Monday, June 30, 2008

Wines Tasted in June

2003 Boudreaux Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve USA, Washington, Columbia Valley - Cracked open this bottle for my 35th birthday dinner. Paired with a medium rare hunk of tenderloin. Decanted for about 2 hours, there was a bit of sediment in the bottle. As with some other "top shelf" wines I have had, there were not a lot of unique aromas and flavors. The wine just melded very well around little bits of this and that. One of the elements of Rob's wines that I just adore is the mouth feel, just pure silk. Finish lingered on the tongue for a while. All in all very good effort. Would purchase again.

2001 Sanford Pinot Noir Santa Rita Hills USA, California, Central Coast, Santa Rita Hills - Wine was really nice right out of the bottle but faded too quickly. Lots of cherry cola on the nose with a bit of tart cranberry coming through on the palate. Tartness overwhelmed after about a half an hour. Finish became clipped and astringent. Think that this might be at the end of its life.

2005 Canon de Sol Viognier USA, Washington, Columbia Valley - Somewhat one dimensional, but in a good way. Huge nose of honeysuckle. Nice crisp, fresh flavors on the palate. Nice balanced acidity. Would purchase again.

2002 Cechony Gold Label Champoux Vineyard USA, Washington, Columbia Valley - Very light in color with a thin clear line around the edge. Nose was somewhat closed. Upon opening there was slight hint of cherry liqueur on the palate. After about two hours the flavors turned smoky. Tannins were absent; this is a wine to be drunk young. Had one glass left after three days. Flavor was a mix of candied fruit and smoke.

2003 Townshend Syrah USA, Washington, Columbia Valley - Lots of sediment in the bottle, unfortunately the restaurant we were at doesn't decant wines. Right out of the bottle this had a heavy fruit forward aroma. This died quickly as the oak took over. Way too much wood for my liking. Would not purchase again.

2005 Cougar Crest Vivace USA, Washington, Columbia Valley, Walla Walla Valley - This wine is a blend of 70% viognier and 30% chardonnay. The buttery element of the chardonnay were coming through more tonight than the last time I had this wine. There was still a good amount of tropical notes from the viognier, but just not the dominant force. Lots of crisp acidity on the finish. Would purchase again.

2004 Rulo Combine USA, Washington, Columbia Valley, Walla Walla Valley - Decent. Not nearly as mind blowing as the Chardonnay/Viognier mix from the 2003 vintage. Better whites out there for the price...At least for this vintage.

2003 Januik Merlot USA, Washington, Columbia Valley - Oaky, Complex, Smooth. Needed an hour to open up. Would purchase again

NV Scharffenberger Brut USA, California, North Coast, Mendocino County - Consistent Notes.

NV Scharffenberger Brut USA, California, North Coast, Mendocino County - Very dry. Pleasant to drink. Wife likes Gloria Ferrer better. Would purchase again.

1999 Beringer Vineyards Alluvium USA, California, Sonoma County, Knights Valley - Lots of green notes. Heavy on the dill. Doesn't seem ready for consumption, may need a few more years.

2002 Cedar Creek Meritage Platinum Reserve Canada, British Columbia, Okanagan Valley - Decanted due to lots of sediment. This was a huge fruit forward wine. Bordering on a fruit bomb! Notes of cherry, raspberry and mint. Fruit was very sweet even though the wine was dry. Tannins showed up after about a half an hour in the decanter, balanced at first than drying out. Good amount of oak but well integrated. Very good wine and I would love to purchase more, but the winery treated me like such crap when I was there I have to pass just on principle.

2002 Chateau St. Jean Chardonnay Belle Terre Vineyard USA, California, Sonoma County, Alexander Valley - Consistent Notes.

2002 Chateau St. Jean Chardonnay Belle Terre Vineyard USA, California, Sonoma County, Alexander Valley - Smooth and Buttery. Similar to the basic blend, but a little softer. Really enjoyable wine. Not sure if the extra money for the vineyard designate is worth it?

2001 St. Supéry Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon USA, California, Napa Valley - Consistent Notes.

2001 St. Supéry Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon USA, California, Napa Valley - Tight. Needs more time in the bottle or a minimum of three hours decanting to mellow. I like their wines a little older.

1995 Gloria Ferrer Royal Cuvée USA, California, Sonoma County, Carneros - Starting to go down hill a little bit. Just not a fresh as some of the other bottles I have had. Still enjoyable, but time to drink up.

2003 Lake Chelan Winery Stormy Mountain Red USA, Washington, Columbia Valley - Nice but unremarkable wine. Smoky with a bit of oak and tobacco. Very short finish. Not much fruit. Better wines out there for the price. Would not purchase again.

2005 Woodinville Wine Cellars Sauvignon Blanc Artz Vineyard USA, Washington, Columbia Valley, Red Mountain - Good. Pineapple and hay. Would purchase again.

2003 Penny's Hill Shiraz Australia, South Australia, Fleurieu, McLaren Vale - Consistent Notes.

2003 Penny's Hill Shiraz Australia, South Australia, Fleurieu, McLaren Vale - Consistent Notes.

2003 Penny's Hill Shiraz Australia, South Australia, Fleurieu, McLaren Vale - Great, wonderful, yummy. Decanted 30 minutes prior to dinner. Cherries and Strawberries. Good amount of oak, but not overwhelming. Tannins were well integrated. Need to buy a case of this. Plus...Have read that this was a down vintage. Can't wait to try my 2002.

2005 Isenhower Cellars Wild Thyme USA, Washington, Columbia Valley - Very earthy right out of the bottle, but that blew off quickly. Nose of plum and smoke. On the palate there were tons of tart berry flavors. Mouthwatering acidity brought the finish along. Enjoyed the wine tonight, but it didn't match the mouth feel and complexities of flavor from the last time I had this. Would purchase again.

2004 Soléna Pinot Gris USA, Oregon - Consistent Notes.

2004 Soléna Pinot Gris USA, Oregon - Fabulous. Melon and citrus. Classic example of what I think of when I drink Pinot Gris. Would purchase again.

2004 Seghesio Family Vineyards Zinfandel Sonoma County USA, California, Sonoma County - Consistent Notes.

2004 Seghesio Family Vineyards Zinfandel Sonoma County USA, California, Sonoma County - Needs lots of time to open up. Spicy. Good potential, but tight right now. Not as much of a fruit bomb as past vintages. Would purchase again.

2001 Salmon Harbor Merlot USA, Washington, Columbia Valley - It was wine. Not bad, not good, just wine.

2007 Sleight of Hand Cabernet Franc Magician's Assistant Rosé Frenchtown Vineyard USA, Washington, Columbia Valley, Walla Walla Valley - Really refreshing. Had a bubble gum color. Aromas of strawberries still on the vine and just a hint of green peppercorns. The wine had a thicker mouth feel than I was expecting. Flavors of cranberry and canned peaches with raspberry syrup. Paired quite well with mac and cheese with a side of ham steak. Looking forward to this on a really hot day in the summer. Would purchase again.

2004 Nefarious Cellars Pinot Noir Vista Hills USA, Oregon, Willamette Valley - Nice light red color. Nose of oak and tangy fruit. On the palate you get lots of strawberry twizzler. Decent length finish. Balanced acidity. Would purchase again.

2002 Spring Valley Vineyard Merlot Muleskinner USA, Washington, Columbia Valley, Walla Walla Valley - Much drier than I remember at the winery. The fruit is hiding more in the background now. Could use a nice fatty steak to open up. Tasty...But...Think that there are other better choices at this price point.

2004 Rulo Chardonnay Sundance Vineyard USA, Washington, Columbia Valley, Walla Walla Valley - Steely, no butter here. Needed food to balance out the acidity. Not really my style of Chardonnay.

2000 Terra Blanca Cabernet Sauvignon Red Mountain USA, Washington, Columbia Valley, Red Mountain - Consistent Notes.

2000 Terra Blanca Cabernet Sauvignon Red Mountain USA, Washington, Columbia Valley, Red Mountain - Consistent Notes.

2000 Terra Blanca Cabernet Sauvignon Red Mountain USA, Washington, Columbia Valley, Red Mountain - At peak but possibly starting down the other side. Still very tasty. Recommend that you start drinking them if you got them. Would purchase new vintages.

2005 Buty Merlot/Cabernet Franc USA, Washington, Columbia Valley - Really balanced bottle of wine. Dark purple to red color. Tannins are present but not overwhelming in any sense. Nice mix of fruit flavors along with herbal, tobacco, spice thing going on from the cab franc. Medium length finish. Not sure where this wine could get better as all elements seem in complete balance. Would purchase again.

1985 Porto Rocha Porto Vintage Portugal, Douro, Porto - Cork broke in half, and then the bottom crumbled as I was trying to get it out. Did not decant. Poured very slowly and the cork fragments stayed in the bottle. Was not showing well tonight. Have had this on three other occasions and it sang. Felt a little flat and gritty tonight. Very dry and not a lot of fruit to be found. Hope that this was just an off bottle.

2004 Cougar Crest Viognier USA, Washington, Columbia Valley, Walla Walla Valley - Consistent Notes.

2004 Cougar Crest Viognier USA, Washington, Columbia Valley, Walla Walla Valley - Can see why this winery is getting some good press. One of the best whites of the cruise. Reminded me a lot of the 2003 Rulo Combine. Tropical fruits that last and last. Good balanced acidity. Would purchase again.

2004 Rulo Syrah Columbia Valley USA, Washington, Columbia Valley - Rulo syrah just never lets me down. Dark and brooding. Still a bit young, but opened up nicely with an hour of air. Heavy(in a good way) with a touch of spice. Would purchase again.

2003 Bergevin Lane Calico Red USA, Washington, Columbia Valley - Decant, decant, decant. Opened this wine (did not decant) and drank over four hours. The first three hours it was green and harsh. From three to three and a half hours it opened up into an extremely tasty and complex wine. By hour four all that was left was wood. Will wait another six months and hope that I can get that half hour window to be the majority of the flavor profile.

2004 Boudreaux Cellars Chardonnay Bishop's & Homestead USA, Washington - Fruit starting to fade a little bit. Still a nice balanced wine with a hint of caramel and lots of apple. Great mouth feel, just fills every bit of the mouth and has a nice long finish. Still drinking wonderfully, but probably won't hold for all that much longer. Would purchase again for near term drinking.

2004 L'Ecole No. 41 Sémillon USA, Washington, Columbia Valley - Great wine year in and year out. Heavy wood flavors but in a way that doesn't taste over powering. Has the mouth feel of heavy cream. Would purchase again.

2001 Terra Blanca Merlot USA, Washington, Columbia Valley, Red Mountain - Consistent Notes.

2001 Terra Blanca Merlot USA, Washington, Columbia Valley, Red Mountain - Consistent Notes.

2001 Terra Blanca Merlot USA, Washington, Columbia Valley, Red Mountain - At peak. Great everyday or special occasion wine. Smooth. Nice dark fruit flavors. Paired well with a porterhouse. Would purchase more, but only for near term drinking.

NV Scharffenberger Brut USA, California, North Coast, Mendocino County - Consistent Notes.

NV Scharffenberger Brut USA, California, North Coast, Mendocino County - Consistent Notes.

2003 Toad Hollow Merlot Reserve McDowell USA, California, Sonoma County, Russian River Valley - And then the fruit disappears. Color on the wine still makes me think that it is Pinot. Deep pink, with just a hint of a cherry center. All that was left tonight of this wine was the barrel. Total oak on both the nose and palate. Wasn't bad enough to pour down the sink, but not something that I'd want to drink again anytime soon. Maybe 2003 just wasn't a good year. Would not purchase again.

2004 Viña Estampa Assemblage Chile, Central Valley, Rapel Valley, Colchagua Valley - Decent everyday wine. Starting to mellow out. Would purchase again.

2004 Kenwood Sauvignon Blanc USA, California, Sonoma County - Nice though unremarkable wine. Started out with a floral fruity aroma that turned grassy as the wine warmed a bit. Crisp acidity. Decent QPR, would purchase again.

2004 Chandler Reach Vineyards Corella USA, Washington, Columbia Valley, Yakima Valley - Going to have to pick more of this up. Nice mid week wine with great QPR. A bit spicy with a good mouth feel. There are some dried floral aromas from the sangiovese with more roundness from the cab and syrah. Would purchase again.

2004 Gallagher U Brew Pinot Gris USA, Oregon, Yamhill County - Maybe slightly corked, but not enough to tell for sure. Maybe just an off bottle.

2007 Trust Cabernet Franc USA, Washington, Columbia Valley, Walla Walla Valley - Paired with burgers and potato salad. Color was T-Mobile Magenta. Crisp fruit on the nose with bits of strawberries. Flavor profile was nice but didn't last very long. Finish was clean but uninspiring. Decent wine for a warm day with a picnic. Would purchase again.

2007 Sleight of Hand Cabernet Franc Magician's Assistant Rosé Frenchtown Vineyard USA, Washington, Columbia Valley, Walla Walla Valley - Paired with burgers and potato salad. Light pink color. Nose was a bit sweeter than the last bottle, but the wine was nice and dry on the palate. Very refreshing. Would purchase again.

2005 Seghesio Family Vineyards Zinfandel Sonoma County USA, California, Sonoma County - Bright purple color. Lots of up front fruit with a bit of spice. Not a lot of oak on the nose, but it is there on the palate. Very good sit and relax wine. Would purchase again.

2004 Powers Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve Champoux Vineyard USA, Washington, Columbia Valley, Horse Heaven Hills - Opened bottle without decanting for two hours prior to drinking. Nose was still a little muted at first and took a good swirling to open up. Notes of chocolate, cassis and black liquorice. Fine grained tannins that danced across the tongue. Full mouth feel with a finish that lasted 20 seconds. Would purchase again.

2004 Gallagher U Brew France, Rhône - Funky in all the wrong ways. Can't say that this bottle is corked, but all of the kit wines I have made have this off aroma and flatness to them. Turned the bottle into the base for Sangria. With the extra fruit and alcohol it covers up the wines flaws.

2004 Robert Karl Cellars Claret USA, Washington, Columbia Valley - Popped and poured. Right out of the bottle this was very young and primary. Bright red purple color with the slightest clear rim. Bit of a stemmy aroma with candied fruit behind. Thought that this was a merlot (wife picked it and made me taste it blind to see if I could tell what it was). After an hour in the glass the fruit was taken over by a smoky tobacco aroma. There was still the fruit on the palate with a balanced tannin level. Definitely needs to be decanted right now to get the best out of the bottle. Would purchase again.

2004 Nefarious Cellars Pinot Noir Vista Hills USA, Oregon, Willamette Valley - Wow, this bottle was singing tonight. Right out of the bottle there were tons of mushroom aromas as well as wet dirt (love that pinot funk). There was also an element of strawberry twizzler. On the palate there was a hint of sweet tart candy along with more of the forest floor notes. Finish was smooth but didn't last an overly long time. Mouth feel was very nice without being too heavy. Would purchase again.

2005 Northwest Cellars USA, Washington, Columbia Valley, Walla Walla Valley - Served too cold at first. Better once it warmed up. A little bit of oak and a good to slightly heavy amount of acidity. Green apples on the nose and palate. Not as creamy mouth feel as the last bottle. Decent. Would purchase again.

2003 Bergevin Lane Calico Red USA, Washington, Columbia Valley - Good for everyday wine. Short clipped finish. Finally mellowing out, the tannins are in check. Burger or BBQ wine.

2004 Chateau St. Jean Chardonnay USA, California, Sonoma County - Good all around wine. Buttery and smooth. Would purchase again.

2003 Montirius Gigondas France, Rhône, Southern Rhône, Gigondas - Wine had notes of minerality and black pepper. Tannins were somewhat in the forefront of the wine until I paired it with a med rare rib eye. Then the wine really started to come out of its shell. Would purchase again.

2004 Stevens Cabernet Sauvignon XY USA, Washington, Columbia Valley - Popped and poured, should have done a splash decant. Wine was singing after a little while in the glass. Mouth feel was bordering on heavy (a good thing). Aromas of oak, dark fruits and a roasted corn element. Palate was complex yet simple. There were a multitude of flavors going on, but they melded into one singular taste and so it was difficult to pull any one element out. Finish lasted a while. Would purchase again.

2004 B.R. Cohn Zinfandel USA, California, Sonoma County, Sonoma Valley - The nose on this wine has really popped since the last bottle I had. Spot on aromas of clove dominates. The taste leaves lots to be desired. A bit metallic and thin. Improved a little over time, but not markedly. Decent wine to drink on a weeknight, but not a good QPR. Would not purchase again.

2006 Stevens Viognier Divio USA, Washington, Columbia Valley - Much spicier than I remember this wine being in the past. Typically there are a lot of floral elements, but I was getting a heavy arugula aroma. Good balanced acidity and nice crisp mouth feel. Finish stuck with me for a while. Would purchase again.

2005 Francis Coppola / Niebaum-Coppola Chardonnay Diamond Collection Gold Label USA, California - Not a good bottle of wine. Drank from 375ml. Nose jumped right out of the glass and had tons of burnt caramel and cream. Palate was all new wood. Finish just disappeared right after the wine left the tongue. Would not purchase again.

2003 Stevens 424 USA, Washington, Columbia Valley, Yakima Valley - Brought to Gig Harbor "open" tasting.

2005 Nefarious Cellars Riesling Antoine Creek USA, Washington, Columbia Valley - Brought to Gig Harbor "open" tasting.

2005 Buty Merlot/Cabernet Franc USA, Washington, Columbia Valley - Brought to Gig Harbor "Open" tasting.

1999 Erath Pinot Noir Reserve USA, Oregon, Yamhill County - Still tasty but starting down the hill. Wasn't nearly as inspiring as the last time.

2004 Chatter Creek Cabernet Franc Alder Ridge Vineyard USA, Washington, Columbia Valley, Horse Heaven Hills - red core with a pink rim. Nose is a bit hot with some green elements. Fruit is starting to die on the palate, leaving a sour finish. Tannins are still present. Overall I think that this is on the downhill. If you got 'em, drink 'em. Would not purchase this vintage again.

2004 Chatter Creek Cabernet Franc Alder Ridge Vineyard USA, Washington, Columbia Valley, Horse Heaven Hills - Drank rather than analyzed this tonight. It was good, would purchase again.

2006 Stevens Viognier Divio USA, Washington, Columbia Valley - Nose was not giving up all that much tonight. On the palate there was a lot of lime and a bit of kiwi. Not terribly complex tonight, but it was drinking just fine for the fact that it was hot out today. Would purchase again.

2005 Nefarious Cellars Gewürztraminer Antoine Creek USA, Washington, Columbia Valley - Still going strong. The nose is starting to close up a bit, but I think that I had it chilled a little bit too much. Very distinct flavor of Satsuma orange peel. Touch of residual sugar balanced nicely with the Jerk chicken. Acidity could be a little higher. Finish was pleasant and lasted a good 30 seconds. Would purchase again.

2004 Mission Hill Shiraz Reserve Canada, British Columbia, Okanagan Valley, Okanagan Valley VQA - Cork was soaked through and spongy. DOA.

NV Nicolas Feuillatte Champagne Brut France, Champagne - Decent bottle of wine, but did not live up to my expectations. Extremely tart and this covered the fruit flavors. Medium sized bubbles. Would not purchase again due to low QPR.

2003 Inniskillin Pinot Blanc Single Vineyard Series Dark Horse Estate Vineyard Canada, British Columbia, Okanagan Valley, Okanagan Valley VQA - Decent bottle of wine for a weeknight. Nice floral aromas and pleasant tart(crisp) flavor. It was a bit too one dimensional, but at the price point it is hard to expect complexity. Would purchase again.

2006 Stevens Viognier Divio USA, Washington, Columbia Valley - Tasting more like Sauv Blanc tonight. The floral elements are definitely going away. The wine was much grassier with lots of tropical fruit flavors. Acidity is really taking over the finish with laser like focus. Would purchase again.

2005 J. A. Balistreri Vineyards Merlot Little Feet Lovies USA, Colorado, Grand Valley - Tastes like sacramental wine. A bit sweet like there is a touch of residual sugar left in the wine. Very jammy, not much acid. Tends to be a bit flabby on the tongue. Would not purchase again.

1999 Woodward Canyon Pinot Noir USA, Washington, Columbia Valley, Walla Walla Valley - Very nice. Evolved over a four hour period. Decanted, threw about a teaspoon of sediment. Started with a hint of mint (I find this in a lot of Pinot Noir, my wife thinks I am crazy. Maybe it's not mint, but that's how it tastes to me). An hour later the wood showed through then changed into tobacco. Last glass had lots of sour cherries and eucalyptus. Overall the wine still had some tannin left. Could age a bit more.

2004 Mark Ryan The Dissident USA, Washington, Columbia Valley - Thought this was a very nice but nothing "wow" about it. Heavy oak nose and flavors. Gave it an unsweetened vanilla profile. Extremely ripe and primary fruit flavors. Finish was neither long nor clipped. Though this wine was good, for $22 I can think of too many other wines that offer much more "wow".

1 comment:

helen said...

Wow indeed!. That is some serious wine tasting there. I personally like californian wines like white grenache and zinfandel but noticed the zinfandel you drank wasnt to your liking. Great wines reviews keep it up.