Bordeaux, Nebbiolo, Brunello suggestions

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Joseph Grassa
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Bordeaux, Nebbiolo, Brunello suggestions

#1 Post by Joseph Grassa » January 27th, 2020, 5:59 am

I am looking for suggestions of some reds

Suggestion requirements/ aims:
  • the wine can age 20-30 years.
  • available by the case
  • available in at least 2 different sizes (375ml & 750ml preferred, but 1.5L will also work.)
  • historically known for having a dumb phase (ideally Bordeaux, Barolo, Barbaresco, Brunello or tempranillo)
  • as affordable as possible
Thanks in advance.

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Re: Bordeaux, Nebbiolo, Brunello suggestions

#2 Post by HoosJustinG » January 27th, 2020, 6:27 am

Lot to learn, so apologies if this is a "duh" type question, but why do you want a wine that's likely to have a dumb phase? All else equal, with you buying by the case, wouldn't you want a wine that you can enjoy the evolution of over the course of 20-30 years without having worry about popping one during a dumb phase?
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Re: Bordeaux, Nebbiolo, Brunello suggestions

#3 Post by John Kight » January 27th, 2020, 6:48 am

HoosJustinG wrote:
January 27th, 2020, 6:27 am
Lot to learn, so apologies if this is a "duh" type question, but why do you want a wine that's likely to have a dumb phase? All else equal, with you buying by the case, wouldn't you want a wine that you can enjoy the evolution of over the course of 20-30 years without having worry about popping one during a dumb phase?
Good question...I assume what he means is that it's acceptable if it has a dumb phase, since he's going to hold them long-term (rather than the way he worded it, which sounds like it's some kind of requirement for the wines).

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Re: Bordeaux, Nebbiolo, Brunello suggestions

#4 Post by Pat Burton » January 27th, 2020, 7:20 am

OP has another thread trying to understand the dumb phase...

Oddero bottles some of their nebbiolos in 375s most year. The strong vintages will easily age 20 years. I don't know if there will be a dumb phase though. Vallana gattinara from northern piedmont is pretty affordable. Not sure about 375s though. I've had wines from Vallana in a dumb phase.
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Re: Bordeaux, Nebbiolo, Brunello suggestions

#5 Post by R. Frankel » January 27th, 2020, 9:15 am

Joseph, this is a very broad question, so broad that it’s hard to answer. To really help with a few good ideas, we’d need to know:

- your purpose. Do you want to sample over time to study the wine’s evolution? Or is this for your child’s wedding in 20-30 years?
- what does ‘affordable’ mean? A number is needed - your affordable and mine could be quite different.
- what do you like in wine?

The really rough question is case/size availability. To answer definitively requires research, and the market changes all the time.

You live on LI. My recommendation is to go to a good wine store in NY (e.g. Morrell, Crush, Union Square, Flatiron, there are many more) and ask them to help you with this. They will know what they have in stock.
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Re: Bordeaux, Nebbiolo, Brunello suggestions

#6 Post by Joseph Grassa » January 27th, 2020, 7:24 pm

Thanks for the replies. Pat is correct to mention the other thread. I am really trying to study dumb phases, while also studying the effects of different bottle sizes on aging and how those 2 topics relate.

The idea is that I will open 1 of each every 1-3 years (this number will be consistent and depend on how many I buy and how long it is expected to age).
Mainly I want to monitor this qualitatively to understand the changes, but I am also looking to quantify whatever I can make sense of. There is no way this would ever been enough data to be comprehensive, but it intrigues me.

As far as affordable, I don't have a specific number, but I am aiming as low as possible because I'm looking to buy so many. If I do this with 3 different wines, that would be 36x 750s and 36x 375 or magnums. I am hoping I can find bottles that are $30 or less for the 750 but I am not sure that will be possible, while still being bottles worth aging that long. The less expensive it is, the more I can be willing to buy and the more frequent I can taste them or more different bottles I can try this with. If I have to go to $70 750s, I will likely only do this with 1 wine for now.

As to what I like, I'm more into Brunellos than Nebbiolos but love both. I love Tempranillos, more so from Ribera del Duero than Rioja, but also love both. When it comes to Bordeaux I lean more toward dark fruit than red fruits.

I will definitely check into Oddero and Vallana Gattinara too!

Thanks again for for any feedback.

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Re: Bordeaux, Nebbiolo, Brunello suggestions

#7 Post by John Morris » January 27th, 2020, 9:33 pm

You won't find a lot of wines that have the potential to get a lot better with 20-30 years of aging in the under $30 category. There are some, but that's a challenging combination of criteria.

My own experience is that few Brunellos age that well, at least ones made in the last 20 years. Often they don't seem to gain any complexity. I'd say spend your money on Bordeaux, Rioja/Ribero del Duero and nebbiolo.
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Re: Bordeaux, Nebbiolo, Brunello suggestions

#8 Post by Joseph Grassa » January 28th, 2020, 5:04 am

Thanks again everyone.
Pat Burton wrote:
January 27th, 2020, 7:20 am
OP has another thread trying to understand the dumb phase...

Oddero bottles some of their nebbiolos in 375s most year. The strong vintages will easily age 20 years. I don't know if there will be a dumb phase though. Vallana gattinara from northern piedmont is pretty affordable. Not sure about 375s though. I've had wines from Vallana in a dumb phase.
I just jumped on the 2015 Oddero Barolo. Not bad prices and look like they are well worth it. Hard for me to imagine no dumb phase at all even if it is slight, but either way I don't think I will be very upset having these. After taxes and shipping it came out to $26.48 for the 375s and $40.23 for the 750s, so I think I got a pretty good deal.

Have you tried the 15? And if so, have you made any estimate of your own on peak or late drink dates?
John Morris wrote:
January 27th, 2020, 9:33 pm
You won't find a lot of wines that have the potential to get a lot better with 20-30 years of aging in the under $30 category. There are some, but that's a challenging combination of criteria.

My own experience is that few Brunellos age that well, at least ones made in the last 20 years. Often they don't seem to gain any complexity. I'd say spend your money on Bordeaux, Rioja/Ribero del Duero and nebbiolo.
Any tips on which Ribera del Dueros might be a good option? I imagine I will have to go with 750 and 1.5L for those right?

Also, any idea what it is with newer brunellos not having the same aging potential?

Thanks again everyone

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Re: Bordeaux, Nebbiolo, Brunello suggestions

#9 Post by Mich@el Ch@ng » January 28th, 2020, 5:10 am

Vietti Castiglione, Brovia Normale (not sure if this is available in 375). For bdx maybe something like 14 lanessan but not sure how it’d do in 30.

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Re: Bordeaux, Nebbiolo, Brunello suggestions

#10 Post by Pat Burton » January 28th, 2020, 5:47 am

Joseph Grassa wrote:
January 28th, 2020, 5:04 am
Thanks again everyone.
Pat Burton wrote:
January 27th, 2020, 7:20 am
OP has another thread trying to understand the dumb phase...

Oddero bottles some of their nebbiolos in 375s most year. The strong vintages will easily age 20 years. I don't know if there will be a dumb phase though. Vallana gattinara from northern piedmont is pretty affordable. Not sure about 375s though. I've had wines from Vallana in a dumb phase.
I just jumped on the 2015 Oddero Barolo. Not bad prices and look like they are well worth it. Hard for me to imagine no dumb phase at all even if it is slight, but either way I don't think I will be very upset having these. After taxes and shipping it came out to $26.48 for the 375s and $40.23 for the 750s, so I think I got a pretty good deal.

Have you tried the 15? And if so, have you made any estimate of your own on peak or late drink dates?
I haven't have the 15 Oddero Barolo. I did taste the 2013 and have had some older vintages of the normale Barolo including 1996 recently. Based on my experience, I'd say the 2015 would be reaching my preferred peak around age 20 and will stay there for a while. I don't tend to buy in high volume so I'd probably open my first around 2027. Again though, I haven't tasted any 2015 Barolo, as I rarely drink any Barolo or Barbaresco young.
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Re: Bordeaux, Nebbiolo, Brunello suggestions

#11 Post by Greg K » January 28th, 2020, 5:54 am

Mich@el Ch@ng wrote:
January 28th, 2020, 5:10 am
Vietti Castiglione, Brovia Normale (not sure if this is available in 375). For bdx maybe something like 14 lanessan but not sure how it’d do in 30.
IIRC correctly from my visit, the Castiglione is one of Vietti’s modern crus, so I wouldn’t expect it to have a dumb phase.
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Re: Bordeaux, Nebbiolo, Brunello suggestions

#12 Post by Markus S » January 28th, 2020, 5:56 am

John Morris wrote:
January 27th, 2020, 9:33 pm
You won't find a lot of wines that have the potential to get a lot better with 20-30 years of aging in the under $30 category. There are some, but that's a challenging combination of criteria.
Luis Pato's bagas would fit the bill, as would some Madirans, but I'm not sure how dumb they get.
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Re: Bordeaux, Nebbiolo, Brunello suggestions

#13 Post by Nathan Smyth » January 28th, 2020, 12:19 pm

Joseph Grassa wrote:
January 27th, 2020, 7:24 pm
I am hoping I can find bottles that are $30 or less for the 750
If you had said $300, then the answer would have been Gaja Sperss [which probably has a dumb phase of about a century, although I guess no one knows for sure yet].

Many people say that Riesling goes through a dumb phase, but I would never open an adolescent Riesling [simply as a matter of principle], so I'll have to take their word for it.

I imagine the same is true of Chenin Blanc [particularly Huet].

But 21st Century $29.99 Reds with Dumb Phases - that needs to be a question for Championship Week Jeopardy.

Possibly a far northern Piemontese Nebbiolo [way up in the hills, above the tonier Langhe vicinity of Alba], where the cultivar is known as "Spanna":

https://www.wine-searcher.com/find/spanna

It looks like you could get the basic 2015 Vallana Normale for less than $20, and the 2015 Vallana "Cuvee Bernardo Vallana" for less than $25. [There's even a Vallana "Gattinara" for just shy of $30, although its most recent release is the 2009.]

For your whites, you can still get the 2016 Huet secs [dry Chenin Blanc] for less than $30.

And I'm seeing 375s of 2016 Demi-Sec [semi-sweet] and 2016 Moelleux [fully dessert] in the $20s.

In 2018, however, it looks like the entire Huet line card is moving to the $34.99 to $39.99 market segment & beyond.

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Re: Bordeaux, Nebbiolo, Brunello suggestions

#14 Post by John Morris » January 28th, 2020, 1:28 pm

Markus S wrote:
January 28th, 2020, 5:56 am
John Morris wrote:
January 27th, 2020, 9:33 pm
You won't find a lot of wines that have the potential to get a lot better with 20-30 years of aging in the under $30 category. There are some, but that's a challenging combination of criteria.
Luis Pato's bagas would fit the bill, as would some Madirans, but I'm not sure how dumb they get.
I like Pato's wines, but I don't think they're 30-year wines. My 01 single vineyards have been pretty mature for several years, and a couple of '95s were in a similar state circa 2010.
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Re: Bordeaux, Nebbiolo, Brunello suggestions

#15 Post by Peter Papay » January 28th, 2020, 3:30 pm

I am surprised nobody mentioned Riesling yet. They have a distinctive dumb phase and are very affordable so no need to worry about smaller formats which might impact the exercise. They are also known to go the long haul. Just saying.

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Re: Bordeaux, Nebbiolo, Brunello suggestions

#16 Post by Robert.A.Jr. » January 28th, 2020, 3:54 pm

OP -

I’m like a broken record on these two Bordeaux, but I don’t think we have interfaced before on a thread:

Both Sociando Mallet and Lanessan can and do age gracefully for long periods, and in big years like 2010, 2005, etc, go through a closed period. Both are very affordable. The most recent vintage that I went long on was 2014, with my average price on Sociando ranged from $26-30 and my average on Lanessan was $17-20. I will start drinking them regularly by 2024, but based on vintages that I have had from both recently from the 1980s, especially Sociando, these can go 20-25+. I would put Cantemerle in this mix as well.

PS. Lanessan brought in Bouard for the 2015 through recent vintages, so there is a change there. I cannot prognosticate on what that does to your longevity window.

PPS. I regularly see all bottle size formats for these wines. Total Wine carries Lanessan in large quantities and has 750s and often 1.5s.

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Re: Bordeaux, Nebbiolo, Brunello suggestions

#17 Post by Ian H » January 28th, 2020, 4:11 pm

Joseph Grassa wrote:
January 28th, 2020, 5:04 am
Thanks again everyone.
Pat Burton wrote:
January 27th, 2020, 7:20 am
OP has another thread trying to understand the dumb phase...

Oddero bottles some of their nebbiolos in 375s most year. The strong vintages will easily age 20 years. I don't know if there will be a dumb phase though. Vallana gattinara from northern piedmont is pretty affordable. Not sure about 375s though. I've had wines from Vallana in a dumb phase.
I just jumped on the 2015 Oddero Barolo. Not bad prices and look like they are well worth it. Hard for me to imagine no dumb phase at all even if it is slight, but either way I don't think I will be very upset having these. After taxes and shipping it came out to $26.48 for the 375s and $40.23 for the 750s, so I think I got a pretty good deal.

Have you tried the 15? And if so, have you made any estimate of your own on peak or late drink dates?
John Morris wrote:
January 27th, 2020, 9:33 pm
You won't find a lot of wines that have the potential to get a lot better with 20-30 years of aging in the under $30 category. There are some, but that's a challenging combination of criteria.

My own experience is that few Brunellos age that well, at least ones made in the last 20 years. Often they don't seem to gain any complexity. I'd say spend your money on Bordeaux, Rioja/Ribero del Duero and nebbiolo.
Any tips on which Ribera del Dueros might be a good option? I imagine I will have to go with 750 and 1.5L for those right?

Also, any idea what it is with newer brunellos not having the same aging potential?

Thanks again everyone
Joseph, I had a 1978 Oddero Barolo late last year. This bottle had excellent provenance and 78 is regarded as a very very strong vintage. This bottle was very nice at 41 years old. I've read good reviews on '15 Barolo too, so my guess is those bottles will be quite long-lived.
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Re: Bordeaux, Nebbiolo, Brunello suggestions

#18 Post by Hank Victor » January 28th, 2020, 4:13 pm

Produttori del Barbaresco Nebbiolo Langhe DOC

WS is showing average price of $25 with a few retailers sub $20.
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Re: Bordeaux, Nebbiolo, Brunello suggestions

#19 Post by Brian G r a f s t r o m » January 28th, 2020, 5:19 pm

Produttori's straight Barbaresco should fit your bill perfectly.
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Re: Bordeaux, Nebbiolo, Brunello suggestions

#20 Post by GregT » January 28th, 2020, 6:43 pm

As to what I like, I'm more into Brunellos than Nebbiolos but love both. I love Tempranillos, more so from Ribera del Duero than Rioja, but also love both. When it comes to Bordeaux I lean more toward dark fruit than red fruits.
After hundreds of Spanish wines, I can't say I've ever encountered a dumb phase in the wine, just in myself. And if you like Brunello, that makes sense because Sangiovese and Tempranillo can be surprisingly similar after 30 years. But neither is like Bordeaux. And Nebbiolo is also its own thing. I think you're more likely to find dumb phases in wines based on Cab/Merlot than in the others, and you'll find some younger Nebbiolos to be less than entirely enjoyable.

My suggestion is to buy a few bottles of different wines that are ten and twenty and perhaps thirty years apart, and try those with some friends. And I'm a little curious as to what wines from Ribera del Duero you like and what wines from Rioja you've had.
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Re: Bordeaux, Nebbiolo, Brunello suggestions

#21 Post by John Morris » January 28th, 2020, 8:19 pm

Hank Victor wrote:
January 28th, 2020, 4:13 pm
Produttori del Barbaresco Nebbiolo Langhe DOC

WS is showing average price of $25 with a few retailers sub $20.
It’s not made to be an ager. That’s Nebbiolo for early consumption.
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Re: Bordeaux, Nebbiolo, Brunello suggestions

#22 Post by John Morris » January 28th, 2020, 8:23 pm

Peter Papay wrote:
January 28th, 2020, 3:30 pm
I am surprised nobody mentioned Riesling yet. They have a distinctive dumb phase and are very affordable so no need to worry about smaller formats which might impact the exercise. They are also known to go the long haul. Just saying.
Maybe because the OP began:
Joseph Grassa wrote:
January 27th, 2020, 5:59 am
I am looking for suggestions of some reds.
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Re: Bordeaux, Nebbiolo, Brunello suggestions

#23 Post by Fred Davis » January 28th, 2020, 9:42 pm

John Morris wrote:
January 28th, 2020, 8:19 pm
Hank Victor wrote:
January 28th, 2020, 4:13 pm
Produttori del Barbaresco Nebbiolo Langhe DOC

WS is showing average price of $25 with a few retailers sub $20.
It’s not made to be an ager. That’s Nebbiolo for early consumption.
I have this dilemma with affordable Barbarescos. For instance, the Vite Colte Casa in Collina 2015. I normally wouldn't open such a young Barbaresco, but it's under $20 so I don't feel bad doing so. I have no idea how this would age, but I might try it with a bottle or two.

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Re: Bordeaux, Nebbiolo, Brunello suggestions

#24 Post by Joseph Grassa » January 29th, 2020, 4:40 am

Robert.A.Jr. wrote:
January 28th, 2020, 3:54 pm
OP -

I’m like a broken record on these two Bordeaux, but I don’t think we have interfaced before on a thread:

Both Sociando Mallet and Lanessan...
Thanks for the tip. Heavily considering going with one of these.

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Re: Bordeaux, Nebbiolo, Brunello suggestions

#25 Post by Joseph Grassa » January 29th, 2020, 4:47 am

GregT wrote:
January 28th, 2020, 6:43 pm
As to what I like, I'm more into Brunellos than Nebbiolos but love both. I love Tempranillos, more so from Ribera del Duero than Rioja, but also love both. When it comes to Bordeaux I lean more toward dark fruit than red fruits.
After hundreds of Spanish wines, I can't say I've ever encountered a dumb phase in the wine, just in myself. And if you like Brunello, that makes sense because Sangiovese and Tempranillo can be surprisingly similar after 30 years. But neither is like Bordeaux. And Nebbiolo is also its own thing. I think you're more likely to find dumb phases in wines based on Cab/Merlot than in the others, and you'll find some younger Nebbiolos to be less than entirely enjoyable.

My suggestion is to buy a few bottles of different wines that are ten and twenty and perhaps thirty years apart, and try those with some friends. And I'm a little curious as to what wines from Ribera del Duero you like and what wines from Rioja you've had.
I have never seen a dumb phase in any Spanish wines either, but didnt know if it was just my lack of experience there.

These are 3 bottles Spanish bottles I love.
2010 Conde Neo
2006 R. López de Heredia Rioja Reserva Viña Tondonia
2005 Escudero Arvum

I dont own enough Ribera del Duero though. I've been eyeing 2016 Aalto for a few weeks and think I am going to grab a few of those. Ever had any Aalto?

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Re: Bordeaux, Nebbiolo, Brunello suggestions

#26 Post by Pat Burton » January 29th, 2020, 5:07 am

Although the OP didn't ask for Rioja, LdH referenced above does come in 375s and 750s. I think maybe only the Tondonia has 375s widely available in the US. The 2001 Tondonia had a dumb phase about five years ago. Not sure if that is specific to that vintage though.
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Re: Bordeaux, Nebbiolo, Brunello suggestions

#27 Post by Robert.A.Jr. » January 29th, 2020, 5:17 am

B21 Wine has the 2006 Tondonia in all three formats, but you are paying a premium above 750. They have the 2007 Bosco as well. They have over two cases each in 750 available for sale. These are excellent wines and would seem to fit the OP’s preferences. I had the 2006 Tondonia this past weekend and about three months ago. Really solid.

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Re: Bordeaux, Nebbiolo, Brunello suggestions

#28 Post by Robert.A.Jr. » January 29th, 2020, 5:21 am

What are thoughts these days on Chasse Spleen? Was always a fan of this wine but then fell off purchasing it but don’t know why. Just grabbed some 375s of the 2016 out of curiosity. Unless the estate has changed stylistically to a more modern profile, perhaps this fits the bill as well.

Edit: just checked Leve’s website, like what I read here:
Quite bright, this medium/full bodied, fresh, sharp, crisp, cassis and cranberry filled wine is made for lovers of older, classically styled Bordeaux. The wine leans to the cedar, tobacco leaf and piquant red fruit oriented side of the style range.
Read more at:https://www.thewinecellarinsider.com/bo ... se-spleen/

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Re: Bordeaux, Nebbiolo, Brunello suggestions

#29 Post by Joseph Grassa » January 29th, 2020, 5:58 am

Pat Burton wrote:
January 29th, 2020, 5:07 am
Although the OP didn't ask for Rioja, LdH referenced above does come in 375s and 750s. I think maybe only the Tondonia has 375s widely available in the US. The 2001 Tondonia had a dumb phase about five years ago. Not sure if that is specific to that vintage though.
Only problem with LDH is that it is released so late that I would miss so many years of changes to monitor.

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Re: Bordeaux, Nebbiolo, Brunello suggestions

#30 Post by joz€f p1nxten » February 11th, 2020, 2:47 am

Robert.A.Jr. wrote:
January 28th, 2020, 3:54 pm
OP -

I’m like a broken record on these two Bordeaux, but I don’t think we have interfaced before on a thread:

Both Sociando Mallet and Lanessan can and do age gracefully for long periods, and in big years like 2010, 2005, etc, go through a closed period. Both are very affordable. The most recent vintage that I went long on was 2014, with my average price on Sociando ranged from $26-30 and my average on Lanessan was $17-20. I will start drinking them regularly by 2024, but based on vintages that I have had from both recently from the 1980s, especially Sociando, these can go 20-25+. I would put Cantemerle in this mix as well.

PS. Lanessan brought in Bouard for the 2015 through recent vintages, so there is a change there. I cannot prognosticate on what that does to your longevity window.

PPS. I regularly see all bottle size formats for these wines. Total Wine carries Lanessan in large quantities and has 750s and often 1.5s.
Robert, have you already had the Sociando Mallet 2016 or 2017? The 2016 is substantially more expensive (50 USD). Can also get the 2014, which you seem to like but different in flavor profile I guess?
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Re: Bordeaux, Nebbiolo, Brunello suggestions

#31 Post by Howard Cooper » February 11th, 2020, 4:13 am

Rather than buying new wines and having to wait 20-30 years for an answer, why not buy wines of various ages and do a vertical. Chambers Street in NYC often has Italian wines going back a good ways (often Produttori) and could help you put together a couple of verticals of 4-5 wines where you can get some understanding now rather than in 20 years.
Howard

"That's what I do. I drink and I know things." Tyrion Lannister

ChristopherSK
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Joined: June 8th, 2018, 8:49 am
Location: Philly area most of the time

Re: Bordeaux, Nebbiolo, Brunello suggestions

#32 Post by ChristopherSK » February 25th, 2020, 4:11 pm

Lanessan. Recently picked up 5 bottles of 1996 Lanessan at auction, and look forward to giving them a try. Want to let the first bottle sit for a few months after it has been jostled, so I will pop the first in May. Haven't had a Lanessan with this amount of bottle age.
Chri$toph3r S K0y$te

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