Went to dinner at Rue Cler with Matt. Brought his two favorite wines since he is leaving for a month.
2002 Azienda Agricola Stanislao Radikon Jakot Venezia Giulia IGT
A deeper color than when I last had it. After some air, the nose really opens up. This is my favorite of the Radikon wines and while this bottle doesn’t have the intensity of past bottles, the 2002 vintage was probably not a great candidate for aging. Not that these bottles should be aged in any event.
2003 Clos Rougeard (Foucault) Saumur-Champigny Le Bourg
This showed a lot of wood on first opening. After about an hour in the carafe, the wood started to become more of a complement, with notes of spice, rather than a focal point. This has excellent texture with a nose and palate that is pure Bourg. This wine, along with the 1997 of this and Breton’s Perrières of the same vintages, is the wine that made me question perceived wisdom about vintages and to start asking questions about how the wine can be so remarkable and fresh in such a hot and challenging year like 2003. What this comes down to is not so much ambient temperature, but soil depth. There is very little topsoil at Bourg and underneath is pure rock, according to Nady Foucault. The same is true of Perrières, according to Pierre Breton. This same topic came up a couple of years later with Kevin Harvey at Rhys when discussing his various vineyards. Although the Skyline wasn’t the coolest of his vineyards, it had the poorest soil which really makes the plant struggle to ripen and forces the roots very deep to find water.