Held up beautifully- with heirloom pork, Brussels Sprouts, and a sweet potato hash — a month ago
This was a rescue mission. A friend of mine who isn’t a wine professional, or even much of a hobbiest, was hosting a small gathering and we needed another bottle of wine. She mentioned that she had some bottles downstairs that she had holed away; gifts from clients and such. There were about two dozen bottles in a small wine rack in her basement; some recent Opus and some other random bottles. As I looked through, I noticed a lone bottle of Viader and as I spun the bottle over, I nearly laughed when I saw the 1996 vintage. I asked if she had any sentimental attachment to the bottle; she had none. We were drinking this bottle.
The label was clearly stained and was, apparently, received that way. She had won the bottle at a charity auction, donated by a known local collector. The cork, which seemed it otherwise fabulous condition, came out in two distinct pieces but I fault myself and the corkscrew for that.
The 1996 Viader Proprietary Red now pours a dark garnet with slightly browning edges and a good amount of fine sediment. However, this is not only very much alive, it was sharing possibly one of its grandest moments of life! The bouquet is absolutely beautiful...beguiling; commanding attention the moment the cork is extracted. Unleashing powerful aromas of homemade mixed berry preserves, baking spices, sweet pipe tobacco and old leather. It actually gained intensity in the glass and I just wanted to smell it for the rest of the night. On the palate, the fruit was on full display and yet, the secondary flavors of spices and earth are in perfect balance. As are the tannins which, while still apparent, are neatly integrated to deliver maximum satisfaction. The texture, impeccable. The finish, everlasting. She is a wine at full peak and she knows it. A wine of confidence and grace. Amongst the nerds and plebes, this wonderful ‘96 Viader was the unanimous WOTN. Drink it now while it’s still sexy as hell. — a month ago
Surprised by the quality and varietal signatures of this NAPA Riesling! Could easily confuse it for a good dry German Riesling. That oily petro white stone flowers and complexity carrying over to a good balanced palate and finish. Impressed. — 19 days ago
Balanced oak flavor. Not at all bitter. Great Chardonnay. Easy to drink. Leaves you wanting more — 2 months ago
The wines of Roger Sabon have been on my radar for about ten years now and I have always thought the “Prestige” designation was, pound-for-pound, one of the better values in all of Chateauneuf-du-Pape. However, for one reason or another, I never seem to drink them that often. This particular bottle of “Le Secret des Sabon” was a lone singleton resting in my cellar since release. My wife, after an unusually exhausting week of work, said she wanted to drink something “impressive”...which means to me that the juice better not suck. And while “Le Secret” has a reputation for being one of the great wines from the entire appellation, I was taking some risk when I selected this bottle since I had no personal experience with it. As soon as I pulled the cork, it was clear this was going to be a special experience. Glass staining garnet with a touch of color that looks almost brown-ish however, there are no signs of decomposition. There is, however, a fairly decent amount of fine sediment. The fruit...well...the fruit is simply sensational. We’re talking fistfuls of the purest raspberries and cherries with some star anise, slightly burned pie crust and black pepper. This is a wine of tremendous texture and balance. Medium acid and medium plus tannins, the latter of which are so fine and silky. The ABV is stated as 15% but it’s so well hidden you would hardly notice. My only wish was that “Le Secret des Sabon” wasn’t so expensive...but there is no doubt about its quality. Drinking so well now but could easily hold for longer if necessary. — a month ago
Pitch perfect balance, oak, malo, fresh and mineral. Would drink this every day. — 20 days ago
Had to try another bottle. Founded by Cody and Marque Wright, yes that family of the great Ken Wright Pinot’s very nice small production Pinot, 1700 cases, sourced from 8 vineyards. Ruby, purple hues with aromas of blue and red fruits with an array of spices. On the palate youthful flavors of cherry and fresh strawberry, licorice notes with elegant spice. Fine tannins, long ending with fruit and tangy spice and mineral notes. Great now but a few years will bring out more of the wines complexity. — a month ago
Cherry, raspberry preserves, blackberry, currant, vanilla, dark chocolate and oak. Full-bodied and moderate tannins. — 2 months ago