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Classy Spain

January 8, 2015 Leave a comment

Over the last few months I drank several wines from Spain, most of them worthy of being mentioned. It is always interesting to see how one single grape: Tempranillo, can show so many and different facets depending on the climate where it was grown, yields or wine-making style. Known more as providing the cheapest wines of Europe, Spain has its own jewels of the crown.

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Termanthia is produced from a small parcel of 4.78 ha of very old Tempranillo from a high altitude – 120 years old pre-filloxera vines, from Toro. Currently this winery is owned by the LVMH group that also owns Chateau Cheval Blanc and Chateau d’Yquem in Bordeaux.

Termanthia 2009 is an opaque, dark red colored wine. Highly complex and elegant nose, with very intense and pure aromas of ripe black forest fruits, dark chocolate, smoke, cured meats and licorice, that constantly evolves in the glass and impresses at every sip. The palate is dense, fleshy and concentrated, with refreshing, silky smooth but assertive tannins, vibrant acidity and a whole kaleidoscope of layers and flavors. The finish is very long, savory dark chocolate with blackberry essence lingering well in the aftertaste. There is a natural elegance in this wine that I found in many of the First Class French or Italian wines that is just astonishing. Nature’s own elegance. (96/100)

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Two older wines from Rioja made by what are known to be classic Old School producers: Lopez de Heredia and Muga, the wines cannot be more different. These 2 wines were drunk over 2 weeks distance.

Lopez de Heredia Vina Tondonia Cosecha de 1994 has a pale medium ruby red color with a brick rim. This is a highly sensual and elegant wine, with a complex and layered aromatic profile that combines pure dill and fresh orange peel, sweet ripe cherries and currants, with a light touch of oriental spices and tertiary notes of undergrowth, tobacco and old leather. Mature, very feminine and almost weightless on the palate, the fully resolved velvety tannins and its vibrant acidity make a supple wine with pronounced flavors of tobacco, spices and red fruits. Finish is medium to long, very refreshing. I can see this wine pairing very well with a more delicate game dish – partridge, and even with a red meat fish. (92/100)

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Muga Prado Enea Gran Reserva 1991 came even as a bigger surprise. In spite of being 3 years older than Tondonia, Muga feels at least 7-8 years younger. The color is deep ruby red. It takes about 2-3 h for the wine to open up completely – the wine is good to drink even after 20 min, and when it does it is a whole concert. A youthful complex and intense nose with rich aromas of ripe red cherry and strawberry, orange peel, sweet spices, pipe tobacco and old leather, with very delicate shades of dill. Full bodied, smooth like silk, a lush palate and plenty of vibrant and spicy red fruits. Medium to long finish, fresh and compelling. This feels as an immortal wine that will stay on this plateau of drinking decades from now. (94/100)

The most interesting Spanish wine I had in 2014 was at a friend’s birthday in October when a Magnum of Vega Sicilia Unico 1996 was popped. This wine came after a bottle of Krug Rose and while the expectations were high, the wine never ceased to amaze.

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1996 Vega Sicilia Unico has a dark red garnet color. After almost 4 h sitting in the decanter, the wine shows a youthful and maturing nose, highly complex and profound, with layers and layers of pure and intoxicating aromas of fresh blackberries and black cherries, refined oak and tobacco, a compelling freshness given by assertive orange rind and dill aromas, with savory cured meats and beef blood. Full and very dense palate, assertive smooth tannins and very detailed nuances of black fruits, spices and dark chocolate. Finish is very long, bitter espresso and sweet cranberry essence making a refreshing aftertaste that goes on and on. This is a monumental wine. (97/100)

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Aalto PS 2011 is probably one of the best deals from Spain for wines under 100 Eur. I had this wine 2 or 3 times last year and I always enjoyed it more even when drank with more expensive wines like Artadi Pagos Viejos or Cirsion from Roda. It’s full and expansive on the palate, with classy ripe black fruits, smart oak and refreshing espresso and dark chocolate aromas, while the finish is long and layered. (93-94/100)

Degustare de vinuri mature din Bordeaux

September 11, 2013 Leave a comment

Degustare vinuri vechi frantuzesti

Zilele acestea mustul este pe buzele tuturor, producatori si consumatori, si la propriu si la figurat. Cum noi vrem sa fim altfel, va propunem o degustare de la polul opus acestui trend de inceput de toamna: vinuri mature. Frantuzesti, in marea lor majoritate, din Bordeaux, ca sa fim mai exacti, plus un spaniol pentru varietate.

Asadar, vinurile:
• 1975 Chateau Montrose, St-Estephe (CT 91, JMQ 96, Jancis R 18/20)

• 1979 Chateau Haut Bailly, Pessac Leognan (JMQ 92)

• 1985 Chateau Pontet Canet, Pauillac (CT 89)
• 1995 Chateau Pontet Canet, Pauillac (CT 91, ST 90, Decanter 18/20)

• 1990 Clos du Marquis, St-Julien (CT 90, WS 90, Decanter 18/20)
• 1996 Clos du Marquis, St-Julien (JMQ 92, ST 90)

• 1982 Murrieta Casstillo Ygay Eticheta Blanco, Rioja

Legenda: CT – CellarTracker; ST – Stephan Tanzer; WS – Wine Spectator; JMQ – Jean Marc Quarin

Ne intoarcem la locatia de inceput a degustarilor noastre, restaurantul Dada. Degustarea va avea loc joi, 19 septembrie 2013, de la ora 19:00, la restaurantul Dada (Str. Matei Voievod nr. 94bis). Sunt 10 locuri disponibile și fiecare costă 320 de lei, sumă care include vinurile, aperitivele și prezența noastră agreabilă.

Rezervări la +40722 141 879 (Nicușor) sau +40723 240 102 (Cosmin) sau pe email: cosmin.grozea@gmail.com si nicusor.cazan@gmail.com

1996 Robert Weil Riesling Halbtrocken

This is not that intense as the 1996 R Weil Spatlese Halbtrocken I had a few weeks ago and it is on a lighter side in the mouth.

Yellow lemon color, still young. The nose is developed, youthful, with aromas of apple pie, nectarines, very discreet petrol and pineapple. Light to medium bodied, with sharp acidity and flavors of ripe citrus fruit, baked apple amd peach. Short to medium finish, fresh. (87/100)

Paired fairly well with sushi from Itadaki.

1996 Robert Weil Spatlese Halbtrocken Rheingau Riesling

June 25, 2012 2 comments

Tasted this wine during a lovely vacation in Lefkada in Greece, on the beach. The 11% alcohol level was a blessing for a sunny summer day. I would dare to say that Riesling has never tasted better than this for a long time.

1996 Robert Weil Spatlese Halbtrocken Rheingau Riesling

Deep yellow gold color. Well developed, complex and really intense bouquet, overall sweet on the nose, extremely youthful, with very nice aromas of pinneaple, peach, melon, warm rubber, citrus fruit – red pinked lemon, yellow spice and basil. Full bodied, lively and refreshing acidity, rich on the palate, off dry, but the acidity keeps everything in perfect balance and keeps it extremely fresh and closer to a dry wine. The wine has really intense flavors and drinks very well. Medium plus finish, with ripe citrus fruit and mouth-watering acidity. This wine has a very long life ahead, there is absolutely no sign of being tired. It can stay at this level for at least a decade, but it is drinking already so well. Great example of an aged Riesling. (91/100)

I admit it: I am a Riesling addict.

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