A blog about life, language, writing, and other trivia.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Tasting Notes

My latest notes, from the "around the world" tasting:

1. Chateau Haut-Bailly 2005 (France/Bordeaux; $130.99/bottle)
This is one of those wines you're excited to drink even though you know it's a crime to do it a mere three years after the vintage. Still, this very nice Bordeaux has a beautiful nose of currant, dried cranberry, leather, earth, and a touch of gravel. Despite being a young, tannic beast, it still gives hints of what it will be in 8-10 years: a dark, rich, earthy, silky beauty of a wine. Definitely one for the cellar.

2. Mateic EQ Syrah 2005 (Chile; $29.99/bottle)
This syrah immediately puts one in mind of the wines of the northern Rhone (though at a fraction of the cost of most good ones): medium-bodied, with meaty, peppery, and dusty berry and mineral flavors, it simply screams for a nice roasted leg of lamb, or even beef kebabs.

3. Scala Dei Cartoixa 2001 (Spain; $59.99/bottle)
This one is an all-around beautiful wine. It starts with aromas of blackberry, licorice, coffee, and a hint of fragrant toasted almond. Medium-full bodied, with a wonderfully satiny mouthfeel. Enticingly earthy and aromatic flavors of dark, spicy fruit are framed by a bolt of anise up front and a dash of new leather on the finish. Very good now (think steak), but should continue to harmonize for another 3-5 years.

4. Ascheri Sorano Barolo 2001 (Italy; $59.99/bottle)
The brownish tint gives this wine away as the consummate old-world red, with a very sensual nose of barnyard, crushed violet, and chocolate, and silky smooth, full bodied flavors of black plum, cedar, tobacco, and a hint of dusty cocoa. Nicely integrated tannins and surprisingly buoyant acidity will give this very nice wine another 2-4 years' cellaring potential, though if it were in my cellar right now, I'd pop it tomorrow with an equally indulgent plate of duck ragout with wild mushrooms.

5. Showket Napa Cabernet Sauvignon 2005 (California; $89.99/bottle)
This Cab's very ripe, fruity nose is underscored by subtle earthy notes. Full bodied, with nice grip and flavors of cassis, blackberry, dark chocolate, bramble, and mint. This is a very nice wine.

6. Schild Barossa Shiraz 2005 (Australia; $28.99/bottle)
This is not your run-of-the-mill Aussie Shiraz, with an intensely musky nose and flavors of super-ripe blueberry, black olive, smoke, and musk. While it might not be my first choice for a day-in, day-out quaffer, I have to give it credit for taking a chance and actually being a sensual, even sense-challenging, wine. Definitely one to pop with grilled red meats.

7. Adelsheim Pinot Noir Deglace 2006 (Oregon; $34.99/bottle)
Dessert wines seem to be en vogue right now, so we shouldn't be surprised to see American producers trying them with grapes not normally associated with sweet wines (for another fun example, look for Meeker's Fro-Zin, a Zinfandel-based dessert wine). Such efforts tend to be hit or miss, but this one--while not earth-shattering--is quite nice, with aromas and flavors of baked cherries and enough acidity to keep the whole affair from being too heavy.


Post a Comment

<< Home