Friday, February 12, 2010

Wines of the Year (2009)

In honor of Cory Cartwright, Wines of the year 2009.

And why not? The list is missing great bottles I had at friends’ houses or restaurants of which I don’t have a true record.

The very best:

1997 Weingut Knoll Grüner Veltliner Smaragd Loibenberg
Knoll has made some of the greatest wines I’ve ever had. This bottle was one of the highlights of my year. I’ve commented on this before, but strangely, I don’t own nearly as much of wines I love this much as I should.

1990 Chave Hermitage
Will turn out to be one of the great wines of my lifetime. Hell, it already is. Reconfirmed at a Chave dinner this year.

Best value:

2006 Montesecondo Chianti Classico
Silvio is getting better and better. I had more of this than any other single wine this year. The best value this year.

Domaine de la Pépière (Marc Ollivier) Muscadet
Marc is a god and a genius in my book. Tasting at his cave is always one of the highlights of my year. The 1996 and 2002 Briords deserve special mention, but it’s ALL great.

In no particular order except reds then whites, bottles for which I have a record that struck me as meaningful:

2001 Roagna Langhe Rosso
I’ve been through a case and a half of this over the last couple of years. Fantastic wine.

2004 Domaine Bernard Baudry Chinon Cuvée Domaine
I’m smart enough to buy at least a case of this most years. This is the vintage I’m currently enjoying.

2004 I Vigneri di Salvo Foti Etna Vinupetra
The bottle I had this year was spectacular. Isn’t always the case.

1982 Fratelli Brovia Barolo Rocche dei Brovia
In many other years, this would be the wine of the year. Out of magnum it was sublime.

1989 and 1995 Chave Hermitage
Both pretty damn close to the 1990 in quality, but each different in style. Beautiful. A reminder of what Chave used to be.

2004 Domaine de Briseau Coteaux du Loir Les Mortiers
Good bottles are among the best pineau d’Aunis based wines I’ve ever had. Some variability.

1993 Ridge Monte Bello
A great cabernet and speaks volumes about the potential of these wines. Too bad no one is listening.

2002 Domaine de Bellivière Coteaux du Loir Le Rouge-Gorge
Still the best Bellivière I’ve had. Unfortunately, my last bottle.

1999 Ghislaine Barthod Chambolle-Musigny 1er Cru Les Charmes
An excellent wine in a beautiful place. Probably my favorite Charmes I’ve ever had.

2006 Domaine Bernard Baudry Chinon Blanc La Croix Boissée
This wine did a complete turn-around after sitting for a bit. I was blindsided by it’s epic beauty and grace, despite the ripeness of the vintage.

2006 Cá de Noci Vino di Tavola Notte di Luna
A wine that I could, and did, drink at every opportunity. At least half the NC allocation. Not profound, but amazingly fun and flexible.

1999 Nigl Sauvignon Blanc Ernte
I went through the rest of my case years ago and this last bottle was a science experiment. It didn’t just hold, it turned into a precise cut diamond.

2002 Edmond Vatan Sancerre Clos la Néore
While the 2005 may become a great wine, this already is. Profound.

1996 Zind-Humbrecht Riesling Clos Häuserer
Linear and laser like and still fresh. I kinda wish I hadn’t stopped buying this wine. Better than any Trimbach I had this year.


Anonymous said...

VLM, the 2002 Rouge Gorge is in fact, magnificent. One of these days I'll get to try some '90 Northern Rhone stuff (i hope at least).

sfgadfly said...

Hmm. I may have to open one of those Chaves. Damn you!

Love the Montesecondo, Pepiere of course, never bought the 97 Knolls (guess I missed that one), '02 Rouge Gorge - if only it wasn't 60 miles away in a locker, and you know how I feel about the '99 Barthods.

the vlm said...


Open one of those Chave's with me and Cory next time I'm in town. Be lucky you have more 2002 Rouge Gorge.


It's really just Chave. 1990 La Chapelle is a mess and I'm a seller of that wine. Sorrel Greal is good, not great. Ferraton is erratic, but good bottles are great.

For Cornas and Cote-Rotie, 1988 and 1991 are superior vintages, but I wouldn't pass up Verset, Clape, or Michel from 1990.