
    August 1, 2010 - Rosemount Balmoral McLaren Vale Syrah 2000 - RM 90 - Aromatic, flavorful - ripe black raspberry, raisin, black cherry, cassis, tar and cedar that turns to an aftertaste of currant and a hint of plum. Starting to show age a bit. Drink over next year or so. Tasted at at our favorite Italian Bistro Angeli's Restaurant w/ L w/ Alec serving.
    Hall Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2006 July 31, 2010 - Hall Napa Cabernet Sauvignon 2006 - RM 93 WS94 - Dark inky color, rich, dense, concentrated, style, full-bodied, fruit forward ripe sweet currant, ripe black raspberry, plum, black cherry fruits, mocha and hints of black licorice with a long soft tannin finish. Has the rich thick jammy fruit of a south Australian Shiraz. Tasted at home with L - better with chocolate cherry desert than steak dinner entre.
    July 28, 2010 - Chateau Haut-Bailly Graves Pessac Leognan Bordeaux 1986 -RM 89; Same tasting experience as last bottle a year ago... from 5/11/2009 - Medium body, bright perfume, red raspberry, black cherry fruit, earthy leather, lead and a hint of graphite on the finish. Lots of life and fruit left in this twenty-plus year old. Tasted from 375 ml. Tasted at apartment in DC.  http://cellartracker.com/w?69684
    Pahlmeyer Jason Red Wine 2003 Label July 27, 2010 - Pahlmeyer Jayson 2005 - RM 90 - http://cellartracker.com/w?424835; Ladera Cabernet Sauvignon Estate Grown Howell Mountain Mt Veeder Napa Valley 2006 - http://cellartracker.com/w?670017; Marquis Philips Shiraz 9 2007 - http://cellartracker.com/w?651009 Tasted at WIllow (Ladera) and then Grand Cru in Arlington Balston w/ RTN Mike C and Sue K.
    Duckhorn Napa Cabernet Sauvignon 2006 July 26, 2010 - Duckhorn Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2006 - RM 90, WE 90 WS 89-9;"Medium-full bodied, flavors of blackberry, black currant, black cherry, hint of spice and smoky oak with fine tannins on a long finish. Tasted w/ L at Mark Z and Shirley's.
    Chateau Larmande St Emilion 2005
    July 24, 2010 - Chateau Larmande Grand Cru Classe St Emilion 2005: RM 91- My best of tasting pick from an earlier Bordeaux flight tasting. Medium bodied, floral perfume, flavorful red berry, plum fruits, subtle spice, cherry-cranberry, nice texture and an appealing moderately firm grip of tannin in the finish. http://www.cellartracker.com/wine.asp?iWine=351693
    Chateau Brane Cantenac Grand Cru Classe Margaux Bordeaux 2004
    - RM 90, RP 90 -  Deep purple medium bodied, black berry fruit accents, subtle currant, plum with tones of  earthy leather, anise and subtle floral with a firm tannin finish. http://www.cellartracker.com/wine.asp?iWine=108850  A delightful and informative comparison between 'Left Bank' vs 'Right Bank' Bordeaux blends and styles.
    Tasted at at our favorite Italian Bistro Angeli's Restaurant w/ L, Bill and Beth C w/ Alec serving.
    Chateau Brane Cantenac Marqaux 2004 label
    Venge Scout's Honor Red Wine Blend 2007 July 23, 2010 - Venge Vineyards Family Reserve Scout's Honor 2007 - RM 89; Dark color, full bodied, intense full forward black fruits, spicy rich ripe plum;, anise, hints of smoke and subtle cedar overtake the fruit until the big full long spicy berry fruit finish. Bought it for bar-b-que, drank it with dark rich chocolate desert. Can't wait to try it with bbq ribs!  Tasted at home w/L.  http://cellartracker.com/w?751609
    Beringer Knights Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2004 label July 21, 2010 - Beringer Knights Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2007 - RM 91;Dark purple color - full bodied, big firm tannins that are nicely polished but not for the feint of heart... dark berry, cassis, hints of cedar and soft oak on a firm finish. Dining with PJM and Randy T - BYOB at La Fontana Della Citta in Philadelphia http://www.cellartracker.com/wine.asp?iWine=744519
    Kracher Auslese Cuvee 2005
    July 20, 2010 - Guigal Cotes du Rhone 2006 - RM86; Kracher Auslese Cuvee 2005 - RM 89;  Light butter color - subtle sweet honey taste with slight hint of vanilla and touch of lemon meringue. http://www.cellartracker.com/wine.asp?iWine=376310 Tasted w/ Randy Tucson Randy T at Duling-Kurtz House and County InnExton, PA. Guigal Cotes du Rhone
    July 19, 2010 - Geyser Peak Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2005 - RM 87 - Simple, basic easy drinking, medium bodied, black berry and black cherry fruits with a hint of oak. Good value under $15. http://www.cellartracker.com/wine.asp?iWine=313002
    Amisfield Otaga New Zealand Pinot Noir 2006 July 18, 2010 - Amisfield Otago New Zealand Pinot Noir 2006 - RM 88 - Tasted at home w/ L.

    July 17, 2010 - Hazyblur South Australia Kangaroo Island Shiraz 2006; Dutschke St Jakobi Barossa Valley Shiraz 2002; Poalillo Vineyards Westside Zinfandel Paso Robles 2005; Tasted w/ ENA in Indy.

    July 14, 2010 - Domaine Santa Duc Gigondas Prestige des Hautes Garrigues 1998 - Dark color - medium-full bodied - earthy, leather, black cherry, hints of anise, touch of black pepper on the firm tannin finish. Tasted at at our favorite Italian Bistro Angeli's Restaurant w/ Alec serving.  http://cellartracker.com/w?8842
    Ridge Vineyards Three Valleys Sonoma Zinfandel Blend 2008 July 13, 2010 - Ridge Vineyards "Three Valleys" Sonoma Zinfandel Blend 2008 - RM 89 - Dark purple color - medium bodied  spicy black berry fruits, slightly earthy hints of tobacco box and cedar on a moderate tannin finish. 
    Ridge has been making their Three Valleys blend since 2001. It is a blend of mostly zinfandel with small additions of petite sirah, syrah, grenache and carignane sourced from 10 individual Sonoma vineyards. http://cellartracker.com/w?812089 Tasted at McCormick & Schmick in Crystal City, Arlington.
    Chateau Rocher-Figeac 2006 July 10, 2010 - Chateau Rocher-Figeac St Emilion Bordeaux 2006 - RM 87 - Dark berry fruit offset by earthy leather, anise and smokey black cherry. Tasted w/ L and Don Z @ Bistro LaFayette in Alexandria - #wine http://cellartracker.com/w?801155
    Linden Vineyards Wine Flight - Hardscrabble Red, Avenius Chardonnay, Late harvest Vidal July 10, 2010 - Linden Vineyards Winery visit, cellar tasting with winemaker Jim Law. Linden Vineyards Hardscrabble Red 2007 - RM 90 - Dark purple in color. Nicely balanced and polished - pleasant aromas of red currant, hint of pencil lead, a what Jim Law the winemaker describes as earthy forest floor. Medium body, moderately complex, the palate reveals dark berry fruit, black cherry, tones of spice and herbs, subtle tones of soft oak, with a hint of dark chocolate on the moderate to firm tannin finish. 61% cab sav, 17% merlot, 11% cab franc, 11% petit verdot. Linden Vineyards Hardscrabble Red 2006 - RM 89 - Dark purple color - medium bodied - smooth, polished, nice balance of complex medley of flavors.
    Dark berry fruit, hint of currant, bramble, spice, herbs and slight earthiness - subtle tones of soft oak and subtle dark chocolate on the moderate tannin finish. 61% cab sav, 17% merlot, 9% cab franc, 8% petit verdot, 4% carmenere. Linden Avenius Vineyard Chardonnay 2006, 2007; RM 88 - Light to medium bodied, crisp and tangy, bright acidity, subtle green apple, toasted almonds, hint of citrus and pear on a clean finish.  Linden Vidal Late Harvest 2005 - RM91 - Light butter color. Subtle aromas of dried apricot, lychee, and hint of mango. Flavors of tangy persimmon, lychee, hint of apricot.  Impressive well crafted wines tasted in the winery cellar with owner/winemaker Jim Law. - http://cellartracker.com/w?567768
     
    Naked Mountain Winery Wine Flight July 10, 2010 - Naked Mountain Vineyard visit, Markham, Virginia - winery tasting with winemaker Don Oldham. Naked Mountain Vineyard Un-oaked Chardonnay 2008 - RM 88, Naked Mountain Vineyard Barrel Fermented Chardonnay 2006 - RM 89; Naked Mountain Vineyard Scarlet Oak Red 2005; Naked Mountain Vineyard Cabernet Franc 2006; Naked Mountain Vineyard Chardonnay/Riesling 2008; Naked Mountain Vineyard Merlot 2008;  
     
    Seventy-Five Sum 2006  July 9, 2010 - 75 (Seventy Five) Wine Company "The Sum" 2008 - RM91 - Deep dark purple color, huge forward mouthfull of plum, black raspberry and spice with hints of cassis, black cherry, and anise. Very much like an rich Aussie shiraz. For its 'size' surprisingly smooth, nicely balanced with smooth firm tannins on a long finish. Great value wine. Find it, try it, buy more!  http://cellartracker.com/w?881004 Tasting notes two days later, opened another bottle and this one has an undercurrent of earthy, tinny, mustiness with a slight hint of mocha - the less desirable tones competing with the fruit detract from the score to render an RM87! Tasted w/ L at Grand Cru in Arlington Balston.
    Robert Craig Mount Veeder Cabernet Sauvignon 2001 Label July 4, 2010 - Robert Craig Napa Valley Mt Veeder Cabernet Sauvignon 2001 - RM 92
    Wine tasting 2010 0303 July 3, 2010 - Spring Valley Vineyard Uriah Walla Walla Valley red blend 2004 - RM 90 - Big full bodied flavorful red fruits, spice, sweet cherry and loganberry with a bit of tart on the finish. Merlot 65%, 30% Cabernet Franc, 5% Cabernet Sauvignon, 1% Petit Verdot. http://cellartracker.com/w?215438 Andrew Will Two Blondes Vineyard Columbia Valley Washington 2003 - RM 89 - Dark black berry, leather, tobacco, slight anise on the long firm finish. #wine http://cellartracker.com/w?129397 66% Cabernet Sauvignon 34% Cabernet Franc.  Chateau Haut-Bergey Blanc Pessac-Leognan Graves Bordeaux 2005 - RM 89   Initially bright aromas but subdued flavors of nut, melon and grapefruit - a couple hours later it erupted with big mouth-full of peach flavors with citrus and lemon on the full long crisp finish. #wine http://cellartracker.com/w?217536 Interesting comparison on two blends both 1/3 cabernet franc - one based on merlot, the other cabernet sauvignon. Tasted at home with L, Bill and Beth C.
    Del Dotto Vineyards Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 1995 July 1, 2010  - Del Dotto Rutherford Estate Cabernet Sauvignon 1995 - Starting to show a hint of age but lots of life left in this fifteen year old - spicy toasty oak predominates the taste accented by spicy black cherry, berry, plum and hint of vanilla , with smooth polished well-integrated tannins on a long complex finish. Cabernet Sauvignon 90% Merlot 5% Cabernet Franc 5% Barrel Aged for 27 Months 100% New French & American Oak http://cellartracker.com/w?890767 Del Dotto were featured producers of our Napa Wine Experience 1998, 1999, and 2003 - Tasted at at our favorite Italian Bistro Angeli's Restaurant w/ Alec serving.
    June 25, 2010 - Marquis Phillips S2 Mclaren Vale Cabernet Sauvignon 2002
    Domaine Chandon Carneros Pinot Noir 2007
    Zenaida Cellars Zephyr Paso Robles Syrah 2005
    June 23, 2010 - Domaine Chandon Carneros Pinot Noir 2007: Zenaida Cellars Zephyr Paso Robles 2005
    Rosemont Blue Mountain Mudgee McLaren Vale cabernet sauvignon 2001 June 22, 2010 - Rosemount Blue Mountain Mudgee Mclaren Vale Shiraz Cabernet Sauvignon 2001
    Wine flight - Burgess, Ilona, Fiddlestix June 19, 2010Burgess Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon Flight - 1996 & 2002  - '02 - RM89 Surprising burst of fruit flavor on opening - red berry fruits and hint of spice - turning more Bordeaux like, black cherry, earthy leather and cedar after a couple hours. Much more fruit forward then 96 and 97 vintages tasted recently. http://cellartracker.com/w?138524 1996 - RM87 - A bit closed and tight on opening - Bordeaux like earthy leather, black cherry, hint of cedar - started to open and reveal more black cherry fruit after an hour. http://www.cellartracker.com/wine.asp?iWine=59751
    Burgess Ilona Howell Mountain 2004 - RM91 Dark, complex, full bodied black berry fruits, dark chocolate, hint of spice and anise, on a moderately firm tannin finish. http://cellartracker.com/w?879599 Fiddlehead Cellars Seven Twenty Eight Fiddlestix Santa Rita Hills Pinot Noir 2005 - RM89 - Pleasant easy drinking, medium bodied - black cherry, berry, nutmeg spice, hints of dark chocolate.  http://cellartracker.com/w?529101 Tasted w/ L @ Bill & Beth C's with wonderful teryaki beef London Broil and pork tenderloin dinner. 
    Mayo Winery Random Ridge Cabernet Sauvignon 2005
    Niner Paso Robles Shiraz 2006
    June 17, 2010 - Mayo Family Winery Random Ride Vineyard Napa Valley Mt Veeder District Cabernet Sauvignon 2005; Niner Wine Estates Bootjack Ranch Paso Robles Syrah 2006
    Chateau St Michelle Indian Wells Merlot 2005 June 16, 2010 - Chateau St Michelle Indian Wells Vineyard Merlot 2007
    Willows Vineyard Bonesetter Shiraz 2002 label June 14, 2010 - The Willows Vineyard Bonesetter South Australia Barossa Shiraz 2002 - RM 90 - Deep dark inky purple color, full bodied, intense dense thick forward super ripe plum, black berry, black raspberry, high acidic alcohol with a cedar finish. Linda loves this style - its too over the top for me.  http://cellartracker.com/w?79267
    June 13, 2010 - Calera Selleck Vineyard Pinot Noir 1993 - RM89 - Light, slight rust color - polished with a complex symphony of subtle black cherry, berry, black pepper, spice, hints of coffee and leather. This legendary wine and the plight of producer Josh Jenson were featured in the wonderful book The Heartbreak Grape. http://cellartracker.com/w?252733 Tasted w/ L at our favorite Italian Bistro Angeli's Restaurant w/ Alec serving.
    Napa Howell Mountain Cabernet 1997 Horizontal
    Napa Howell Mountain 1997 Cabernet Sauvignon Flight
    June 12, 2010 - Horizontal tasting of 1997 Howell Mountain Cabernet Sauvignon - Lokoya, Robert Craig, Cornerstone, Burgess, Clark-Claudon; Clark-Claudon (RM92 RP92) took the night with its complexity, balanced breadth and depth - blackberry, hints of cassis, gravel and caramel; Lokoya (RM93 RP93 WS 91) was my favorite, dark with initial surge of forward dense, bramble, red currant fruit, firm full refined tannins, only to shut down later in the evening; Cornerstone Napa Valley Howell Mountain Beatty Ranch Cabernet Sauvignon 1997 (RM91) was next - similar to Lokoya albeit a bit narrower, accented by focused forward black cherry, slightly astringent initially; Robert Craig (RM90) opened big only to shut down to be more subtle; Burgess (RM89) was consistent through the night with medium body, moderate black berry fruit, slight mineral & leather. Other wines tasted - Clark-Claudon Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon  2003;  Belle Glos Clark & Telephone Vineyard Santa Maria Valley Sonoma Pinot Noir 2003; Freemark Abbey Napa Valley Pettit Syrah 2006; ricci Curbastro Franciacorte Extra Brut NV; Clos Fontindoule Dordogne Monbazillac 1982 - RM89 - Dark golden color of weak tea - smoke and tea tones predominate on the subdued fruit flavors of apricot, peach and lychie. http://www.cellartracker.com/wine.asp?iWine=197675  -    Gala beef tenderloin and sockeye salmon dinner and wine tasting w/L, Bill & Beth, Dan & Linda.
    Barnet Vineyards Santa Lucia Highlands Pinot Noir 1999 label June 9, 2010 - Barnett Vineyards Santa Lucia Highlands Pinot Noir 1999 - RM87: Medium bodied, dark garnet with slight brownish color suggesting may be reaching end of life - further evidenced by slight dirt taste beneath the full spicy loganberry, undercurrent of blueberry, hint of rhubarb with punch of black cherry and leather on the finish. http://cellartracker.com/w?112541
    1985 bordeaux mini flight - Sociando-Mallet kagnum and Laclariere Laithwaite Bordeaux June 6, 2010 - Chateau Sociando-Mallet Haut-Medoc Bordeaux 1985 - RM 90 - Medium bodied - bright lively forward red fruit flavors highlight with hints of raspberry, black cherry, anise and leather on a moderate tannin flavorful finish. Tasted from magnum - lots of life left - little sign of age in this 25 year old. http://www.cellartracker.com/wine.asp?iWine=40950
    Chateau La Cla
    riere Laithwaite Bordeaux Controlee 1985
    - http://cellartracker.com/w?287216 
    Gala celebration dinner - '85 wines for G'Ma's 85th.  Tasted w/ L, G'Ma Evelyn, G'Pa Keith, Erin & Johnnie, Ryan & Michelle, & Sean at our favorite Italian Bistro Angeli's Restaurant w/ Alec serving.
    Mollydooker The Violinist Verdelho 2008 Mollydooker Violinist Verdelho 2008 Mollydooker Verdelho The Violinist 2008 - RM 88  - Medium bodied, a cross between the body of a chardonnay and the crispness of a sauvignon blanc - full essence of pear predominates with subtle melon and tropical fruits on a firm finish. Tasted on a warm sunny afternon on the deck w/ L and Bob with artisanal bread & cheeses, fruit and Italian sausage.  - http://cellartracker.com/w?566718
    Oakwood Hollow Cuvee Michael Mendocino County Pinot Noir 2006 June 5, 2010 - Oakwood Hollow Cuvee Michael Mendocino County Pinot Noir 2006 - RM 87 : Medium - light bodied. Spicy pepper, leather, black cherry, cedar and moderate tannins on a long fruit finish.  http://cellartracker.com/w?566442
    Newton Claret Napa Valley 2007 June 3, 2010 - Newton Claret Napa Valley Spring Mountain 2007 - RM 90 WE93 - Dark garnet color. Medium bodied. Subdued nose - full flavors of forward cherry and cranberry accented by raspberry, black berry, clove and brown spices. Blend of 60% merlot, 35% cabernet sauvignon, 4% cabernet franc and 1% syrah. Great value. Tasted at The Refectory Restaurant and Bistro in Columbus.
    Stuhlmuller Alexander Valley Estate Chardonnay 2008 June 1, 2010 - Stuhlmuller Vineyards Estate Alexander Valley Chardonnay 2008 - RM88 - Forward pear fruit flavor turning to pineapple and hint of lime with a mineral finish.  Great complement to parmesan crusted halibut at Jay's Restaurant in Dayton.
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