2007 Virginie de Valandraud, France, Bordeaux, Saint Emillion, Wine Review

Purple in color.  Ruby at the rim.  The nose is nice with cherries and cedar.  Some spice.  On the palate, there are medium tannins.  Plenty of cherry fruit.  A bit of earthy funk.  This has a good complexity.  Showing far better than I might have expected from the vintage or the second label status.  Good finish.  Seems to have plenty of life left.  Not sure if it improves but might gain some complexity.

2000 Château Monbousquet, France, Bordeaux, Saint Emilion, Wine Review

Purple/brown in color.  Not at the edges but the whole color.  Interesting and still bright.  On the nose, this has some black cherries, roasted fruit (not too much) and spice and vanilla.  On the palate, this is tight but opens in the glass with air.  Black cherry and black raspberry fruit with some spice.  The oak is prevalent here and the tannins, while present are diminishing.  I doubt this ever fully sheds the oak before the fruit is gone.  That said, there is plenty to like if one is not too oak averse.  I would still recommend drinking it sooner than later, say by 2022 which isn't to

2010 Château de la Rivière Aria, France, Bordeaux, Fronsac, Wine Review

Inky purple in color, ruby at the rim.  The nose has spice, oak and dark cherries.  On the palate, cherries and chocolate.  Seems like a fair amount of Merlot must be in this.  A new estate for me.  This is drinking well right now at 8 years from vintage.  It has a fair amount of oak on it, so if that is an issue, let it cellar for a while.  It should integrate in the next five years or so.  

2007 Château Pontet-Canet

Ruby/purple in color.  The nose is nice with cassis and tobacco.  On the palate, cassis and dark cherry fruit.  Medium tannins.  Long finish.  There is some depth and complexity here.  It is nearing maturity given the vintage but easily a decade left.  

2001 Château de Malle, France, Bordeaux, Sauternes, Wine Review

Opened late in the evening (probably should have skipped it) but it was a nice treat.  Drinking great right now.  Golden in color, but not that dark for an 01 (purchased on release).  The nose is gorgeous with apricots and honey and a bit of burnt sugar.  On the palate, not quite as expressive but still quite nice.  Burnt sugar and apricots carry thru.  Viscous but not cloying.  Sweet but not overtly.  Ok acidity.  Long finish.  This was from a 375 and even in that format, has a long life left.  


1982 Château Ducru-Beaucaillou, France, Bordeaux, Wine Review

This bottle was popped open at 9:00 am and decanted at 9:00 pm and served immediately.  Seemed to be about right although the wine is still youthful.  Purple in color.  The nose is classic with cassis,  tobacco, leather, and slight funk.  On the palate, slight tannins.  Cassis layered with earthy forest floor/tobacco.  great balance.  Long finish.  Went well with a Roasted Eggplant and mildly spicy peppers casserole.  At 26 years from vintage, this might even have a bit of upside.  Seemed to be the crowds WOTN but I have had slightly better (more exuberant) bottles of this.  nitpicking of c

2004 Château Smith Haut Lafitte Blanc, France, Bordeaux, Graves - Wine Review

Very nice showing.  Perhaps a bit past prime, but very good nonetheless.  Golden in color.  The nose has a very slight oxidation to it.  Minerals, limes, slight wax, slight melon notes.  On the palate, this has a nice, slightly oily texture.  Melons and waxy notes.  Slightly burnt orange peel.  Nice finish.  The fruit is persistent but certainly no longer boisterous.  It wored well with vegetarian matzoh ball soup. Still, I would drink these sooner than later at this point.  

1999 Château Mouton Rothschild, France, Bordeaux, Pauillac - Wine Review

Really nice showing for this first growth from an under appreciated vintage IMO.  Ruby in color with purple swirls.  The nose is great.  Classic.  Cassis, barnyard, cigar tobacco and slight cherries.  On the palate, this took some time to open and then kept on opening.  It started a bit hollow, but kept putting on weight.  Cassis with layers of dry forest floor and funk.  Good balance.  Nice finish.  Food friendly.  Always a treat.