TN: Great wines in strange bottles- Burg, Bdx, Italy, US, Aussie, etc at Dan's


Last night SOBER was meeting at Dan's in Pound Ridge. I managed to work in a stop by a friend/accountant and by Wine Connection, but managed to forget my stems- luckily Dan had plenty.
Several people were running very late, so John and I chatted with Dan as he cooked. We also sampled the cooking wine, the 2005 Chave "Silene" Crozes-Hermitage. Fleshy, ripe, not very long. Blackberries and a little herb. OK example of Crozes, but why pay the Chave premium? B-
As people arrived, Dan poured the 1988 Pol Roger Brut Champagne. This had the room a bit divided, I was in the middle. Very mature, deep dish apple cobbler with cinnamon, quite bready, quite pleasant if not compelling. B
NV Camille Saves "Carte d'Or" Brut Champagne Brought out because some were disappointed with the PR. Big but not ungainly, crisp acids, medium mousse, delightful. A-
Then we moved to table for the blind portion of the evening. Dan likes to throw some twists in, so rather than numbered decanters, he used empty bottles he had in the house, which is how bottles appear in my notes. I'll mess up names a tad so these containers won't show up in searches
White Flight LavileHB bottle- Acids, white fruits, not very long. A bit awkward. Someone got white Burg quickly, but it took several guesses (I went with Corton-Charlemagne) before anyone got Beaune. 2005 Drouhin Clos des Mouches blanc. B-
Moosigny bottle- OK, I guessed 2003 white Burg. Very ripe tropical fruit, a little heat (some felt a lot), but I didn't actually find it particularly buttery at least. I thought it had an interesting nose, with the ripe fruit, some flint, and flowers. Quite big. 2007 Kongsgaard "The Judge" Chardonnay B/B-
61Beych bottle- this had a floral/perfumey scent I couldn't identify at first (jasmine?) but seemed to blow off in favor of some gooseberry./catpee (Craig jumped in early with Sauvignon Blanc). Citrus, grass, nice length. White Bordeaux was settled on early, then Pessac, but it took lots of guesses to get estate. I did get 2001 on first guess, because I thought it had both nice acids and ripe fruit. Some others thought soft, I disagreed. 2001 de Fieuzal A-/B+
First Red Flight 61PopeClem bottle - medium bodied, sweet, easy, elegant. Someone (Mark?) got Northern Rhone early. One of my favorites. 1999 Texier Hermitage A-
55HB bottle. Someone guessed south of France (Mouvedre?), when Dan said no we went to Italy. I got Campania, but then blew it by guessing one of Mastrobernardino's more international wines. Big, sweet/ raisiny, dense. Quite clumsy. As Cathleen noted, many people would love this. 2000 Feudi di San Gregorio "Sirica" B-/C+
Second Red Flight Decanter #1 This seemed way off- sour, volatile, old. But after I dumped my glass it made a surprising 15 minute turn around- smelling a repour showed red fruit and flowers. 1986 Coudelet de Beaucastel Cotes du Rhone. C at first, B-? later.
Decanter #2 Some debate about whether this was corked, I didn't get any TCA. Some funk, midbodied with raspberry fruit, pleasant finish. I believe Craig got older CdP. 1986 Ch. Beaucastel Chateauneuf-du-Pape. B
Decanter #3 I thought this was clearly Burg, guessing Chambolle of some sort. Red and black fruits, earth, spice, mushrooms. I was shocked it was US, but once we were there Cathleen got W-S. 1991 Williams-Selyem "Olivet Lane" Pinot Noir B+/A-
Third Red Flight
HankyJBru bottle Some found this too green/stemmy, but I found very nice. Spice, red cherry, smoke, a touch exotic. John called Dujac right away. I was guessing 1998, but it turns out to be very nice '97.My #2 red of night. 1997 Dujac Les Gruenchers Chambolle-Musigny 1er. A-
HankyJEch bottle A little more subdued, has something in reserve. Darker fruit, lots of spice, some earth. A few found it lacking as a Musigny, but I liked a lot (maybe because I drink a lot less Musigny than they do). 1997 Drouhin Musigny B+/A-
Fourth Red Flight DujBM bottle Someone guessed CalCabs, I said 1990 Bordeaux. Both wrong. Once Franco went with Aussie Syrah, John went quickly to Grange. Balanced, ripe, mature but not at all fading. 1982 Penfolds Grange B+/A-
99Tex bottle Ripe, floral, meat, smoke. Dan threw us by noting it was a blend, but John recovered to get La Mouline. 1991 Guigal "La Mouline" Cote Rotie. A-
(somewhere in here we had a delightful broth with porcini stuffed pasta, and then lamb with haricots verts. My notes got even briefer and harder to read as I went to back page of form I was writing on, an already printed page so I was writing in margins).
5th Red Flight #1 Mark quickly called Chave, and several people got '91 I think. Dark berries, smoke, bacon, earth. Long and elegant. 1991 Chave Hermitage A
#2 - initial impression was all brett. I'm pretty brett- tolerant, but this was pushing it for me. A bit brutish, redder fruit, still a bit of tannin. Solid, but poopy. 1993 Clape Cornas (magnum) B-
6th Red Flight 85BartMBar bottle Everyone got Bordeaux, but I was thinking 83 or 85. Some tannins, dark cassis fruit, medium bodied, tobacco. 1966 Ausone B+/A-
LePin bottle Cigarbox was only thing I wrote. Lovely middleweight. 1966 Magdelaine B +
Very fun night, great crowd, great wine, great food. Thanks Dan
Grade disclaimer: I'm a very easy grader, basically A is an excellent wine, B a good wine, C mediocre. 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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