TN: Real Wine with Real Food

REAL WINE WITH REAL FOOD - Our House, White Plains (7/1/2017)

A Motley Crew. Three other couples, one twenty-something child of one of them, our two adult sons, one daughter in law, and one under 3 grandchild, with a multi-course pairing meal.

Assorted fresh made breads
Gravlax with Saffron Aioli- Pepiere Muscadet
Figs stuffed with Chevre and crushed Almonds, wrapped in Bacon - Pepiere Muscadet
Gazpacho - Aubert CIX Chardonnay
Shitake Mushroom Risotto - Beychevelle
Moroccan Lamb Burgers with Tzatziki Sauce - Royal City Syrah
Marinated Skirt Steak with Assorted Roasted Vegetables - Black Sears Cabernet
Vanilla Ice Cream with Four Berries - 2011 Ch. Guiraud
Strawberry Cake

  • 2015 Domaine de la Pépière (Marc Ollivier) Muscadet de Sèvre-et-Maine Sur Lie Vieilles Vignes Clos des Briords - France, Loire Valley, Pays Nantais, Muscadet de Sèvre-et-Maine
    No decant, served to accompany home made gravlax with a saffron aioli I learned how to make the week before at the CIA. The acidity cut through the fat/oil of the gravlax as a very nice pairing. Salty minerals and assorted tropical fruits, but more guava and melon like than citrus. Quite delicious. I would buy again. Tough to keep my hands off. I have owned this for less than a year and four out of six are gone. (90 pts.)

  • 2013 Aubert Chardonnay CIX Estate Vineyard - USA, California, Sonoma County, Sonoma Coast
    Another great showing at our dinner party - paired with home made gazpacho - but only a tiny bit of hot sauce so it was not spicy. Great pairing. A few people at the table said they didn’t like white wine and then proceeded to declare that this was the best white wine they had ever tasted. The one thing that I often get in a good white Burg that is often missing in the Cali Chards is a depth in the chest that is so hard to describe as a flavor. It’s a feeling that fills your upper torso. AND this wine definitely had it, to complement the acidity, the white fruit, tart apple and overall perfect balance. I have been sensing movement of the house style slowly just a bit away from the creamy chard to the slightly higher acidity chard with more laser-like precision. They have denied there has been a change, but in a recent exchange of emails there was a hint of an admission of a slight style change. I loved the old and the new is even better. (94 pts.)

  • 1970 Château Beychevelle - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Julien
    Brought by a friend to our dinner party. Purchased as part of a mixed case at a Christie’s auction. Pop, decanted and poured. A lot of crud. Cork was a bit loose and even with the Durand the bottom piece broke off but I got it out clean. The wine was sound and had a nice balance of an aged left bank Bordeaux, but with light fruit. After 10 minutes in the glass, it really blossomed into more red fruit wit some smooth saddle leather. From a vintage reputed to be awful, it’s quite nice. (91 pts.)

  • 2006 Charles Smith Syrah Royal City - USA, Washington, Columbia Valley
    My last bottle of this wine was like a jack hammer to my forehead, but this has calmed down after an extra 8 years in the bottle. 3-1/2 hour decant with a second bottle into a large ope mouthed glass pitcher. It has smoothed out but is still an oozing fruit monster, but a good monster at that. Not for the faint of heart, but I am not of the faint of heart. This wine is a simple gut check. If you are on the AFWE side of the aisle, STAY AWAY FROM THIS WINE. You might hurt yourself as you violently relive yourself of all the flavors it puts into your mouth. However, if the idea of drinking a big red syrah with home ground lamb sliders with Ras el Hanout and other fresh ground spices, served wit a dollop of home made Tzatziki sauce does not cause you to run away with your tail between your legs, this is for you. (94 pts.)

  • 2010 Black Sears Cabernet Sauvignon Estate - USA, California, Napa Valley, Howell Mountain
    4 hour decant with a second bottle into a large open top glass pitcher because we do not have a magnum decanter. Still primary but beginning to take on some back end secondary red fruit extra complexity to go with the Howell Mountain spice and the power of a Thomas Rivers Brown wine. The next bottle can wait five years and my guess is that additional flavors in hiding due to the power of what’s there will come to the fore. Good pairing with marinated skirt steak as the seventh course of a tasting menu dinner party we created. (93 pts.)

    Posted from CellarTracker

I did not taste the Guiraud, but I was advised that it was not overly sweet with balancing acidity. I had it two years ago and that fits with my recollection.

Sounds like a great meal and nice wines. However, 1970 was not reputed to be an awful vintage in Bordeaux.

Chuck - You’re just too young. In the 1970s, it was reputed to be a bad vintage, perhaps not as bad as 1968 or 1973, but definitely no 1961 or 1966, which were the two vintages people always talked about. I think half the reason so many people went nuts over 1975 was that they were vintage-starved. I still have a 1970 Gruaud and I opened one last year. It was quite good. Perhaps I should have said “1970, originally reputed to be a bad vintage.”

I recall 1970 as being the go to vintage when I was starting out. Between a very bad string of vintages from 67-74, it sort of stood out as the only good bordeaux vintage to buy among what was available retail at that point.

Just spent 10 minutes flipping through some old materials a guy from my wine group gave to me when he retired. 1970 was certainly not portrayed as a bad vintage when it came out.

Parker trashed some of the wines later on, but that was his MO.

I wasn’t drinking wines then, but from various readings, 1970 was considered by most pros then to be the vintage to go for in the decade of the 1970s.

Enjoyed the write up Jay and loved the chest feel description you got in the Aubert as I can relate. I fail to make mention of it in my notes, but it is definitely there.