TN: 8 bottles of 1959 French wines, plus others, for Betsy's birthday

Last week was a landmark birthday for Betsy, but we celebrated this Wednesday at St. George Bistro in Hastings. Nice private room upstairs, good food, good attitude. I had worked out a corkage deal and furnished all the wines.
As people gathered , we had Champagne and canapes- onion and olive tartlets, mushroom duxelle and goat cheese mousse in phyllo, Jambon de Bayonne gougeres
NV Pierre Peters Cuvee de Reserve Champagne (mag, disgorged Dec 2010) Crisp, bright acids, lemon and apple, long B+
1990 Laurent-Perrier ?Grand Siecle? Champagne Brut (mag) Brioche meets croissant, pear, lemon curd, touch of almond, this was fresher than I expected and a big hit. A-
We sat for family style mussels with a curry sauce as well as salad with blue cheese, followed by gnocchi Parisienne with wild mushroom, parmesan, & herbs. 2013 Francois Carillon Puligny-Montrachet 3 bottles all similar. Lovely midweight white Burg, pear, fruit blossoms, and chalky earth notes. Some oak/vanilla but not obtrusive, balanced acids. B+
1997 Jadot Clos des Couchereaux Beaune 1er 2 magnums -one a bit fresher than other. Black cherry, earth, just a hint of cow pasture. Nice softer Burg, one seems to have future, other fully mature. B+ and B
1988 Jadot (Duc de Magenta) Clos de la Garenne Puligny-Montrachet 1er Cru 2 Bottles Bottle A- this and the Grand Siecle are my wines of the night. Crisp, pear and hazelnut, citrus blosson, chalk. Lovely A- Bottle B- darker color, but mature without being tired. A little more nutty than first bottle, not as long, good but the vagaries of cork. B With the main courses (I had Poulet au Vinaigre with mushroom, onion, herbs, other choices were steak frites with bordelaise and béarnaise or duck confit on greens)
1959 Charles Vienot Chateauneuf-du-Pape 3 bottles Bottle A - fleshy, herby, holding well, very Southern Rhone. B/B+ Bottle B- this is more perfumed and elegant , red fruit, sandalwood, lovely. A-/B+ Bottle C- similar to bottle A, but with a little ashtray and a shorter finish. B-
1959 Branaire-Ducru Mid-shoulder fill, but some life left. Red plum, Earl Grey, tobacco. Hangs on well for 30 minutes, then cracks up, For its better period, B/B+
1959 Giscours 2 bottles bottle A mid-shoulder fill, but drinks pretty well, berries and tobacco. B Bottle B- high shoulder fill, but drinks much older than other bottle. Red fruit, but dank, acrid, I put aside. C+/C
1959 La Grave a Pomerol Best claret of the bunch. Dark plum, tobacco, good acids, silky finish, B+/A- (not as much of this to go around, due to a premature pour by a guest)
Dessert was profiteroles and tarte au citron
1959 Moulin Touchais Wax, apricot, honey, tea leaves. Quite long. A-/B+
Fun night. None of the wines have aged as well as Betsy, but lots of pleasure to be had.
Grade disclaimer: I'm a very easy grader, basically A is an excellent wine, B a good wine, C drinkable. Anything below C means I wouldn't drink at a party where it was only choice.Furthermore, I offer no promises of objectivity, accuracy, and certainly not of consistency.
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DaleW

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