Recently we joined friends in SF for a French Wine Dinner at Pera. The dinner included a lineup of awesome wines, including two exceptional bottles of Coche Dury pictured at left. The flight of the night, found the contrast in the two wines striking. One was delicate and feminine, the other powerful and masculine!
What made the tasting more challenging than usual was the relatively small pours. Given the larger group size, it did not allow the best opportunity to revisit the wine later in the evening. Continue to suggest that 6 to 8 person tastings offer the best opportunity to fully evaluate a 750ml bottle of wine. Evaluating wine aside, the true spirit of the evening was to share special bottles of wine among friends, and that is exactly what we did!
The following are very brief observations of all wines opened sorted in order of personal preference by flight.
2001 Raveneau Butteaux – Oyster shell, sweet citrus, moist white cake, nice acidity and balance. A well structured, very good drinking wine.
Dom Perignon Flight
1978 Dom Perignon – Clean, peach, bright orange, nutty, white chocolate, a compelling full bodied Champagne that showed best among the flight.
1976 Dom Perignon– Not too far off stylistically from the 1978, walnut, hardwood, hazelnut, and spice. Some oxidation, but not significant.
1998 Dom Perignon -Honey, tart, lemon, firm acidity, was way too young to be opened. Should cellar this wine for years before opening.
1990 Dom Perignon – A flawed bottle.
1996 Dom Perignon Rose– Bright, light cherry, powder, restrained, elegant and clean. An excellent Rose, and close top pick as wine of the flight.
N.V. Krug Champagne Brut Rose – More powerful than the Dom Perignon, yeasty, rose pedal, young, and a long finish. Very close second wine of the flight.
Coche Dury Flight
2001 Coche Dury Meursault 1er Cru Les Perrieres– Floral, oily, creme brulee, flinty, a lovely soft, but well balanced elegant wine that is ready to drink now.
2001 Coche Dury Meursault – Toasty, petrol, powerful wine, coarse texture, intense citrus, mineral, a young drinking wine that should be aged longer.
Burgundy Flight 1
1990 Frederic Esmonin Griottes Chambertin– Clean blue fruits, mineral, rough texture, but highly age worthy. Did not have a strong preference of the 90 over the 93.
1993 Frederic Esmonin Griottes Chambertin – Sweet, game meats, ripe, perfectly mature, open knit, shut down a bit as it sat in the glass.
Burgundy Flight 2
1996 Domaine Dujac Charmes Chambertin– Blue fruits, exotic and tropical, stemy, a strong showing as wine of the flight.
1996 Louis Jadot Chambertin – Big ripe powerful full bodied Jadot, showed very well next to the Dujac and Bertagna.
1996 Domaine Bertagna Chambertin – Medium bodied, spice, firm acidity, but mellowed out in time. Good balance, nice age worthy wine.
1996 Frederic Esmonin Clos Vougeot – Light bodied, high acidity, lacked character, thought this was a disappointing wine in tough company.
1983 Chateau Margaux– Mineral, earthy, floral, perfect balance and integration. A young wine that has plenty of life.
1962 Chateau Canon – Saddle leather, nice tannin, no signs of oxidation, an excellent old Bordeaux that showed well.
1986 Chateau Margaux – Not too far off in style from the 83 Margaux, however slightly more menthol and less balanced.
1983 Chateau Palmer – A flawed bottle.
1944 Massandra Muscat Rose– Absolutely gorgeous, caramel, thick, rich, butterscotch, a lovely end of meal wine, one of the best wines of the evening.
1955 Domaines et Terroirs du Sud Rivesaltes Millesime – Lean, tight, did not find this wine appealing. In very tough company next to the Massandra.
Cheers to wonderful wines, good friends, and a highly enjoyable evening!
Santa Rosa Fine Wine