Notes from annual tasting group garden and bocce party.

2006 Soter Vd. Brut Rose – from the Yamhill Oregon area, this sparkler
was very nice – clear salmon pink colour with notes of raspberry in
the nose and a long clean finish.

2007 Dom. Blain Gagnard Batard Montrachet – a Batard wasn’t the first
wine I’d be looking for in a garden setting, but none of us were
complaining. The nose seemed more mature than I would have expected
with some nice citrus notes and chalk that morphed in time to show
additional vanilla and lemon. Smooth, rather low acid in the mouth and
elegant.

2008 Jean Paul Droin Chablis 1er Montmain – creamy lime nose and
entry, crisp and tasty in the mouth and medium length. I liked this.

2010 Mendel Semillon (Mendoza) – an Argentine Semillon isn’t in our
normal focus, so it was interesting to taste it. Very little typical
varietal character – maybe the hints of melon in the nose? Supple and
smooth with medium weight and pretty good balance.

2009 Argiolas Perdera – one of mine and to my surprise, tasting a
Sardinian wine made from the local Monica grape didn’t come as a first
for a couple of the guests. The appearance was quite like a pinot,
and the nose had big dark fruit and exotic spice notes. The wine was
soft in the entry but big acidity came in at the end, and I think it
would be a good food wine. Pleasant and worth searching out.

2006 St. Prefert CNduP Collection Charles Giraud – dry red fruit and
earthiness in the nose and some black pepper, smooth, tasty and medium
long with softening tannins. No rush on this one.

2009 Dom. Bosquets Gigondas – I thought this wine was forward and very
pleasant right now, with dark, sweet fruit, not too ripe, and a mellow
sweet middle with a very decently long finish. It drinks really well
now, but I’d say that there is a future ahead too.

Plan Pegau (2009 ) – the prefect bocce (or maybe petanque)
accompaniment. No lengthy note, but recall the usual good fruit levels
and acidity.

1986 Grahams Malvedos Port – pulled this to go with cigars and quiet
contemplation after some of the guests had gone, and for me it turned
out to be better than I’d remembered. Dark sweet fruit with some
peppery bits, and not as tannic as the last time I tried it. I think
I better put a note on this one to hold a few more years before I pop
another one as there is potential here.

A few of us then retired to the home theatre to watch and enjoy some
music videos, and I opened a few bottles of older mature American wine
to sip as we did that. My notes are a bit sketchier (not due to wine
intake, necessarily, but because it was dark and Blair was hitting my
elbow in his search for a top up….)

1994 Flora Springs Trilogy – this cab, merlot, cab franc blend was in
great shape, as I’d expected, showing nice mature fruit and lots of
vanilla in the nose, mellow sweet fruit on palate, very well
integrated now, and good length.

1993 Beringer Knights Valley Cabernet – I wanted to contrast a 100%
cab as well as to show what a not overly expensive wine can do with
age. Though probably considered well past its due date by many, I
felt that it provided some interesting development in the nose and on
palate and drank quite well.

1986 Cuvaison Cabernet – then a fully mature Napa cab in slow decline
(IMHO, only the 1987s in general are still holding well). Pleasant
plummy nose, with some oak, mellow fruit and complex flavours,
essentially no tannins left, and a medium long finish.

Modesty prevents me from saying who retains the bocce crown – again!
That may have been the last really nice Saturday we have for awhile,
so we had good luck all round.