Loren, Tony and Samantha
Loren, who was in the Bay Area from Cleveland on business this week, proposed an offline on WineBerserkers that quickly filled up. Since Loren is a vegetarian, I proposed doing it at San Francisco’s highest rated vegetarian restaurant (and one of Zagat’s highest rated SF restaurants of all kinds): Millennium. I was favorably disposed to the place even before I arrived, as all the staff I had dealt with were very helpful and took their time to give good advice. The Chef, Eric Tucker, also arranged for our corkage fees to be halved.
In offering up our wines for this OL, we somehow ended up with a mix of red Burgundy and interesting Cali Pinots. The result was a charmed evening, not just in the lovely and interesting group that came together, but also in the state of our wines (none of which were corked or showing major faults) and in the superb food. I’m not a vegetarian, but would definitely return to try more of those tasty and healthful dishes. It was great meeting Loren, Samantha, Paul, Gene and Delia, and seeing Tony, Al and George, as usual.
The standout wines for the evening, for me, were our '96 Krug, the '02 Z-H Brand Riesling, the '90 Clos de Tart and the '97 Calera Mills (impressive for me as the best Calera Pinot I’ve ever tasted).
A lovely start to our meal, this Krug got better and better as it sat in the glass.
1996 Krug Champagne Brut - France, Champagne
Light yellow color; nice yeasty, tart peach nose; tasty, focused, tart peach, apricot and lemon palate with zingy acidity; long finish (opened up a lot after 30 minutes in the glass) (95 pts.)
The '02 Z-H Brand has really grown since I last had it a couple years ago, showing wonderful complexity and balance. It was a great match with my Raw Zucchini Napoleon, with corn & macademia nut “cheese,” gypsy pepper, onion and black olive peperonata, smoked pimenton-almond-tomato romesco sauce and herb and arugula salad:
2002 Zind-Humbrecht Riesling Brand - France, Alsace, Turckheim, Alsace Grand Cru AOC
Medium golden yellow color; big, complex, ripe and tart apricot, peach and mineral nose; poised, bright and rich apricot, peach and mineral palate with balance on cut; long finish 95+ pts. (starting to drink very well I think; significantly better than when I last had it two years ago) (95 pts.)
2005 Xavier Monnot Meursault Les Chevalières - France, Burgundy, Côte de Beaune, Meursault
Light golden yellow color; nice floral, lemon blossom, lemon, mineral nose; tasty, tart lemon, lemon sorbet and mineral palate with depth; medium-plus finish (92 pts.)
First Pinot Flight - starting with the oldies
The '90 Clos de Tart was a great kick off for our Pinots. I’m usually a fan of Clos de Tart, and this was the best showing for me of the '90 in the few times I’ve had it. The '80 BV had some charm initially, but I thought it went downhill quickly, and was showing a maderized, stewed fruit note that increased as it sat.
1990 Mommessin Clos de Tart - France, Burgundy, Côte de Nuits, Clos de Tart Grand Cru
Medium bricking rust red color with clear meniscus; lovely, mature, subtle tobacco, truffle, mushroom and baked strawberry nose; delicious, mature, strawberry, baked strawberry, mineral and sous bois palate; long finish (95 pts.)
1980 Beaulieu Vineyard Pinot Noir Carneros - USA, California, Napa Valley, Carneros
Medium brick red color with clear meniscus; baked cherry, black cherry nose showing a little stewed fruit; tart, mature, cherry, dried cherry, dried red fruit palate with some stewed fruit underneath; medium finish (went downhill after 10 minutes in the glass) (83 pts.)
1993 Mount Eden Vineyards Pinot Noir Estate Bottled - USA, California, San Francisco Bay, Santa Cruz Mountains
Bricking medium red color with pale meniscus; mature, focused, tart cherry and roses nose; lovely, solid, tart cherry, strawberry, red fruit, black cherry and cinnamon palate with a touch of orange spice, would benefit from another 2 or 3 years of age; medium-plus finish 93+ pts. (93 pts.)
1997 Calera Pinot Noir Mills Vineyard - USA, California, Central Coast, Mount Harlan
Bricking medium red color with clear meniscus; savory, roasted meat, smoke and dried red fruit nose; maturing, harmonious, baked cherry, dried cherry, cinnamon, tart raspberry and mineral palate with balance and depth; medium-plus finish 94+ pts. (best Calera Pinot I’ve ever tasted) (94 pts.)
Clos Vougeot Flight
We continued going back and forth from Cali Pinot to Burgundy with this flight of tight and youthful Clos Vougeots.
Cumin Scented Fresh Corn Tamale, with seared velvet proppini & king trumpet mushrooms, posole verde, saute of pinquito beans, roasted carrot, greens, marinated radish, jicama, avocado and cashew sour cream
2001 Château de La Tour Clos Vougeot Vieilles Vignes - France, Burgundy, Côte de Nuits, Clos Vougeot Grand Cru
Medium red color with clear meniscus; nice tart red fruit, strawberry, sous bois, mineral and baked cherry nose; tart red fruit, rosehips and cinnamon palate with medium acidity, needs another 5-7 years; medium-plus finish 91+ pts. (91 pts.)
2002 Joseph Drouhin Clos Vougeot - France, Burgundy, Côte de Nuits, Clos Vougeot Grand Cru
Medium cherry red color with clear meniscus; nice tart red fruit, rhubarb and cinnamon nose; ripe black cherry, baked cherry, rhubarb palate with medium acidity, tight yet; medium finish (91 pts.)
2001 Faiveley Mazis-Chambertin - France, Burgundy, Côte de Nuits, Mazis-Chambertin Grand Cru
Medium red violet color with pale meniscus; appealing sous bois, cherry, mineral nose with focus; silky textured, with lots of stuffing on the palate, showing tart red fruit, baked cherry, minerals, roses and a touch of chlorine; medium-plus finish 92+ pts. (92 pts.)
2001 Domaine des Chezeaux Griottes-Chambertin - France, Burgundy, Côte de Nuits, Griottes-Chambertin Grand Cru
Medium cherry red color with pale meniscus; VA, vaulting nose, brimming with dried cherry, tart cherry and rhubarb; baked cherry, tart cherry and tart plum palate with integrated oak and depth; long finish (93 pts.)
2005 Vincent Girardin Charmes-Chambertin - France, Burgundy, Côte de Nuits, Charmes-Chambertin Grand Cru
Dark cherry red color; earthy, sous bois, animal skin, cinnamon nose; big, solid, tart red fruit, tart cherry, roses, strawberry and black cherry palate with sap, needs a few years; long finish 92+ pts. (92 pts.)
2003 Kosta Browne Pinot Noir Cohn - USA, California, Sonoma County, Russian River Valley
Dark red violet color; big, cherry, black cherry and caramel nose; good ripe cherry, berry, raspberry and confectioner’s sugar palate; long finish (90 pts.)
2001 DuMOL Pinot Noir Finn - USA, California, Sonoma County, Russian River Valley
Dark red violet color; berry, boysenberry, boysenberry syrup nose; rich, port-like, concentrated, berry, blackberry, boysenberry and plum palate; medium finish (89 pts.)
2005 Viader Proprietary Red - USA, California, Napa Valley
Opaque dark red violet color; nice coffee, black fruit and mulberry nose; nice, plush, mulberry, berry and roast coffee palate; medium-plus finish (93 pts.)
1998 Château d’Yquem - France, Bordeaux, Sauternais, Sauternes
Light orange yellow color; coconut, apricot nose; tasty, rich, coconut, baked apricot, apple, baked peach and brown sugar palate; long finish (93 pts.)
Posted from CellarTracker