Saturday night, a few of us got together at our local gem of a byo - Kitchen, A Bistro. Ray told Paul that he was bringing an older Ridge Petite Sirah, so Paul told me we're bringing California wines. Not a problem as I had a couple of Havens wines from a visit to the winery a couple of years ago that I was interested in trying. Paul said I should look at his inventory and chose something for him. I skipped through all of his Martinellis and Turleys and decided between a Cinq Cepages and a Rudd. Ray nudged me to select the Rudd.
While Paul and I and our spouses were waiting for Ray and his wife to arrive, we opened a 2003 Muller Catoir Haardter Herrenletten Riesling Spatlese. This bottle lost the sweetness of prior bottles, just a touch acidic with an oily texture and a mineral and citrus nose and the taste of dried apricots. In some ways, it reminded me of a light bodied Sauternes and I thought to keep some in my glass since we were talking about placing an order of foie gras torchon for a few of us to share. I liked the pairing.
The first of our wines was a 1988 Ridge Petite Sirah York Creek Devils Hill - very strong barnyard on the nose, and once you got past that, some fruit dominated by cherries and still some tannins present. The barnyard was off putting, and I saved a glass for the end of the evening to check on the barnyard, but never got around to it.
Next up was a 2001 Havens Syrah Hudson Vineyard - pronounced aromas of black cherries, and on the palate is jammy fruit and honeycake with thick tannins, and a tartness on the finish that I found disappointing. I hadn't noticed any tartness when tasted at the winery. The last wine was a 2001 Rudd Oakville Cabernet - it was opened earlier in the day, but still had a wall of tannins- dark fruits and espresso on the nose, it was bright, smoky, and chocolatey, and worked rather well with my dessert.
The food was quite good, as usual. Service was sweet and you can't beat the wine list.