Monday, October 26, 2009

Wine Spectator's Wine Experience 2009

There are some serious perks to working in the wine business. One of them is wrangling a ticket to Wine Spectator's Wine Experience. This is the second year in a row that I have gone to this event, which can really only be described as an orgy of wine. There were people wall to wall BEFORE PEOPLE WHO PAID FOR THEIR TICKETS GOT IN THE DOOR. In addition to this press of people, on one of the floors the air conditioning had stopped working, so it became unbearably uncomfortable and was one of the reasons I left the event. Other reasons had to do with I could not taste anymore and still be able to go to work the next day...

Wine Spectator magazine holds their New York Wine Experience at the Marriott Marque in Times Square. There are 256 wineries that participate in this extravaganza, chosen by the editors of the magazine and asked to show one wine that was scored above 90 points. The list of the wines is much to long to include here, and there was no way for me to taste all of them. So I picked my way through the tasting (which spanned two floors of the Marriott Marque). Almost needless to say, all of these wines are more expensive than the wines I tend to purchase and it is unlikely that I will have the ability to purchase more than one or two of them in the foreseeable future.

WINES TASTED (highest price found online for a single bottle from retailers in New York)

Dom Perignon Brut Cuvee 2000, Champagne, France ($200) - Fresh green apple, yum!

Perrier-Jouet Brut Fleur de Champagne Cuvee Belle Epoque 1999, Champagne, France ($170) - Noticeably rich and bready.

Krug Brut Grande Cuvee NV, Champagne, France ($225) - Absolutely lovely, no wonder it is so sought after. Wonderful Balanced sweetness.

Joseph Drouhin Chassagne-Montrachet Marquis de Laguiche 2006, Burgundy, France ($100) - Smelled rich and round but tasted beautifully refreshing.

Kistler Cuvee Natalie Silver Belt Vineyard Pinot Noir 2007, Sonoma Coast, California ($160) - bright red cherry and easy drinking.

Kosta Brown Pinot Noir 2007, Russian River Valley, California (not yet released, 2006 is $150) - Soft, ripe, and spicy.

Opus One 2006, Napa Valley, California ($200) - Way over the top. Wasn't ready for the power behind this wine.

Almaviva 2006, Puente Alto Maipo Valley, Chile ($100) - needs a steak, immediately!

Chateau Clerc Milon Pauillac 2003, Bordeaux, France ($65) - High on both fruit and structure.

Chateau Mouton Rothschild Pauillac 2005, Bordeaux, France ($1375) - Definitely an impressive wine, but worth the money?

Chateau Lafite Rothschild Pauillac 2003, Bordeaux, France ($1650) - I could not fully describe what I tasted here if I had a hundred years to write. Such an amazing wine.

HALL Kathryn Hall Cabernet Sauvignon 2006, Napa Valley, California ($75) - I was lucky enough to receive a sample of this wine before coming to this tasting. I was going to write it up in a future blog post, but it just fit so perfectly with the rest of these amazing wines. When I tasted this wine it was brilliantly smooth, with a beautiful lingering power.

Staglin Cabernet Sauvignon 2006, Rutherford, California ($180) - If you've been reading my blog for a while, you'll remember that in July I visited Staglin Family Vineyards. And you may also remember that I did not have a great experience. When I saw the winery here I knew I had to try the wine, just to be able to say I had tasted it. Honestly, the wine was fabulous. Their was a great balance of fruit and structure, plenty of length and power, with a touch of brightness to show that this wine could make it for the long haul. After tasting it I was almost sadder that I did not get the opportunity to taste the wine on a more personal basis with the owners, but such is life.

Concha y Toro Don Melchor Cabernet Sauvignon 2006, Puente Alto Maipo, Chile ($100) - Certainly a great wine, but comparing it to California Cabernets has made me re-evaluate where it standing in my personal assessment.

Chateau Margaux Margaux 2001, Bordeaux, France ($360) - Stunning.

Chateau Cheval Blanc St.-Emilion 2001, Bordeaux, France ($420) - I wish I could buy a bottle to save for 10 years, or longer.

Bodegas y Vinedos O. Fournier Alfa Crux Malbec 2006, Uco Valley, Argentina ($50) - Rich and ripe.

Bodegas Vega Sicilia Unico Gran Reserva 1999, Ribera del Duero, Spain ($450) - Elegant and tasty! Rich but not overly so.

Ridge Monte Bello 1989, Santa Cruz Mountains, California ($240) - I love old wine. So many thanks to Ridge for pouring a wine from the cellar. Truly a delicious experience. I need to purchase some of their wines pronto.

Joseph Phelps Insignia 2006, Napa Valley, California ($210) - Super structured! Tasty but a little over the top.

Chateau Ducru-Beaucaillou St.-Julien 2006, Bordeaux, France ($230) - Somehow meaty and fruity at the same time.

Montes Alpha M 2005, Santa Cruz, Chile ($85) - A little disapointing because I had tasted this wine before and I loved it. It did not sing to me this time.

Santa Rita Casa Real Cabernet Sauvignon 2005, Maipo Valley, Chile ($80) - An awesome wine! So rich and smooth, with fruit to spare and enough structure to balance.

Now remember that while doing this tasting I was walking around and talking to people I knew and introducing myself to those that I felt it was important to meet. This is only a tiny selection of the amazing wines that were available.

Looking forward to the next time...
Copyright 2009 Wine Post: Wine & Spirits Blog. Powered by Blogger Blogger Templates create by Deluxe Templates. WP by Masterplan