Gather your bottles of wine, your trays of scalloped green beans, and the all-grown-up cousins. Turkey Day is upon us. Let’s all be together cracking jokes, talking about old times, and checking out the young ‘uns and their “sig Os.” Tell stories, think about those who are no longer here. As Grandma used to say, “eat something!” As we like to say “Drink Something!” Everyone have a great time. (more…)
2007 Durant Dundee Hills La Casita Pinot Noir $20: Quite sweet for this vintage and region. Could be mistaken for Santa Rita Hills. The 2007 vintage in Willamette is typically more lean and even elegant in a severe Heidi Klum way. “One of you will remain and one of you…will be dismissed.” Jawohl!2009 Anne Gros Bourgogne AND Hauts Cotes des Nuits $33: Just released and already impossible to find. Same price for either wine. When you wait for a wine this good this long it cannot possibly fulfill the expectation. But it does. Much tannin without being lean. Somewhat muscular in a youthful style. Fruit in reserve. Cannot wait to taste again but next time with a Vinturi – the aerator. Ages faster than smoking three packs a day. Steve Goldun says they are equally delicious. Only tasted the Bourgogne which was just fine.
2009 Clos de la Roilette $26: This bottle keeps tasting better with time. Reviewed most recently here Great balance of generous fruit with enough stuffing to keep it all firm and gripping. Nothing flashy. Just very nicely made Cru declassified Fleurie Beaujolais. Gotta love it. Beaujolais IS the longest standing bargain. This wine is in the top 5 from the very good 2009 vintage.
2009 Domaine Alain Michaud Brouilly $23: Add this one to the list of superb 2009 Beaujolais cru wines. Had not tasted this one until very recently. Extra bonus – Paul Wasserman pouring! Creamy smooth like a 1950s puro. Quite delicious. Shall hunt down and bag a few. Believe it will still be within reach.
1989 Chateau Soucherie Chaume $33: Creamy, chalky, Double lovely. Like pears and heavy cream. Golden color. At 23 years still drinking young. This is a Chenin Blanc from the Loire. These are another group of less fashionable wines that deserve your attention. You will not be disappointed. Can take 20 years easily. This is how to buy a wine with age and open it tonight. Pricing is bargain city. Go find and buy then drink. Dessert wine without the candy. 12.5%
Holidays are coming. Good time to share wines with loved ones. We can also help with top of the line plonk advice and how to handle re-gifting!
Words rarely uttered among the wine cogniscenti passed the lips of the tBoW team. This Beaujolais is not ready. A Beaujolais not ready to be consumed right now? The phraseology version of an oxymoron is…? Don’t know. We do know that snow will fall in Santa Monica, Lady Gaga will wear ballerina flats, and the Tea Party will certify our President is 100% American before we hear “this Beauj ain’t ready stuff” again.
Jerry Lewis made a film in 1960 “Visit To a Small Planet” where one of the actors kept repeating “there ain’t no sech animal”. He was referring to aliens. Jerry played the nebbishy harmless nice guy alien. I wouldn’t look for it. “Divorce American Style” or “How to Murder Your Wife” – those are worth looking for on NetFlix.
If you can find among the following wines the ones we favor you will have completed a successful and rewarding hunt.
2009 Clos de la Roilette Vielles Vignes $23: After finding the last 3 bottles in LA Dotor√© found the last case in the country in Connecticut during the Great Winter Storm of 2010. The producer is notorious for putting his beloved race horse on the label after the appellation committee in Beaujolais ruled his property was outside the Cru region of Fleurie. His response was kiss my grits. He makes one of the most sought after non-Cru wines in the Beaujolais and certainly the best in or near Fleurie. Dotor√© reasoned if the rest of the vintage was so darn good, and Dubouef could make better than good wines in 2009 then the top producers should be phenomenal. On the hunt like Sherlock Holmes, tBow himself filling the role of Watson, Dotor√© tracked all domestic shipments finding the last one not sold out on the Least Coast. We have tasted. New tBoW tasting team member Peewee declared what was in her shapely goblet was swamp water. A mineral dagger stuck in her chest. Dotor√© brought over his bottle, open 24 hours, poured her another dose. Much better. Somehow tBoW received a “bad bottle”. Peewee nailed it. Without contemplating the provenance of “bad bottles” suffice it to say this wine is gorgeous, sumptious, full bodies (for Beaujolais) and fulfills its promise. It can easily go a couple years and more. It will never get that far. 13%
2006 South Pinot Noir $15: “It’s from Tasmania. I think you’ll like it”. That’s all tBoW needs to hear from preferred wine vendor Steve Goldun of Palate Wine Merchant. Strong Pinot flavors. Black cherry. Balanced. Very nice wine. The bottle IGTY has been looking for all his life. Gotta love the price. 13.5%
2002 Paul Lato Duende Gold Coast Vineyard Pinot Noir $30:¬† We crowned this wine the best in Santa Rita Hills only three years ago. Today the wine remains attractive and exotic showing strawberries and marzipan. It’s good but not great. Santa Rita fruit is just too ripe and alcohol levels tend to overwhelm the fruit. Can’t find this wine. Not even Paul has it. 14.3%
2009 Domaine Cheysson Chiroubles $15: Terrific Gamay fruit. Rich; not Pinot Noir. Gold medal somewhere. Solid drink with chicken and mac cheese. We is stone. Immaculate. “Are you kiddin’ me?” says Dick Vitale. If Cheysson had a basketball team it would easily be a 4 seed in the tourney. Another hUge winner from the 2009 vintage. Grab it if you see it. 12.5%
It was 72 degrees in LA yesterday. Summer is just around the corner. Spring is here. Try something new in your RnR catalog. Anthony Gomes…lot of country and even more rock n roll.
The ocean of wine and the lineup in it keeps getting bigger. We choose wines like we would choose waves; certain size, as close to perfect conditions as we can presume. What wines will be in the tBoW lineup for 2010? [ed. the surfing lineup is all those people in the water here at Topanga point trying to catch the same wave] With seemingly limitless options we contemplate the wine lineup for the coming year. Keep it simple – good values, great and interesting wines, selecting carefully from the best of the best. Based on the first pours in January we can forecast that Winter through early Spring will feature French white wines and more Malibu discoveries. We can live with that. The local vintners of the Bu continue to defy expectations and definitely have our attention. Here then are several recent turns of the corkscrew. (more…)
This is the second installment of The Best of Wine Importers (go to The Best of Wine Importers Part One). Perhaps this is a continuing series. Perhaps an annual review. At this time, it is part two of my favorite wine importers, currently. The premise is simple. Think cheat-sheet for wine pickens (like the wonderful Slim Pickens). There are so many wines to choose from, and labeling conventions are so distinctively local (nice way to say wine labels aren’t always helpful), and international wines are becoming so abundant…well, a discriminating wine buyer in search of that top price:quality ratio could use some help. Enter the importer, the cheat-sheet, your personal wine buyer. (more…)