My men’s wine group “The League of Gentle Men” decided to have a dinner to celebrate Bastille Day. We could not do it on July 14th so we celebrated to the 13th. It was held at Nice-Martin on the upper West Side. The food was excellent and went well with the wine. The theme of course would be French. For the first time we invited women. Only one of them showed up stayed for the champagne, and left.
We started as we always do with Krug. This was a special treat because it was a magnum of the 1990.It did not taste like it was almost 20 years old. It was fresh and alive and has many long years ahead of it. I would have guessed it as being a 1998.It is always better to drink Champagne from a magnum
Next was one of my favorite white wines the 1996 Chablis Premier Cru Vaillons from Domain Jean and Sebastien Dauvissat. It had citrus aromas, hints of lemon and pear with a good mineral character and acidity, a great finish and after taste. This is an understated, balanced and elegant wine. It was served almost at room temperature which enhanced the flavor.
Chateau Lanessan 1996Haut Medoc-75% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Merlot 4% Piet Verdot & 1% Cabernet Franc. The blend is dominated by Cabernet Sauvignon but it did not show in the wine. It was a very balanced wine, easy to drink, with red fruit aromas and flavors and a pleasant finish and aftertaste.
Chateau Haut- Bages 1990 Averous-Pauillac There must be a lot of Cabernet Sauvignon in the wine because it had very pronounced bell-pepper flavors and aromas, which I found, made it a little one dimensional. It is the second label of Chateau Lynch Bages
1989 Chateau L’Evangile- Pomerol Made from 78 % Merlot and 22 % Cabernet Franc This was a very concentrated wine with berry aromas of raspberry and cassis, and flavors of blackberries with a mineral character.
1962 Chateau Lafite Rothchild-Pauillac- It was very interesting that the wine needed a few minutes in the glass to open up. It was ready to drink but could last for a few more years.
1979 Château Latour-Paullic This has always been my favorite Bordeaux and it was in my opinion the wine of the evening, classic Bordeaux in every sense of the word.
1990 Chateau Montros– Saint Esteph– after we drank the wine some one said they believed the Wine Spectator gave it a rating of 100. It was a classic wine with red fruit aromas and flavors.
1983 Mas De Daumas Grassac- Languedoc- This is a very interesting wine and one that most of our members were not familiar with. It is made from 80% Cabernet Sauvignon and the other 20% made up of a number of grapes including: Malbec, Cabernet Franc, Syrah, and Tannat among others. It had aromas of black fruit including black berries and black currents with a leathery berry flavor which continued in the finish and after taste. It was like an “old style” Bordeaux and had more than a few years left and the color was still dark.
1988 Chateau Lafaurie- Peyraguey– I have never had a sauternes from this producer. One of our members always brings an interesting dessert. It was the perfect way to end a great evening, sipping the wine and enjoying its orange marmalade flavor with over tones of honey and floral herbs, hints of spice, good acidity and mineral character.