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Dale Williams


Compassionate Connoisseur




Tue Mar 21, 2006 5:32 pm


Dobbs Ferry, NY (NYC metro)

WTN: 9 modest Bdx, blind

by Dale Williams » Sun May 14, 2006 3:53 pm

Friday night was my local tasting group's get-together. Before heading to Alex's, I had dinner with Betsy- flank steak in an Asian-influenced marinade with edamame, snow peas, and Napa cabbage. A preserved half-bottle of the 1999 La Fleur du Bouard showed very similarly to how it had shown previous week- lush, modern without being over-the-top, very good.

Theme for this month's gathering was originally supposed to be second labels of Bordeaux '95-'99, but then got changed to a more general "Bordeaux from 1994 to 1999". Turned out some folks didn't get message, so we ended up with some grand vins and some deuxiemes. All wines were blind:

Wine 1: Round, low acid, with somewhat firm/hard tannins and modest blackcurrant and plum fruit, my guess was '95 or '96 Medoc. B/B - It's the 1995 Ch. Talbot (St. Julien) {I prefer '96 of this}

Wine 2: No guess for this one, as I brought it. Resolved tannins, warm red plum fruit . lush texture for a medium-bodied wine, and some earth and leather. Pleasant mature Merlot. B+ 1995 Ch. Corbin-Michotte
Wine 3: This was very popular around the table, but I found a slightly offputting green note under the blackcurrant & blackberry fruit. Moderate tannins,moderate acidity. B- I guess '96 or '98 Medoc, turns out its a wine I've had before (and I liked a bit better), the 1996 Pagodes de Cos.

Wine 4:The next wine has some hard tannins, but good cassis fruit and some leathery notes made it interesting. B. '98 Medoc? Wrong vintage, its 1996 Ch. Le Crock (St. Estephe)

Wine 5: seemed tired, had rather fading red fruit, tannic, and a little short. C+ (others liked better) I thought (over)mature Right Bank, it's the 1994 Ch. Martinet (St. Emilion)

Wine 6:Next wine had lush red plum fruit with some graphite and flowers. Moderate ripe tannins. B+ I was confident this was Right Bank, as it was obviously youthful I guessed '98 St. Emilion. It was youthful alright, enough to actually be off-theme- the 2001 Pavillon Rouge du Ch. Margaux. I had had this before, and liked less, an argument for blind tasting.

Wine 7: This had good black fruit, some floral aromas, and cedar and leadpencil as it opened up. Nice structure and finish. B+ . I guess '96 Left Bank, I'm surprised it's the 1998 Ch. Branaire-Durcu (St. Julien).

Wine 8: Good acidity, red fruit, mild tannins. B 1996 Ch. Caronne St. Gemme (Haut-Medoc)

Last wine wasn't blind, the 2000 L'Hermitage de Chasse Spleen. Ripe, low acid, a little short on finish. B-

Not a night with any real stars, but a fun group and it was fun to see how I did guessing (not so great). Walked home, got in just before the rain.

Grade disclaimer: I'm a very easy grader, basically A is an excellent wine, B a good wine, C mediocre. Anything below C means I wouldn't drink at a party where it was only choice. Furthermore, I offer no promises of objectivity, accuracy, and certainly not of consistency.  

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