1958 Barolo Riserva

September 22, 2014

Name:Barolo Riserva
Vintage:1958
Type:Red Wine
Varietal:Nebbiolo
Producer:Giacomo Borgogno & Figli
Region:Italy / Piedmont / Langhe / Barolo/ Barolo

Leathery and nutty with a layer of balsamic and madera. Loud tertiary aromas leading the way, but layers of secondary and primary are still evident. Faded, thin, but still evident. Still alive, but definitely over the hill in terms of precision and balance. I can only speculate that evolution is advanced due to merely good (vs. ideal) history of storage. Typically reclusive, dusty and dry Borgogno style.

1964 Barolo Riserva

September 22, 2014

Name:Barolo Riserva
Vintage:1964
Type:Red Wine
Varietal:Nebbiolo
Producer:Giacomo Borgogno & Figli
Region:Italy / Piedmont / Langhe / Barolo/ Barolo

This bottle was in the best condition of the line-up. Great balance. Not only the façade is sophisticated, intricate and extremely pleasing, but also, underneath it, is the masterpiece of a frame. Ripe, but assertive tannins. Super acidity. Elegant. Clean lines. The fruit is more present, which provides a better balance to the secondary and tertiary aromas and adds in perceived complexity. The color is clean, saturated and is deep enough to really surprise if this is the first old Barolo of such kind for you. This one also had signs of slight daydreaming or mild absentmindedness. An endearing imperfection, but at this age it separates the good one from great ones.

1971 Barolo Riserva

September 22, 2014

Name:Barolo Riserva
Vintage:1971
Type:Red Wine
Varietal:Nebbiolo
Producer:Giacomo Borgogno & Figli
Region:Italy / Piedmont / Langhe / Barolo/ Barolo

Storage issues. Not dead, but quite cooked & maderized.

1968 Bodegas Valdemar ‘Conde de Valdemar’ Centenario Rioja Gran Reserva

September 19, 2014

Name:'Conde de Valdemar' Centenario Rioja Gran Reserva
Vintage:1968
Type:Red Wine
Varietal:Tempranillo Blend
Producer:Bodegas Valdemar
Region:Spain / La Rioja / La Rioja Alta / Rioja
Alcohol:n/a

This is pure seduction. Properly and perfectly mature secondary and tertiary aromas and flavor, but it feels as if this is how it’s meant to be and not because of the age. None of the pickly/green nose which I am not so keen on in some Riojas.

The flavor is savory sweet, delicate and laced with uncanny acidity and tannins which grab you gently, but firmly. Old-school Rioja, This was another one of those “wow” experiences and way above expectation. Would love a case of this delight….or a few.

Many thanks to folks at The Sampler in London, UK, which is where I tasted this beauty by the glass. From what I understand, 1968 is the oldest vintage that even the Bodegas Valdemar has in its own cellar library.

2005 Paleo Rosso

September 18, 2014

Name:Paleo Rosso
Vintage:2005
Type:Red Wine
Varietal:Cabernet Franc
Producer:Le Macchiole
Region:Italy / Toscana / Bolgheri

Ample fruit, tightly woven and a smidge nervous. Showed the least change in the glass throughout the evening, neither falling off, nor spreading its wings. Clearly needs more time to deliver its full potential.

2003 Paleo Rosso

September 18, 2014

Name:Paleo Rosso
Vintage:2003
Type:Red Wine
Varietal:Cabernet Franc
Producer:Le Macchiole
Region:Italy / Toscana / Bolgheri

This one was a clear outlier in the pack (of 7 vintages) oscillating from dusty, peppery and slightly green nose to dry hay, sawmill and varnish undertones simmering under the reasonable fruit. Restrained and austere. Perhaps just going through a phase.

2002 Paleo Rosso

September 18, 2014

Name:Paleo Rosso
Vintage:2002
Type:Red Wine
Varietal:Cabernet Franc
Producer:Le Macchiole
Region:Italy / Toscana / Bolgheri

Clean, elegant, extremely silky. Very classy and well balanced. One of the favorites in the tasting.

2000 Paleo Rosso

September 18, 2014

Name:Paleo Rosso
Vintage:2000
Type:Red Wine
Varietal:70% Cabernet Sauvignon and 30% Cabernet Franc
Producer:Le Macchiole
Region:Italy / Toscana / Bolgheri

Very similar to 2001, but more vibrant, bright and softer tannic side.