Post Scriptum de Chryseia 2011, Douro ('2nd wine' of Chryseia). Pure and elegant. Not as overt a red as you would expect from the Douro, especially in 2011. Nothing out of place, and quite classy. Possibly a bit closed/muted right now, though there good concentration. Bordeaux approach is evident. Will be interesting to see how it evolves. A very good value (picked it up in Porto for about €13 if memory serves correct). — 5 years ago
Els Jelipins 2009 (a very kind gift from, and shared with, @J_A_A). Made by Gloria and Berta Garriga in the hills Penedès. Based around the Sumoll grape, with a slightly different blend each year (depending on which rows of vineyards they decide to take fruit from). The fruit is hand-picked over a number of sessions — always early in the morning and in small cases. It ferments with the natural yeasts, without temperature control, fining, or filtration and only a touch of sulfur added right before bottling. Open-top barrel fermentation and some wax-lined oval amphorae are used, along with lengthy aging in big barrels. Each bottle is painted by hand – the design is different each year, but always includes the symbolic heart.
This has to be one of the most distinctive, intriguing and confounding red wines I've ever tasted. The first thing you notice is the cloudy ruby color. A mysterious scent leads to strong flavors of green herbs (almost medicinal) on the palate: is it tarragon or dill, or both? Elderflower perhaps? Maybe fresh olive too. Underlying this is an ever-changing red fruit core (cranberry, tart cherry), with the odd streak of wet rocks and a zippy freshness. Totally raw and wild. Impossible to pin down and paradoxical.
Ultimately, this wine was indomitable. We paired it with a full-flavored Iranian stew (ghormeh-sabzi), then with vegetarian Indian curry. The wine went remarkably well with both, though I wouldn't say it 'paired' well. You could always taste the distinct flavors of the wine, and it didn't interfere with the food, but they didn't really enhance each other either. Essentially, even robust food flavors could not tame this cloudy, 'little-looking' red wine.
After all of this, I will not say that I am gagging to try this wine again, as I'm not really sure I love the flavor profile overall … but it did grow on me over the four days we had it open. And the wine was possibly even better on Day 4 than it was on Day 1. I would definitely be happy to try it again, though, as there is no doubt it would challenge palates, ideologies and spark conversation. This is a 'real' wine, with no pretense and oodles of individuality. — 5 years ago
We had this 2006 with our duck on Xmas Day (sorry for the late post) and stole the show at the table. This was just remarkably perfumed, and then seamless on the palate, with all manner of red fruit, earth and woody notes parading around. It may have lacked a certain depth of flavor, and perhaps it wasn't the longest in finish, but boy was this a totally enjoyable bottle. I wish I had another. Such a treat. Real class in the glass.
Comment — 5 years ago
We greatly enjoyed the 2007 in March of 2013. In fact, it was probably the best Languedoc white I have tasted. Just opened a second bottle on NY's Eve and sadly a bit passed its prime. Still has a slightly bewitching nose, but the stone fruit has begun to turn bitter. The color is very mature for only 7 years of age or so. Drink up if you have any. My score reflects this wine when it was in more prime drinking condition. Hope that makes sense! — 5 years ago
This bottle of 1994 held up very well. Some mature BDX-type flavors and, while the primary fruit was totally gone, there was enough else going on to make it a very interesting and tasty bottle. — 5 years ago
Very good value at <$15. Bright red fruits with hints of creamy blueberry too plus a distinct violet note. It had tannins and body similar to Beaujolais but a bit more weight and a different (sweeter) fruit profile. Two of us finished the bottle in one sipping (not the norm), and it went quick! A good sign. Not complex but highly drinkable. An Eric Solomon import. — 5 years ago
A truly sensational Blanc de Blancs Champagne from the 1996 vintage (widely considered one of the few best years in the 20th century). Late disgorged in 2014, it possesses a beautiful tension between richness and freshness. This comes from a top house that did not release a BdB in '96. Amazing value at $59.99 a bottle on sale. — 5 years ago
Very fine Chianti Classico Riserva for the price. Made by Franco and Matteo Bernabei (of Flaccianello fame) at the Lornano estate just outside Sienna, from a special vineyard. Fantastic value for the pure Sangiovese flavors, which are nicely rounded out by 20 months in oak. — 5 years ago