Well, to be brief before I paste my notes, I was generally disappointed with the wines presented last night. Based on many of the amazing wines available in this catalogue, I would have expected them to pull out a few more nice wines to taste. So much for that idea.
Oh well, I still tasted 24 wines, chatted with some great people and had an all around good time.
And now for the notes:
2000 CHARLES MENTON NINE POPES (Barossa, Australia)
Deep purple colour. Sweet nose with glycerin, blackberry jam, and smoke. Thick legs. Very tasty wine with layers of sweet dark fruit and a bit of cedar. Long dry finish. Will only improve in the cellar. 91 points.
2000 M. CHAPOUTIER COTE-ROTIE LES BECASSES
Medium-dark ruby red. Thick legs. Aromas of mesquite, smoke, provencal herbs and red berry fruit. On the palate, peppery with red fruit. Good tannin and a decent finish. Needs time. 87 points.
2000 DOMAINE DU VIEUX LAZARET CHATEAUNEUF-DU-PAPE CUVEE EXCEPTIONELLE
Medium-dark ruby red; thick slow legs. Nice nose of bramble, grilled meat, spice, cassis. Wow. Lots of fruit, glycerin, spice and a smooth, lingering finish. The steal of the catalogue at $42CAD. 92 points.
1998 MASSOLINO BAROLO
Medium ruby colour to a pink rim. Pretty traditional nose of tobacco, rose petals and berries. Nice wine with cherries and candied red fruit. Medium-full bodied with a disappointing short finish. 86 points.
1999 MARCHESI DI GRESY BARBARESCO MARTINENGA
Light-medium red; floral nose with hints of cream soda. Crystal clear in the glass. Surprisingly well integrated tannins for such a young wine. Earth, mushroom, tobacco and red berry on the palate with a medium finish. 87 points.
2000 DOMAINE BOUCHARD LE CORTON
Medium-ruby colour with anise and a bit of barnyard on the nose. Medium-full bodied with red fruit, good tannin. Slightly hot but with a lingering, dry finish. 87 points.
2000 DOMAINE DANIEL RION & FILS VOSNE-ROMANEE LES BEAUX-MONTS
Clear ruby red in the glass. Great nose of coffee, cassis, mocha, and floral. Nice wine with pretty fruit and good tannin but a little short on the finish. 87 points.
2000 MISSION HILL OCULUS (Okanagan Valley)
Medium-red to rim. Nose of cedar, bramble, cassis, and pepper. Full bodied with lots of tannin and spice. Hot in the mouth. Needs a heck of a lot of time if it’s going to come together. 85 points.
Medium-dark ruby, crystal clear in the glass. Cassis, cream and dark crushed fruit on the nose. Well integrated tannins, medium-full bodied with great dark fruit. Medium finish. 89 points.
2000 KARLY WARRIOR FIRES ZINFANDEL AMADOR COUNTY
Dark ruby colour. Pretty nose of dark fruit, mocha. Full-bodied, unctuous, tasty wine with plenty of cassis and black fruit. Long, lingering dry finish. Great Zin. 92 points.
2000 CLINE CELLARS ZINFANDEL LIVE OAK CONTRA COSTA
Medium-ruby to violet rim. Thick legs. Coke and red fruit on the nose. Full-bodied with lots of blackberry and raspberry. A little hot. Touches of mocha, cola, and oak on the finish. 88 points.
2000 SHAFER MERLOT STAG’S LEAP DISTRICT
Dark ruby red to rim. Cedar, bramble, mocha aromas. Silky in the mouth with cassis, crushed black fruit and smoke. Good finish. 89 points.
1997 GIUSEPPE LONARDI AMARONE DELLA VALPOLICELLA CLASSICO
Medium-ruby. Medicinal nose with cedar and red fruit. Thick legs. Medicinal tasting as well with cherry and earth. Very disappointing. Tried twice from different bottles with similar results. 68 points.
1999 PENLEY ESTATES CABERNET SAUVIGNON ESTATE RESERVE
Medium ruby. Cream, mocha, cassis on nose. Smooth, well integrated tannins with good black fruit. Medium finish. A tasty wine. 89 points.
2000 D’ARENBERG THE COPPERMINE ROAD CABERNET SAUVIGNON
Deep, dark ruby colour; almost black. Huge nose of cassis, anise, leather. Medium-full bodied with well integrated tannin. Good fruit in the mouth with a medium finish. 90 points.
1995 REIF ESTATE CABERNET SAUVIGNON ESTATE
Medium-dark ruby. A little green on the nose with bramble as well. Integrated tannins, decent fruit and lots of pucker on the woody finish. 80 points.
1999 CHATEAU LEOVILLE-LAS CASES
Dark ruby to rim. Beautiful nose of blackcurrant, smoke, tobacco leaf, grilled meat and bramble. Nice thin, slow legs. Full bodied with some bite. Nice tannin but little fruit right now, it’s hiding behind the oak. Long, lingering finish. Should come around with time. 90 points.
1998 PARKER COONAWARRA ESTATE TERRA ROSSA FIRST GROWTH
Intense purple colour. Dark fruit, glycerin, smoke and a bit of green pepper on the nose. Smooth, lots of fruit peeking from behind the wood. A little hot and will need time to mellow. Lots and lots of wood right now. Was expecting better. 88 points.
1997 CAPARZO BRUNELLO DI MONTALCINO
Deep garnet to rim. Nose of briar, chocolate, coffee, and caramel. Nice red fruit, integrated tannin. Dry on the finish. 87 points.
1998 BANFI EXCELSUS
Dark, dark ruby, almost black. Nice pretty nose of plum, black cherry, flowers, and smoke. Thin, slow legs. In the mouth: cassis, coffee, oak. Really dry, mouthpuckering finish with red berries. Needs a lot of time if it’s going to come together. 60/40 Cab/Merlot blend. 87 points.
1995 BANFI BRUNELLO DI MONTALCINO RISERVA POGGIO ALL’ORO
Deep dark ruby/garnet colour. Expansive nose of cassis, raspberries, and violets. Full bodied, plenty of tannin and oak with enough fruit to support with age. Should come together nicely with about 8+ years in the cellar. Long, lingering polished finish with a hint of rose petals. 93 points.
1999 DOURO A.A. FERREIRA CALLABRIGA
Deep ruby colour to violet rim. Crushed berry fruit on nose. Well integrated tannin with nice fruit and a bit of pucker on the short finish. 86 points.
2000 MAJELLA CABERNET SAUVIGNON
Inky purple; opaque. Bit of crème de cassis. Soft, integrated tannins. Black fruit in the mouth with a lingering finish. A tasty wine. 90 points.
1997 JACOB’S CREEK SHIRAZ/CABERNET LIMITED RELEASE
Inky purple colour. Pretty nose of cassis, pepper, caramel and cream. Cassis, dark crushed fruit in the mouth with a short finish. 87 points.