2005 Vieux Clocher "Nobles Terrasses", Gigondas
I thought this wine relatively simple compared to other 05 Rhones we tasted at a neighborhood blind tasting of six a few years ago. It would have been the one I'd have least wished to buy. But we had less of a turnout than originally planned for that tasting so I bought all the extra bottles and ended up with this. And now I'm not unhappy about that. What struck me as simple back then due, in no small part, to a domination by red fruit, strikes me as now as having greater purity and even if a bit one-noted in the fruit department there's a purity to appreciate, decidedly more syrah on the nose and first half of the taste experience, and more grenache-y assertive black pepper in the latter half and on the finish. It's a very nice wine and the bottle was empty too soon. Very good.
1999 Domaine les Espiers "Cuvee Tradition", Gigondas
I haven't a clue where I got this wine, but stains on the label suggest it might have made the move with us from California six years ago. Similarly, why I was holding it this long when all the other 99's are gone has faded from memory, but once we poured/smelled/tasted it we could only conclude that at some point I knew to leave it alone. Ample black fruit coats the palate, it's sweet and ripe but overall the mouthfeel is more on the taut side than generous. There's some herb too as well as ham, suggesting that there's a lot of syrah here and possibly mourvedre too. It's only barely ready to drink and could easily improve for years yet. Definitely rewards food. Excellent.
My wine shopping and I have never had a problem. Just a perpetual race between the bankruptcy court and Hell.--Rogov