Wine Impressions 7-21-18

Wine Impressions - 7-21-18

2009 Camille Saves, Champagne Brut - fresh but very young with little development, coiled and closed.
2008 Baron Fuente, Champagne Brut - this one is fully developed with a nutty but non-oxidized bent and good acidity; quite open and expressive

2016 Louis Michel, Chablis Vaillons - starting to shut down but showing good material for development.
2014 Louis Michel, Chablis Montee de Tonnerre - brilliant wine, full flavored yet focused, precise but not austere; a joy to drink.
2009 Damijan, Ribolla Gialla (mag,) - skin-fermented, brass color, no oxidation, all sorts of phenolic/savory/tangerine skin stuff going on with grip and textures that make me sit up and take notice. Powerful, idiosyncratic and arresting wine. What a treat.
2015 Idlewild, Cortese and 2012 Cowan Cellars, Ribolla Gialla - (had side by side at the Fig Cafe with dinner) the Idlewild is partially skin-fermented and the Cowan is 100% skin-fermented. These wines were virtually the same; the Cowan a little darker and more integrated, the Idlewild with more cut. Both are thoroughly enjoyable with fried calamari and an heirloom tomato pizza. But neither has typicity nor any clear indicators of terroir. My surmise is that skin-fermented wines are more about process than grape or place. And when these two wines are compared to the Damijan in the preceding note, that theory becomes even stronger.
Don’t get me wrong; I love orange wines. But I don’t think you’ll often find terroir or varietal character in them.

2017 Pax, Trousseau Gris - quite pale with a dry slightly medicinal (but not off putting) cranberry nose, mouth coating, light flavors and pretty balance but then a surprise; the finish is really long. 11.8 abv. How’d he do that?

2017 Dirty and Rowdy, Mourvèdre Unfamiliar - I could drink this a lot; fun, balanced, dry and light, charming fruit. Maybe a little short but that just means it’s time for another sip!
2016 Nalle, Pinot Noir Hopkins Ranch - broader and softer than expected, all about the fruit, low acid. Nothing wrong with it but I’ll spend my calories elsewhere.
1977 Ridge, Petite Sirah York Creek - reinforces my belief that petite sirah can age but does not develop. At 41, this is so monotone that it would be a minor miracle if the latest release wasn’t damn near identical. It’s solid and yet totally uninteresting. And let’s face it, if anybody could shoot down my belief, it’s Ridge at York Creek.
2014 Gonon, St. Joseph - delicate but intense, nuanced, balanced and long; mid weight Syrah at its best.
2016 Dirty and Rowdy, Mourvèdre Evangelho Vineyard - own-rooted, Goblet pruned, very old vines in sand - the harmonic convergence for this grape. High toned aromatics, integrated in the mouth with perfect balance and good length. I know there is more here but it will take a lot of will power to stay away from my remaining bottles. Lovely this. (Aside: I chose this from the cooler thinking it was the D&R Unfamiliar but, after opening, realized my mistake. I subsequently learned that Frank Evangelho had passed away the previous day. Maybe it wasn’t a mistake . . .)
1982 Fontodi, Chianti Classico Riserva - sous bois, soy sauce, but also some mellow fruit aromas; more vigorous in the mouth with bright acids and some secondary earthy accents to medium weight cooked fruit flavors. But it is hard to get past the nose which deteriorates quickly. Diane says, no. This is like an interesting motion that never gets a second.
2016 Birichino, Mourvèdre - starts young and unevolved, developes from a slightly rustic, casual type of wine - why yes I’ll have a bit more but just a light pour, please - to become more than the sum of its parts. Following this for several years should be instructive. Screw cap.

Best, jim

Thanks for the insight on the D&R Evangelho. I opened the 2016 Shake Ridge Ranch Mourvèdre the other day, and while very good, was rather curled up. Going to leave the rest alone.

Thanks for the tasting notes, Jim!!

I am hanging on to my bottle of 2016 D&R “Evangelho” Mourvèdre for a little while longer!

May I ask you how you heard about Mr Frank Evangelho’s passing?

Morgan Twain-Peterson posted on Facebook about Frank’s passing.
Best, jim

The 1974 Ridge York Creek Petit Syrah was one of the most complex and profound American wines I have ever tasted. 1977 wasn’t an easy vintage and I am wondering what the effect of a long drought on this really tannic unforgiving grape would be.

Thanks Jim! Absolutely heart-breaking. :frowning: I know that Mr Frank Evangelho had heart problems, alluded to in MTP’s comments about the purchase of the vineyard by Bedrock, but I am sad nonetheless