Brad organized a retrospective of the legendary 1989 Domaine Huet wines Saturday. I jumped onto train (where I ran into Sasha) down to Marble Hill then strolled over bridge into upper Manhattan. Don and Melissa welcomed us and some other intrepid Loireheads. Congrats to Brad for finding the entire lineup of ?89 Huet.
While we were waiting we enjoyed the Eric Nicolas Les P?tits Velos - apparently Domaine de Belliviere?s first petillant, with fruit from the hail-hit 2013 vintage. I feel badly for growers in years like that, but I certainly enjoyed this. Bone dry, pit fruits, chalk. Crisp and bright. B+
A few folks were delayed, but everyone made or brought food- chicken, lentils, beet salad, pork/apricot stews, rillettes, pate, headcheese, whitefish salad, bread, cheese, smoked salmon, mackerel, tarts, and more
1989 Huet Le Haut Lieu Vouvray Sec
This was a bit austere for some, but I enjoyed- nutty, citrus, waxy. B+
1989 Huet Le Haut Lieu Vouvray Demi-sec
Very wooly, complex, nice length. B+/A-
1989 Huet Le Haut Lieu Vouvray Moelleux
Lighter and a bit less complex than CdBbut still a nice wine. B+/B
1989 Huet Clos du Bourg Vouvray Moelleux
Exotic and lush, but with structure. Lots of marmalade and honeysuckle. A-
1989 Huet Le Haut Lieu Vouvray Moelleux 1ere Trie
Bright and long, apricot and Earl Grey A-
1989 Huet Le Mont Vouvray Moelleux 1ere Trie
Most closed wine of lineup. Good wine underneath, great acids. B+
1989 Huet Clos du Bourg Vouvray Moelleux 1ere Trie
So it took a while to call corked. I brought a backup but it wasn?t cold, but Don had one in winefridge so we traded. Once it opened up quite fine, long. Lots of honey and citrus blossom. A-/B+
1989 Huet Le Mont Vouvray Moelleux Debut Pressee
First bottle corked, second great. Bright, lively, most electric of the Moelleux, pear tart. A-/A
1989 Huet Le Mont Vouvray Moelleux Fin de Presse
Seemed subdued, superripe peach, not so long. Was later declared corked, I didn?t get but hadn?t revisited. B/B-? If correct
1989 Huet Clos du Bourg Vouvray Moelleux Essai
This was an early experiment in biodynamics. Really lovely complex wine, intense, long. A-
1989 Huet Clos du Bourg Vouvray Moelleux Temoin
So this was non-bioD plot next to Essai plot (if I understand correctly). Good acids but not as electric as Debute Presse or Essai, but deep with toffee and caramel flavors (without being oxidative or tired), intriguing, A-/B+
1989 Huet Cuvee Constance Vouvray Moelleux
So this was quite closed when opened in afternoon, still pretty shut when we got to it. Weirdly, I seemed to get a hint of cardboard on the palate, but not on nose, but those with better noses eventually called corked. So we chilled backup in ice bucket to get cool and popped. Lighter than I remembered at first but seemed to be putting on weight with air. This never got to the stunning stage that I expect from Constance but I left as it was still developing (still a rather late train). What I tasted B+/A-, but 89 Constance is usually an A for me, this probably just needed air.
Fun informative night, nice group, but the one downer is all the TCA. With Huet's corked rate rep in 1989 we had backups, but if Fin de Presse was corked that's 33% of original bottles. Plus I admit I have a hard time with all that RS. I was taking a train and still spit most wine after 9 PM. Thanks Brad for organizing.
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.
- posted 9 months ago