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Cellar Favorite: 1988 Domaine de la Romanée-Conti Montrachet

featured, Cellar Favorites, cellar favorite, France: Burgundy

Antonio Galloni, May 2018

The 1988 Montrachet was a stand out in a recent dinner that spanned 20+ vintages going all the way back to 1973. This is an especially fine example of a wine I have been fortunate to taste and drink many times over the years.

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Cellar Favorite: 1978 Jurançon Moelleux Le Clos Joliette

France, Cellar Favorites, cellar favorite

Neal Martin, May 2018

Le Clos Joliette is a producer with an almost obsessive cult following. Whilst many might have never heard the name, I bet there are one or two readers going wobbly at the knees at the mere mention of this “unicorn” estate. I dislike that term. Yet Clos Joliette is certainly an enigma. There is a dearth of information on the internet and hardly any professional reviews, yet mature bottles are highly coveted and do not come cheap.

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Cellar Favorite: 1948 Taylor Fladgate Vintage Port

Portugal, Cellar Favorites, cellar favorite

Neal Martin, May 2018

There is Vintage Port and then there is the 1948 Taylor Fladgate. It remains a monumental Port that towers over the 20th century. Nineteen forty-eight is perhaps one of the lesser-known declarations compared to 1945 and 1963, although nine houses declared that year. Michael Broadbent described that as an “error of judgment” given the quality of the vintage in retrospect. I have been fortunate to taste the 1948 Taylors on several occasions, encountering one or two perfect bottles along the way. “Christopher & Co” bottled my most recent encounter in 1950, British merchants bottling a lion’s share of production in those days.

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Cellar Favorite: 1947 Cos d’Estournel

France: Bordeaux, Cellar Favorites, cellar favorite

Antonio Galloni, Apr 2018

I look at the pristine bottle of 1947 Cos d’Estournel set in front of me during my most recent visit to the château and the unthinkable crosses my mind: “What if the bottle is corked, or off?” As much as I love tasting and drinking older wines, when bottles are very rare there is always a moment of suspense when the cork comes out.

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Cellar Favorite: 2006 Tertre Rôteboeuf

France: Bordeaux, Cellar Favorites, cellar favorite

Antonio Galloni, Apr 2018

François Mitjavile’s 2006 Tertre Rôteboeuf is an absolute joy to taste. Generally speaking, I am not a huge fan of the 2006s because so many wines are gamy, rustic and rough around the edges. There are no such issues here. Wonderfully perfumed, with striking inner sweetness and layers of fruit, the 2006 Tertre Rôteboeuf is exceptionally vivid from the very first taste.

Heidseck dry monopole 1966

Cellar Favorite: 1966 Heidsieck & Co. Brut Rosé Dry Monopole

France: Champagne, Cellar Favorites, cellar favorite

Neal Martin, Apr 2018

AG will probably kill me if he reads this, so please don’t tell him, but I once wrote something along the lines: “if you want to drink mature Champagne then you might as well pour a prematurely oxidized Meursault into a Sodastream.”

Cellar favourite 1973 petrus

Cellar Favorite: 1973 Pétrus

France: Bordeaux, Cellar Favorites, cellar favorite

Neal Martin, Apr 2018

Yet the quality of this 1973 was undeniable. I had encountered it once before, a bottle opened for my brother to celebrate his birth-year over a decade ago when such off-vintages, eschewed by all but the reckless, were affordable. But I could not remember it being this fine.

Latour tower triplicate

Cellar Favorite: Château Latour: Latest Releases

featured, France: Bordeaux, Cellar Favorites, cellar favorite

Neal Martin, Apr 2018

During my week of château visits to inspect the 2017s in barrel, there was of course one significant, recalcitrant property whose wines will not be released onto the Place de Bordeaux this late spring. Château Latour withdrew after the 2011 vintage, since when they have embarked upon a series of bi-annual mature vintage releases, commencing with stock held in reserve during their respective en primeur campaigns. The latest trio of releases is the 2006 Grand Vin, the 2012 Les Forts de Latour and the 2013 Pauillac.

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Cellar Favorite: Jadot’s 2015 Beaune 1er Cru Celebration

featured, France: Burgundy, Cellar Favorites, cellar favorite

Antonio Galloni, Mar 2018

I remember the first time I tasted Jadot’s 2009 Beaune 1er Cru 150th Anniversary several years ago. An assemblage of numerous Beaune climats, the 150th Anniversary was incredibly expressive and flat-out delicious from the very beginning.

Madeira

Cellar Favorite: Blandy’s Madeira – Recent Releases

featured, Portugal, Cellar Favorites, cellar favorite

Neal Martin, Mar 2018

My love affair with Madeira began whilst holidaying on the namesake Atlantic volcanic island in 2003, where in a pique of curiosity I ordered a 1927 Bual. Afterwards I understood why those with good taste revere this profound, time-buckling, ethereal and enigmatic wine. Madeira is so unfashionable it is the epitome of cool. These are the latest releases from Blandy's.