TN: Rioja 1942-1996 at Noreetuh

Patrick was in town from Colorado, and some of the usual suspects and a few new friends gathered at Noreetuh, where we were very well treated. I enjoyed the walu dish, pork jowl musubi, ankimo torchon, tuna poke, truffle wontons, mentaiko spaghetti, and Wagyu beef with rice and mushrooms. I hear after I left more pork jowl was consumed, along with dessert.
Wine theme was Spain (well really Rioja)
1996 Lopez de Heredia Gravonia Rioja Blanco (corked) Seems to be a great wine lurking, but TCA always wins.
1996 Lopez de Heredia Tondonia Reserva Rioja Blanco Oxidative style, but in a really pleasant way- salted nuts! Saline, nutty, citrus, flowers. Great length. B+
1987 Marques de Tomares Rioja Reserva Blanco Incredibly light color, bright and grassy, tangy, shockingly young. B+/B
1973 Marques de Murrieta Etiqueta Blanca Rioja I liked this, but not as much as some others. Nice cherry fruit, touch of dill, quite lively but I thought a bit one-dimensional. B
1989 Marques de Murrieta Ygay Rioja Reserva Young, red fruit with mushrooms and tobacco, a touch lifted but I enjoy. B+/B
1947 Lopez de Heredia Bosconia Rioja Gran Reserva (flawed) Never tasted this, cork was dried out and Justin said caramelized flavors.
1942 Lopez de Heredia Bosconia Rioja Gran Reserva This was a bottle that had been pulled because of fill, but fill looked fine to me for almost 80 years old- maybe 4-5 cm. Pretty exotic nose, macerated cherries with sandalwood and anise, mushrooms, kept evolving. Gets a bit disjointed in end, but quite the experience. B+/A-
1981 Lopez de Heredia Bosconia Rioja Gran Reserva Lovely and elegant, floral and herb notes over solid red plum and cherry fruit, not a blockbuster but sweet and balanced. A-
1982 La Rioja Alta 904 Rioja Gran Reserva Still apparent oak, but lovely bottle, with red and black cherry fruit accented with spice and leather. Powerful compared to preceding wines, but not heavy. A-
1964 Franco-Espanolas Rioja Reserva Mature but not tired, lots of citrus zest and spice over quiet but pleasant fruit. Good length, good acids. B+/A- 1966 Franco-Espanolas Rioja Reserva Some preferred this to ?64, not me. But I did like- high toned, bright, good fruit but not as long as ?64. B/B+
1964 CVNE Vina Real Rioja Reserva Especial Wildly delicious,. Red and black cherry, anise-y herbs, cigarbox. Exotic but classic at same time. A/A- 1985 CVNE Vina Real Rioja Reserva Slightly lifted nose but not problematic, dark fruit, smoke, very tasty. B+
1995 Bosconia Bosconia Rioja Gran Reserva This was a late addition, and I really enjoyed, but took no notes.
I needed to catch train and missed the 1985 Don Pedro Ximenez Gran Reserva.
Fun night, great food, great wines, great friends.
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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Too bad, this has been on my short list of birthday wines. Can't seem to source it though.
Seems that La Rioja Alta never loses the oak taste though I don't mind it.
I really miss this old style of CVNE. They don't seem to make them this way any more.
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Lawrence Leichtman

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