FRI dinner

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Kelly Flynn
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Joined: March 14th, 2018, 11:12 am

FRI dinner

#1 Post by Kelly Flynn » June 18th, 2019, 9:19 am

Wife out of town and kids ensconced in front of a movie, I had a few wine friends over for a very simple steak dinner and a lot of wine. Please forgive the brevity. Given the wine/guest ratio, I hope it is understandable.

The Burklin-Wolf "Gaisbohl" riesling GG 2011 (mag) was a great way to get things started, with shrimp cocktail. Not the most bracing acidity for a GG, which was fine by me. A smoky, saline/lime profile that reminded me of a mezcal margarita -- in a good way, of course. As an indication of the power here, a solid glass remaining in the re-corked bottle was still going strong two nights later.

I love the "Cuvee Tardive" every year, but the 2014 was my first Roilette "Griffe du Marquis" beaujolais. It was fine as another starter, with charcuterie and cheese, but it lacked the gravitas I was expecting. One guest frequently disparages bojo, and I wanted to open his mind. Oh well, next time. But overall very pleasant, with a soft mouth feel.

On to the steaks (reds served blind):

The CVNE "Real" Gran Reserva rioja 1981 was a contender for my WOTN. The spicy American oak strongly suggested rioja. I guessed 70s or 80s, so in the ballpark. I believe "Real" is CVNE's "modern" bottling, and indeed this tasted relatively modern. What it lacked in dill and leather and tobacco, however, was more than compensated for by a very hedonistic cherry vanilla.

The Bosquet de Papes cdp "Chante Le Merle Vieilles Vignes" 2001 was unmistakably southern Rhone. Some sweetness and heat of grenache coupled with the bramble that is so characteristic of the appellation. My experience with older cdp in general -- and 2001 in particular -- has been mixed at best, but this one delivered. I guessed a cdp ten years younger.

I haven't had much Pavie, but I never would have guessed the 1999 was Old World. It was delicious, but in a spicy/sexy sort of way. Not much secondary going on here. Not to damn with faint praise, but I thought it might be a Howell Mtn merlot.

The Ridge Monte Bello cabernet sauvignon 1990 was my initial humble contribution to the reds. This had been in my cellar for a very long time, and honestly I can't recall my last Monte Bello. In any event, I was very happy that it was appreciated by the group, but for me there were no particular fireworks. I was impressed, however, at its condition at the age of 29. Most people thought it was 10-15 years old.

Dessert of roquefort and dark chocolate bars and cookies:

I am a fan of this producer, but have never had this bottling. The Weinbach "Schlossberg" riesling SGN 2006 (500 ml) paired nicely with the cheese, but lacked the sweetness and intensity I was expecting. It seemed more VT than SGN, honestly. Nice but I was hoping for more sharpness.

I am a big fan of 1983 vintage port, though the Cockburn I opened was not among the best examples IMHO. Decanted for several hours prior, it was pleasant enough, but very very hot and also rather one-dimensional. No comparison to a 1983 Grahams I had not too long ago. Just for the heck of it, I left a healthy pour in an open glass for the next two days and then drank it. As expected, much more civilized. Too soon?

More reds? Stop the insanity!

As sometimes happens toward the end of these dinners, questionable decisions get made. In this case, we started talking about older Cali cabs, and it occurred to me that I had been looking for a reason to open the Clos du Val cabernet sauvignon 1978. Though it was late and we had all had our fill already, it was not a decision I regret. The wine was amazing. The color had lightened over the years, but the tannins remained very much in check. A very appealing savory character. From a winery frequently lauded or decried for its "elegant" cabs, the power here was palpable. I have enjoyed some great Cali 78s over the years, and this is perhaps just behind the Shafer in my experience.

And then sometimes questionable decisions beget further questionable decisions. One very generous guest had a Borgogno barolo Reserva 1967 in reserve, which he decided to open. I have had this wine previously, and several other old Borgognos, but frankly had never been that impressed. This one was properly colored, without the cloudiness that can accompany older nebbiolo, and was delicious. Classic tar and roses. Real power remaining, yet light on its feet. The puckering acidity nearly compelled me to re-heat some leftover steak.

Thankfully Uber prevented any more questionable decisions. Way too much wine for five people, alas. But I enjoyed picking on the wounded soldiers for the next couple of days.

Hank Victor
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Re: FRI dinner

#2 Post by Hank Victor » June 18th, 2019, 11:37 am

Nice write up and good notes.
- ITB
Take a chance, Columbus did..

"Two years away from being two years away”

Kelly Flynn
Posts: 743
Joined: March 14th, 2018, 11:12 am

Re: FRI dinner

#3 Post by Kelly Flynn » June 18th, 2019, 3:48 pm

Thanks, Hank. Way too much wine but a lot of fun!

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