2000 R. & V. Dauvissat, Chablis La Forest:
A glorious nose – expansive, penetrating, integrated and complex – with citrus, lemon oil, mineral, mountain stream water and white fruit elements all intense and playing off each other; as good a nose on a chardonnay as I have ever smelled and, truly, one for my life list; very good on the palate too, with flavors that echo the nose, a softening of the acidity which allows the wine to be broader and softer in the mouth than on release yet it is still vivid and lively; good depth and length. Perfectly balanced and as authentic an expression of the vineyard as I can remember. This bottle was at, or very near, peak.
2003 Sean Thackery, Andromeda:
Pinot noir says the label, from some place called Devil’s Gulch Ranch in Marin County, CA; okay, it smells like pinot and even tastes a little like pinot; but there is not the slightest chance that anyone can tell me where this is from by smelling or tasting. It has pretty, milk chocolate-strawberry flavors but it’s candied, on both the nose and palate, heavily extracted and has no character. “Cocktail wine” at its best and it belongs in someone else’s cellar (fortunately, that’s where this bottle came from). BTW, 15.1% alcohol, if you’re counting – curiously, it does not show hot!?
2001 Giacosa, Nebbiolo D’Alba:
The best showing of this wine, ever. Tar and roses (not to be confused with the rock group) on the nose; wonderful secondary development on the palate and great complexity with lots of earthy/leathery/not fruit stuff happening in the background as the wine unfolds in the glass. Really lovely tonight (but then, maybe, it’s just the comparison with the CA pinot). Nope, that’s not it. This is as close to Barbaresco as it gets without being Barbaresco.