Elisabeth Goutorbe "Cuvée Eclatante" Brut Champagne – Very nice as you say, but I did find it a bit too sweet for a Brut. Minor complaint, though.
2011 Taille aux Loups Montlouis ‘Les Dix Arpents’ – Agree with your assessment.
1995 Clos des Papes CNduP – My favorite red of the day. Leathery Rhone nose with so much substance on the palate along with the white pepper, I went North instead of South in my guessing. Divine.
2000 Bernardus Pinot Noir Garys' Vineyard (Monterey) – An obviously well aged pinot with what struck me at first as black fruit along with some tobacco-y green notes--could see it being a Ken Wright from Willamette. But all that softened in the glass somewhat with time. Though not the minerally red fruit typical of most Garys' (Bill, note the placement of the apostrophe, it's owned by two Gary's), the herbal tomato leaf thing so typical of pinots in this area did eventually materialize along with, surprise surprise, quite a bit of mint. No matter, it was harmonious and impressive for its age. Liked it a lot. The first pinot I've had from Bernardus.
2000 Vignalta Gemola IGT – Going to differ with you here. Some wines age well, some fade, and some just go into a dark hole. This was the last example, the soy and vinegar nose only had mud to offer on the palate. This is where the last Pavie I brought to lunch went (though a bottle enjoyed at home later was fine), and a few other wines I've opened or experienced at group events like this. I don't understand what causes this or why others don't object to what I do so strongly, but I know that once a wine is there you can't tell pinot from cabernet from merlot from zinfandel--and the wines are as dark to look at as the mud they taste like. I'm a van of Vignalta Gemola but did not think this a good bottle.
2007 Grgic Plavac Mali – your description is perfect. But it was so odd! I opened it at home to 1) ascertain that it was lunch-worthy, and 2) pending the results of item 1 decant for two hours, as all notes I'd read from others suggested this was neccessary. At home it was interesting and definitely worthy, full of baked cherries and leathery in the right way. But later, on the table, it was embarrassing. Sorry!
1996 Argiano Solengo – Can't improve on your description. Loved this, it's drinking perfectly now.
2001 Dom. Tempier Bandol – Very good, but at peak.
Christopher’s Rare Old Verdelho Madeira – Okay, not just bottled for the 1969 investiture of the Prince of Wales, it was bottled for and available ONLY to the royal family. It was never offered at retail. This bottle came from Charles' own collection, and was bottle number 11 (I also own bottle 13). Unfortunately, though properly stored it was a leaker and I recently discovered that it had lost almost a third of its contents. So I stood it up and decided to share with my Canadian friends, cuz who would get the historical significance better than you guys? That said, onto the wine itself: dates, dried figs, walnuts, butterscotch and orange peel. Only lightly sweet. Splendid, I thought.
My wine shopping and I have never had a problem. Just a perpetual race between the bankruptcy court and Hell.--Rogov