Uncorked-Wine and Spirits Appreciation

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Re: Uncorked-Wine and Spirits Appreciation

Postby Belgian » Tue Jun 05, 2018 11:45 pm

Domaine Mouréou Madiran 2014

Inky dark wine with brambly and pure dark fruit aromas. The cork and back label indicate this is a Laplace wine (this one and Chateau Addie produce a lot of the Madiran reds we see here.)

Pretty good Madiran, this time with a full 70% Tannat and the other 30% unspecified blend of Cabernets. This 2014 needs some air to breathe it. Has a good tight solid structure, an herbal personality over the powerful black fruit especially in the taste. Mineral and great depth. Not the cassis-blackberry jam and toasty oak of the Bouscasse, quite different. If you can manage the herbal and brambly qualities along with the acidity and firm tannins, this is an Interesting wine now and could yield still greater cellar results later.

This may be a good time as any to stock up on Madiran wines that stand at the level of Bordeaux about twice the price. One of my favourite AOCs.
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Nebbiolo from Piedmont Italy.

Postby Belgian » Sat Jun 09, 2018 4:45 pm

Giacosa Scarrone Vigna Mandorlo Barolo 2010

I wanted to snag a decent Barolo and I was not disappointed. Garnet red look. Fairly dry tannins as a solid Nebbiolo-grape wine, yet approachable with dense dark cherry-berry fruit and acidity. Tobacco and herbs and and some meaty umami notes that really carry long over the fruit and the dry-acid structure. A really elegant powerful wine. Has a lot going on.
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Castillon Bordeaux

Postby Belgian » Wed Jun 13, 2018 10:35 pm

Château Hyot 2014 Castillon Cotes de Bordeaux

Garnet colour. Has great cherry-berry and tart cassis fruit and acidity, some nice light cedar sauna and woody herbal-spicy tones and mineral. Good medium body and dryness with an elegant poised and warm finish. (Note to self: never sip wines while snacking on delicious RainCoast sardines, it makes the glass smell weird.) This classic style red Bordeaux is not a total powerhouse, but is a very fair deal.
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Languedoc charmer less $

Postby Belgian » Sat Jun 16, 2018 8:03 pm

Château L'Hospitalet La Clape Réserve Rouge 2014

Nice deep dark pour. Grenache Syrah Mourvèdre blend that was reduced substantially from its price pushing near thirty dollars. Offers value, solid structure and powerful fruit. Shows off some garrigue and rooty herbals among the deep black berry and black plum skin. Forest floor humus and violet petal florals. Unusually round and full in structure rather than dry or very acidic and yet it is not heavily sweet. And there's some Syrah-like chocolate on the finish. Worth snagging one for the 22 or so bucks I paid.
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L-M 2015 Bordeaux

Postby Belgian » Mon Jun 18, 2018 9:18 pm

Château de Lafaurie-Monbadon 2015 Baron de Montfort

This begins with oak over the dark fruit, aged oak. The gradual bloom of dark appealing fruit is very classy., touch vanilla and spice. Has some good acidic frame and tannic grip yet already very drinkable. Classic structure. Cassis and cherries plus herbs and some cedar and mineral, very well turned out Bordeaux from what I guess is a successful vintage year. Grab a few,
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Mencia from Castilla y León

Postby Belgian » Tue Jun 26, 2018 12:09 am

Gancedo Xestal Mencía 2010 Mencia grape (Spain)

A very nicely aged red showing smooth subtle oak and deep rounded dark fruit, notably plum skin and blackberry. Round tannins and hints vanilla. Med-full structure with solid dryness and acidity. Heck of a nice Spanish grape and wine style.
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Castelas Rhone Red value

Postby Belgian » Thu Jun 28, 2018 6:37 pm

Les Grandes Serres Les Portes du Castelas 2015 Grenache/Mourvèdre

Has savory and spicy complexity over a deep red-black fruit and acidic-dry base, nice! Little hints of quality Balsamic. Black fruit is cherry and berry, and the round structure has tannins holding it up well. Nose is unremarkable but it likely needs air to open up. Almost a kelp-y saltiness to flavor, whiffs of tobacco, vanilla. Good for the $15.95 price in terms of value and charm. You might want to grab one to try if you still can, I'd say the quality is here.
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2015 Campo Arriba Yecla

Postby Belgian » Sat Jul 07, 2018 12:30 am

Campo Arriba Old Vines 2014 Monastrell/Syrah/Tintorera

That's Spanish for Mourvédre / Syrah / Grenache in the grape blend, grapes found in most Rhône wines yet unlike those GSM blend beauties the main grape in this Yecla region Red is Mourvédre / Monastrell with it occupying 70% of the blend. This putting the supporting grape in the leading role creates a deep dense berry black fruit flavor with mild herby and licorice layers. And it's a very solid wine - it takes some time to open up and then delivers. Structured with a fairly full palate, some good dry tannins and moderate acids.
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2014 Beaumes de Venise S. Rhône

Postby Belgian » Sat Jul 07, 2018 8:16 pm

Terrissimo Beaumes de Venise 2014

This is a nice Southern Rhône red with 75% Grenache and 25% Syrah grapes. Deep garnet pour, full body with solid red berry fruit. Some herbals on aroma and pepper on the palate. Warming round feel. Bottle is embossed with the propriety Beaumes de Venise AOC to immediately inform buyers of the region just like many others such as Vacqueyras, Gigondas and Chateau Neuf-du-Pape.
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Merlot-Cabernet Bordeaux

Postby Belgian » Wed Jul 11, 2018 5:44 pm

Château La Fontaine de Genin 2014

A fairly easy-going mid-weight yet classically-styled Bordeaux red, it offers herbs and a little garden peppers along with the dry-sweet berry/cherry and cassis. Spice, bright acidity, and enjoyably scrapey tannins. Some mineral carries over the dark acidic fruit. Likeable, with nice nuances but expect a lithe profile rather than richness.
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Sparkling Chilean!

Postby Belgian » Thu Jul 12, 2018 7:22 pm

Echeverría Brut Sparkling Pinot Noir / Chardonnay

With old-world know-how and some new-world attitude, this Echeverría Brut sparkling white from Chile nicely captures a bit of Champagne style in this bottle-conditioned wine. Structure is substantial enough in body, framed with a steely dryness and acidity, the pale orchard fruit is good. There is a bready quality obtained from the lees ageing, slightly like brioche and also a bit beery like wort. While not hugely complex, it's distinctive, as any Champagne or Champagne-alike should be. For the price it's a banger of a deal and worth trying one.

The 'Non-Vintage' designation on the capsule is a reference to the practice of the Champagne region where for most bottlings vintners need to blend from 'reserve' stocks held back from previous years to establish a consistent flavor balance. A 'Vintage' Champagne (all harvest in the blend is from same year) is rare and the declaration of a VC indicates an exceptionally balanced harvest in the flavor profile of grapes that year, producing a wine that should be exceptional in quality and also have unusual longevity in cellaring. You'll infer that from the staggering price. Nearly all other sparking wines and NV Champagnes are not meant to be kept forever, so drink em up - don't save them because you might lose them. The Bouillot Perle d'Aurore Rosé is a good example of a wine that might have good bones to last an extra year but you'd be taking your chances. Buy a bunch of those, it's usually great.
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Spain Mourvédre-Syrah

Postby Belgian » Sat Jul 14, 2018 11:38 pm

Sein 2011 Monastrell / Syrah

This is stylistically a peculiar wine, with an acidic and fruity and almost fresh/easy presentation. It starts oddly playful But then there's Mourvédre grape depth that weighs in and a cassia-like phenolic spicy overtone. Berries and black raisins. Tartness. Some meaty Syrah backs it up. This is just the crazy, kinky sort of wine that lives and breathes the Iberian peninsula. I can't guarantee you'll like this but I'm glad I tried this bottle.
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Grenaudière Muscadet 2016

Postby Belgian » Mon Jul 16, 2018 4:52 pm

Domaine de la Grenaudière Sur Lie Muscadet Sèvre et Maine 2016 Melon de Bourgogne

From that long name the thing to know is Muscadet Sévre et Main wine is consistently delicious. This White is nicely dry with a well filled fruit profile along with mild spiciness and touch of herbs. Perfect acidic balance. Fragrant. It's the ultimate (inexpensive) seafood wine.

Muscadet is made with the Melon de Bourgogne grape, which is a Pinot Blanc cross. Well worth getting a few of these Grenaudière along with some good Rosés this summer.
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Brouilly sale, quick Beaujolais guide

Postby Belgian » Sun Jul 22, 2018 5:13 pm

Georges Duboeuf Beaujolais Brouilly

Like practically any red Beaujolais this is pure Gamay grape, and Brouilly is a great 'Cru' (classified growth) among the ten most select AOC regions of Beaujolais in Burgundy.

Yes, Gamay is the 'other' Burgundy grape, and I believe at least one red Bourgogne label wine I have seen was pure Gamay grape.

But don't worry about that. This is a tight and solid Cru, probably my first glass of Brouilly ever (I've tried most or all of the Crus including the Cotes de Brouilly I had many times.) Solid fruit and acid profile, not excessively tannic which is typical of the grape. Which means if you are a little afraid of red wines generally or they give you a headache, Beaujolais wines are a great 'gateway', and the ten Crus tend to be exceptional values as the best 'growths' available, each of them with its own regional character.

I also really like Chiroubles, it has unique brightness and dark floral notes. Awesome summer and French-bistro wines, while the Morgon and Moulin-a-Vent/Chenas are also the 'biggest' Cru gamays that will typically age the longest. Yes, most Beaujolais outside of the Crus cannot really be aged very long, they are buy-and-drink for the most part and will go 'soft' pretty quick.

As I've said before Beaujolais Nouveau wines are sort of fun and trendy but a terrible value if they cost more than a few Euros (ha!) and they go south really fast. Just go to the good stuff at the other end of the spectrum if you are not vicariously celebrating the French regional culture of wine harvesting. This DuBoeuf Brouilly is two bucks off, and the 2016 should be cellar-stable maybe a year.

Beaujolais-villages is another great wine classification, not within the ten Cru regions yet good value & deemed better than 'standard' Beaujolais, which itself is generally not bad at all. Drink 'em soon in any case.
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Tourelles 2015 Medoc (Bordeaux)

Postby Belgian » Mon Jul 23, 2018 4:09 pm

Château Les Tourelles 2015 (Medoc) Bordeaux 80/20 blend Cab/Merlot

This is a typical Left Bank Bordeaux red, leaning more to Cabernet Sauvignon than Merlot. It is Bordeaux of modest status and therefore price. I like this class of wines very much. Into the glass, deep garnet. Aromas tight but showing cassis. Taste immediately passes a very acceptable Bordeaux, tart dry medium-full with some fruit. A bit of cedar, spice, mineral and oak. Good dry tannins on palate, moderate acidity. This wine needs to breathe a bit but it's all there and for $14.95 it's a fair deal.
Last edited by Belgian on Tue Jul 24, 2018 3:04 am, edited 1 time in total.
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