Our local blind group got together again after something of a hiatus to taste through ten blind wines at David's place with an assortment of cheeses.
Fun evening as well - guesses all over the place, but some rather eye opening wines.
2010 Wind Gap Wines Trousseau Gris Piccolo Bastardo Fanucchi Vineyard
More about being an unusual wine for curiosity value than something really interesting/compelling; a cloudy orange-salmon colour with lightly spicy and earthy notes framing fresh cranberry and raspberry fruit. It's light on its feet with bright acids and a savoury finish, but while it's nicely balanced there's nothing here that keeps me coming back for anything more than a tasting pour.
2000 Château de Saint-Cosme Gigondas
Quite pleasant, if somewhat one note. A rather ripe, slightly roasted scent leads into a palate that's much lighter and more finessed than the aromatics suggest, with fresh red fruited flavours seasoned by cracked black pepper notes. It's nicely balanced but not particularly complex.
2001 Edmunds St. John Rocks and Gravel
Lovely wine; rich, dark fruited and showing some developing herb and savoury earthy elements, all in a very polished, impeccably balanced whole with superb balance. This is drinking stunningly well now, though the richness of fruit and fine grained tannic structure suggests there's no rush for me to go through my other bottles of this.
2003 Domaine Robert Chevillon Nuits St. Georges 1er Cru Les Saint Georges
Nothing here that I'd place in Burgundy; it's full of heavy, chewy dark fruited flavours with a faint candied quality that makes it taste like New World Pinot. Not a whole lot of acidity here, and it feels clumsy and one-note.
2003 Domaine Georges Mugneret/Mugneret-Gibourg Clos Vougeot
No idea whether or not this is a representative bottle, as it's dominated by awkward reductive and tarry aromas that distract from everything else and never fade even with some vigorous swirling.
1987 Dunn Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley
Just a great bottle of wine. I really should own more Dunn. A fragrance that had me guessing Graves, with savoury smoky, gravelly, cedar and tobacco flavours around a core of elegant red and dark fruited flavours. Medium weight and very finessed on the palate, still showing some lingering tannic structure on the back end but superbly balanced and all too easy to drink right now.
2001 Château Pavie
Not hard to guess this as a spoofed, ultra modern Bordeaux when tasted blind - I don't think I've ever had a Cabernet from Australia or California that had such grotesque charred and oaky flavours obliterating anything else that might make this pleasurable. The fruit's massively ripe, roasted and heavy, it's dull and monolithic on the palate and finishes with a streak of abrasive tannin and lingering alcoholic warmth.
1994 Edmunds St. John Syrah Durell Vineyard
Really nice aromatics, a combination of savoury smoky, earthy and tarry flavours with higher toned herbal and spicy notes, all around a core of rich but not heavy red and dark fruited flavours. It doesn't have the finesse and balance I usually expect from ESJ though, finishing with a tinge of alcoholic warmth though overall it's very nice.
1998 E. Guigal Hermitage
Surprised to see this was a Guigal Hermitage when unveiled - it doesn't have the power and richness I expect from Hermitage; I'd guessed this might be a St. Joseph, but I'm also really pleasantly surprised to see how little apparent oak there is here. It's all about bright peppery, meaty and leathery elements around a core of gentle red fruited flavours, elegant and polished in the mouth and drinking very nicely right now with the tannins quite gentle and a bright acid spine keeping it very fresh and lively.
2001 Joh. Jos. Christoffel Erben Erdener Treppchen Riesling Auslese **
Flat out wow. A fireworks display of pure Mosel fruit and florality over a vivid stony/slatey mineral base. I don't have words for the stunning purity, clarity and sheer sense of electricity to the flavours here; this has the richness and depth of an Auslese conveyed with the clarity and lightness of touch I'd find in a classic Kabinett. Just an absolutely stunning wine, and I can barely imagine what will happen to this with time.
Thanks again David - a fun tasting as always, and the Christoffel and Dunn in particular were absolutely stellar.