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08-08-2013 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
de charlus
Posts 94
Joined on 06-11-2013

Post #: 41
Post ID: 19878
Reply to: 19877
Mouton etc
fiogf49gjkf0d
Yes, what an outrageous assertion! Yes, Rieussec is always a good thing, but I strongly recommend Gilette Creme de Tete and Sudiraut Cuvee Madame, since these special cuvees from somewhat less illustrious estates can be obscenely good, and decently-priced, although they can be hard to find due to only being made in the best vintages. Oh, and - and this is a wine-trade Masonic thing, but since I'm no longer in the trade.... - above all, Cru d'Arche Pugneau, a tiny estate bordering d'Yquem, Rieussec etc etc and making some stunning wines. Since they're unheard of outside of a select few, even their prestige cuvees are relatively affordable; "Trie Exceptionelle" is a typical, best-of-the-best prestige cuvee sometimes equal to the very best Rieussecs, Sudirauts and - dare I profane the name? - d'Yquems, whilst "L'Intemporel" is an exercise in the expression of terroir, each release being comprised of the portion of the holding that performed best in that vintage. Since the whole domain is 13ha, you can imagine that quantities are beyond limited, but the fact that no-one's heard of it helps.
I too like the butch, inky-black, blackcurrant-y Barton, but less than the aristocratic, elegant and supple Las Cases; a matter of personal preference, but I imagine the Mouton lover favoring Barton, and the Lafite fan preferring Las Cases. I never did much like the various Segurs, be they Phelan, Calon or H-Bomb, no matter what Mr. Parker has to say about it - coarse and monolithic, IMHO, but in Parker-speak that translates to "unbelievable intensity", "inordinate aging potential" and "colossal mouthfeel". A shame about your 82s; most 83s are drinking now, although Lafite, Latour etc have long lives ahead of them even if they are delicious now. As for 82s, their prices have reached such absurd territory that I almost feel guilty when I drink one, but I seldom buy purely to invest; I only did that in the 2000 vintage, since even if it had been terrible, it still would have appreciated, but having been at the Bordeaux 2000 Primeur tasting, I knew that not only was it the millennial vintage, but it was bloody great too, even modest estates like Clerc Milon turning out superb wines. Since I was in a position to furnish myself with the pick of the litter, I did so, and as you can well imagine was delighted with the outcome. Naturally, I sold 90% of what I bought at the top of the market, but for cellaring and eventual drinking I kept 6 of each of the 1st growths, plus Cheval Blanc and Petrus, and kept a case each of Las Cases, Cos d'Estournel, Barton, La Mondotte, L'Eglise Clinet, Talbot, Ducru-Beaucaillou, Gruaud-Larose, L'Evangile, Palmer, Giscours, Trotanoy, La Fleur Petrus, Angelus and Ausone. I am very happy about this.
Mouton did do a beautiful job of making their wines collectable even when terrible by having their label done by a different, prominent artist every year. Not only do they look cool, but the side-effect has been that the 1946 and 1948 (terrible when young, so unspeakable now) are almost as costly as their noble brethren, 1945 and 1947 (absolutely great) because people need those bottles - which were almost all consumed young, being terrible - to complete their Mouton collection - absolute genius. We are already seeing this effect with things like 52, 64, 68 etc etc, meaning that it actually makes a great deal of sense to purchase bad Mouton vintages when young, in the knowledge that people will simply have to have them for their label collection in a decade or two!

de Charlus
08-08-2013 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
clarkjohnsen
Boston, MA, US
Posts 298
Joined on 06-02-2004

Post #: 42
Post ID: 19881
Reply to: 19863
"Terroir-less Parkerized liquids."
fiogf49gjkf0d
Oooh! Right in the gut.

I must thank you all again for this educational and vastly amusing discussion. While I know whereof you speak, still I've never had one of those great DRCs. Perhaps I can talk Romy into investing in one for immediate consumption. Romy?

(The "underpriced" '59 Richebourg seems no longer to be available in the US, but I find it in der Schweiz for as little as $3300.)

Speaking of Parker, a friend of mine who wrote a local store's wine newsletter (great writing it was too) once published a parody issue called The Wine Avocado in which the descriptions of the wines on offer -- two pages' worth anyway -- were composed in Parkerese. It was a hoot.

c
08-08-2013 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
clarkjohnsen
Boston, MA, US
Posts 298
Joined on 06-02-2004

Post #: 43
Post ID: 19882
Reply to: 19881
The '47 Lafite
fiogf49gjkf0d
A friend of mine once showed me a book on wine written in IIRC 1951, in which a memorable line appeared:

Unfortunately this beautiful 1947 Ch. Lafite is already, at $5, priced beyond the ability of most people's budgets to afford.

c
08-08-2013 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
de charlus
Posts 94
Joined on 06-11-2013

Post #: 44
Post ID: 19883
Reply to: 19881
Wine spoofs
fiogf49gjkf0d
I did one such newsletter many years ago at university; one description I recall was "have you ever - inadvertently or otherwise - tasted your own earwax? Well, embrace and amplify that thought, add tannins that could strip paint at five paces and garnish with the bouquet of an open Delhi sewer in a heatwave." Needless to say, I was, quite in earnest, describing a South African Pinotage, the bastard vinous result of incestuous union, and utterly appalling swill.
Perhaps the 59 Richebourg is not as 'underpriced' as I recall it being; I was given mine as a birthday present, when the lady in question went down to her late husband's cellar and picked out something that looked "interesting", knowing that I liked "interesting" wine. She perhaps realized the extent of her accidental largesse when I, an Englishman and thus not much given to "touchy-feely", overwhelmed her with hugs and kisses. Nonetheless, I opened it there and then, shared it with her, and we both agreed that it was indeed very, very "interesting" in the Romy sense of the word.
I thought that you were perhaps a DRC virgin when you equated the domain with that of Dom. Leroy; I assure you that no two things could be more dissimilar than the intense, silky, aristocratic, terroir-driven, liquid-velvet beauty of DRC and the hyper-extracted, terroir-less, ooey-gooey, opaquely Parkerized stuff with which La Bize believes she can exceed the wonders of DRC. If you don't have the holding, you don't have the holding, and when you do - and she really does have some very good ones, just not Romanee-Conti and La Tache (much to her chagrin) - Burgundy viniculture 101 is to let those holdings express their wonders, instead of doing your damnedest to hide them in search of Parker 100s. Take my word for it; mature Romanee-Conti in a fine vintage is exquisite in a way that goes beyond wine, almost to erotica, the pheromonal nature of the stuff making one's hair stand on end and one's mind to reel in a state of utter bliss. Why it is that only the synergy of a particular grape variety, and 1.6ha on top of an otherwise nondescript hill in Burgundy seems capable of doing this is beyond me, but emblematic of the frustration and wonder of wine, Burgundy in particular. I suggest that you lose your DRC virginity at the first opportunity; life really is much better when suffused with such sublimity.
Now I mention it, said quest reminds me of that for audio bliss, a state of being also much sought but seldom gained, so exquisite when gained and yet so utterly humdrum when not.
I too have been enjoying this discussion; I seldom get to speak with anyone whose enthusiasm for the finer things mirrors my own.

Regards

de Charlus
08-08-2013 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Paul S
San Diego, California, USA
Posts 2,367
Joined on 10-12-2006

Post #: 45
Post ID: 19884
Reply to: 19883
Stand Up (and move fast) for Greatness!
fiogf49gjkf0d
I refuse to reflect on the possibility of that '59 DRC Richebourg being taken from horizontal to vertical to horizontal in 5 minutes flat, since I would certainly have moved as quickly as necessary on this opportunity, myself (and have done!)!

Dixie Cups and Saltines, I presume?

Next, vintage Port from the bottle...


Best regards,
Paul S
08-08-2013 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
clarkjohnsen
Boston, MA, US
Posts 298
Joined on 06-02-2004

Post #: 46
Post ID: 19885
Reply to: 19883
Virginity and sublimity
fiogf49gjkf0d
"I suggest that you lose your DRC virginity at the first opportunity; life really is much better when suffused with such sublimity."

That line might be taken as patronising except, you are correct, sir! (Only, what if virginity is itself sublime?)

I can't think where I made that gaffe about Leroy but it doesn't matter as I am actually aware of the difference... intellectually.

So, M. de Charlus, I assume you found this site owing to an interest in music and/or audio, besides in all things good and precious. So I give you a column I wrote some time ago in which I deride the need of audio objectivists (the measurements men) to ignore connoisseurship.

http://www.positive-feedback.com/Issue9/diaries.htm

Votre sante!

c
08-09-2013 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
drdna
San Francisco, California
Posts 523
Joined on 10-29-2005

Post #: 47
Post ID: 19887
Reply to: 19871
Parker and Bruckner
fiogf49gjkf0d
 Paul S wrote:
we should all try to remember that Parker actually says outright that he is not a Burgundy guy.
Or, perhaps, that Burgundy is not (yet) a Parkerwine?
08-09-2013 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
drdna
San Francisco, California
Posts 523
Joined on 10-29-2005

Post #: 48
Post ID: 19888
Reply to: 19876
Two Leovilles
fiogf49gjkf0d
Yes, Las Cases is actually my personal favorite. It decays in a delectable way when it is supposedly over the hill, with incredible complexity and infinite layers. Barton is much more prim and proper, taking its own time to come around but ultimately in a generally extremely predictable and classic way.

Let's say Las Cases are horn speakers and Barton are electrostatics?

Adrian
08-09-2013 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Paul S
San Diego, California, USA
Posts 2,367
Joined on 10-12-2006

Post #: 49
Post ID: 19893
Reply to: 19888
Knitting
fiogf49gjkf0d
I would say that Las Cases is a closer knit, more "balanced", typically lighter wine, and Barton is more "au sauvage", often quite rough when young.  And I would say the same of THE DRC (regarding knit and balance, in any case) vs La Tasche, which I also prefer in most vintages I have tried.  In the best vintages, however, nothing can touch THE DRC (as everyone already knows and agrees).

Before we abandon this discussion, let's also salute the incredible white wines of Burgundy, starting with another DRC, THE Montrachet, a whole universe that can "come up" in a glass for well over 2 hours.

And perhaps dC will spool off for us a list of today's likely Bourgognes, to keep our whistles properly wetted.


Best regards,
Paul S
08-09-2013 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Paul S
San Diego, California, USA
Posts 2,367
Joined on 10-12-2006

Post #: 50
Post ID: 19894
Reply to: 19887
Tail Wags Dog; World Applauds
fiogf49gjkf0d
Not to defend Parker, but that genie is long out of the bottle.  I remember when he started, I appreciated his insight and a palate that could differentiate far better than other critics of the day. Now, like I've said, I "read through" his very consistent reviews to home in on what I like.  And he has actually said that he does not "get" Burgundy, and he actually hired help to try to cover Burgundy, because so many people want him to do it!  Believe it or not, I can remember back to when some of Lalou's winemakers would not "go along", although there are too few of the old guard now, anywhere in the wine world, it is true, down to effing Riojas, fer crissake!  The first "jammy" Brunello I try, I am launching a counter attack!

As with so many things, eff the "Public"; by and large, they get what they deserve.  As PT Barnum said...


Best regards,
Paul S
08-09-2013 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
de charlus
Posts 94
Joined on 06-11-2013

Post #: 51
Post ID: 19895
Reply to: 19894
DRC Montrachet, etc
fiogf49gjkf0d
Ah yes, how could I have forgotten Montrachet DRC? Also totally spectacular stuff, right up there with Lafon, Leflaive and Lucien Le Moine. Actually, when requiring an excellent white Burgundy and not feeling like spending $700 per bottle, and having overdosed on Lafon Meursaults, Coche Dury Corton-Charlemagnes and Sauzet and Ramonet Batard-, Chevalier- and Criots-Batard-Montrachets, I like to go for the expression of the Burgundian terroir in pure, unoaked style, meaning the Chablis of Raveneau and Dauvissat. The pure, tingling, mineral intensity of these almost elemental Chardonnays can be really breathtaking, and they're not very expensive either; from Dauvissat the Grand Cru Le Clos is the one to go for, and from Raveneau the 1er Cru Montee de Tonnerre is it - you won't look as cool at your dinner party as if you'd served something ending in -Montrachet, but you will certainly surprise people, and enjoy a delicious bottle of wine.
Much as I enjoyed the joke, there does in fact exist a photograph of me stumbling around my drawing room, wearing a Santa Claus hat and slugging from a magnum of Taylor '63; it was great, although I did miss out Xmas day and half of Boxing Day, but then, given that my objectionable then in-laws were present, unconsciousness was not only the better part of valor, but a concise statement of my respects.
As for Las Cases vs Barton, I find that both are enjoyable, but the former to be more subtle, complex and less monolithic. The Barton is a little more obvious, IMHO, but considering its heavy Cabernet Sauvignon content vs Las Cases, this is not surprising; it does give it considerable structure and good aging potential, but not with the same grace as Las Cases. In short, I believe that the Las Cases, given its aristocratic grace and suppleness, merits inclusion among the 1st Growths in some vintages, whilst in my opinion the same can only be said for Leoville Barton in a couple of instances.
It is good that Parker acknowledges that he doesn't know what he's talking about when it comes to Burgundy, but this just makes the fact that people still follow his pronouncements religiously even more irritating. Oh, and whilst on the subject of "jammy" Brunello, have you tried Fattoria Poggia Di Sotto recently? Fix Bayonets! Really, the only things that Parker hasn't managed to bugger up are the things that were Parker-y anyway to an extent, like Quintarelli Amarone; these he just made much more expensive, which is just great, thank you very much.

de Charlus
08-09-2013 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Paul S
San Diego, California, USA
Posts 2,367
Joined on 10-12-2006

Post #: 52
Post ID: 19897
Reply to: 19895
World Applauds; Sellers Raise Prices
fiogf49gjkf0d
Well, I meant to drink my '63 Taylor this year, but...

Thanks for the Chablis leads, since the last few locally-purchased bottles I've tried smacked (surely, I must be wrong...) of oak chips!  Take that with your boulliabaisse!

Shame about the Brunello tart.  Probably "ready for drinking" in <10 years, too.  I thought we could count on the Mafia to keep that stuff (and the best grappa) under control!

Yes, Hermitage and Amarone are OK as-are, apparently, making Parker's opinion here moot, for a change (apart from the nominal price increase, of course...).

So, how about some Bourgogne tips?

Best regards,
Paul S
08-09-2013 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
clarkjohnsen
Boston, MA, US
Posts 298
Joined on 06-02-2004

Post #: 53
Post ID: 19898
Reply to: 19895
Regarding Raveneau
fiogf49gjkf0d
The 1er Cru Montée de Tonnerre, yes, you have me intrigued. I see vintages 2005-2009 in the US, but perhaps only the '09 locally. What say ye?

Interestingly, Massachusetts adds no purchase tax to the three essentials: Food, clothing, and alcoholic beverages. However, in the case of the '09, it's about $50 cheaper in taxy California. Problems, problems.

c
08-09-2013 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
de charlus
Posts 94
Joined on 06-11-2013

Post #: 54
Post ID: 19901
Reply to: 19898
In vino veritas
fiogf49gjkf0d
09 is fine for the Montee de Tonnerre; I would certainly give it a try if you can - anything from Raveneau is usually excellent.

As for the best Bourgogne Rouge, that's usually akin to asking for the best poet in Belgium, but as it happens I've tried three good ones recently;

2010 Bourgogne Rouge Les Bons Batons, Rion

2010 Bourgogne Rouge, Dom Christian Serafin

2008 Bourgogne Rouge, Dom Dugat-Py (or any other vintage, but good luck finding it).

As for Bourgogne Blanc, I've tried two good ones as of late;

2010 Bourgogne Blanc, Haut-Cotes de Nuits Clos St-Philibert, Dom. Meo-Camuzet (always good, but this is really remarkable considering the AOC - I bought one bottle, tried it, and went back half an hour later and bought the rest of their stock).

2008 Bourgogne Blanc, Comte de Vogue (although once again, good luck getting any).

de Charlus

PS With Dauvissat, the Grand Cru I mentioned - Le Clos - is pretty much legendary these days and thus commands serious Burgundy prices. It's worth every cent, but if you don't want to spend all that on Chablis, he makes a 1er Cru Les Forets, which is almost as good at a third to a half of the price, being less legendary, and all that.

Seriously though, go for the Raveneau; you simply wouldn't have believed that Chablis could ever be that good, especially considering that it's the 09 vintage - a remarkable achievement.
08-09-2013 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Paul S
San Diego, California, USA
Posts 2,367
Joined on 10-12-2006

Post #: 55
Post ID: 19902
Reply to: 19901
"Second" Wines and Stormy Weather
fiogf49gjkf0d
Thanks, dC!  With Burgundy "production" what it is, I suppose it's a snipe hunt outside La France. But I still have a couple of phone numbers (and I also use the "search-and-clear" tactic when I find a real value).  And, fortunately, I'm not really that hard to please (any Port in a storm!)!


Best regards,
Paul S
08-10-2013 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
de charlus
Posts 94
Joined on 06-11-2013

Post #: 56
Post ID: 19905
Reply to: 19902
No problem
fiogf49gjkf0d
No problem at all. I'm always happy to discuss wine; for some reason my appetite for music and vino never seems to falter - strange that true excellence is equally hard to attain in both spheres, which I suppose would make the pursuers thereof masochists, wouldn't it? About that Meo-Camuzet Bourg. Blanc, it is usually that which I employ as my white vin de table; it's so consistently good, almost always hints at the auspicious vineyards from which it comes, and makes excellent, restrained, harmonious use of oak. The fact that it's from a red Burgundy specialist just makes the whole thing even more surprising, but then, if you can make wine, you can make wine.... That's why the de Vogue and Dugat-Pys are so very good; they simply don't have any bad holdings from which to get grapes, whereas Bourgogne Villages are more typically dumping grounds for young vine, or just plain bad, produce from meager plots.

de Charlus
08-10-2013 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Paul S
San Diego, California, USA
Posts 2,367
Joined on 10-12-2006

Post #: 57
Post ID: 19906
Reply to: 19905
Never Drink Alone
fiogf49gjkf0d
My son tells me we have tried some Raveneau, and it was remarkable(!), and an excellent value at 70USD.  And now I also remember some (not THE...)  Dauvissat Blanc; who could forget it at 20USD, owing to the supposition that it was then "over the hill"? Only, it wasn't, at all. We called right away to buy the rest, but when my son went to pick it up, there were only 2 bottles there.  This has happened to us a few times at the same shop, including some well-priced Ducru Beaucaillou that was also supposed to be "over the hill" (but we discovered it wasn't...).  OTOH, this was the same merchant through whom we bought the futures I already told of, along with some other gems.

Paul S
08-10-2013 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
clarkjohnsen
Boston, MA, US
Posts 298
Joined on 06-02-2004

Post #: 58
Post ID: 19907
Reply to: 19906
Paul S, You have a most excellent son, sir!
fiogf49gjkf0d
.
08-11-2013 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
de charlus
Posts 94
Joined on 06-11-2013

Post #: 59
Post ID: 19908
Reply to: 19907
Good for you.
fiogf49gjkf0d
Yes, anything from Raveneau for $70 is a bargain. In addition, his 09s are spectacular - unlike most others - meaning that they're underpriced due to the vintage's bad reputation. Furthermore, anyone tasting the close-knit, incredibly intense purity of these wines would know in an instant that where most 09 Chablis would indeed be "over the hill" fairly soon, Raveneau and Dauvissat wines would still have considerable development ahead of them. I think that the prices for these Chablis will eventually catch up with their more auspicious, "-Montrachet" brethren, and no longer be the relative bargains that they are now. Also, in good vintages there are few white Burgundies as age-worthy as the Raveneau Montee de Tonnerre and Dauvissat Le Clos and Les Forets; I have some 05s and 07s in the cellar that I'm intending to age for 15 or so years, sampling a bottle every couple - it will be very interesting and, I believe, have excellent results. I wouldn't expect to see a 10-15 year old Raveneau Chablis even at auction; I certainly don't recall having done so. These wines have an almost Mosel-Riesling-like mineral purity that makes me think that they will age with similar grace; although that's not an entirely rational supposition, experience supports the notion.

de Charlus
08-11-2013 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Paul S
San Diego, California, USA
Posts 2,367
Joined on 10-12-2006

Post #: 60
Post ID: 19909
Reply to: 19908
Beating the Odds by Jumping on Bargains
fiogf49gjkf0d
I see the same Raveneau is now averaging 200 USD, and the same merchant who "had no more for sale" to us at 70USD obviously tasted it again after we called and re-priced it, just as he has done with some of our other finds.  I don't blame him, but I do advise those who stumble onto a stellar bargain, trust your palate and buy what you can, while you can.  Generally speaking, wine is "figured out" in terms of pricing at any given time; in fact, remarkably so, on the order of Las Vegas gambling "odds".

By the way, the qualities dC mentions of these wines are exactly what I want from a "big" Chablis; what I do not want is a wannabee Montrachet.

Best regards,
Paul S
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