Blind tasting in Paris (Part #2) – Nov 2022

Happy belated/late Hanukkah wishes to all, I hope the festival of lights was a true joy for you and all your friends and family! When we last left off, we were detailing the sad truth of the first two rounds of our blind tastings. Things will improve here but overall, this was not a great list of wines, regarding WINNER scores. The tastings, after the whites and the first reds, did indeed improve and they were far more enjoyable, as I state below, but overall, not a lot of WINNER wines. Such is life!

So, we continue where we left off last time, with some poor wines indeed. As stated in that previous post, I was in Paris in November, with Avi Davidowitz from Kosher Wine Unfiltered. The sheer number of boxes in our room was insane, somewhere nearly 120 bottles of wine came to our hotel or Ari Cohen’s home. The poor bellman pushing that cart laden with wine boxes was a site to see.

Blind Tasting Methodology

This time I wanted to break up the normal approach, of tasting wines from the distributor or wine producers and instead taste the wines blind in their respective groups. The methodology was simple, bag all the wines, hand them to Avi who wrote a number/letter, and then line them up for the tasting. Then we taste them in numerical/alphabetical order and write the notes. After the first pass, we taste the wines again to see if they have changed. Then we show the wines and write the names down. We did find a few anomalies in the system. First, the more closed wines needed time to open and those were tasted again later. If there were flaws at the start those stayed in the notes, at least for me, and if there were issues after they were also written.

2020 Vintage versus 2021 Vintage in Bordeaux

I will repeat what I wrote previously, as this post will showcase far more 2021 wines from Bordeaux. So far, the sample size of 2021 wines from Bordeaux includes very few big names because they are still in the barrels. Or should be! So, the sample size of 2021 wines from Bordeaux is all simpler and of lower starting quality. Still, what is apparent, from this sample size, is that 2021 will be a very hard year. The 2020 vintage, by contrast, is hit and miss, and so far, while the hits have been solid, there are no home runs, and we have tasted most of the wines we expect to rave about from the 2020 vintage. There will be one 95-scoring wine, ONE, from all the wines we tasted on this trip. I expect even fewer exceptional wines from the 2021 vintage and I personally, will be buying far fewer of the 2020 or 2021 wines. Finally, the wine notes from the 2020 vintage should be witness to the fact that while the 2020 wines are OK to good, they are far more accessible than previous vintages. The glaring exception to that will be highlighted in a subsequent post.

Thoughts on Red Wines (part #2) (Round three)

Overall, this list has many decent enough wines but only two WINNER wines. Sadly, the two WINNER wines are repeats of last year’s tasting. They are the 2019 Château de Marmorières Les Amandiers, La Clape, Languedoc and the 2018 Maison Sarela 1922 Meritage, Languedoc. Many of these wines will never make it to the USA. The 2020 Elvi will make it, along with the 2021 Pavillon du Vieux Chantre, and others, like the Paloumey. The best of them will never make it here and that is the shame!

Thoughts on Red Wines (part #3) (Round four)

There are a lot of wines here and there are a few wines that I have been hounded on for information – so here you go! Included in this list are the famous three new wines from Pierre Miodownick, the Godfather of Bordeaux wine and founder of Netofa Wines in Israel. They are the 2020 Château Olivier Grand Cru Classe, Pessac-Léognan, 2020 Chateau Clement-Pichon, Haut-Medoc, and the famous 2020 Château Angelus Carillon de l’Angélus, Saint-Emilion Grand Cru. They all showed nicely with the clear WINNER, in regards to value for the price being the Chateau Clement-Pichon.

In regards to the three red wines that Pierre and team made, the 2020 Château Angelus Carillon de l’Angélus, Saint-Emilion Grand Cru is famous and lovely but at $360 a pop, I really do not understand the market, IMHO. I am sure they will sell, as the wine is good and there are enough of these wines out there now at that price, but WOW! The other two wines are priced more in line with the quality, especially the Clement-Pichon.

There were also some really impressive wines like the 2019 Chateau Tour Seran, NON-Mevushal. The wines that come here are Mevushal but those in Europe are left non-mevushal and it showed beautifully. Again, all of these wines were tasted blind and the Tour Seran really stuck out like a sore thumb, in all the right ways, from the very start.

Another incredible WINNER was the 2020 Chateau Castelbruck, Margaux. The 2015 Vieux Chateau Chambeau, Lussac Saint-Emilion, shocked me for an old Mevushal wine. I KNOW I had tasted the wine and sure enough, a quick search of the blog using Google found it! I liked this blind more than when I had it two years ago with GG (AKA Gabriel Geller), though that was from a 375 bottle.

On the list of wines that showed HORRIBLY would be the 2017 Chateau Pape Clement, Pessac-Leognan. Just an oxidized disaster. There is a 2018 vintage as well but I have NO IDEA where it is! They are sold out of it in Europe and what I see now is 2019, which I posted notes about a few months ago. Other than the horrific Pape, the fourth round was nice enough and many of the wines showed well at the opening and onwards, while some needed time like the wines from Pierre.

Thoughts on Red Wines (part #4) (Round five)

This was the final round and it had a few WINNER wines as well some were quite surprising including wine from Georgia, no not the state, the country, and a lovely new vintage of the Vignobles Mayard Le Hurlevent, Châteauneuf-du-Pape. There were no massive duds, and this round showed simpler, more accessible wines that were either good to go, from the start, or ones that will never be good to go!

The real shocker, other than the lovely Georgian wine which we both thought was a Rhone was the 2021 Philippe Paine La Petite Metairie, Chinon. It was lovely, not simple, yet not built to last. More proof that nice wines can come at any price point.

This round was maybe the best overall one of the tasting, not from the number of WINNERs but rather from the lack of massive failures. A lovely, enjoyable, wine tasting.

Thoughts on this tasting

These last tastings were far better than the previous post. We have some WINNERs here and while the WINNER wines exist in Europe they will not be WINNERs once they arrive on our shores. The prices will push the wines too far from a QPR score median. The wines from Taieb will be WINNER wines when they get here and the Hurlevent will also be a WINNER when it gets here, as well.

Other than those, there are no WINNER wines for the USA, according to my scores and the prices I have seen quoted so far, and my understanding of what wines will actually make it here. I really had a great time hanging with Avi, and as always I could never have done these tastings without the incredible help of Ari Cohen.

The wine notes follow below – the explanation of my “scores” can be found here and the explanation for QPR scores can be found here:

Red Wines (part #2) (Round three)

2020 Elvi Wines Vina Encina Tinto, La Mancha (M) – Score: 86 (QPR: EVEN)
The nose of this wine is a bit too ripe and unbalanced, with notes of blue and red fruit, but while the brightness is there, what is lacking is a bit of balance, with dirt, and almost too much fruitiness. The mouth of this medium-plus-bodied wine is a bit too fruity for me, with notes of dried flowers, rose, dried raspberry, blueberry, and tart fruit, showing nice acidity, but still, there is a lack of balance. The finish is long, tart, ripe, and green, with nice lemongrass, tart cherry, and more smoke. Drink until 2024. (tasted November 2022) (in Paris, France) (ABV = 14%)

2021 Pavillon du Vieux Chantre, Puisseguin Saint-Emilion – Score: 84 (QPR: EVEN)
The nose of this wine is hot, green, and tinny, with jalapeno, loam, and more heat. The mouth of this wine is ripe and green with a bit of heat, cranberry, cherry, some nice loam, eucalyptus, earth, searing tannin, acidity, and smoke. The finish is long, still hot, with more acidity, green notes, herbal, and loam. Drink until 2025. (tasted November 2022) (in Paris, France) (ABV = 13%)

2019 Chateau Guibeau, Castillon Cotes de Bordeaux (M) – Score: 86 (QPR: GOOD)
This wine is a blend of 80% Merlot & 20% Cabernet Sauvignon. The nose of this wine is ripe, and less green, with ripe plum, candied raspberry, jammy fruit, almost liqueur, with earth and smoke. The mouth of this wine is ripe, almost Israeli-ripe, with great acidity, nice mouth-coating tannin, just too fruity and ripe for me, with boysenberry, dark red fruit, dark plum, and candied and jammy strawberry. The finish is long, ripe, jammy, and fruit-forward, with nice tannin, graphite, and milk chocolate. Drink until 2026. (tasted November 2022) (in Paris, France) (ABV = 14%)

2021 Plume de Paloumey, Haut-Medoc – Score: 86 (QPR: POOR)
This is an organic wine with no added sulfites. The nose of this wine is ripe and green at the same time with lovely mushrooms, forest floor, vegetal, almost elegant, yet annoying, with loam, and nice aromas. The mouth of this medium-bodied wine is nice, still with a bit of green, nice fruit, black plum, raspberry, dark cherry, tart, and jammy, with loam, forest floor, graphite, and smoke. The finish is long, green, herbal, and menthol-driven, with tannin and smoke. Drink until 2024. (tasted November 2022) (in Paris, France) (ABV = 13%)

2013 Chateau Cru Ducasse, Haut-Medoc – Score: 0 (QPR: N.A.)
Dead (tasted November 2022) (in Paris, France) (ABV = 12.5%)

2019 Chateau Haut Piquat, Lussac Saint-Emilion – Score: 81 (QPR: POOR)
This wine is a blend of 85% Merlot & 15% Cabernet Sauvignon. The nose of this wine is boring, green, simple, and not much else. The mouth of this medium-bodied wine is boring, almost flat, with enough acidity, but boring, and uni-dimensional. Drink by 2024. (tasted November 2022) (in Paris, France) (ABV = 14%)

2019 Chateau Rollan de By, Medoc – Score: 86 (QPR: POOR)
The nose of this wine smells of cherry cola, followed by dark plum, dark fruit, green notes, jalapeno, smoke, and milk chocolate. The mouth of this medium-plus-bodied wine is ripe, with milk chocolate, dense fruit, sweet tobacco, and ripeness, charcoal, but also with some green notes. The fruit is blackberry, plum, raspberry, dark and brooding, but a bit simple. The finish is long, with more chocolate, menthol, and sweet tobacco. Drink until 2024. (tasted November 2022) (in Paris, France) (ABV = 14%)

2019 Chateau Picampeau, Lussac Saint-Emilion – Score: 80 (QPR: POOR)
This wine is a blend of 85% Merlot & 15% Cabernet Sauvignon. The nose of this wine is ripe, green, and smoky, with tobacco, red fruit, and earth. The mouth of this medium-bodied wine is another boring repeat, green, herbal, with menthol, raspberry, spice, herbs, and strawberry, with some earth. The finish is a bit short, herbal, and smoky, with loam. Drink until 2024. (tasted November 2022) (in Paris, France) (ABV = 14%)

2018 Chateau Lafitte, Cotes de Bordeaux – Score: 89 (QPR: POOR)
The nose of this wine is nice, black and blue with nice smoke, animal, and herbal notes, with ripe fruit, powerful and jammy, but controlled. The mouth of this full-bodied wine is ripe, brooding, and powerful, with herbal notes, boysenberry, dark raspberry, nice acidity, chunky tannin, and some minerality. The finish is long, chunky, green, herbal, and jammy. Drink by 2024. (tasted November 2022) (in Paris, France) (ABV = 14%)

2004 Chateau Brousseau, Haut-Medoc – Score: 0 (QPR: N.A.)
DEAD (tasted November 2022) (in Paris, France) (ABV = 12.5%)

2015 Chateau Real, Haut-Medoc – Score: 76 (QPR: N.A.)
The nose of this wine is boring, and flat, with ripe fruit, and hot with green notes. A mess. The mouth of this medium-bodied wine is boring and flat, with some acidity, but unbalanced, ripe, and green, with menthol and not much else. Drink until 2024. (tasted November 2022) (in Paris, France) (ABV = 13%)

2021 Chateau de Mole, Puisseguin Saint-Emilion – Score: 70 (QPR: N.A.)
The nose of this wine is ripe, with green notes, but too much pain in regards to ripeness and unbalanced. The mouth of this wine tastes unbalanced and not enjoyable. Drink by 2024 (tasted November 2022) (in Paris, France) (ABV = 13%)

2019 Vieux Chateau Guibeau, Puisseguin Saint-Emilion – Score: 75 (QPR: N.A.)
This wine is a blend of 80% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon, & 10% Cabernet Franc. Vile juice – epic failure. Purple vanilla cola is not fun!  (tasted November 2022) (in Paris, France) (ABV = 14%)

2019 Château de Marmorières Les Amandiers, La Clape, Languedoc – Score: 92 (QPR: WINNER (France))
Well, tasting this with other red Languedoc wines, this is the clear WINNER, sadly, the price in the USA will be much too high to garner a WINNER score, but in Europe, this wine is a CLEAR WINNER! It just feels like an elegant, grown-up Languedoc, very nice!
The nose of this wine is lovely and ethereal, yet rich, dirty, and fruity, with impeccable balance, rich loam, dirt, smoke, tar, asphalt, red and blue fruit, with nice balancing roasted herbs, garrigue, and more mineral, lovely! The mouth on this medium-plus wine is rich, layered, smoky, and really fun, loaded with screaming acid, lovely and elegant mouth draping and drying tannin, scraping mineral, blueberry, raspberry, smoked cassis, balanced so well with roasted herbs, rich dry spices, cloves, mineral, graphite, tar, hay, with crazy good acidity, wow!! The finish is forever, so long, green, red, blue, black, with roasted herbs, leather, smoking tobacco, rich spices, cinnamon, cloves, tarragon, wow!!! Bravo!!! Drink until 2025. (tasted November 2022) (in Paris, France) (ABV = 14%)

2018 Maison Sarela 1922 Meritage, Languedoc – Score: 92 (QPR: WINNER (France))
The nose of this wine is lovely, I like a good Languedoc, with tar, asphalt, earth, smoke, blue and black fruit, rich mineral, saline, roasted animal, and a nice and rich bouquet. The mouth of this full-bodied wine is ripe and full with good control, showing ripe blackcurrant, boysenberry, tar, asphalt, rich mouthfeel, great texture, and grippy tannin, with loam, and earth, a really nice wine. The finish of this wine is lovely, rich, ripe, layered, and expressive, with rich extraction, richly concentrated, and dense, with great control, leather, tar, mineral, smoke, and scraping graphite. Lovely! Drink by 2026. (tasted November 2022) (in Paris, France) (ABV = 14.5%)

Red Wines (part #3) (Round four)

2020 Chateau Haut-Breton Larigaudiere, Margaux – Score: 87 (QPR: EVEN)
The nose of this wine shows pure sweet vanilla, ripe fruit, cloyingly sweet milk chocolate, and some earth. After 10 hours, the mouth turned very green, not quite tinny, but not as good, or bad, just uninteresting. The mouth of this medium-plus-bodied wine shows much better than the nose, with bright acidity, tart, and ripe fruit, dense and mouth-drying tannin, ripe blackberry, blueberry, nice minerality, dense and rich with good fruit focus, all around a nice ripe wine. After 10 hours the mouth is the same minus acidity and shows a big hole, sad. The finish is ripe, with more vanilla, ripe fruit, smoke, roasted herbs, licorice, milk chocolate, and scraping graphite. Drink until 2025. (tasted November 2022) (in Paris, France) (ABV = 13.5%)

2020 Château Olivier Grand Cru Classe, Pessac-Léognan – Score: 94 (QPR: WINNER (France)
The nose of this wine is quite nice, a wine I would drink, with a bit of soy sauce, rich salinity, mushroom, earthy, and dirty, like a rich and redolent mud pen, with a bit of heat, and lovely smoke. With time, the heat drops off, ripe, muddy, mushroom haven, lovely! The mouth of the full-bodied wine is dense, layered, rich, and concentrated, with rich extraction, dark and brooding, with juicy blackberry, ripe strawberry, mushroom, forest floor, wet leaves, rich salinity, soy sauce, umami, just a fun, ripe, savory, and dirty wine. The finish is long, dark, and brooding, but well controlled, one of those rare ripe/dirty/earthy controlled monsters, with dense minerality, scraping graphite, ripe fruit, and leather, Bravo! Drink until 2035. (tasted November 2022) (in Paris, France) (ABV = 14.5%)

2015 Vieux Chateau Chambeau, Lussac Saint-Emilion (M) – Score: 92 (QPR: WINNER)
The nose of this wine is ripe, with good minerality, red and green fruit, nice loam, and some soy sauce. The mouth of this medium-bodied wine is lovely, showing a nice and plush mouthfeel, with dark fruit, raspberry, plum, graphite, smoke, and lovely mushroom, with a lovely focus of fruit and minerality, with loam and lovely dense tannin. Nice! The finish is long, bright, green, mineral-driven, smoky, and earthy, lovely! Drink by 2032. (tasted November 2022) (in Paris, France) (ABV = 14%)

2019 Chateau Tour Seran, Medoc – Score: 94 (QPR: WINNER (France))
This is one of the best wines of our blind tastings here in the hotel. The nose of this wine is lovely, and perfectly balanced, with licorice, smoke, black and red fruit, char, toasty oak, loam, lovely mushroom (that comes out after a few hours), and forest floor. The mouth of this full-bodied wine is dense, ripe, layered, and rich with good acidity, richly extracted, but savory, not overly ripe, a real joy, with blackberry, ripe raspberry, currants, dense loam, forest floor, with scraping minerality, graphite, tar, and rock, this is too much fun! The finish is long, and mineral-driven, with good fruit focus, great graphite, and rock. Drink until 2036. (tasted November 2022) (in Paris, France) (ABV = 14%)

2019 Clos de Menuts, Saint-Emilion Grand Cru – Score: 85 (QPR: POOR)
The nose of this wine is strange, nice, but strange, with potpourri, very floral, with some smoke, toast, red fruit, and some green notes. After 10 hours the nose changes to a lovely wine of red fruit, green notes, sweet herbs, mint, menthol, and concerns to me of oxidation in the far back. The mouth of this medium-bodied wine starts strangely but after some time it turns violet, with nice acidity, good red fruit, and some smoke. The wine is overall but has no real plan. After 10 hours the tannin comes out but there is not enough acidity to bring it all together, nice enough, with some dirt and mineral. Drink now. (tasted November 2022) (in Paris, France) (ABV = 14%)

2020 Chateau Castelbruck, Margaux – Score: 93 (QPR: WINNER)
At the opening, again blind, this wine was dead. After 10 hours the wine opens nicely to show tart and ripe red fruit, rich mushroom, loam, and nice minerality, nice! The mouth of this medium-bodied wine is nice, showing good fruit focus, and nice acidity, not as dense as other wines, but still shows good structure, and elegance, with dark cherry, raspberry, plum, loam, earth, nice licorice, with a plush mouthfeel, nice structure, and great minerality. The finish is long, bright, and tart, yet plush and ripe, well balanced, with more minerality, scraping graphite, tar, leather, and rich tannin lingering long. Bravo! Drink from 2026 until 2035. (tasted November 2022) (in Paris, France) (ABV = 13.5%)

2020 Château Angelus Carillon de l’Angélus, Saint-Emilion Grand Cru – Score: 94 (QPR: POOR)
The nose of this wine is super closed for a day, literally, after a day the nose opens to rich, brooding, deep, and unctuous ripe notes of black and red fruit, controlled and redolent, with mineral, smoke, dirt, iron, loam, mushroom, and sweet spices. The mouth of this full-bodied wine is rich, layered, and controlled, with lovely blackberry, ripe raspberry, plum, dense and draping mouthfeel, lovely and elegant extraction, rich mushroom, and loam, wrapped in a dense mouth draping tannin, complex and elegant, with black and white pepper, sweet baking spices, garrigue, and sweet dill, lovely! This wine is still closed, I am doing my best here to get the notes. The finish is long, ripe, controlled, and mineral-driven, with intense graphite, pencil shavings, gravel, rock, tar, sweet tobacco, leather, and sweet spices. Drink from 2030 until 2040. (tasted November 2022) (in Paris, France) (ABV = 14.5%)

2020 Chateau du Courneau, Marguax – Score: 85 (QPR: EVEN)
The nose of this wine is richly ripe with intense milk chocolate to start, with time it calms into nice blue and black fruit, with vanilla (replacing the milk chocolate), minerality, asphalt, and loam. After a few hours no change here. The mouth of this full-bodied wine is richly extracted, a bit closed still, with minerality, violet, blackberry, and boysenberry, with intense tannin, lovely acidity, and enough control. After a few hours, it falls apart and loses all acidity, with some nice tannin. The finish is long, dark, ripe, brooding, and dense, with milk chocolate, graphite, rock, and lovely dirt/loam. After a few hours, the wine falls apart, a bummer. Drink up! (tasted November 2022) (in Paris, France) (ABV = 13.5%)

2019 Clos de Menuts L’Excellence, Saint Emilion Grand Cru – Score: 90 (QPR: POOR)
To start this wine is not fun, open it and wait a few hours. After a few hours, the nose of this wine shows nice green and red fruit, with some minerality, loam, and not much else. The mouth of this medium-bodied wine shows better acidity, enough tannin, and some fruit focus, just a nice round, tannic, and balanced wine, with cherry, raspberry, and loam. The finish and flavor profile of a Pinot Noir, but the wine and finish are clearly Cab related, with nice minerals, smoke, loam, and some graphite. Almost plush, nice! Drink by 2025. (tasted November 2022) (in Paris, France) (ABV = 14%)

2020 Marquis, Medoc – Score: 80 (QPR: POOR)
To start the nose of this wine is fun, with loads of earth, smoke, loam, white and black pepper, roasted herbs, menthol, green notes, red fruit, and some anise, nice! Sadly, within a few hours, the nose disappears and turns into a green monster, sad! To start, the mouth of this medium-bodied wine is boring, ripe, and without enough body to balance this out, with no acidity, a hole in the middle, and smoke. Within a few hours, the wine falls into line but loses any fun and turns into a green wine without much appeal. The finish is long, with green notes, herbs, red fruit, loam, and smoke. Drink until 2025. (tasted November 2022) (in Paris, France) (ABV = 12.5%)

2017 Chateau Pape Clement, Pessac-Leognan – Score: 60 (QPR: N.A.)
This is 100% trash, an oxidized mess, next! (tasted November 2022) (in Paris, France) (ABV = 13.5%)

2020 Chateau Clement-Pichon, Haut-Medoc – Score: 93 (QPR: WINNER (France))
The nose of this wine is 100% pure joy, soy sauce, umami, and black pepper, with blue and black fruit, roasted animal, tar, and nice savory notes, lovely! The mouth of this full-bodied wine is ripe, riper than the nose would make me think, with dark black and purple fruit, ripe boysenberry, blackberry, with dense mouth-draping and drying tannin, nice acidity, richly extracted, concentrated, and comes at you in layers of fruit and smoke, nice. The finish of this rich wine is plush, mineral-driven, scraping graphite, earth, and lovely smoke! Bravo!! Drink from 2025 until 2032. (tasted November 2022) (in Paris, France) (ABV = 14.5%)

2019 Chateau Jaumard, Bordeaux (M) – Score: 89 (QPR: GREAT)
The nose of this wine starts with classic barnyard notes, rare for me to taste such notes in a newly opened bottle, but this wine was tasted blind so I have no idea what vintage or what wine this is. With lovely earth, loam, soy sauce, and some red fruit. The mouth of this medium-bodied wine is either closed or dead, It shows ripeness and nice barnyard, with nice mouth-draping tannin, but it lacks the acidity to make this all work. Fun, but without acidity, it does not work. But still fun. Drink up! (tasted November 2022) (in Paris, France) (ABV = 14.5%)

2015 Menuts, Bordeaux – Score: 20 (QPR: N.A.)
Dead (tasted November 2022) (in Paris, France) (ABV = 13%)

2020 Chateau Haut-Brignot, Haut-Medoc – Score: 76 (QPR: N.A.)
The nose of this wine is not for me, and time will not help this, it is another one of those tinny, green, jalapeno wines. The ripeness calms over time but all that replaces it is even more green and tinny notes, red fruit, acidity, and a touch of tannin. Drink now. (tasted November 2022) (in Paris, France) (ABV = 12.5%)

2019 Chateau Cheval Brun, Saint-Emilion Grand Cru – Score: 60 (QPR: N.A.)
The nose of this wine is simple, red fruit, green notes, loam, and not much else. The mouth of this medium-bodied wine is a watery red mess, not much here, raspberry, cherry, acidity, no tannin, round, and green on the finish. Drink now if you must. (tasted November 2022) (in Paris, France) (ABV = 14%)

Red Wines (part #5) (Round Five)

2020 Vignobles Mayard Le Hurlevent, Châteauneuf-du-Pape, Châteauneuf-du-Pape – Score: 93 (QPR: WINNER)
This smells like Huervelent, CDP, lovely! Again, all tasted blind. The nose of this wine is lovely, ripe, balanced, and earthy, but blue like the sky, with boysenberry, elegant notes of dirt, and blue fruit, with oolong tea, lovely! The mouth of this medium-plus-bodied wine starts ripe, with lovely blueberry pie, baked goods, lovely minerality, rock, graphite, balanced, and rich, layered, and dense, really nice, with roasted meat, dense loam, and earth, candied raspberry, well controlled, with draping tannin and lovely extraction, all I want from a well made Rhone wine. The finish is long, dark, blue, and red, with spicy notes, white pepper, loam, graphite, and a sweet balanced plush mouthfeel that lingers long. Nice!! Drink until 2029. (tasted November 2022) (in Paris, France) (ABV = 15%)

2019 Domaine Ouled Thaleb MD Excellence, Zenata – Score: 85 (QPR: EVEN)
The nose of this wine is funky, earthy, mushroom joy, with umami, salami, violet, and green notes, fun! With time the barnyard emerges. The mouth of this medium-plus bodied wine is ripe, too ripe, almost date-like, with good mouth coating tannin, intense violet, and rosehip, an intense flower bomb, lovely extraction, with great acidity, but the floral notes and dark ripe fruit take control, with raspberry, dark cherry, candied and date-like plum, and nice smoke. The finish is long, dark, spicy, smoky, floral, and deeply tannic, sadly the ripe fruit throws me. Drink until 2024. (tasted November 2022) (in Paris, France) (ABV = 15%)

2021 Philippe Paine La Petite Metairie, Chinon – Score: 91 (QPR: WINNER (France))
The nose of this wine is great and everything I like, with lovely mushrooms, red fruit, earth, and dirt, is lovely! After a bit of time, the mouth of this light to medium-bodied wine comes alive with dark cherry, nice acidity, soft tannins, nice earth, green notes, and spice. The finish is long, green, and lovely with cherry and smoke. Drink now!!! (tasted November 2022) (in Paris, France) (ABV = 12.5%)

N.V. Badagoni Saperavi, Special Brands, Gold, Kakheti – Score: 92 (QPR: WINNER (Europe)
This wine, like all the wines we tasted in the hotel, was tasted blind and when tasting this we both swore it was a Rhone varietal, NOT EVCEN CLOSE! The nose of this wine is ripe, red, mushroom joy, with earth, and salami in the background. The mouth of this medium-bodied wine is nice, and well-balanced, with great acidity, intense ripe fruit, candied plum, candied raspberry, candied boysenberry, and root beer, with nice mouth-coating tannin, nice floral notes, which works with the intense acidity. This reminds me of a GSM all the way! The finish of this wine is lovely and long, with dense ripe fruit, intense acidity, bright fruit, rich loam, charcoal, leather, and more smoked meat, really fun!!! Drink by 2027. (tasted November 2022) (in Paris, France) (ABV = 14%)

2019 Les Vin de Vienne Cornas Les Barcillants, Cornas – Score: 85 (QPR: POOR)
The nose of this wine is so fun, with rich mushroom, dark cherry, no raspberry or plum, showing lovely dirt, gravel, and richly smoked meat, nice!!!! The mouth of this wine, while nice, is not at the same level as the nose, it is flat with intense tannin, rich extraction, and much else. The finish is long, extracted, and intense but the ripe fruit and red cherry notes without any acidity throw me off. Drink by 2024. (tasted November 2022) (in Paris, France) (ABV = 14.5%)

2020 Les Vins de Vienne Saint-Joseph, L’Arzelle, Saint-Joseph – Score: 90 (QPR: EVEN)
Tasted this blind, like all the wines at the hotel and it was clearly a Rhone. The nose of this Rhone wine is nice, not as good as the previous wine, with blueberry, salami, soy sauce, root beer, and mad smoke. The mouth of this medium-plus-bodied wine is nice enough, it has lovely extraction, rich spice, nutmeg, and salami, but the blueberry pie is intense, with good acidity, nice fruit structure, and good earth, a nice simple blue Rhone wine. The finish is long, tannic, fruity, and blue. Drink by 2026. (tasted November 2022) (in Paris, France) (ABV = 14.5%)

2021 Philippe Paine La Petite Metairie, Bourgueil, Bourgueil – Score: 87 (QPR: GREAT)
The nose of this wine is lovely, with intense white pepper, smoke, loam, a lovely redolent nose of pepper, and floral aromas, very nice! The mouth of this wine is simple, but well made, a classically well-made Gamay with cranberry, cherry, tart rhubarb, more intense white pepper, and dirt. The tannin lingers a bit on the long finish of dirt, cherry, and floral notes. Sadly, after a few minutes of air, the wine falls apart – drink now!!! (tasted November 2022) (in Paris, France) (ABV = 12.5%)

2021 Casa E.di Mirafiore Dolcetto D’Alba, Dolcetto D’Alba – Score: 75 (QPR: N.A.)
The nose of this wine is the strangest wine we have had in all of our tastings, it shows banana, yes banana, along with red fruit, some heat, and some earth. With time the banana blows off and shows dark red fruit, earth, and not much else. The mouth of this medium-bodied wine is boring, flat, and horrible all at the same time, with more banana, (which blows off over time), cherry, and hints of earth, I have no idea what this wine is, but it is a hard pass. Next – oh wait we are done!! This is a warp!!! (tasted November 2022) (in Paris, France) (ABV = 13.5%)

2020 Maison Sarela Eclectic, Languedoc – Score: 60 (QPR: N.A.)
The nose of this wine is flat, watered-down peach juice, nothing here to talk about. Next wine! (tasted November 2022) (in Paris, France) (ABV = 13%)

2021 Val D’oca Millesimato Prosecco, Extra Dry, Prosecco (M) – Score: 60 (QPR: N.A.)
Another wonderful glass of useless wine. Next! A wine with no acidity and sweet ripe fruit the perfect combination for a refreshing glass of wine! next! (tasted November 2022) (in Paris, France) (ABV = 11.5%)

Posted on December 26, 2022, in Food and drink, Kosher French Wine, Kosher Red Wine, Kosher Sparkling Wine, Kosher Wine, Wine, Wine Tasting and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 7 Comments.

  1. Cru Ducasse You mean the 2012 or is there also a 2013?

    • No this was 2013, the 2012 is LOVELY! AWSOME wine!! Remember the 2013 vintage was a weak one!

      • Are you sure about the 2013? I do not think there was a 2013 vintage at all. There’s a 2012 (which is amazing) and a 2015 (did not taste yet).

  2. Hi
    The Château Angelus Carillon is selling in Belgium for € 260, so do not know how you got to a price of $360. Wine prices are usually higher in Belgium compared to France.

    • Hello Joseph, I was speaking of the USA pricing, not Europe’s. In Europe, that price is very high still, as equally good wines are far cheaper, especially there. But again, this is all about what the market will bear.

      • Hello Joseph, Sorry I do not have a picture of the bottle, but yes, we tasted the 2013 vintage and it is dead.

  1. Pingback: My top 25 kosher wines of 2022, including the Wine of the Year, Winery of the Year, the Best Wine of the Year, and the Best Mevushal wines of the year awards | Wine Musings Blog

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