Thanks again to Zach for organizing and to our favorite haunt for allowing us to free form on people and wine. Ed was close to sitting in another zip code from my end of the table, but seemed to be enjoying himself. I really enjoyed my first experience with the August West wines and the old Bordeaux weren’t too shabby either.
1996 Jacquesson Signature Extra Brut – I think this bottle was flawed, with a strong note of oxidized sherry to go along with intense sea shell minerals on the nose. Very, very tart and acidic on the palate with nice structure and lemons and soy on the finish.
2007 Vieux Lazaret CNDP Blanc – Very nice lemon/lime on the nose with a strong whiff of limestone. Not a ton of fruit on the palate, but very nice body and texture with a strong mineral backbone. Went wonderfully well with food.
2007 August West Graham Family Vineyard – White pepper, forest floor, baking spices and graham crackers on the nose. Beautifully structured palate with cola, black raspberry, and spicy ginger. Good balance of sweet and acidic on the finish.
2006 August West Graham Family Vineyard – This had been open since the day prior. It did not have the same fruit forwardness of the 07, but instead was full of spicy peppery mushrooms and pine needles on the nose. Much more delicate but delineated and elegant palate, consistent with the nose but also having some nice soft raspberry fruit.
2007 August West Rosella’s Vineyard – Some pronounced pinot funk on the nose (good funk, like Parliament/Funkadelic in their prime) with a strong cola and big bold black cherry fruit. Much more in your face than the Graham’s – quite structured, almost tannic on the finish.
1997 AF Gros Savigny Les Beaune Le Clos des Guettes – White flowers, soy sauce, just a hint of brett and damp earth. Bright very tart cherry fruit on the palate – nice attack but a little thin on the finish
2006 WH Smith Marimar Vineyard – A huge style shift from the Burg. Nose of juniper, cola and black raspberry. Very oaky palate with some of the same black raspberry notes shining through. Not my cup of tea.
1983 Chateau Canon – Very refined nose of white pepper, cedar, sweet licorice and leather. Definitely fully mature on the palate with very soft tannins and some nice earthy raspberry fruit and a hint of soy on the finish.
1982 Beychevelle – Still very vibrantly colored. Seemed a little muted to me on the nose and palate even after an hour decant, but as it sat in the glass began to really open up. Lots of cinnamon, nutmeg, cedar and tobacco notes on the nose. Soft attack with lovely red fruit, but still some significant structure and backbone to it with a nice long finish. Drinking well right now but has some life left.
1990 Pegau Cuvee Reservee – We tasted this blind. Guesses at our end of the table were Amarone or Valpolicella as the wine had a definite sweet dried fruit note to it. Some raspberry and plum fruit, but the whole thing seemed a little monolithic to me and I was shocked at the reveal. Maybe some more time open?
1993 Hilltop Neszmély Tokaji – Like a marvelously refreshing lemon iced tea. Not overly sweet and cloying, but nice notes of honey and tea on the palate as well. A very nice finisher!