End Of June...Thoughts So Far On 2009 WOTY?

We are six months into 2009. Any thoughts on your best bottles this year?

Selosse Cuvee Substance

2001 d’Yquem

2003 Fonseca

2005 Aubert Chardonnay Ritchie

2003 Pavie

Winner So Far:
2003 Pavie

I’m split between apples and oranges.

So far it has been a great year:

Jean Macle Chateau Chalon 1976
Domaine du Closel Savennières Clos du Papillon Cuvée Spéciale 1989
Chave Ermitage Cuvee Cathelin 1990
Jamet Cote Rotie Cote Brune 1991
Jose María da Fonseca Bastardinho de Azeitao 30 Anos
Dagueneau Mont Damnees 2007
Marqués de Murrieta Castillo de Ygay Gran Reserva Blanco 1940
Romanee St Vivant Leroy 2000
Giuseppe Rinaldi Barolo Cannubi 1999
Joh Jos Prüm Auslese Goldkapsel 2001
Raveneau Montrachet 2001
DRC Vin des Vignerons 1998
Viña Real Gran Reserva Especial 1959
Raymond Trollat St Joseph white 1989
Raveneau Chablis Les Clos 2002
Egly Ouriet Vintage 1996

Had some pretty good wines already this year…
02 Monfortino
04 F Rinaldi Cannubio
02 M Colin Chassagne Caillerets
06 Roumier Amoureuses
01 Gran Elias Mora


Magnum of 1970 Mayacamas

The leader in Cabs: 2004 Buccella. Syrahs: 2006 K Vintners Royal City.

The very good news is I have about 30 runners up.

1999 Rousseau Gevrey Clos St. Jacques no doubt. Absolute stunner of a wine.

Psht. I can’t even remember what I drank/did this weekend…

1990 Clos des Papes

From what I can remember a couple of 89’s (from yesterday) - Pichon Baron and Pichon Lalande

Good year so far. Leading contenders:

Chambertin Rousseau 1962 and 1999
La Tache 1999
Nacional 1963
Chablis Les Clos Raveneau 1996
Mouton Rothschild 1959
Heitz Martha’s 1974

So far this year, the only real heavyweight that’s underperformed has been Clos de Beze Rousseau 1962, which was from a bottle that was a bit oxidized. If I had to pick one of the above? Probably La Tache 1999.


The 1963 National is a very special wine. Had it along side the 1963 Taylor recently.

CellarTracker says that I said:

1990 Dom Pérignon 99 (Had this for our anniversary, so maybe that colors things a bit, but it was the best Champagne I have ever tasted)
1989 Mouton Rothschild 98 (way exceeded my expectations; the bouquet was off the charts, and incredibly velvety on the mid-palate
1998 Quilceda Creek 97 (Yowza – this wine was singing!)

Interestingly enough, I had all 3 of the wines at the same restaurant (Jake’s) where I did the BYOB and paid the $5 corkage

1989 Haut Brion

Just bottles?
I had some fabulous wines from cask in Villa Nova De Gaia this past spring.

T3 - Clos de Truffieres 2001 & Haut Brion 1985. Chalk & cheese. Both great.

2 - 1988 Krug. Nuff said.

1 - Remoissenet Clos Vougeot 1971

The Remoissenet was off the list at Legal Seafoods HQ in Boston in March. It developed the most fantastic mequite quality on the palate over time that was completely beguiling. I didn’t take notes but it was wonderful, complex, ethereal, you name it.

I’ve read the stories about Remoissenet back in the day, and perhaps the purists might be horrified that I’ve chosen it over the Krug…but it was the most memorable experience of the year so far (as much for the unexpected nature of the pleasure) and for that it gets the nod as WOTY to date


There are some other strong contenders, but if I have to pick just one I guess it would be the 1977 Emidio Pepe Montepulciano d’Abruzzi.

'89 & '90 Chave Hermitage

2003 Cayuse En Chamberlin syrah–had it twice this year…both times, kicked ass. No doubt.

2004 Lucia Susan’s Hill syrah–first vintage for the vineyard and this wine gets better and better every six months in bottle. Try it now if you own one–excellent.

2005 Pax Castelli-Knight syrah–big wine, huge flavors, maybe not for everyone but for me, it is. May not excel past the first two but it’s close.

Too many kinds, but, offhand, since Jan 2009:

Champagne - '88 Cristal

Médoc - '83 Lafite

Pomerol - '98 L’Evangile

Sauternes/Barsac - '90 Filhot Crème de Tête

Pessac-Léognan - Incredible QPR is '96 Domaine de Chevalier

Hermitage - '96 Chave Hermitage; close second is '85 Jaboulet La Chapelle

CdP - '98 Beaucastel (very young, but very good with cassoulet and roast squab)

Rioja - '82 La Rioja Alta Gran Reserva 890; for sheer QPR - '96 Beronia Rioja Gran Reserva

Ribera del Duero - '87 Unico

Priorat - '01 Alvaro Palacios Finca Dofí

Rosé/Rosado - '07 Tempier Bandol Rosé

Galicia (Rias Baixas) - 2007 Laxas Albariño (love it with escalivadas, pulpo and boquerónes)