Sunday, December 8, 2013

Ten Birthday Wines - Starring a 1970 Bordeaux (France, Germany, Ontario, California)

'Twas the night of my birthday and friends were in the house - bottles of wine were opened and here's what we had:

Starting with a Dr. Burklin Wolf 2004 Riesling, which was quite an interesting older German Riesling full of honey and waxy notes with some apricot pit ... this was the first dead soldier of the night (some wines did not get finished).  Other whites of the night were a Thirty Bench 2012 Riesling, Chateau des Charmes 2010 St. David's Bench Chardonnay, Cave Spring 2012 Dolomite Chardonnay, Vineland 2011 Elevation Riesling, and a Vineland 2005 Dry Riesling (this one did not show well).  Speaking of not showing well, we also opened a bottle of Ruhlmann 2004 Sylvaner Bouquet Printanier - Cuvee Prestige, sealed with a cheese-o plastic cork, this wine should never have spend this long in my cellar, nor should it have been opened tonight - this wine should have stayed lost.

Surprisingly, only two reds were opened, a Tom Eddy 2001 Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon, which proved to be a delightful wine, well aged, well balanced but certainly not the star of the night ... on any other night maybe, but tonight it was a 43 year old Bordeaux that stole the show.  The Chateau Gruaud Larose 1970 Grand Vin was absolutely stunning, considering its age.  To the average everyday wine drinker this is going to sound unappealing, but to wine geeks (like a couple around the table tonight) this wine kept changing and opening and giving different aspects of its character that were admirable: starting with Band-aid and forest floor on the nose and a bit on the palate, there were also welcome (and surprising) hints of raspberry that appeared, not strong, but subtle and appealing.  No doubt the wine is very mature, but still very drinkable. The most surprising part is the acidity, which still stood up and kept the wine "fresh" or at least the palate from getting tired.  The biggest and best compliment I can give this wine is that it is savoury and sexy - in its own kinda way.  This is only the second wine I have ever had from my birth-year, this time it was extra special cause it was my actual birthday.

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