WTN: Beringer, Shafer, Byron, Merryvale...

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WTN: Beringer, Shafer, Byron, Merryvale...

Postby Bill Spohn » Tue Apr 25, 2006 11:54 am

WTN: a dinner tasting of mostly American wines.

With air dried beef bresaola:

2002 Ch. de Fesles Bonnezaux ‘La Chapelle’ – lemony waxy nose, smooth on palate with lots of acidity and tons of flavour with a hint of coconut at the end. Has a long life ahead.

With halibut with sweet corn and favas:

1998 Blue Mountain Stripe Label Chardonnay – this BC reserve bottling was amazingly young, starting with the colour. It showed primarily oak in the nose, had a sweet entry but quickly segued to crisp acidity Medium length. Drink up.

With braised duck ravioli with butter sauce and Nicoise olives:

1997 Byron Santa Maria Valley Estate Pinot Noir – sweet pinot nose in a dark wine with lots of fruit, ending with a whack of acidity that worked better with food than without.

With veal loin wrapped in prosciutto with sage and wild mushrooms:

1991 Shafer Hillside Select – I haven’t really started drinking this vintage yet and would normally have brought out an 84-86 that needed drinking, but we figured we give some 91s a go. This was dark with a mellow oak nose, and was surprisingly forward , round and drinkable now. I am sure it will continue to hold, but I’d say it has hit prime time.

1991 Beringer Private Reserve Cabernet – almost purple colour, and a nice vanilla and spice nose, more expressive than the Shafer. Excellent lush fruit on palate, with some spice in the long, juicy finish. I preferred this wine, which has more time to go before hitting peak.

1994 Merryvale Profile – well what can I say, it was a back-up bottle and it was a long time between courses, and we happened to have a corkscrew handy…..This Bordeaux blend has a warm toasty blackberry nose, and nicely calculated fruit with a smooth long finish. More elegant than the previous wines, yet by no means a ‘small’ wine on its own.

With vanilla panna cotta:

2003 Ch. Mosny Montlouis Moelleux– back to the Loire again! Light clean rather candied nose, not a lot of residual sugar, medium weight, nice but not more.

2001 Ch. de Cosse Sauternes – a second wine of Rieussec in a good vintage – light colour, good botrytis nose, low acid, drinks well now. Quite pleasant.

2003 Ch. Roumieu (Barsac) – not much botrytis on this nose, an oily feel in the mouth and higher terminal acidity than the Cosse, but I preferred the latter.

2003 Geyser Peak Late Harvest Semillon – smoky, slightly Maderised orange peel nose, fairly sweet but balanced. Not my style, but interesting.
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Re: TN: Beringer, Shafer, Byron, Merryvale...

Postby Florida Jim » Tue Apr 25, 2006 12:17 pm

Bill,
Where are you getting the Blue Mountain wines? I have been looking of their pinots.
Best, Jim
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Re: TN: Beringer, Shafer, Byron, Merryvale...

Postby Bill Spohn » Tue Apr 25, 2006 12:46 pm

I buy them at the winery - I make an annual trek to BC's interior to visit my favourite wineries in the Fall.

This hasn't worked as well as it used to, as many wineries are starting to spread out their releases - I have just received a bunch of stuff for the smaller wineries this week. I hate buying without tasting but sometimes you have to take a chance.

Just got the Black Hills Nota Bene, for instance - they sell out within a few weeks of offer!
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Re: TN: Beringer, Shafer, Byron, Merryvale...

Postby Jenise » Tue Apr 25, 2006 1:28 pm

Another note to Jim: Bill's Canadian, so getting BM wines isn't a problem like it would be for us typically. Oh, and I'm on their mailing list too. Even though I'm an American, I'm a borderite and get over there about once a year. Let me know if you want some--the BM Stripe pinot release was just yesterday. I might be able to add onto my order but would have to do it like today. They sell out within days, if not hours.
My wine shopping and I have never had a problem. Just a perpetual race between the bankruptcy court and Hell.--Rogov
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Re: TN: Beringer, Shafer, Byron, Merryvale...

Postby Jenise » Tue Apr 25, 2006 1:29 pm

Oh, and Bill: great notes. That duck ravioli course sounds especially enticing--what a neat pinot match.
My wine shopping and I have never had a problem. Just a perpetual race between the bankruptcy court and Hell.--Rogov
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Re: TN: Beringer, Shafer, Byron, Merryvale...

Postby Bill Spohn » Tue Apr 25, 2006 1:34 pm

Jenise wrote:I'm a borderite


Isn't that 'borderline'.....

PS - your Nota Bene is in (you did want some?)
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Re: TN: Beringer, Shafer, Byron, Merryvale...

Postby Jenise » Tue Apr 25, 2006 2:12 pm

Borderline? Ah, that's only when they take away my peanut butter. The rest of the time I'm as normal as...you!

Nota Bene--yes, I saw! Looking forward to it--saw Plusvini's TN on it, which sounds like what a very good young wine still under travel shock should taste like.
My wine shopping and I have never had a problem. Just a perpetual race between the bankruptcy court and Hell.--Rogov
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Re: TN: Beringer, Shafer, Byron, Merryvale...

Postby Florida Jim » Tue Apr 25, 2006 2:58 pm

Jenise wrote:Another note to Jim: Bill's Canadian, so getting BM wines isn't a problem like it would be for us typically. Oh, and I'm on their mailing list too. Even though I'm an American, I'm a borderite and get over there about once a year. Let me know if you want some--the BM Stripe pinot release was just yesterday. I might be able to add onto my order but would have to do it like today. They sell out within days, if not hours.


Jenise,
A very kind offer but I don't need any wine I have to work that hard for. I will taste vicariously through you and Bill. 8)
Best, Jim
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