Bodegas Arzuaga Tinto Crianza Ribera del
Duero '95--Earth and leather
characterize the nose of this wine, with lusty oak and cherry
flavors. Moderate tannins.
Bodegas Arzuaga Tinto Reserva Ribera del
Duero '94--Alcoholic nose, along with
earth, saddle leather and cherry aromas. Smooth black cherry and
earth flavors, which actually seem to increase on the long
Bodegas Martinez Bujanda Garnacha Rioja
Reserva '91--Cigar-box and plum nose,
with good plum, coffee and tobacco flavors. Becomes lean and tight on
the finish. Probably better with food.
Bodegas Martinez Bujanda Finca Valpiedra
Rioja Reserva '94--A single-vineyard
Rioja. Very nice anise, plum and earth aromas and flavors. Very
smooth and round in the mouth, with moderate tannins.
Dow Reserve Port '82--What other houses might call a "Colheita",or
single-vintage tawny Port. Layers of black fruit and vanilla seem to
go on forever. A rich, sweet Port, which actually seems somewhere
between a tawny and LBV in style.
Hijos de Antonio Barcelo Vina Mayor Crianza
Ribera del Duero '95--Very little, if
any, nose. Lush cherry and earth flavors, but the tannins are a bit
coarse and rustic.
Kopke Vintage Porto '95--Shy, almost nonexistent nose. Medium-bodied,
medium-sweet, with decent, but not outstanding, fruit flavors. Not
Lustau Oloroso Del Tonel Sherry
NV--Very rich, with much less oxidation
than one might expect from a sherry. Nose is a little shy, but there
are plenty of flavors of caramel, toffee, and dried fruits. A very
tasty dessert style sherry.
Lustau East India Solera Sherry
NV--The expected sherry oxidized aromas
and flavors, though not overdone. Nuts, raisins, coffee and caramel
dominate this sweet wine. Another very good sherry from this
Lustau Moscatel Solera Reserva Superior
Emilin Sherry NV--Candied orange-peel
and floral Muscat aromas. Complex flavors of orange, toffee, coffee,
caramel and candied fruit. Long, long fruit finish. Very sweet, and
sticks on the palate, but manages to stop just short of cloying. An
Gran Clos de J. Fuentes Priorat
'96--Made from 90% Grenache. Inky dark
purple red. Very tannic with modest black cherry and plum flavors. I
question whether the fruit will ever win out against the tannin, but
it isn't bad to drink now.
Penascal Red '96--(missing information on this wine; if anyone knows
more than what is written there, like the region of production, let
me know) Shy nose, but good plum and cherry flavors. A bit bitter on
the sour-cherry and leather finish.
Quinta do Noval LB House Reserve Port
NV--Nice nose of raisins and plums, and
a full, lush palate of black fruit and raisins, ending with a bit of
tannic structure. Not my favorite style of Port, but a very nice
Quinta do Noval Late Bottled Vintage Port
'91--A very good wine, with plum and
raisin flavors. Not much tannin here, and not as lush as the LB House
Quinta do Noval Colheita Port
'81--Wonderful, easy drinking yet
complex wine. Raisins, and plums dominate, though there are hints of
vanilla and spices, as well as some anise and rancio flavors on the
very long finish. A "super-tawny"...
Realeza Tempranillo Castillo Y Leon
'97--Funky, earthy smells hide lush
cherry fruit on the palate. There's more leather and earth on the
palate and in the finish, too.
La Rioja Alta Vina Alberdi Tinto Reserva
Rioja '94--Cherry dominates the nose,
as well as the medium bodied palate. Very nice and smooth in the
mouth, but the finish is a bit drying.
Sogrape Douro Reserva '95--Intense leather and raw meat aromas, followed by lush,
smooth plum and earthy flavors in the mouth. A spicy vanilla plum
finish rounds out a very nice package.
Vina Mayor Reserva Ribera del Duero
'94--A bit of alcohol on the nose, but
the dominant aromas are earthy. A nice blend of plums, leather and
earth in the mouth and a good finish.
Warres Late Bottled Vintage Port
'86--A bit simple, with an
alcohol-dominated nose and bright plum flavors.
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Copyright 1999 Marcel Lachenmann. All rights reserved.