We hosted a fun tasting last night. Typically, a dozen people show up, each with a couple of bottles. Last night both numbers nearly doubled. We started with whites blind, then reds. With that many people and bottles, a blind tasting can get a little cumbersome, at least for me. My guesses were so far off the mark it was embarrassing. There were too many wines to take notes, but the take-home summary for me was:
- The whites were all good. I don’t drink enough Italian white wines
- The ‘52 Borgogno Reserva was a beauty. A nose of soy sauce and iodine (in a good way) with sweet red fruit still dominating the palate. Still strong at 70, as I hope to be (too soon).
- I thought I didn’t like “modern” Barolo, but the ‘96 Paolo Scavino Bric del Fiasc was elegant and delicious. The ‘05 Aldo Conterno was fresh and nice too.
- The 1964 Dessilani Bonarda from the Fara region in Piedmont was a revelation. The freshest 50+ year old wine I’ve ever had. If that was a representative bottle, that’s a grape that can stand with Nebbiolo, Tempranillo and Chenin Blanc as a wine that can age for decades.
- We were lucky with the quality and condition of the wines. Only the 1995 Tignanello was bad (corked).
- I like well made Nerello Mascalese. Those bottles had a lot of similarities to the Nebbiolos, but with a touch of Burgundian character. Some seem to age well.
- I wish I had started buying Alta Piedmont wines earlier.
- I think about a dozen bottles is my limit before I start losing focus and get palate fatigue.
Photos are in random order; no time for sorting.