Maybe it’s just me but the 2012 happy holidays has just about run its course and we are still a week ahead of December 25. Call me Humbug. Izit the older we get? Perhaps. Do not misunderstand the point here. Life is good. Being alive is good. The terrible tragedy of Newtown CT does not choose the day of occurrence. I just get less tolerant each year with the entire holiday zeitgeist. It seems to get harder and harder to buy in. Dotoré says Dec 21 is his favorite day because that is when he can begin counting down the mental march towards June 21, the longest day of the year, when he finds himself squarely in summer.
I am ripping and playing the Complete Recordings of T Monk grateful for the opportunity to have the disc at my disposal and the option to listen while I rip. Downright Disney-like. What do the the holidays mean to us? Most political outcomes went our way. Watching the Tea Party squirm and twist like a gator on some cable channel beats watching the NFL. Of course, right now for “reality TV” nothing beats Basketball Wives LA. If you watch this contemporary classic series (it is a series, no?) you will appreciate so much more the following wines tasted recently. In the meantime, do have a happy holiday with all the necessary neutralities observed. Hang out with pals and family and drink some decent wines.
2010 Axis Mundi Windmill Vineyard $20: A blend of Santa Ynez Grenache (67%) and Syrah (33%). But it tastes like Pinot Noir! Wes Hagen of Clos Pepe made this wine and we are wondering why. Wes (we love Wes and the screwtop) says he was looking to approximate Chateauneuf du Pape in the blend. Wes is an educated man. The label notes explain that we are each at the center of our own universe without duality. A skilled writer, Wes accomplishes this very nicely in less than 200 words which is impressive. He is a very good writer and an excellent winemaker. The wine did not place us in the center of SRH Pinot Noir country. We are left wondering why he made this wine. If you know Laura on BWLA</span> this is her wine. Perplexing, promising but not fulfilling. 14.2%
2008 Terredavino Barbaresco DOCG $25?: Purchased at Wine Expo in Santa Monica where Robert Rogness specializes in precisely these kinds of lesser know Baroli and Spanish wines (as well as Champagnes you never saw or heard of that are always outstanding). Tannic, softer, classic nose and flavors. Lean-ish, subdued fruit. The best Baroli are often so coy. We put it thru the aerator which opens the bouquet and palate. Unmistakably Piemonte Nebbiolo. We are considering trading out the entire cellar in 2013 for Burgundy, Baroli and Riesling with a smattering of Orenellaia if we hit it big. If you watch the Hoops Wives this is Malaysia; solid, seductive, reliable. 13.5%
Switching out to a Riesling extravaganza that brought lots of holiday cheer and joy.
2009 Dr. F Weins-Prum Kabinett $25: Mosel petrol nose. Pears, acid, perfect. Keep It simply Holmes. Light it up! Making the kind of great entrance without the complication we expect from DRAYA. 9%
2009 Weiungut Summerer Langlois Riesling Urgestein $??: Austrian Riesling for the young tasters Sawa-M and PT8Y to get onto. They prefer the nose and they prefer the wine which is not to take anything away from the Weins-Prum. So much acid and such a long finish it’s like pop-rocks hit the back palate. Lots off lime flavors. Crash course on Mosel vs. Austrian styles. 12%
1998 Hoffmann-Simon Köwericher Laurentiuslay Riesling Spätlese $56: Golden canary color. Petrol nose is b-a-a-a-ck. It is Mosel! The goils go nuts with the flavor profile. We settle on Ranier cherries with the crisp acid and cherry flavors. They admit it is confusing to taste cherries in Riesling. Then comes the cumin, curry and dill flavors as they continue to taste. This is why we like great wines. Think BAMBI on BWLA without the gangster bullshit. You know Bambi is all huff ‘n puff but she has the tats and she got the goods. The Young Tasters will be here next holidays looking for more of this! 8.5%
2009 AJ Adam Hofberg Kabinett $30: High alcohol for German Riesling but this is an unusual and collectible producer. Especially acidic, at least up to snuff with the Austrian wines. Fresh and bright. Downright stimulating. I tell Adams he is a frontline new producer. What do I know? Kris-B tells me. I just work here. This IS great and exceptional wine that is redefining the Mosel mainstream. A more trim BROOKE ready to fly off the handle but somehow she stays in the bosom of civility. 8%!!!
2009 Poggio Alle Gazze Millevitti $47: The white wine from Orenallaia. Been waiting to taste this. Notable anise even eucalyptus on the nose and in the mouth. But not overbearing in any way. Exotic especially in the company of Le Bosch. Completely different but not exactly out of place. It is one of the more unusual Sauvignon Blancs in our memory. The longer you try the more interested you get. Oh yes. That would be Jackie Christie. She don’t cook and she don’t you-know. But she does TCB. 13%
OK. If you MUST have holiday cheer you might try Dino.