Wine Impressions - 7-1-19

N/v Alexandre Le Brun, Blanc de Meunier Champagne - broad on the attack but narrows as it moves across the palate to become a laser of acidity on an extended finish. This wine excites me, not only for its mouth presence now but for its potential. Pretty amazing bubbly.
2008 Delamotte, Champagne Blanc de Blanc - a bit sweeter than the above wine and not as exciting to me but many liked it better.

2016 Cave Dog, Albariño - crisp, clean and flavorful; more please.
2005 Gravner, Berg - orange wine with huge concentration and intensity; complex, textural, powerful - and maybe just a little too powerful for me. But I’m splitting hairs.
2017 Faury, Condrieu - stony, mineral laced fruit, dead dry, good acids and focused - nothing soupy here. Viognier done right (‘hard to remember a time I’ve said that).
2016 Ladd Cellars, Chardonnay Sonoma Coast - steely and firm, needs time in the cellar yet shows a lot of potential.
2017 Louis Michel, Chablis Montee de Tonnerre - young but still beautiful and complete - ‘this gets any better with age it will give the grand crus a run. Wow!

2013 Idlewild, Nebbiolo - day one, a bit muddy; day two,
2016 Schievenza, Nebbiolo Langhe - sappy, concentrated and flamboyant; for full flavored foods.
1993 Laurent, Nuits Saint Georges Les Vaucrains - I am no fan of Laurent but this was quite good; concentrated, true to its place and balanced - yes, there is wood but the fruit here is in control.
1996 Laurent, Clos de la Roche - this is why I don’t buy Laurent, wood muddies it out and the whole thing suffers. Nothing here for me.
2003 Radio-Coteau, Pinot Noir Marsh Vnyd. - a tip of the hat to Pete Marsh who babied these vines like his kids; a nice rendition of Sonoma Coast Pinot with just a little bit more than expected. Still in fine form.
2000 Chateau Grand Puy Lacoste, Pauillac - in pieces upon opening but over the course of several hours began to show its promise as it became more integrated. Hold for at least a decade.
2004 Felsina, Fontalloro - over the evening, this got better but it was never my favorite.
2016 Stolo, Syrah Hillside Reserve - the winery is in Cambria but the vineyard is almost in Big Sur; 12.9% abv; Côte Rotie, American style. A beautiful, complex, rendition of cool climate Syrah that grabbed me and made me listen. Intense without weight, feminine but not thin, complex but still of whole cloth - a revelation. Bravo!
2001 La Rioja Alta, Gran Reserva - weird upon opening but a couple hours later, it had its stride and was complete and delicious.
2015 Crux, Syrah Russian River Valley - more sweet fruit than savory at this point so not in my wheelhouse.
1998 Scavino, Barolo Bric Del Fiasc - huge, daunting wine when opened; much better after several hours but still a big mouthful. I like something a bit slimmer.
2003 Cuvée de Vatican, CdP Reserve - sensational, from first sip to last swallow three hours later. I am not a Grenache guy but this was tremendous tonight.
2012 Littorai, Pinot Noir Savoy Vnyd. - a bit too green and thin for me.
1985 Windsor Vineyards, Petite Sirah - somewhere, pigs are flying - a PS with secondary development and pretty good balance, too. Who’d a thought?
1997 Toad Hall, Bodacious - half Malbec and half Cabernet Sauvignon; dill pickle nose, not a bad wine but nothing I want more of.
1969 Chateau de Marbuzet, St. Estephe - little fruit, sous bois to the max, great acidity and length. I am not an ancient wine guy but this was amazing.
1999 Dom. Tempier, Bandol la Tourtine - flawed by Brett - I do not like onion aromas/flavors in my wine.
2002 Hobbs, Shiraz - for somebody else
1999 Ambroise, Nuits St. Georges En Rue de Chaux - for me, for sure; quite a terroir driven, well made Burgundy.
1989 Leonetti, Cabernet Sauvignon Seven Hills Vineyard Reserve - not without appeal but the wood treatment hurt the fruit and time has not been kind.
1998 Oscar Semmler, Shiraz - for somebody else

2006 Chat. De Fargues, Sauternes - while the fruit is good and the acidity is present, they are not in sync - acidulated?

Best, Jim
Jim Cowan