Barell Tasting Of 2020 Burgundy

On April 5th I was invited to attend a barrel tasting of 2020 Burgundy. Specifically, the 2020 Burgundy in the portfolio of Fredrick Wildman & Sons distributor.

The tasting was for members of the trade and was a great opportunity to get some sort of idea how the 2020 vintage turned out as well as the opportunity to sample some of the finest wines in the world.

The whites are already bottled while the reds were just out of the barrel. My impression of the vintage was that the whites were drinking beautifully now, just enough fruit with balanced acidity. The reds were fruit forward, some were drinking nicely right out of the barrel, but lacked the structure for long term aging. The reds are definitely wines to be enjoyed sooner than later.

The tasting was held at Quality Bistro restaurant at 120 West 55th Street in Midtown Manhattan.

White

2020 Chateau Fuisse Pouilly Fuiseé “Tete de Cuvee”: Medium gold, closed nose of honey, medium fruit with a nice balance.

2020 Famille Vincent Bourgogne Blanc: Light gold, floral nose, medium body with tropical fruit notes, nice balance.

2019 Domaine Bruno Clair Marsannay Blanc “Source des Roches”: Light gold, green herbs on the nose, juicy, melon notes, good grip.

2020 Domaine Faiveley 1er Cru Puligny Montrachet “Champs Gains”: Medium gold, honey and tropical fruit on the nose, medium fruit with melon notes and honey with lemon curd notes on the finish

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Red

2020 Domaine Jean-Luc Burguet Bourgogne Rouge: Clear light purple, green herbs on the nose, chewy young fruit with a nice grip.

2019 Domaine Bruno Clair Marsannay “Les Grasses Tetes”: Clear medium purple, green herbs and crushed red fruit on the nose, chewy, smoky, silky red tannins, long finish.

2020 Domaine Humbert Freres Fixin Vieilles Vignes: Clear medium purple, cigar box on the nose, chewy, silky red fruit, nice grip.

2020 Domaine Humbert Freres Gevrey Chambertin: Clear light purple, tobacco smoke on the nose, silky, dusty red fruit and balanced. Nice wine.

2020 Domaine Meo Camuzet Nuits St George: Opaque medium purple, crushed blueberry and tree bark on the nose, chunky black fruit with slate notes, nice acidity.

2020 Domaine Meo Camuzet Vosne Romanee 1er Cru “Les Chaumes”: Opaque dark purple, roast meat notes on the nose, silky red fruit, slate notes, good grip.

2020 Domaine Virgile Lignier-Michelot Morey St Denis 1er Cru “Faconnieres”: Opaque dark purple, green herbs on the nose, chewy with tobacco and slate notes on the fruit, firm, silky tannins.

2020 Domaine Virgile Lignier-Michelot Clos de al Roche Grand Cru: Opaque dark purple to black in color, silky, chewy red fruit ending with slate and silky tannins.

2020 Domaine Faiveley Gevrey Chambertin 1er Cru “Les Cazetiers”: Opaque medium purple, tar and crushed red fruit on the nose, chewy and dense, black licorice, silky tannin with bitter almonds notes on the finish.

2020 Domaine Faiveley Corton Grand Cru “Clos des Cortons”: Opaque dark purple, barnyard and crushed black fruit on the nose, silky and dense with a hit of tannin and some heat at the end.

2020 Olivier Leflaive Volnay 1er Cru “Clos de Angles”: Opaque medium purple, crushed rock notes on the nose, chewy fruit with slate and firm tannins.

2020 Comte Armand Pommard 1er Cru “Clos des Epeneaux”: Opaque dark purple, silky red fruit, moderate tannins and acids.

2020 Domaine Michel LaFarge Volnay 1er Cru “Clos du Chene”: Clear light purple, a perfume of violets and tobacco, juicy and smoky with moderate tannins and acid.

2020 Domaine Dominique Gallois Gevrey Chambertin “En Justice”: Opaque dark purple to black in color, slate and roast meat on the nose, juicy red fruit.

2020 Domaine Labruyere Moulin a Vent “Le Clos Monopole”: Opaque dark purple, green herbs on the nose, silky dusty fruit, good balance.

Rhone Masterclass Lunch

This past March 30th, I attended a Cote du Rhone Masterclass lunch.

The luncheon was held at Aldo Sohm wine bar located at 151 West 51st Street in Midtown Manhattan.

It was a three-course lunch served with six Rhone wines that included whites, reds and rosés. These were budget friendly wines that were meant to showcase that Rhone wines can be approachable and easy drinking.

It was an excellent lunch with each of the first two courses paired with a white, a rosé and a red. With the very good cheese course we drank what we wanted. Since the cheeses were semi soft, the white wines worked very well with them.

Menu

Golden & red beet, terrine seasoned goat cheese

2020 Vignerons de l’Enclave “La Resistance” Blanc: Medium gold in color, floral, green herbs on the nose, full fruit with melon notes, moderate acids, easy drinking.

2021 Cellier des Dauphins Rosé Reserve: Light pale red with strawberry notes on the nose, easy drinking with low acids and honeydew melon notes.

2020 Joseph Castan “Tresor du Rhone” Rouge: Opaque medium red. leather and rosemary on the nose, dusty black fruit, silky tannin and crushed rock notes.

Braise short rib, spinach, fried shallots, red wine reduction

2019 Andre Brunel “La Becassonne” Blanc: Medium dark gold with honeydew on the nose, medium to full bodied, tight, juicy fruit, good balance and very drinkable.

2021 Chapoutier Belleruche Rosé: Medium pale red, cantaloup melon on the nose, firm with some tart notes.

2019 Delas Freres “St Esprit” Rouge: Opaque dark red with green notes on the nose, chewy, black licorice fruit, silky tannins and a nice grip at the end.

Cheese of the moment Chef’s selection

Raw Wine Festival New York 2022

The Raw Wine Festival is an international Natural Wine fair that stops in London, Berlin, Los Angeles, Miami, Montreal and New York City. It’s all about low intervention organic, biodynamic, natural wines, “the most important event for artisanal and natural wines in the international wine calendar”.

The Spring edition was held in New York City on March 27-28 at an event space at 99 Scott Street in Bushwick, Brooklyn.

These wines are still a niche market, but the market has grown tremendously the past decade. I attended on the first day on Sunday and the event space packed with trade and consumers ready and eager to try the wines. All of the major wine producing countries and several of the smaller ones were represented this afternoon with all styles of wine poured including still, sparkling, pet-nats and orange wines.

Many of the wine makers themselves were on hand to discuss their wines and not surprisingly were a colorful cast of characters.

These wines have come a long way in the past few years with the “funk” factor toned down.

Vintus Imports Portfolio Tasting

Many of the distributors that supply the wine and bar industry here in New York carry a wide range of wines and spirits. Not surprisingly every bar and restaurant have its particular needs. They might be looking for a good wine by the glass or something out of the ordinary or maybe they’re looking for a trophy wine.

On March 21st I attended the Spring portfolio tasting of Vintus Imports which was held at their offices at 48 West 38th Street in Manhattan.

I was not familiar with this company and was curious to check out their portfolio. They did carry a good selection of wines as well as some interesting spirits including several aquavits.

Some highlights:

2007 Chateau Montelena Estate Cabernet Sauvignon (Napa Valley): Opaque medium brick with a sweet perfume of graphite and black licorice, silky red fruit with dark chocolate notes finishing with green herbs. Lovely wine.

2018 Darioush Signature Cabernet Sauvignon (Napa Valley): Opaque dark red, sweet nose of tar and wet earth, dense and chewy black fruit. Some heat at the end.

2019 Far Mountain Cabernet Sauvignon “Fission” (Sonoma): Opaque dark red to black, nose of ripe fruit, chewy and chunky black fruit with a dusty and chewy finish and a nice balance.

2017 Lucien Le Moine Chambolle Musigny 1er Cru “Les Baudes”: Clear light brick with graphite and leather on the nose, juicy red fruit with earthy notes, tight acids and a long finish.

2017 Lucien Le Moine Volnay 1er Cru “Clos des Chenas”: Clear light red, toasty red fruit on the nose, silky red fruit with some earth notes, nice balance.

2018 E. Guigal Saint-Joseph “Vignes de l’Hospice”: Clear dark red with a beautiful nose fo wet earth, mint and crushed black fruit, silky red fruit with wet rock notes on the fruit, balanced and long.

2016 Chateau de Nalys Chateauneuf du Pape: Clear dark brick, closed nose of bacon fat, dusty, silky dark fruit with slate notes, balanced and long.

2008 Tommasi “De Buris” (Veneto): Clear medium brick with damp earth and prunes on the nose, pruney green herbs on the tight finish.

2017 Tommasi Amarone Classico (Veneto): Clear light brick, closed nose of dark chocolate, juicy with raison and herbs of the long finish. Great balance.

2015 Casisano Brunello di Montalcino (Tuscany): Clear light red, tar and graphite on the nose, silky with earthy fruit and nicely balance.

Passport To Eataly

Eataly is the “world’s largest artisanal Italian food and beverage marketplace”. It’s like an Italian food theme park with Italian themed groceries, restaurants and bars.

They also host cooking classes, wine and beverage classes and about once a month they throw an in-store party.

The standard formula for these parties is to offer 40+ Italian wines with several Italian inspired appetizers, a jazz band and plenty of people having a good time. Usually there is a theme either with the wine or the time of year. On March 25th at the downtown location (101 Liberty Street) that theme was Passport to Italy.

At this “Fiesta” the wines were mainly from the South of Italy with selections from Calabria, Sicily, Basilicata, Puglia, Molise, Lazio, Campania and Abruzzo.

A couple of the standout appetizers were the Vesuvio Con Salsiccia E Cime di Rape; house made pasta with sausage and broccoli rabe. Another was Spado alla Siciliano; Swordfish in a sauce of tomatoes, raisons, olives and pignoli nuts.

As usual it was filled with people enjoying the wine, food and music.

La Paulée de NY: Verticals Tasting 2022

La Paulée de New York is Daniel Johnson’s homage to La Paulée de Meursault, a three-day long end of grape harvest festival held in Meursault, Burgundy in France. The festival itself was a revival of the end of harvest banquet that the medieval monks threw for their growers and workers.

Mr. Johnson brought that festival to New York in 2000 and after a one-year hiatus it’s back in New York City. It’s several days of tastings and wine dinners featuring the red and white wines of the Cote d’Or of Burgundy.

They threw two tastings, the Grand Tasting in which they poured 100+ wines from the current vintage release, and the Verticals Tasting in which each producer poured at least three different vintages of their wine.

I attended the Grand Tasting in March 2020 which was held just a few days before the lockdown, it was the last major tasting for me for almost two years. This year they were showcasing the 2018 and 2019 vintages to make up for the lost year. This year I didn’t attend that tasting but was able to make it to the Verticals Tasting. It was a little smaller in size than the Grand Tasting but was a great opportunity to drink Burgundy with some age to them. It was well worth the 10am start time.

The tasting took place at the event space Second in the Eventi Hotel at 849 6th Avenue in Manhattan.

Some highlights:

White

2011 Domaine du Duc de Magenta Chassagne Montrachet 1er Cru “Clos de la Chapelle”: Light yellow, toasty nose, roasted nuts and lime on the finish.

2012 Domaine Christian Moreau Chablis Grand Cru Les Clos “Clos des Hospices” en magnum: Dark gold in color, ripe tropical fruit on the nose, dusty, nutty on the finish.

2014 Bouchard Pere & Fils Corton Charlemagne Grand Cru: Light yellow with honey and cinnamon on the nose, mouthful of fruit with a nice balance

2015 Domaine Eleni & Edouard Vocoret Chablis 1er Cru “Les Butteaux”: Light yellow with a floral nose, nice balanced fruit ending with a firm finish

Red

2006 Domaine de la Vougeraie Clos de Vougeot Grand Cru: Clear light red, tar and cigar box on the nose with earthy, tobacco fruit and a long finish.

2007 Benjamin Leroux Volnay “Clos de la Cave du Ducs” Monopole: Clear light brick, beautiful nose of earth and barnyard with tobacco and cigar box notes on the long finish.

2009 Chandon de Briailles Corton Grand Cru “Les Bressandes” en magnum: Clear light red, plummy tobacco on the nose with silky bright red fruit and green herbs on the finish.

2009 Domaine Faiveley Echezeaux Grand Cru: Light brick, crushed raspberry and earth on the nose, silky red fruit ending with silky tannins and a long finish.

2010 Domaine Simon Bize Savigny les Beaune 1er Cru “Aux Vergelesses”: Clear light brick, cigar box on the nose, bright red fruit ending with mouth coating tannins.

2010 Joseph Drouhin Chambertin Clos de Beze Grand Cru: Clear light brick, tar and tobacco on the nose, silky, earthy fruit with firm acids and tannins at the end.

2010 Domaine du Comte Liger-Belair Vosne-Romanee 1er Cru “Aux Brulees” en magnum: Clear light brick, crushed blueberry on the nose, red toasty fruit with a silky finish.

2011 Domaine Faiveley Nuits St. Georges 1er Cru “Les Saint Georges“: Light brick in color, cigar box on the nose, nice balanced fruit with a long finish.

2011 Derey Freres Fixin 1er Cru “Les Hervedets”: Light brick, cinnamon, smoky tobacco and ripe fruit on the nose, chewy and nicely balanced with a long finish.

2011 Pierre Morey Pommard 1er Cru “Grand Epenots”: Clear light red, closed nose of crushed black fruit and dried herbs, silky red fruit with a nice balance.

2012 Antoine Donnedieu Clos de Tart Grand Cru monople: Clear light red, barnyard and green herbs on the nose, tight and tart.

2013 Domaine d’Eugenie Vosne-Romanee 1er Cru “Brulees”: Clear light red, perfume of crushed red fruit and cinnamon, bright red fruit with some earth notes on the finish.

2014 Domaine Jean Marie Fourrier Vougeot 1er Cru “Les Petits Vougeot”: Clear light brick, pumpkin spice on the nose, silky red fruit ending with silky tannins.

2014 Jerome Galeyrand Gevrey-Chambertin “En Croisette”: Clear light brick, toasty, earth nose, chewy black licorice fruit ending balanced and long.

2015 Yvon Clerget Pommard 1er Cru “Rugiens”: Clear medium red, crushed black fruit on the nose, ripe and chewy black fruit ending with silky tannins.

2015 Nicolas Rossignol Volnay 1er Cru “Chevrerz”: Clear light red, red smoke on the nose, silky red fruit with a nice balance.

Independence Wine & Spirits Cabernet Portfolio 2022

Plenty of trade wine tastings at this time of year. In the three-tier system in New York State, a bar or restaurant has to buy their wines and spirits from a distributor. On March 8th one of those distributors, Independence Wine & Spirits held their annual portfolio tasting.

I wasn’t familiar with this particular distributor, so I was curious to see what was in their portfolio, so I attended the tasting.

I was pleasantly surprised at what they carried. They had a huge French presence with many Burgundy, Cote du Rhone and Bordeaux brands. I even had the opportunity to sample one of the Premier Grand Cru of Bordeaux, the 2017 Chateau Lafite Rothschild which was drinking very nicely.

They also had a very nice portfolio of excellent boutique California Cabernets and I decided to focus my time sampling them.

It was a trade tasting and was held at The Metropolitan Pavillion event space at 125 West 18th Street in Manhattan.

Some of what I sampled:

2019 Adversity Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon “Melanson” (Atlas Peak): Opaque black, closed nose of crushed blueberries, chewy with dark mint chocolate on the fruit, long finish.

2019 Adversity Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon “Sage Ridge” (Napa Valley): Opaque black with a purple rim, chewy and chunky black fruit, mint notes on the fruit ending with a long, dark finish.

2019 Adversity Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon “Erba” (Atlas Peak): Black with a purple rim, chewy and chunky with smoky, damp earth on the black fruit, nice balance.

2018 Anakota Cabernet Sauvignon “Helena Montana” (Knights Valley): Dark red to black in color, dark leather on the nose, tight red fruit with firm tannins.

2016 Cardinale Cabernet Franc “Caladan” (Napa Valley): Opaque dark red to black with silky fruit and tannins, great balance.

2018 La Jota Vineyard Co. Cabernet Sauvignon (Howell Mt): Opaque black with dusty, crushed black fruit on the nose with dense and chewy black fruit ending with silky, firm tannins.

2018 Lokoya Cabernet Sauvignon (Diamond Mt): Opaque dark red, crushed rocks and green herbs on the nose, bright red fruit, crisp acids.

2018 Lokoya Cabernet Sauvignon (Howell Mt): Opaque dark red, closed nose of milk chocolate with chewy and dusty fruit ending with silky tannins.

2018 Staglin Family Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon “Salus” (Rutherford): Medium red with tobacco and bacon fat on the nose, silky red fruit with some pickle juice notes on the finish.

2018 Staglin Family Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon “Estate” (Rutherford): Clear medium red, crushed black fruit on the nose, chewy with tobacco note on the fruit, silky tannins.

2017 Taub Family Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon “Morisoli-Borges” (Rutherford): Clear medium red, dusty dried leaf on the nose, silky black fruit with silky tannins on the long finish.

2017 Taub Family Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon “Beckstoffer Missouri Hopper” (Napa Valley): Opaque dark red to black, sweet violets on the nose, silky with a great grip on the balanced, long finish.

2018 Mt. Brave Cabernet Sauvignon (Mt Veeder): Opaque dark red, crushed black fruit on the nose, chewy bark fruit ending with big tannins.

2018 Verité Cabernet Sauvignon “La Jolie” (Sonoma County): Dark red to black, closed nose of tar and tobacco with dense, silky and toasty fruit, firm finish.

2018 Verité Merlot “La Muse” (Sonoma County): Clear medium red, toasty nose with silky red fruit, nice balance.

Some Bordeaux 2022

Traditionally at this time of year many of the wine and spirit distributers have their portfolio tastings. These tastings are open to members of the trade who will make buying decisions or for those who need to educate themselves on the products of a particular distributer. They can show up and browse the portfolios for something in particular or to search for something new. Some of the tastings showcase the whole portfolio in which case there may be 100+ wines and spirits available to sample. Sometimes they have smaller, more intimate tastings that showcase a niche category.

On March 2nd one of those distributors, Fredrick Wildman & Sons held an invite only small tasting of some of their upper tier Bordeaux from their portfolio. It was a mix of current releases (2018) with some older vintages that were available for sale. When Bordeaux is drinking well, it’s a nice experience.

The tasting was held at Benoit restaurant located at 66 West 55th Street in Midtown Manhattan.

Some of what I sampled:

2014 Chateau Carbonnieux (Pessac-Leognan): Dark red with a purple rim, tobacco and crushed red fruit on the nose, silky and chewy red fruit, beautifully balanced with a long finish.

2018 Chateau Haut-Bailly (Pessac-Leognan): Black with a purple rim, nose of sweet tobacco, chewy black fruit, silky tannins with a great balance.

2015 Chateau Troplong Mondot (St.-Emilion): Black with a purple rim, toasty crushed black fruit on the nose, silky and chewy with a long finish.

2018 Chateau Canon La Gaffeliere (St.-Emilion): Dark red to black with a purple rim, dark chocolate and sweet tobacco on the nose, silky red fruit with crisp tannins at the end, long finish.

2018 Chateau Clos de L’Oratoire (St.-Emilion): Black with a purple rim, sweet strawberry on the nose, dense and tight with a tight finish.

2016 Chateau Gazin (Pomerol): Black with a purple rim, toasted oak on the nose, chewy and tight with silky tannins.

2016 Chateau Jardin de Petit Village (Pomerol): Black with a purple rim, toasty red fruit on the nose, chunky black fruit ending with a good dusty grip.

2010 Chateau Lascombes (Margaux): Dark red to black with an amber rim, perfume of tar and dark leather, silky dark fruit with a beautiful long and balanced finish.

2015 Chateau Cantenac Brown (Margaux): Dark red with a purple rim, smoky nose, tight with green olive notes on the firm finish.

2016 Brio de Cantenac Brown (Margaux): Dark red with a purple rim, big nose of cigar smoke, tight with bell pepper notes on the firm finish.

2014 Chateau Lagrange (St. Julien): Dark red to black with a purple rim, nose of sweet tar, black leather and cigar smoke, dense and tight with wet slate notes, tight acids at the end.

2014 Chateau Leoville Poyferre (St. Julien): Dark red to black, sweet perfume of tobacco, mint and crushed black fruit, chunky with silky tannins with dark chocolate, black fruit and bitter bark on the finish.

2015 Chateau Talbot (St. Julien): Dark purple, brambly nose, chewy with dried leaf notes, balanced with a long finish.

2018 Chateau Leoville Barton (St. Julien): Dark red to black, crushed strawberry on the nose, chewy and dusty green fruit ending with moderate tannins and acids.

2018 Chateau Gloria (St. Julien): Black with a purple rim, stinky nose of crushed black fruit, chewy black fruit with a good grip and long finish.

2018 Chateau Branaire Ducru (St. Julien): Dark red to black, sweet nose of pixe stick and green fruit, silky, dusty black fruit ending with moderate to low tannins and acids.

2016 Chateau Lynch Bages (Pauillac): Black with a purple rim, mint, tobacco and some barnyard on the nose, tight with silky tannins and crushed rock notes on the fruit.

2014 Chateau Phelan Segur (St. Estephe): Black with a purple rim, crushed black fruit and mint on the nose, tight fruit that lighten ups at the end.

2015 Chateau La Croix Bonis (St. Estephe): Dark red, nose of sweet spice and tree bark, dusty, silky tannins with a good grip.

Benvenuto Brunello NY 2022

The Consortium of the Brunello di Montalcino was founded in 1967 and is an organization of large and small winemaking firms that keep an eye on quality control for the wines of the region. They also are active in promoting the wines of Montalcino both in Italy and abroad.

Brunello is produced in the same region of Italy, (Tuscany) as its famous cousin Chianti. Though the town of Montalcino is old, Brunello didn’t become the wine we know today until the mid 1800’s while Chianti as a wine has been around for centuries.

Most of the wines at this tasting were the non Riservas from the 2017 vintage since they just have been released this past January. Most were the regular Brunello with a handful of single vineyard wines from that vintage thrown in. There were also a few Riservas from other years as well.

This was a trade only event and was held at Midtown Loft & Terrace located at 267 5th Avenue in midtown Manhattan.

I thought that most of the wines had elegant fruit but at this point the tannins are a little hard edged which is not surprising for these young wines. I would like to revisit them after a couple of more years in the bottle.

2017 Vintage

Campgiovani: Medium brick, pretty nose of violet, tar and graphite, silky bright fruit ending in firm tannins.

Camigiano: Medium brick, closed nose of plum, silky, earthy fruit ending with silky, firm tannins.

Capanna: Clear medium brick with an amber rim, Asian spices on the nose, bright red leather fruit notes ending with crisp acids.

Carpazo “Vigna La Casa”: Clear medium red, closed nose, bright red fruit ending with firm, teeth coating tannins at the end.

Factoria dei Barbi “Vigna del Fiore”: Clear medium red sweet nose of red leather and tar, dusty red fruit with firm tannins.

Il Poggione: Medium to light red, slate and leather on the nose, crushed red fruit with tight tannins and some tart notes on the finish.

La Fiorita: Medium brick, red leather on the nose, silky fruit with teeth coating tannins.

Palazzo: Clear medium red, perfume of tar and cinamon spice, silky red fruit with some earth notes and firm tannins.

Pian Delle Vigne: Clear medium brick with an amber rim, closed nose of crushed raspberry, chewy fruit with fresh herbs on the finish with a nice balance.

Pinino: Medium brick in color, burnt bacon on the nose, cherry red fruit, drinking nicely.

San Polo “Vignavecchia”: Clear medium red, brick rim, funky earth on the nose, chewy dark chocolate fruit with silky tannins.

Tenuta Fanti “Vallocchio”: Medium red, ripe fruit notes on the nose, chewy and ending tannic.

Tenute Silvano Nardi: Opaque medium red, bright red berries and bacon fat on the nose, silky red fruit ending with firm tannins.

Val Di Suga: Light brick, crushed rocks on the nose, silky, earthy with crunchy tannins, nice balance with a touch of heat at the end.

Verbena “Le Pope”: Medium to dark red, pretty nose of graphite, tar and dark chocolate, dark red fruit with tart cherry notes on the firm finish.

Other Vintages:

2015 Col D’Orca Riserva “Poggio Al Vento”: Clear medium brick, perfume of violets and roast meat, silky, earth notes on the fruit and balanced tannins.

2016 Col D’Orca “Vigna Nastagio”: Clear medium red, tar, graphite and some barnyard on the nose, chewy with crunchy tannins.

2016 Corte Pavone Riserva “Poggio Molino Al Vento”: Clear medium red, tar, black cherry and dark chocolate on the nose, dense, silky red fruit with firm acids and a long finish.

2015 La Rasina Riserva “Il Divasco”: Medium red brick, nice perfume of sweet tar and roasted nuts, silky fruit with toasted notes ending with firm tannins.

Wine & Spirits Top 100 N.Y. 2022

On February 23rd, Wine & Spirits magazine held their 2nd annual Top 100 wine festival which featured the 100 best wines of 2021 from their list.

It was a benefit for the New York and New Jersey Baykeeper, an organization “dedicated to maintaining the health and integrity of the waterways that feed New York’s and New Jersey’s food and wine industry”.

The event was held at the popular event space The Metropolitan Pavilion located at 125 West 18th Street in Manhattan.

It was open to both trade and consumer and had a very nice selection of wines from all the major wine producing countries.

Some of the wines I sampled:

2019 Hermann J. Wiemer Vineyards HJW Bio Riesling: One of a trio of Riesling they poured, this one was medium yellow, with ripe stone on the nose, oily fruit with good acidity.

2018 Ashes & Diamond Mt Veeder Napa Valley “Saffron Vineyard” Cabernet Sauvignon: From a small producer, light clear red, dusty, woody red fruit on the nose, medium fruit with earth notes on the fruit long finish.

2018 Ashes & Diamond Santa Cruz Mts “Bates Ranch” Cabernet Sauvignon: Opaque medium red, red leather on the nose, silky, dusty red fruit with good balance.

2015 Beringer Vineyards “Private Reserve” Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon: Clear medium red with a perfume of plum, bacon fat, black pepper and bell pepper, silky dark chocolate fruit and finish.

2016 Beringer Vineyards “Eighth Maker” Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon: Medium clear red, aromatic nose of earth and dark leather, chewy and silky with cocoa notes with the nice grip, long finish.

2017 Diamond Creek Vineyards Diamond Mt District “Volcanic Hill” Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon: Opaque dark red, great perfume of crushed black fruit and dried herbs, chewy, silky dark fruit with great balance on the long finish.

2018 Diamond Creek Vineyards Diamond Mt District “Volcanic Hill” Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon: Opaque dark red, closed nose of ripe red fruit, tight and silky with some nice bitter cherry notes on the finish.

2018 Donkey & Goat El Dorado “The Bear” Counoise Blend Fenaughty & Lightner: Clear light brick, light red cherry candy nose, chewy with earth notes on the fruit, easy drinking.

2018 Duckhorn Vineyard Napa Valley Merlot: Clear medium red with a tight bell pepper fruit.

2018 The Eyre Dundee Hills “Roland Green” Pinot Noir: Light clear red, toasty earth on the nose, silky green fruit with good balance.

2017 Calera Mt Harlan “Ryan Vineyard” Pinot Noir: Clear light red, crushed ripe cherry on the nose with tight, ripe red fruit.

2018 Delas Freres Crozes-Hermatage “Les Clos”: Opaque dark red, roast meat on the nose, chewy, ends with a good grip and green herbs on the finish.

2018 Louis Jadot Nuits-St-Georges: Clear light red, warm red cherry and forest floor on the nose, tight and silky.

2016 Paolo Scavino Barolo “Bric del Fiasc”: Clear red brick, tarry red cherry nose, chewy, silky fruit with great balance.

2016 Paolo Scavino Barolo “Bricco Ambrogio”: Light brick in color, tar and fresh herbs on the nose, silky fruit with good structure and balance.

2016 Bodegas Muga Rioja Muga Aro: Clear red, crushed red cherry on the nose with tight red fruit.