Ciao amici,

I cruised over to a friend's crib for dinner and a tasting of mature vino. Luckily, my friend Jeff Vaughn took wonderful notes and saved me the trouble. I have his permission to reprint his TNs here.

"I got a text from a friend late in the day yesterday asking if I wanted to come over for an impromptu, casual dinner and open a few Italian wines. An average Monday night turned into a enjoyable evening with good friends. A nice way to start the week.

1990 Tenuta di Sesta Brunello di Montalcino Riserva - Italy, Tuscany, Montalcino, Brunello di Montalcino (5/9/2017)
Decanted and consumed over the next three hours. Right from the start, this was drinking well. A well balanced combination of earthy notes, fruit, mint, acid and fine tannin. A very nice Brunello with no signs of fading.

1996 Francesco Rinaldi e Figli Barbaresco - Italy, Piedmont, Langhe, Barbaresco (5/9/2017)
Decanted and consumed over the next three hours. Spice on the nose, light earth and mushroom, too. With air those disappeared and the wine became more primary, showing tart red fruits and floral notes. Shows some texture, with lots of chewy, fine tannin. Lots of acid and structure. Very nice for the level and still showing young.

1997 Bartolo Mascarello Barolo - Italy, Piedmont, Langhe, Barolo (5/9/2017)
Decanted and consumed over the next three hours. My friend tells me that the previous two bottles from this case have been undrinkable. This one is very closed and muted initially. A pretty, light red color with little bricking on the edge. A subdued nose, that comes around with air. Orange, cranberry, and light spice emerge. Red fruited, good acid, fine tannin, elegant. This one really needed air to put on a little weight and let the red fruits, floral and mineral notes show. This one really needs air to open. Fine tannin, good acid. I hate to use the word Burgundian, but this one was elegant and red fruited and that is the word that came to mind. Plenty of life left here.

1997 Vietti Barolo Lazzarito - Italy, Piedmont, Langhe, Barolo (5/9/2017)
Decanted and consumed over the next three hours. Upon opening, lots of earth, funk and mushroom, with the fruit hidden. This changed quite a bit and improved with air as the fruit emerged. Adds some mint along with quite a bit of ripe red fruit. Mushroom and earth accents in the background. The most earthy of the three Nebbiolos tonight. A pretty color with some orange and browning on the rim. This drank well and has plenty of life left. Give this at least a couple hours in a decanter before drinking."

Thanks Jeff for those tasty notes! Dave.
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