Saturday TNs: 96 Duval Femme, 02 Vogue, 97 Dunn Howell +

ZBL joined me for a late afternoon and evening round of wine and good chow. Fortunately all wines showed amazingly well.

1996 Duval Leroy Femme de Champagne
Their Tete de Cuvee, from 750ml, just a showstopping Champagne imo. The nose reminds me of 96 Dom Perignon - on the palate this is super young still with lots of citrus and piquant lemon flavors. Sizzling acidity, still a baby but tasty now, too.

2002 Vogue Chambolle Musigny
Open for business right from the get go, popped the cork around Noon, took a small sample and then recorked until 430pm. More of a masculine and beefy/hearty Chambolle than I’m perhaps used to, but delicious nonetheless. Soaring aromatics of spice, musky dark fred fruits and that Burgundy funk on the nose. Round, rich and sappy in the mouth, the texture of this wine is amazing. Don’t hesitate to drink one, in a great spot right now.

1997 Dunn Howell Mountain Cabernet
If only they all tasted like this, and I even mean Dunn’s cabs in addition to the rest of Cali. Sure this could go another 20 years or so but especially with food, it’s in a pleasant spot. Lots of brambly red fruits accompanied by a peek of tertiary flavor and tannins that, while evident, aren’t firm and don’t detract from the wine even sans food. Just a beauty and one of the few 1997 Cali Cabs I really like.

1996 Laurel Glen Cabernet
Yet another great showing, less power and muscle than the 97 Dunn but perhaps move verve due to ample acidity. Wasn’t a letdown after the Dunn at all, layered with silky red currant fruit, it glides down the gullet so easily. I think this has plenty of life left, too.

A great night of drinking indeed. Upon opening, I was afraid the Dunn was going to disappoint, but an hour or so in the glass it really shined. Upon opening all I was getting was green tannin, but air did wonders.
The Laurel Glen was in a really weird place when I first opened it. I initially thought we had a dud. It was just primal sweet fruit to me. I left it alone and drank the other stuff figuring I’d drink the LG when all the others were gone. A while later I checked back in and BOOM it was singing. this was my first 96, but I’ve had others from the 80s and these “older” laurel glens are truly great bottles of wine.

The '97 Howell Mt. is ready already!? [wink.gif] I’ve got a couple from the '80s I should try! Haven’t had one yet.

Hi Peter, I agree that the 96 Femme is an amazing champagne, had a bottle last night and it impressed again… Cheers Mike

Paul, the 97 has quite a few years ahead of it!