Chinese New Year 2020: The Year of the Rat

The 2020 Chinese New Year begins Saturday, January 25th and is the Year of the Rat. The rat is the first in the order of the Chinese Zodiac animals. Those born in 1924, 1936, 1948, 1960, 1972, 1984, 1996, 2008 and 2020 are often well-liked by all, are sensitive towards other’s feelings, and quite imaginative. There's no denying that these years produced some noteworthy vintages, so let's celebrate the Year of the Rat by revisiting these unforgettable wines!

Bodegas y Viñedos Vega Sicilia

Reserva Especial Unico Ribera del Duero Tempranillo Blend

Release 20 (08,09,10)wonderfully deep, pure and intense. A slightly medicinal quality over lush fruit. Tight and dramatic. Very long. Needs a while to unpack. — 4 years ago

Ara AslanianJonathan Davidson
with Ara and Jonathan
Shay, Keith and 10 others liked this


Vintage Port Blend 1960

Everything you would expect from a vintage port. — 8 years ago

Ceccherini and Spencer liked this


South Coast Rosé Muscat 1936

Wow. What a thrilling nose and perfectly integrated palette. It's from 1936 so I'm just grateful to have enjoyed a glass — 9 years ago

Bill and Steve liked this
Bill Bender

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Oh my god, you're like totally in the Valley!! I've been there. Do they have a '35? My Dad's 80th is this year.....
Matthew Beckman

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They just might. Worth calling them...I'll give you their info
Steve Anderson

Steve Anderson

Wish the 1937 Massandra Madeira had shown that well when we had it with family last month, but it was still an interesting and unique treat.

Bodega Vina 1924 De Angeles

Vistalba Malbec 1924

Easily one of the most complex malbec wines I have had. Tar, leather, tobacco on the nose. Medium to soft tannins. Fruit starts to show after about 45 minutes decanted. Mouthfeel is velvet. ¡Mendoza pura! — 5 years ago

Tony liked this

Opus One

Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon Blend 1984

Though tamed by age, ruby fruit comes through plumes of cured tobacco and shrewd vanilla melodies. Tannins remain strong and elevate the finish, which is longer than expected for a wine without any definite sharp edges or exclamation marks. This wine is unquestionably full and robust despite sighs of deserved exasperation. — 7 years ago

Ceccherini and Spencer liked this

Domaine Comte Georges de Vogüé

Cuvée Vieilles Vignes Musigny Grand Cru Pinot Noir 1972

Was able to enjoy this 1972 in 2001 at a friend's dinner party. A bit soft (as might be expected), but a nice crispness in the finish. Lovely rust color. I loved the dirt of it. — 9 years ago

Ceccherini liked this

Louis Roederer

Cristal Brut Champagne Chardonnay Pinot Noir Blend 1996

1996 Rosé is a perfect start. Stone fruit on the nose. Very long finish with just the right amount of oxidative quality that makes it pair well with Crab. Cindy, Clay and Laura love it as well. — 6 years ago

Cindy Nguyen
with Cindy
Lisa, Ceccherini and 1 other liked this

Harlan Estate

Napa Valley Proprietary Red Blend 2008

Impressive wine! Love the dark inky color and round cola, oak and dirt flavors. Interested to taste with more aging on it. — 8 years ago

Spencer liked this

Taylor Fladgate

Vintage Port Blend 1948

Tasted without a label. Asked the Somm of there was anything in the cellar that was not on the list. She said there was a bottle without a label, bought from a private collector, that that they wouldn't be able to sell. I offered to take it off their hands for $100.00.
With a little forensics, the cork revealed that the bottle was a 1948 Taylor-Fladgate Vintage Port!
Rich, smooth, with a velvet mouth feel.
Extraordinary acid, great balance. I was fooled by an immature sugar complex and guessed decades younger before the reveal. Old color, young taste. Extraordinary find!
— 9 years ago

Severn, Ceccherini and 1 other liked this