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Everything posted by futronic

  1. For the same reasons that I give points to a Barolo that has a tar aroma to it. It's just what I smell. To be honest, it's not the first time I've come across aromas of petrol on a Riesling or Gewurztraminer, particular from France and Germany.
  2. futronic

    WTN: Recent Sparklers

    The '98 Pelorus is the only sparkler from CB that I've had. We haven't seen the '99 here yet, and since the vintage was only a few dollars more than the NV, I made the natural choice and went for the better bottle. I've got one bottle of the 6-pack of '98 that I bought, and it'll likely get consumed over the next year.
  3. futronic

    Doggie... bottle?

    It's illegal to do that in Ontario, unfortunately. Restaurants can lose their liquor licence if they allow it and get caught.
  4. Craig, No, nothing really stood out here. They were all decent made wines, but nothing special. The Produttori normale is a simple, clean wine which was not bad for the $25CAD I paid for it. The price has since jumped to $35CAD, and I have not surprisingly refused to buy more of it. The Super Tuscans would have been better a couple years ago, and would likely have merited a high-80s score at that point.
  5. lol. The majority of these wines were at one tasting. One of two things can be the culprit: First, there were a lot of lower priced offerings that are going to get a low score regardless. Secondly, anything that should really have been a "wow" wine, wasn't decanted, and needed more bottle age to show better. Again, this resulted in a low score. Not much I can do about things like this - take for example the '98 Dead Arm Shiraz that should have had 3+ hours in a decanter or another 5+ years in a cellar. Who decants this wine for 20 minutes and actually expects it to show well?
  6. futronic


    I write tasting notes on the majority of wine that I drink. I'm not a vendor, only a consumer, and I simply want to share my experiences with other wine lovers. I find it interesting to compare notes with other people, especially to get and understanding of how their palate aligns to mine. Face it - it's impossible to drink every wine available on the market. If I find that my preferences are similar to other people on the forum, I'm more likely to buy a bottle that they enjoyed. I sometimes post the prices for the wines I tasted; other times not. The fact is that some of the notes I write are from trade tastings, and I really don't feel like looking up the price at the LCBO or the wine is only available by consignment through and importer which means I would have to call them to get the price.
  7. 2001 Ravenswood Zinfandel Old Vines Sonoma County Sonoma County, California Medium-ruby red. Aromas of cherry, red fruit, cotton candy. Medium-full boided with black fruit, alcohol, spice, pepper, and candied orange peel. Very tannic. Long, dry finish, ~30-40s with spice notes. 87 points (03/28/2004). 2000 Mt. Veeder Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley, California Crystal clear ruby red. Aromas of tobacco, roasated coffee bean, cherry, earth. Medium-bodied with coffee and tobacco replays along with red sliced plums. Moderate finish with tobacco continuing through. 86 points (03/28/2004). 2001 Blackstone Syrah California Deep garnet/purple colour. Aromas of barnyard, black cherry cough syrup, and oak. Full-bodied with oak, pepper, alcohol, and plenty of tannins. Rough on the edges. Needs to smooth out. Moderate length finish. 82 points (03/28/2004).
  8. 2000 Castello d'Albola Chianti Classico Tuscany, Italy Medium ruby red to rim. Aromas of cherries, plum, brown sugar, and earth. Medium bodied with cherries and sour red fruit. Short finish, ~20s, slightly hot. 83 points (03/28/2004). 1997 Castelli del Grevepesa Chianti Classico L'Alberello di Lamole Tuscany, Italy Crystal clear ruby to slightly oranging rim. Aromas of cherries, strawberries, sliced red plums, orange peel, and finocchio frawns. Medium-bodied with cherry and red plum replays. Well integrated tannins and a moderate-short finish, ~20-25s. Slightly over the hill. Drink up. 86 points (04/16/2004). 1996 Frescobaldi Castello di Nipozzano Mormoreto Tuscany, Italy 60 % Cabernet Sauvignon, 25% Merlot, 15% Cabernet Franc. Deep garnet opaque colour to a ruby/ruddy rim. Aromas of blackberry, tar, varnish, toasted vanilla/oak, black licorice, kirsch, sweet red fruits, and a bit of herbaceousness. The nose seems more in line with a Chateauneuf-du-Pape than a Cab. Medium-bodied with sweet red fruits and a very prevalent green pepper/herbal note on the palate. Very present tannins, and I don't think they'll ever resolve. The fruit is falling apart too. A very drying finish with barnyard, glycerin, and bing cherry are met with more green pepper notes, about 30s in length. This wine is on the downhill slide and would likely have been better a couple years ago. 85 points (04/27/2004). 1997 Michele Satta Vigna Al Cavaliere Tuscany, Italy Opaque garnet/black colour. Aromas of grilled meat, smoke, pancetta, earth, empire apples, and herbs. Medium-full bodied with minerals, fresh figs, and leather. Short finish with apple notes, ~15s. Would have been better a couple years ago. 86 points (04/27/2004). 1998 Vignamaggio Obsession Tuscany, Italy Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah blend. Opaque garnet/purple colour. Aromas of cinnamon, cola, plums, nutmeg, dark chocolate, maraschino cherry, and cassis. Medium-bodied with vanilla, black cherry, and mushroom. Short finish, ~15s. A non-descript expression of terrior in this wine. It could come from anywhere in the world. 85 points (04/27/2004). 1997 Produttori del Barbaresco Barbaresco Piemonte, Italy Crystal clear ruby red to an oranging rim. Aromas of bright cherry, earth, mushroom. Simple, clean Barbaresco. Fresh, with cherries and candied orange peel. Short finish, ~ 20s. A definite food wine. 86 points (04/29/2004). 1999 Tedeschi Amarone della Valpolicella Classico Veneto, Italy Tasted over two nights. First night, straight out of the bottle. Clean, ruby red/garnet colour. Fat, thick, slow legs. Evolving nose with aromas of cherries, espresso, mushrooms, sweet red fruits (sliced plums and raspberries), briar, mocha, glycerin, and balsamic. Medium-full bodied, showing a lot of restraint and mouth-searing tannins. Behind the wall of tannin there are hints of cherries, mushrooms, thyme, and cinnamon. Dry, tannic finish, about 30-40s. 86 points right now, mostly for the nose. (04/28/2004) Second night. Decanted two hours the previous night, poured back into bottle and vacu-winned. Stored overnight in my cellar. Seemed to darken with air, becoming almost opqaue with purple tinges to the dark ruby/garnet colour. Aromas of Asian 5-spice, sweet red fruits (plums, cherries), glycerin, and vanilla. Medium-full bodied with sweet red fruits, white pepper, earth, and bannana. Moderate finish, about 30s, with allspice notes. This will be better in a few years, but never be a 90-point wine. 88 points (04/29/2004). 1997 Ruffino Chianti Classico Riserva Ducale Gold Label Tuscany, Italy Decanted ~ 30 minutes. Dark ruby red to rim. Aromas of vanilla, black cherries, black plums, earth, smoke, raspberries, and currant. Medium-bodied, fresh tasting, clean wine with cherries, a hint of spice and a bit of milk chocolate. Tannins are fully integrated. Short finish, ~15-20s, with spice and orange rind notes. Slightly disappointing; was expecting more. Drink now with food. 86 points (05/01/2004).
  9. 2001 d'Arenberg The Galvo Garage McLaren Vale, Australia 66% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Merlot, 14% Cabernet Franc. Medium garnet/purple colour. Aromas of blackcurrant, maraschino cherries, vanilla, and herbs. Medium-full bodied. Tart, with tobacco and red fruits. Short finish, ~ 15s. 82 points (03/28/2004). 2001 d'Arenberg The Ironstone Pressings McLaren Vale, Australia Grenache, Shiraz, Mouvedre blend. Medium ruby to rim. Aromas of cherries, raspberry, cola. Medium-full bodied. Tart, with rootbeer, cherry, raspberry, and oak. Moderate, tart finish. Needs time. I've never been a fan of this wine from d'Arenberg. 84 points (03/28/2004). 2000 Chateau Reynella Basket Pressed Cabernet Sauvignon McLaren Vale, Australia Medium-dark garnet colour. Aromas of tomato stems, tobacco, and hints of black fruit. Full-bodied; palate follows from nose. Simple wine with a short finish. 82 points (03/28/2004). 2000 Chateau Reynella Basket Pressed Shiraz McLaren Vale, Australia Deep garnet/purple colour. Aromas of cranberry, cassis, eucalyptus, vanilla. Full-bodied with crushed black fruits, cranberries, and a hint of spice at the back. Moderate finish, ~30-40s. Needs time. 88 points (03/28/2004). 2001 Barossa Valley Estate Ebenezer Cabernet Sauvignon/Merlot Barossa Valley, Australia Medium garnet colour. Aromas of vanilla and maraschino cherry. Meidum-bodied; hollow on palate with a hot, moderate-short finish, ~20s. 80 points (03/28/2004). 2001 Barossa Valley Estate Spires Shiraz Barossa Valley, Australia Medium ruby red colour. Aromas of stewed cherries, crushed red berry fruit. Medium-full bodied with cherries, pepper, candied citrus rind, alcohol, and oak. Short finish, ~15s. 84 points (03/28/2004). 2001 Hardys Bankside Cabernet Sauvignon Adelaide, Australia Medium-dark garnet colour. Aromas of black crushed fruits, mint. Medium-full bodied with black fruit replays and eucalyptus. Moderate finish with herbaceous and coffee notes. 86 points (03/28/2004). 2002 Hardys Oomoo Shiraz McLaren Vale, Australia Currently only available in Australia, it will be released in Ontario in late 2004. The Oomoo label is 150 years old. Oomoo is a word from the Dieyerie tribe of Central Australia, signifying ‘good’, ‘nice’, ‘pleasant to the eye’ Dark garnet/purple colour. Aromas of black crushed fruit, vanilla, cassis, moss, eucalyptus, and orange blossoms. Medium-full bodied with cherries, raspberry, blackberry, and oak. Moderate finish, ~30s, with oak and coffee. 88 points (03/28/2004). 2000 d'Arenberg d'Arry's Original McLaren Vale, Australia Shiraz, Grenache blend. Opaque garnet with purple tinges. Aromas of raspberry, cassis, and mocha. Medium-full bodied with coffee and replays from nose. Dry finish with raspberries and slight alcohol. 86 points (03/28/2004). 1998 d'Arenberg The Dead Arm Shiraz McLaren Vale, Australia Deep garnet/purple. Aromas of vanilla, cassis, raspberry, graphite, liquid black licorice, brown sugar. Full-bodied elegant wine, slightly closed, but can sort out black fruits and graphite from behind the wall of tannin. Short finish. Only decanted for 20 minutes, which is not nearly enough. Let this one sleep for many more years. Not rated (03/28/2004).
  10. 2001 Karl Joh. Molitor Riesling Kabinett Feinherb Rheingau, Germany Pale yellow colour. Floral aromas of honey, honeysuckle, petrol, and apricot. Dry, with decent acidity. Medium-full bodied with lemon, apple, and white flowers. Slightly tart. Moderate finish, ~30s. 86 points (03/28/2004). 2002 Aylur Kupp Riesling Kabinett QmP Mosel-Saar-Ruwer, Germany Pale colour, almost clear. Aromas of honey, Asian spice, tropical fruit. Medium-full bodied with lemon and white pepper. Short finish. 81 points. (03/28/2004). 2002 Dr. Pauly-Bergweiler Riesling Spatlese Bernkasteler Badstube Mosel-Saar-Ruwer, Germany Sweet nose with honey and white flowers. Full-bodied with lemon, apricot, and honey replays. Medium sweetness. Short finish, ~ 15-20s. Good acidity to offset sweetness. 87 points (03/28/2004). 2002 Pieroth Riesling Auslese Dorscheimer Pittermannchen Mosel-Saar-Ruwer, Germany Pale yellow/clear colour. Aromas of petrol, white flower, flint. Medium-sweet, full-bodied wine. Good acidity with honey, apricot and lychee fruit. Long finish, ~40-45s, with honey replays. 88 points (03/28/2004).
  11. 1998 Cloudy Bay Pelorus Marlborough, New Zealand Golden yellow colour. Multiple streams of fine bead. A constant stream that bubbled at the top like a hot spring would, and continued for the duration of the bottle, 2 hours after opening. Aromas of oatmeal cookie, pear, apple, cream, apricot, white flowers (peach blossoms), and Abruzzese artisan honey. Wonderful effervescence in the mouth; the bubbles just dance on your tongue. Notes of cream, pears, and a butterscotch/caramel flavour that develops with more air. Still very crisp tasting with a good medium-full body. Lovely, lingering finish for 45-50 seconds with apple and white pepper notes on the close. A solid 92 points and right up there with the bottle opened in New Orleans last year. The wine merits the full 92 points, but the occasion (finishing my last university exam), warrants a 95. (04/27/2004) NV Pol Roger Champagne Brut Extra Cuvee de Reserve Rich Champagne, France Pale yellow, fine bead. Aromas of apple, yeast, cream. Medium bodied with little mouthfeel. Kind of short on the palate. 84 points (03/28/2004). 1996 Pol Roger Champagne Brut Rose Champagne, France 60% Pinot Noir, 40% Chardonnay. Pale pink/peach colour. Plenty of fine bubbles. Aromas of strawberries, cream, granny smith apple, and vanilla. Moderate mouthfeel, fresh on palate, with red berry fruit and apples. A touch sour. Short finish, ~ 15-20s. A bit disappointing. 86 points (03/28/2004). 1993 Pol Roger Champagne Brut Chardonnay Blanc de Blancs Champagne, France 100% Chardonnay. Lots of fine bubbles. Aromas of stewed tomatoes, citrus (lemon), apple. Weak mouthfeel, not much effervesence. Apples, honey, and toast on the palate. Almost tastes skunky. Dry, moderate finish, ~30s. Tried from two different bottles with consistent notes. Disappointing. 78 points (03/28/2004).
  12. There's a restaurant here in Toronto called Mammina's. It's a little, neighbourhood Italian place downtown. Their markup is $5 over LCBO price. Now, I'm all for fair wine list prices, but there's no way that can cover their costs. They only keep about 15 labels on the list, all Italian, but it's excellent value. The food is uncomplicated and good too. I can go in there and get a nice veal dish, or some risotto, or pasta (which I almost never order while out), and a nice bottle of wine for a song. Their vintages are quite young, naturally, because of the turnover they keep, but they have a couple bottles of Amarone, Barolo, and Brunello, in addition to Chianti and good value whites.
  13. I only own three half bottles: 2000 Maculan Torcolato (2 bottles) 2000 Taylor-Fladgate Vintage Port I also have a 500mL bottle of a 6 puttyonos tokaji, but that doesn't exactly fit the criteria. Anyway, I'm not in a particular rush to drink any of those wines, even though it's really difficult to keep my hands off that oh-so-delicious Torcolato.
  14. This wine will be released here soon at about $31CAD, so not much higher than in the US after currency conversion (it works out to about $22USD).
  15. I'll agree with that. I'll likely pick up a bottle of the '99 while in Italy and wait on buying more until I get back to Canada. It will be readily available here.
  16. Pfft ... little bottles ... Just drink the whole thing! I drank more than half a bottle in celebration of finishing my last university exam (ever!) on Tuesday, and I easily could have finished the rest if I wasn't sharing with a friend!
  17. futronic

    Wine and Cheese

    Amarone with Parmigiano-Reggiano. Unfortunately, Amarone is an acquired taste for some people. I'm not one of those people.
  18. Some people are not fans of Banfi because they find their wine very heavily oaked, the Brunello in particular. They're also quite a large outfit, so people like to take shots at them. I tasted the '98 normale and wasn't thrilled with it (even though it was very young), but the '95 Poggio All'Oro, '97 Alle Mura, and '97 normale were all good (again, young).
  19. futronic

    Summer Whites

    Why would someone hoot you off this forum for recommending a NZ SB? Nobilo makes some solid wine, in my opinion.
  20. futronic

    Wine and Cheese

    To celebrate finishing my last university exam, I had a bottle of Cloudy Bay's 1998 Pelorus sparkling wine from New Zealand with Port Salut and Brie. They were both excellent matches.
  21. Bill, Good to see you posting again! It's been a while. Thanks again for all the Piemonte tips. I leave in a few weeks.
  22. I'd make the same choice Mark.
  23. Paul, Do you find that to be true with Riesling icewine as well? The reason I'm not a fan of Vidal icewine is because they're often cloying. With icewine made from other varietals, Riesling in particular, the residual sugar in the wine is offset by the natural acidity. As for Japanese people and their affinity for icewine, it's definitely true. The Summerhill LCBO in Toronto (the largest in Ontario) started putting their icewine shelf talkers in both English and Japanese.
  24. Lol, Mark! In all seriousness, however, if the grapes don't reach -8C soon enough, the grapes rot instead of freeze. I wouldn't want to drink that wine!
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