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Florida Jim

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About Florida Jim

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    Advanced Member
  • Birthday 05/05/1947

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  • Location
    Linville, NC, and St. Petersburg, FL
  • Interests
    Travel, poetry, white-water kayaking, the law.
  1. 2010 Louis Michel, Chablis: 12.5; clean and penetrating lemon and mineral scents; likewise on the palate with good breadth, intense and vigorous; good length. Not a hint of wood anywhere; Chablis and distinctively so. Under screwcap. About $20. I buy a case of this almost every year and the closure allows me to have a glass at a time over the span of a week; nothing like a glass of Chablis to start off dinner. 1995 Laurel Glenn, Cabernet Sauvignon Sonoma Mountain: 12.5% abv; the aromatics tend toward the greener aspects of cabernet although not so much that I’d call it bell pepper; in the mouth it is slightly rustic, grippy, has full albeit young, fruit, and good sustain. Needs more time than the 1994 and 1996 versions I have had recently as it shows little development. Of the three, the 1996 was in a great place last week, the 1994 seemed past it and this seems too young. 2005 Alain Michaud, Brouilly Prestige de Vielles Vignes: 13.0% abv; restrained nose that is mostly dark fruit and earth; much the same in the mouth with considerable concentration and structure, opened some with air; medium length but quite intense. Showing the first glimpses of its old vine depth and sap; a wine that will take many years to develop and has the balance to promise delight. With fennel sausage in chunky red sauce, yummy. 2005 Clos de la Roilette, Fleurie Cuvée Tardive: 13% abv; somewhat tired and attenuated on the nose although it’s clearly Beaujolais; similar in the mouth despite good flavors and grip; medium finish. Either past prime or not a representative bottle. Good with carbonara. Best, Jim
  2. 2002 Brégeon, Muscadet: 12% abv; a clenched fist when opened with no aromatics, little flavor and piercing/almost spritzy acidity; after about 15 minutes it became very pretty with lemon, mineral aromas; lemon-drop and stone flavor impressions and nice length; with about an hour open it was superb with greater depth and breadth, more integration and a lively balance that made me wish I’d decanted this. With linguini and white clam sauce; none better. 2009 Ducroux, Régnié: 12% abv, Demeter; the nose is ladies’ face powder, red fruit and warm earth; the same in the mouth with an accent of black olive, slightly rustic and vigorous with good length. Quintessential Beaujolais and delicious with a rough chopped hash of grilled chicken, caramelized onions, corn and spinach. 2011 Poggio Anima, Grillo Uriel: 13.0% abv; a perplexing wine: on one hand it is unusual and character driven, on the other it’s resinous (as in retsina) and slightly sour; I’m not sure I like it but I won’t dismiss it. Better after being opened and a week in the fridge; seems more of a piece. Pretty darn good with salad Niçoise. Screwcap. Thanks Steve. 2007 Pépière, Muscadet Granite de Clisson: 12% abv; any attempt to parse this wine by descriptor would fail; it is, at this moment, quite simply the finest Muscadet I have tasted. Comparison to premier or even grand cru Chablis is not without appeal and yet it retains its sense of place albeit in a more noble form. Deep, pure, rich and delineated and yet, the sum is greater than its parts. Clearly, I am having difficulty with adjectives; hopefully, gentle reader, it will suffice to say that it is a masterpiece. With a shrimp and vegetable pasta, other worldly. Oh my! 2005 Pépière, Muscadet Granite de Clisson: 12.5% abv; one step behind the 2007, today. But great promise. Best, Jim
  3. 1996 Laurel Glen, Cabernet Sauvignon Sonoma Mountain: 12.5% alcohol; expansive nose with all sorts of red fruit and chocolate tones, accents of herb and earth, quite complex; extraordinary balance in the mouth and without edges, flavors echo the nose, richness without cloy, concentration without being extractive, complete and with great finesse, but again, balance is the lasting impression; long, delicious finish. A mature wine without being an old wine. Some secondary development, well resolved but does not lack grip and as pretty a cabernet based wine as I have had in years. A recent ’94 of this bottling showed more age and less fruit, albeit, still enjoyable. This bottle was at a whole different level. At peak (or at least, one of them). 2007 and 2008 Edmunds St. John, Prophyry: Both 13.0% alcohol and sourced from the Barsotti Ranch in El Dorado County; the 2008 is under screw-cap, the 2007 under Diam cork and the difference is noticeable with the ’08 being almost barrel sample-like and the ’07 smelling and tasting of chocolate-covered currants and seeming more developed; both are more black fruit than red and both are well balanced. Personally, I like the 2007’s complexity and nuance but these are two are very pretty gamays. 2006 Pepière, Muscadet Clos des Briords magnum: 12% alcohol; closed on day one; several days later this has become quite full and rich yet still bright, stony and with plenty of cut; it accompanies salmon cakes as though it were made for no other purpose and its length is astonishing. But based on day one performance, I will let even my 750’s sleep. 2005 Dom. Vissoux, Fleurie Poncié: 12.5% alcohol; . . . I am not sure how many cases of this I bought but this is my last bottle; obviously, I should have saved some but its my favorite wine and I just don’t care about what it will be tomorrow. ‘Had this on my 60th birthday, had it when my grandson was born and every bottle I have opened has brought me pleasure. No less so now; still flamboyant cassis and black fruit on the nose; rich, textured and deep in the mouth with lots of concentration, some development and a long, delicious finish. With grilled chicken, the bomb. A fond farewell to a wine I will not forget. 2009 Edmunds St. John, Rocks and Gravel: 13.8% alcohol, 50% syrah, 42% grenache and 8% mourvèdre; on release this was really delightful but it is closed now and even a couple days on the counter did not help. This needs time . . . lots of it. Best, Jim
  4. Whites: 2010 Louis Michel, Chablis: Textbook Chablis for the stainless steel crowd; delineated, fresh, some complexity and good breadth. Not deep or long or in anyway profound but distinctly Chablis (which all by itself, makes it preferable to 99% of other chardonnay) and only $20. Screw-cap. 2010 Chateau de Maligny, Chablis: Much like the Michel with a bit less approachability and a bit more complexity. Charming now, reasonably priced (low $20’s) and has a future in the cellar. Nice. 2009 Edi Simčič, Rebula: 12.5% alcohol from Slovenia; rebula is also known as ribolla gialla; obviously, not a wine done on its skins this is mildly citric with almond hints on the nose and about the same in the mouth. Not much concentration or complexity and a wine that I won’t buy again; nothing really wrong with it but not much character; about $21. Vilmart Champagne, Grande Cuvée: Charming from the outset, strong bead, nuanced and floral. Pretty wine. Louis Roederer, Champagne Brut Premier: Fine bead, clean and representative of its place. 1999 Nigl, Grüner Veltliner, Piri Privat: Exceptional; full, rich, bright, lively and complex; this wine is getting better and better. A long life ahead but superb now. 2009 La Casa, Rueda: Light, correct and pleasant; a nice aperitif or back porch sipper. 1999 Bueana Vista, Tokaji Aszú 6 Puttonyos: I’m not sure how an American winery gets to use this nomenclature . . . but there it is. In any event, the wine was rich, bright, not over-sweet and unctuous. I liked it. Reds: 2001 López de Heredia, Rioja Tondonia Reserva: One of the nicest surprises in awhile as I don’t often buy tempranillo/grenache/etc.; a little disjointed at first but over two hours integrated into a delicious, nuanced wine with grip and sustain. Complexity is its strongest point, youth its weakest; that is to say, in time, this should be even better. With grilled flank steak and frites, outstanding. About $34 (current price). 1976 Lopez de Heredia, Rioja Viña Tondonia: Profound! Elegant, constantly changing in the glass, highly complex aromatics and flavors, lovely balance and great length. Over the course of the evening, it had multiple personalities, all of them fascinating. Certainly as fine a Rioja as I have had. Finesse. The more I drink Lopez de Heredia, the more convinced I am that they are among a handful of producers worldwide that are utterly dependable. 2010 Montesecondo, Chianti Classico: 13% alcohol; 80% sangiovese, 17% canaiola, 3% colorino; biodynamic; “warm” red fruit smells with some dark notes and hints of chocolate; full in the mouth with significant tannin that is well hidden behind young fruit, a bit soft, but good length. I like it but won’t pay $26, for it again. (I hear nice things about the rosso from this house at a less expensive price and will look for some.) 1928 Chateau Lafite (375ml): From the look of the label, this may be a forgery. Regardless, the wine itself is quite nice; starts disjointed and tannic but after thirty minutes it seems to find its stride and the Pauillac starts to shows. Well past it’s prime but more than simply interesting. 1947 DRC, La Tache: Not only a rare treat but a birth year wine; substantial ullage. This bottle is also past its prime but the power in the remaining autumnal, savory beverage is remarkable. Little fruit but the nose is expansive and the wine fills the mouth; a paradox, to be sure. Lost little over the course of the evening and showed great character. 1978 Mt. Eden, Cabernet Sauvignon Santa Cruz Mtns.: Past it. 1984 Fretter, Cabernet Sauvignon Lucky Lake Vnyd. : After time in the decanter, this is exactly what I would expect of a well done 1984 Napa Cabernet. A hint of scorched earth but amounting only to a level of complexity; balanced fruit and structure, not completely resolved yet but quite drinkable and resolutely Napa Cab. Good, not great. (This is apparently a rare bottling with something like a case or two produced.) 1988 Champet, Côte Rôtie: I nearly dismissed this wine when opened as the bottle stink was overwhelming. After air, it was wonderful; full of the ash, tar, violet elements so indicative of the AOL with solid, even expressive, fruit and great nuance. Almost, but not quite delicate, in the mouth; the grip keeps it from being too tender. Lovely wine, at peak. 1995 Tempier, Bandol la Tourtine: Showing little and what was there was not particularly interesting. Perhaps, we are into this too early. 1997 Thunder Mountain, Cabernet Sauvignon Bates Ranch: Excellent; lively, juicy, almost playful in the mouth. Showing young but approachable. Easy to drink. 1999 Jasmin, Côte Rôtie (mag.): Considerable brett and very closed. 1979 Chanson, Gevrey-Chambertin: A pretty, slender wine with enough earth to relate it to the AOC and enough fruit to keep it interesting. Too much oak influence for me but others thought it very nice. A touch drying. 2007 Overnoy/Houillon, Arbois-Pupillin: Not my favorite vintage from this producer (that would be 1996) but still a wine that is so utterly fascinating for its elegance, complexity and wild nature that it surpasses everything else on the table. Perfectly paired with a lentil and duck confit salad. 2005 Marcassin, Pinot Noir Three Sisters Vnyd.: Over-ripe for my taste and still quite young. Plenty of stuffing but I can’t get past the cooked elements. 1973 Ridge, Cabernet Sauvignon Monte Bello: Started tannic and angry but opened up over the evening and became a much more complete wine, albeit still not resolved. Others were more impressed than I but I didn’t throw my glass away. 1984 Ridge, Cabermet Sauvignon Monte Bello: Whereas the Fretter (above) was quintessential Napa, there are no torrefied notes from this Santa Cruz Mountain wine. Complete, full, still young and without much secondary development but delicious, nonetheless. 2006 Lagier-Meredith, Syrah; Always a strong, concentrated look at Mt. Veeder syrah, this comes across as balanced and nuanced. Maybe a bit young but still a pleasure. 1998 la Fleur de Boüard, Lalande de Pomerol: Good, solid Bordeaux with enough merlot character to denote its AOC and enough character to be of interest. Rounder than expected but not flabby. Nice. 2009 Story, Zinfandel: Red vodka. 2008 Hamilton Russell, Pinot Noir: South African pinot that tastes like it; a bit dirty to my palate with a lot of whole-cluster character tending toward green. Not my thing. Self Promotion: 2011 Cowan Cellars, Mourvèdre Rosé: This started life pretty acidic and savory. It is softening slightly but the fruit flavors are really coming out and the wine is better balanced. I suspect that time in the cellar will be its friend. Went through ML so it’s pretty stable. Much better as it warms to room temp. Best, Jim
  5. Four times a year, the four of us get together to celebrate a birthday; he who is honored, doesn't pay. We usually go to the same restaurant and everybody brings a bottle. I look forward to these gatherings as much as any. This past Thursday was one. The bottles were: 2009 Rhys, Pinot Noir, Home Vineyard 2009 Phelps, Pinot Noir, Freestone 2002 LaJota, Cabernet Sauvignon, Howell Mountain, and, 2010 Occhpinti, il Frappato. Between mouthfuls of carpaccio, filet, pork chop, sea bass, pasta, etc. we tasted the wines over the course of about three hours and caught up. These guys have a mostly CA palate but they know wine from everywhere (although none had tasted Frappato before). All of the wines showed well. At the end of the evening we comment on the wines. Mike's comment on the Frappato - "that's the way wine is supposed to taste." 'Says it all. Best, Jim
  6. 2002 Dom. Michel Voarick, Corton-Renardes: Very pretty cherry, horehound, beet root aromatics that are a little sweet and a little savory but not very expansive; tastes of Corton as it is firm, structured and edgy in the mouth. But half way through the evening the wine turns to black fruit and the tannins become quite prominent and somewhat drying. By the end of the night this is all iron and tannin and not something I want more of. I am guessing we got to this just before it falls off a cliff . . . or maybe I just don’t get its aging potential. 2004 Giacosa, Nabbiolo d’Alba Valmaggiore: Tasted very generic at this point; not bad but without depth or character. Hold. 2005 de Villaine, Côte Chalonnaise Les Clous: Pretty chardonnay half leaning toward Chablis and with good length. Needs bottle age to be more but also nice now. 2009 Calluna Vineyards, Merlot Aux Raynauds: Simply wonderful; rich but not flamboyant, structured yet with plenty of savory fruit, lively in the mouth and very long. The depth and nuance of this wine are approaching world class even at this young age. As good a merlot as I can remember – from anywhere. 2010 Edmond et Anne Vatan, Sancerre Clos la Néore: Tart and too young to show much of anything; hold. 2007 Dom. Saint Suffrein, CdP: Delicious, and this from someone with little use for Grenache. Smooth, nuanced, tactile and long. Quite nice. 2004 Lagier-Meredith, Syrah: Of whole cloth now with layers of flavor and a lovely texture in the mouth. Not the most complex syrah I ever had but one of the easiest to enjoy. Drink now. 2002 Ridge, Mataro Pato Vineyard: Satin textured, forward fruit, no mataro funk (which I miss), and decent length. A good wine but not a great one. 1990 Ridge, Geyserville: A biological disaster that may also be cooked and corked. DNPIM. 2010 Chester’s Anvil, Gewürztraminer: I am not a fan of this grape but this was pleasant. A little perm solution of the nose but pretty in the mouth, if a little thin. And yet, something about this wine made me take another glass – I have no idea why. 2007 Hanzell, Chardonnay: Another chardonnay that leans toward Chablis but not far enough. Good minerality, clean fruit, some depth, good length. I hear these age quite well so we may be too early to this bottle. Nonetheless, easy to drink. Best, Jim
  7. I'll take that as a compliment. Best, Jim
  8. I can't believe the academy hasn't called yet . . . Best, Jim
  9. Café les Amis, in the Cow Hollow district of San Francisco, was the meeting spot for our group of winos on a fine October evening. Good food and nice service . . . and a few Burgundies: 1996 Laurent, Vosne-Romanée Les Suchots: I tasted this early on and never got back to it; initial impressions were not of wood (which I expected) but rather of sous bois, and attenuated fruit. I suspect that air helped but don’t know. 2008 Jerome Chezeaux, Vosne-Romanée Les Suchots magnum: I liked this and while I would not say it was exceptional, it was clean, pleasant had some complexity and enough fruit that I thought it balanced. 1997 Meo Camuzet, Clos de Vougeot: I thought this was mildly corked, others thought it merely vegetal; in any event, I could not get past my initial impression and stopped at two sips. 2009 Voillot, Volnay: All baby fat and simplicity tonight but charming, nonetheless, and a pretty wine. Very much enjoyed. 2008 d’Angerville, Volnay Clos des Ducs: Closed at first and even when, with air, it opened somewhat, it never really got past simple. Nice simple and even worth a second glass but this should have so much more in the future. 1999 Drouhin, Volnay Clos des Chênes: Closed at first but blossomed over the course of the evening and stood out for its texture and depth. I have had this wine several times since release and only once was I underwhelmed. A lovely bottle, my last of the case; yes, I was too early but I still enjoyed it a great deal. Others seemed to also. Best, Jim
  10. Thank you. No intention of selling the vids. The wine, on the other hand . . . Best, Jim
  11. An annual event; grilled food and covered dishes in Mark’s back yard with a diverse gang of folks. And a little wine . . . 2002 Raveneau, Chablis Forêt: Correct, pleasant and of its place; but it’s just that and the breed is not showing. 1990 Cheval Blanc: Blocky and closed both on the nose and palate; angry at the moment and not ready for drinking. 1990 Conterno, Barolo Cascina Francia: Immense disappointment; perfect cork, high fill, raisin juice. 1999 Gilles Robin, Crozes-Hermitage Cuveé Alberic Bouvet (magnum): Got better and better as it opened; no sign of brett, complex and delicious wine but still showing young in this format. The last of my stash – sigh. Thunderbird award. 2002 Knoll, Riesling Kellerberg Smaragd: Charming from the outset and even better with air; early in its life but such potential. 1999 Giacosa, Barolo Falletto: Great wine in its infancy; a pleasure to smell and very long – just needed food while we were drinking. 2007 Ott, Rhine Riesling (magnum): Lovely, almost ethereal throughout the entire mag. A pleasure. 1995 Lafarge, Volnay Clos du Chateau des Ducs: No there, there and past its moment – or so terribly backward that I doubt it will ever show well. 1981 Mt. Eden, Cabernet Sauvignon: For one brief moment, nice; and then it went downhill precipitously. A respite during harvest; thanks Mark and Marico. Best, Jim
  12. Gordon, While I haven't had one that I thought was bad wine, I have had some so young and oaky that I did not enjoy them at that time. American oak and I do not get along - at least not in the early years. Best, Jim
  13. Dinner with “the boys” in honor of a birthday (not mine): 2010 Dagueneau, Pouilly-Fumé Silex: Sauvignon blanc doesn’t get much better, IMO; crystalline flavors, energy, presence and length. Stupid price but great wine. 2009 Kistler, Pinot Noir Kistler Vineyard: Pinot noir concentrate from anywhere. Not bad wine just not worth wasting calories on. 2002 Thomas, Pinot Noir (magnum): The antithesis of the preceding wine; translucent, weightless, with mostly savory flavors and aromas, silken, distinctive; a mag was not enough. 2005 Ridge, Cabernet Sauvignon Monte Bello: Expecting a wall of American oak in one so young, was delighted to find a concentrated and intense mountain cabernet of quality and character. 2007 B.V. Cabernet Sauvignon Georges de Latour: Lightweight cabernet that is acceptable but not special. 1986 B.V. Cabernet Sauvignon Georges de Latour: Good providence, perfect cork; raisin juice. Sigh . . . Best, Jim
  14. Most of what I drink is 'value' also but I run with some pretty generous people. Best, Jim
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