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From the Cellar

Night of Diminishing Wines (Portugal / California / France)

06 Sep 2015

(May 6, 2015) ... While maybe an odd title for a wine column that statement is quite apropos, with each wine I opened I looked more longingly at the last. Starting with a deliciously young and fresh Churchill's Estate 2011 Douro Red, sure it's 4 years from vintage date and I called it "fresh", but that's how the Portuguese roll. This wine was an amazing giver on both the nose and palate: sweet cherry, chocolate, vanilla and clove aromas are followed by black cherry with just the right amount of tannin, oak, spices, especially clove and all-spice flavours - it's a wine I could have easily enjoy for the rest of the evening, but who can be satisfied with just one wine when you can open a second ...

And that wine was the JanKris 2004 CrossFire ... Now granted I probably should have opened this one years ago, but what's the point of having a wine cellar if you can't 'lose' a few things. This wine was a Cab Sauv (50%) Syrah-Merlot Blend (25% each) from Paso Robles, California. The nose was earthy with dried cherry, the palate still showed good acidity as well as some dried cassis and raspberry, sweet oak ran throughout and as it remained in glass longer the wood really started to dominate. A decent wine in its maturity, though as the night wore on it proved to be too earthy and oaky, the remaining "fruit" was at best described as subtle and very much background-oriented. So who can be satisfied with two open bottles when you can pop the cork on a third ...

And here's where the night went even further down hill: a Chateau Poyanne 2013 Cotes de Bourg Cuvee Prestige ... Very little prestigious here and was voted weakest wine of the night, for such a young wine it had little going for it; flavours were slightly bitter with weedy and herbal notes. Should have stopped at one, maybe two ... Have I learned my lesson? Hell no, we'll do it all again real soon.

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