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Jay Labrador

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WTN: Vare, Beaucastel, Coulee de Serrant, Clos Marquis, Chappelet, Kunstler

by Jay Labrador » Fri Jun 29, 2007 11:00 am

From lunch at Cirkulo with Johnny, Arnie and Jojo who brought all the wines.

Vare 2004 - Napa Valley white. A mix of Pinot Gris, Chardonnay, Tocai Friuliano, Ribolla Gialla, Sauvignon Blanc. Light gold dessert wine color. Full, very spicy, aggressive wine. There is a bit of sweetness but the finish has a bitterness that reminds me of Viognier. Shows a bit of oak on the nose. Exceptionally long finish. Interesting wine that I initially liked but which I found tiring to drink since it was so aggressive.

Coulee de Serrant 2004 - Very smooth, soft, silky mouthfeel. Slightly lactic nose. Flavors are quite subtle and difficult to pick out but it doesn't matter to me since it has such a comfortable mouthfeel. Some sweetness at the front but quite dry in the long finish. Excellent balance. Very easy to drink. Very good. I've read that this requires a day's decanting. Maybe one day we'll attempt to do it that way.

Chateau de Beaucastel Chateauneuf du Pape 1990 - Murky. Strong floor wax or shoe polish nose and leather nose. Prunes and pine resin flavors. Acidity provides the structure. Starting to fade but the murkiness may suggest this bottle wasn't in optimal shape. Still, a good wine.

Clos du Marquis 1996 - Very dark, berryish nose, slightly cedary. Lots of good fruit. Drinking very well now. Probably at peak.

Rosenblum Gallagher Ranch Black Muscat 2002 - Very grapey, like a thick grape juice with alcohol. Oddly, some orange on the nose. Others at the table detected lychee. Grape skins mouthfeel. Rather short. Simple but good enough.

Wines from dinner at Lemuria

Franz Kunstler Hochheimer Holle Spatlese Trocken 2001 - Some overripe fruit on the nose. A bit of sweetness on the attack but quickly turns dry and acidic. Sour apple. Steely wine with lots of body. Long finish. Good wine but needs food.

Chappelet Merlot 2004 - Bitter chocolate, rich and syrupy. The chocolate theme is sustained right through to the long finish. Other than the chocolate, showing very little else. Needs more time.
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arnie del rosario

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Re: WTN: Vare, Beaucastel, Coulee de Serrant, Clos Marquis, Chappelet, Kunstler

by arnie del rosario » Tue Jul 03, 2007 11:19 am

Minor correction. I brought the Muscat! :)

Jojo may not appreciate being "blamed" for bringing such a hoi polloi wine!
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Rahsaan

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Re: WTN: Vare, Beaucastel, Coulee de Serrant, Clos Marquis, Chappelet, Kunstler

by Rahsaan » Tue Jul 03, 2007 11:22 am

Jay Labrador wrote:Coulee de Serrant 2004 - Very easy to drink. Very good. I've read that this requires a day's decanting..


Is that recommendation for earlier vintages or the 2004 as well?

I've heard that as well but the 2004 seemed quite forward and approachable in comparison to crankier earlier vintages.

Don't know if Joly has been consciously following the broader trend of Softer Savennieres.
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Bill Spohn

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Re: WTN: Vare, Beaucastel, Coulee de Serrant, Clos Marquis, Chappelet, Kunstler

by Bill Spohn » Tue Jul 03, 2007 11:32 am

Interesting lunch!

I dare say you are right about that being an off bottle of the 1990 Beaucastel - it has been showing wonderfully - just hitting stride.
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Jay Labrador

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Re: WTN: Vare, Beaucastel, Coulee de Serrant, Clos Marquis, Chappelet, Kunstler

by Jay Labrador » Tue Jul 03, 2007 9:47 pm

Rahsaan,

Unfortunately, my references don't say whether a day's decanting refers to specific vintages or the wine in general although I suspect they mean it applies to any vintage. This was the first time for me to try Coulee de Serrant so I don't have prior experience to draw on although the wine seemed perfectly fine straight from the bottle.
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Jay Labrador

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Re: WTN: Vare, Beaucastel, Coulee de Serrant, Clos Marquis, Chappelet, Kunstler

by Jay Labrador » Tue Jul 03, 2007 9:51 pm

That's right! My apologies.

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