I managed to drink a little bit of wine over the last six months. Don't ask to see my liver. I will say that it didn't feel like a lot, but it certainly looks like it. The following list includes wines that I drank domestically, as well as wines from my recent trip to Europe. Most of the wines were consumed at dinners. But the recent wines from the Northern Rhone were tasted at the Marche au Vin in Ampuis in January, and the later vintage Cotat's were tasted at the winery a few days before the Marche. I also attended a forty person BYO tasting in Westchester where I tasted a few dozen wines. All in all it was pretty good drinking. I hope you enjoy the notes.
Please forgive me but I have been late in posting my wine tasting notes. Many of these notes date back to the springtime. A number of them come from a trip to France and Spain back in April where, in spite of the bad exchange rate, I found great bargains on many of the wine lists of top restaurants. In particular, I had a good run of Clos St. Hunes, with examples from 1973, 1979, and 1982. I also had a spate of unbelievable Riojas at local tastings, including great bottles from the 1925, 1928, 1947, and 1949 vintages. Of course, let's not forget a number of other stunning bottles from the various regions I enjoy drinking. And while I know reading about them is not the same as tasting the wines, I hope these notes convey the feeling of drinking them.
1949 Chateau d'Yquem - Beautiful orange/reddish color. Classic petrol palate, but in a mellow sort of way. A glass full of kumquats, oranges, apples, etc. Great bottle of wine. A+
1959 Latour - Silkiness with power and ever-revealing sheets of complexity. A puppy. This will last for 20-30 more years. Needs a nice long decant. A
1966 Palmer - Lovely wine which shows a classic Palmer style. Slightly muted and feminine compared to other clarets; finesse instead of being muscular, you would think from these descriptions it would be an ordinary wine. But somehow Palmer always manages to have these characteristics while still being a great wine. A-
1959 Mouton Rothschild - Somewhat out of balance when it was first opened. An aggressive wine considering the vintage. It developed this animale type of quality that I found a turnoff. B
1985 Haut Brion - This wine has lost some attack. It used to be an in your face, full of fruit, tar, and gravel wine, but it seems to have mellowed. B-
1985 Mouton Rothschild - Starting to develop secondary flavors, this wine was somewhat short on the finish and the concentration. Delicious and easy to drink. B-
1976 Petrus - Big wine with firm and aggressive tannins. Not creamy and supple nature like some of the other Petruses I've had. C+
1964 Latour - Less than a perfect bottle. Excellent nose but the palate fell a little flat. A bit acidic, and even though it got better with air it never really filled out. C
1970 Cos d'Estournal - Out of balance and a little astringent on the mid-palate. Not charming; it had very rough edges. Rustic is a good way to put it. C-
2000 Paulliac de Latour - Fairly concentrated for a 3rd wine and not a bad version of baby Latour. Good by the glass in a restaurant. C-
1996 Leoville Poyferre - Lots of fruit but nowhere near ready. Needs a good 10 years, but I'm not sure it will be a great wine even then. C-