Home > Canada, Italy, Spain > Gleanings from the weekend

Gleanings from the weekend

Last weekend I had an important celebration in my family, my father’s birthday, therefore I was looking forward since last week to open some interesting wines with good food. There were two wines in particular that I wished to try and this was a perfect occasion.

The starter was a dish of foie gras, balsamic vinegar reduction and unripe figs preserves that was paired with a Canadian ice wine.

2007 Inniskillin Ice wine Cabernet Franc (VQO Niagara Peninsula)

Here is some data from the producer’s website about this wine:

Harvested at the pinnacle of Canada’s crisp winter, the grapes are naturally frozen on the vine and picked when the temperature drops to -10°C. Residual Sugar: 220g/L. Alcohol/Volume: 9.5 %

This Cabernet Franc made wine has a light red color. The nose is strong on red berries, strawberries dominate and honey. In the mouth the wine is lusciously sweet with an interesting mix of flavors of ripe red fruits and a long sweet finish. There is not a great complexity on this young wine, perhaps with age it will become more interesting. A delicious wine nevertheless (Very good+ to Excellent) that paired well with the foie gras dish and stood well against the hardcore sweetness of the unripe figs preserves.

As we served lamb in a Provencal sauce, I thought a Spanish Tempranillo from Toro would be a good pair. Plus I was eager to try the 2005 vintage from this producer.

Numanthia 2005

I had two more vintages of Numanthia (Bodega Numanthia was purchased in 2007-2008 by LVMH) this year: the 2000 and the 2006.

Unfortunately this bottle of 2005 was corked. I hate when I get a bad bottle for something I paid a considerable amount of money. But that’s the risk of the business.

As the Spanish Tempranillo was damaged, I went in the cellar and pull out a Cabernet Sauvignon based blend from Tuscany.

Sassicaia 2004 – Tenuta san guido

Price: over 100 EUR

A blend of 85% Cabernet Sauvignon and 15% Cabernet Franc, aged for 24 months in French oak barriques. Sassicaia was the producer that put the Super Tuscans on the map starting with the 1985 vintage. Actually the 1985 Sassicaia was rated a 100 points wine, now the price for the vintage is around 1000 EUR per bottle.

The wine has a deep ruby color. The nose is pretty discreet with earthy aromas, very low fruit, a little bit of cherry. In the mouth the wine is medium body, with firm but silky tannins, giving a nice mouth feel. There are some red fruits, earthy tones and spices, with a nice medium acidity. Nice balance and good integration of the oak. The aftertaste has a pleasant discreet bitter-sweet medium finish.

For the price it sells, the brand it is and coming from a vintage recognized as Excellent(2004) this wine is a Major disappointment. It is an Excellent-(minus) wine if it had a price tag of 40-60 EUR, but anything more than that is a really poor effort from this acclaimed producer.

Briefly, major surprises from the wines of the weekend. And not necessarily pleasant.

Something else not related with wine and food. FRI evening I went to Teatrul Nottara and saw a very nice play called Platonov which I liked a lot. Fairly long, over 2 h, with some moments where you can sense the falseness of the actors, but overall a really good combination of drama and comedy, really entertaining. I would really recommend it if you want to enjoy a night out.

Thanks for reading!

Categories: Canada, Italy, Spain
  1. November 22, 2010 at 14:42

    Maybe Sassicaia was just “asleep” – it’s still a very young wine…

  2. November 22, 2010 at 14:47

    I think if I had the wine unopened and saw my tasting notes on another site I would think the same: maybe it is asleep.

    I am joking. It is too young indeed but I would not risk any more pennies to purchase 2004 Sassicaia and to keep it with the wishful thinking that in 10 years it will wake up. I know better wines for less money.

    It is what it is Ciprian.

  3. November 22, 2010 at 14:58

    Ehhh, you know, there are always better wines for less money🙂

  4. November 22, 2010 at 15:04

    Hehe, I’ve just read the notes on cellartracker – same as here, but almost everybody thinks what I was thinking🙂 Anyway, I understand your point – mostly, it’s about the price you pay for this wine…

  5. November 22, 2010 at 15:10

    Ciprian ce sa zic. Mie asa mi sa parut si nu mi se pare ca se justifica pretul acestui an. Vinul e deja f baubil, nu este astringent dar nu are nici cine stie ce complexitate. Poate e tineretea cum zice toata lumea. Ii las pe altii sa l judece de acum incolo. Eu nu voi face parte din cercul celor care mai achizitioneaza acest vin pt mai tarziu.

  6. November 22, 2010 at 15:18

    Vezi de ce mi-am creat o obsesie pentru vinurile ceva mai mature?🙂 Ce-i drept, riscul este mai mare, dar face parte din joc. Nu pot sa nu ma gandesc la acel Vieux Telegraph din ’95 – l-ai prins intr-o faza perfecta…

  7. November 22, 2010 at 16:35

    Ciprian sa stii ca Vieux Telegraph 1995 a fost intr-adevar ceva deosebit. Mi-a deschis apetitul pt vinuri mai vechi. Au ceva aparte vinurile vechi, deja un echilibru remarcabil. Cel putin ce am baut eu.

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