All in one night, thanks to Lentini, PurpleHaze, Sibster, Newsguy, Jersey Foodie, as below. In a word, Epic. Let's do it again in 2013!
Notes from Newsguy below
1996 Nicolas Feuillatte Palmes d’Or Brut Millesime: Pale yellowish color. Big beaded, lively mousse. A beautiful nose loaded with brioche, hazlenut, and joined on the palate by cream at the start and finish, plus apples. Elegant, and drinking at the top of its game, fairly round and mature. 94 points.
1998 Krug Brut: I literally laughed out loud when I first smelled this. What a nose! Loaded with brioche, plus meaty and nutty at the same time. Serious stuff, and I loved the aromas so much I went a while just smelling and not even wanting to taste it. Flavors echoed the nose, plus some lemon. This was tight in the mouth, though, with plenty of acid. Definitely a food wine. Got creamier with air and as it warmed up. I would give this at least 3-5 more years. Tough for me to score this and the next Krug since they’re drinking so young. But classics in the making. 94-96 points.
1995 Krug Brut: Similar to the '98 in every respect, except it was tighter, with more acidity, and lots of lemon on the palate in addition to notes above. Serious stuff, and wouldn’t pop a cork on one of these for *at least* 5 more years. But patience will be greatly rewarded. 95-98 points.
Sine Qua Non
2010 That Type … of Rosay: Salmon colored. Mostly grenache and syrah, plus some roussanne and viognier. Classic red fruit and spice aromas and flavors a la Provence, but with an intensity that I’ve never experienced in a French rose. A light silky mouthfeel, but the wine simply balloons on the palate, and the finish goes on and on. 15.4 percent alcohol and completely masked by the fruit, yet far from a fruit bomb. A remarkable wine and easily my favorite rose of all I’ve ever had (and I’ve had SQN rose before, along with the usual French suspects). I expect it will improve, but knowing how this wine is drinking now, there’s no way I could wait on popping the cork on one if I had one. 95 points.
2007 Body and Soul: Mostly Roussanne, plus viognier. Melons, honey and tropical fruits, with a slight hint of petrol. Unctuous, and seemingly mature. Nose kept getting bigger and bigger. This white is drinking beautifully now. 93 points.
2009 On the Lamb: Roussanne, chardonnay and viognier. I was cooking when we drank this and could not take notes. I’m hoping others will jump in with their recollections. I remember that it was a serious, unusual tasting white, and seemed pretty tight. No score.
2005 The 17th Nail in My Cranium Syrah: A nose that was beautiful, and initially hit me with the buttered popcorn note that I sometimes get from great merlot. Followed on the nose and palate by luscious dark fruits and black pepper, plus red fruits, brown sugar and spices. Not quite a velvet hammer, because it didn’t really hammer you. Just seamlessly expanded from its elegant, silky mouthfeel on entry to a mouthfull of flavor (the best midpalate I’ve ever experienced), then moved to layers and layers on the finish that seemed to go on for nearly a minute. The balance in this wine was a thing of beauty. Everything about it screamed of elegance and class. And yes, we really did pass around the last empty glass of this so we all could keep sniffing it (aromas changed from incense to ash). Needless to say, my WOTN, and the best wine I’ve ever experienced. 99 points. And if I had quiet time to spend with a glass to give it the respect it deserved, my score might be 100. (Thank you again, patespo1, for sharing this with us.)
2007 Dangerous Birds Syrah: Similar to the above in most ways (minus the buttered popcorn note on the nose and the passing around of the last empty glass). A beautiful wine with layers of fruit, seamless and impeccably balanced. Still has room for improvement. A killer bottle that would be a WOTN under nearly any other circumstances. 96-97 points.
2007 Dangerous Birds Grenache: After the two syrahs, the floral component really popped on this one. Lots of beautiful dark and red fruits, plus spice. Great, lengthy finish. A totally classy, balanced wine that would be a star on most other nights. 95 points.
1980 Kopke Colheita: A pretty yellow-meets-umber color that screams of mature port — as did everything else about this wine. Toffee, caramel, brown sugar. Great finish. I really liked this. 93 points.
1997 Taylor's Vintage (from a .375): I have very limited exposure to young vintage ports, so it was tough for me to assess (especially considering all the wines that preceded it). Plums, raisins and a floral component. Plenty of stuffing, but needs many years to reach its peak. 91-93 points.
Every one of these wines deserved the type of time and attention that we were unable to give them in this setting. They were worthy of real inspection and assessment. Instead, we sipped these suckers one after another.
But we had them with great food and among great company. That’s what it’s all about, folks.