Halcon 2018 Tasting Notes

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larry schaffer
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Halcon 2018 Tasting Notes

#1 Post by larry schaffer »

As part of our Live Zoom tasting last week featuring rhone varieties, Paul and I traded wines, and I opened all 6 of these that night prior to the broadcast. Paul had recommended that I decant each wine, but as I was hanging out in a hotel room so that I could be close to my Mom to comfort her after the passing of my father, I did not have that luxury . . . so I tasted small amounts of each that night and found all of them really enjoyable and distinct.

Fast forward to last night - a full 8 days post that event. Each bottle had been opened, perhaps 100 mLs were taken out, and then the corks were put back as tightly as possible - and the wines had been stored in the styro shipper I had received from Paul, in my living room at about 65 degrees since.

I pulled the corks and was expecting to find wines that were 'over the hill' but this was not the case at all. In fact, these wines were all very much alive and had developed beautifully. To me, this is a great sign for what lay ahead for each of these, and a 'cautionary tale' that if opened now, they probably won't show their 'potential' unless they are decanted and left to open for hours.

In any event, I wanted to share these so here goes (and sorry in advance for any spelling errors):

2018 Roussanne
Honey suckle and lemon verbena on the nose, opening up with some earthy butterscotch as well. It’s picked up more weight in the mouth, showing unexpected richness for the low alcohol level that this is, plus some wonderful acidity and a wonderful fresh lemon quality. Unbelievable for being open for 8 days . . .

2018 Grenache
This has really blossomed since opening, meaning that it is still so darned young. Bright fruit with a touch of herbaceousness, some pepper, and a touch of orange rind as well. No heat whatsoever – and great texture, too. If you are able to get your hands on this, I don’t think you’ll be disappointed – but I’d either sit on it for awhile or open it up and enjoy it over a really long evening . . .

2018 Mourvedre
Plum and cranberry and white pepper aromatics with a touch of oak; medium bodied with noticeable tannins and nice firm acidity as well. More fruit than funk at this point – but would be interested in laying this down for awhile to see where it goes.

2018 Esquito
High toned aromatics that speak of Grenache first, with some bright raspberry and cherry, white pepper and herbs de provence and a touch of black tea, with more structure than the Grenache, with a longer finish, most likely from the syrah. A wonderful blend that will only improve with age.

2018 Alturas
Dark cherry and pepper, a touch of kirsch, a touch of school glue (not a bad thing, by the way); good fruit intensity, great refreshing acidity and some gritty tannins; still quite young with a very long life ahead for those with the patience to let these sit

2018 Elevacion
More blue fruited than the Alturas, with noticeable pepper and a touch of anise and a some black tea, too; great intensity and a ramp up in structure that the Alturas.

In closing, buy with confidence . . .

Cheers!
larry schaffer
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Re: Halcon 2018 Tasting Notes

#2 Post by Brian Tuite »

I bet it’s tough to play wine critic when you are a winemaker. You do it with class Larry, well done my friend!
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Re: Halcon 2018 Tasting Notes

#3 Post by larry schaffer »

Brian Tuite wrote: May 2nd, 2020, 12:24 pm I bet it’s tough to play wine critic when you are a winemaker. You do it with class Larry, well done my friend!
Brian,

I say it as I see it. These are some very interesting wines - not all were to my taste, but all were unique, distinct and enjoyable. For those that dig pepper in their wines (not bell pepper, that is - we'll leave that to the Loire, thank you very much!!!!), you should check these out. I wouldn't necessarily recommend leaving them open, ungassed and not in the fridge, for as long as I did [snort.gif]

Cheers.
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Re: Halcon 2018 Tasting Notes

#4 Post by GregT »

I never left those wines open for that long, but the notes are fair and specifically one of the things I like about the wines is that pepper note on some of them. Right now I'm making plans to pick up some Cinsault . . .
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Re: Halcon 2018 Tasting Notes

#5 Post by MikeL238 »

Suggest waiting on Elevacion as well?
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Re: Halcon 2018 Tasting Notes

#6 Post by TimF »

Popped a 2018 Mourvedre tonight. I really like this wine. Lots of strawberry and white pepper. My wife was really surprised as this is very different than our normal Chinon and Barbera weekday wines. She picked up some cedar in addition to red fruit.
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