France: Wine, French Wine Regions, Bordeaux, Burgundy, Champagne, & More Profiled

2015 J.L. Chave Sélection Hermitage Blanche, France, Rhone, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2015
Score: 
94
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$70.00USD

This is an excellent wine, but consumed side by side with the regular bottling of the JL L'Hermitage Blanc, it does not have the power or concentration.  Medium golden in color, clear and bright.  The nose has slight wax, peach, vanilla and slight white flower notes.  Medium to full bodied.  On the palate, ginger, citrus with some minerality.  Nice finish.  This is not yet at peak and should have ten to twelve years left.  A nice match with hearty fish or non-meat pasta dishes.  

 

2013 Domaine Jean-Louis Chave Hermitage Blanc, France, Rhone, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2013
Score: 
98
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$260.00USD

White Rhone's can be tricky to time as they age, but this was firing on all cylinders.  Medium golden in color, clear and bright.  The nose is great with wax, ginger, orange peel and floral notes.  Full bodied.  On the palate, this is deep and complex.  the ginger and orange peel carries thru but its the minerality that really stands out.  Enough acidity but not a lot.  Long finish.  Delicious wine that keeps improving with air.  It demands attention.  This drinks well on its own and will work well with spicy foods.  Still youthful, this should last another twenty five years with no problem

2007 Billecart-Salmon Champagne Cuvée Elisabeth Salmon, France, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2007
Score: 
94
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$180.00USD

This is a 50/50 blend of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay.  Salmon pink in color, clear and bright.  Minimal mousse but very tiny bubbles.  The nose is lighter but opens with air.  Cherries, oranges and lemons with some minerality.  Full bodied.  On the palate, this is refreshing and delicious.  Cherries and lemon rind with underlying minerality.  Long finish.  Great acidity.  This took some time to open in the glass suggesting it might yet have some upside.  It should drinking well over the next ten to fifteen years.  It drinks well on its own but will be incredibly versatile with food.  It shoul

2016 Château de la Grande Gardiole Châteauneuf-du-Pape Les Vieilles Vignes, France, Rhone, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2016
Score: 
92
Grade: 
A-
Current Price: 
$58.00USD

Another great vintage in the southern Rhone valley in France.  Deep garnet in color, mostly clear and bright.  The nose is nice with cherries, black cherries, slight anise and floral notes (Violets?).  Medium bodied.  On the palate, the cherries and dark cherries come thru with underlying spices and roasted herbs.  Nice texture.  Good balance.  Nice finish.  This is drinking well now and should continue to do so for the next seven to ten years.  It drinks well on its own but will work better with foods.  Ribs off the grill would be a nice choice.  

2010 Château d'Yquem, France, Bordeaux, Sauternes, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2010
Score: 
98
Grade: 
A+
Current Price: 
$385.00USD

What more can be said about one of the truly great wines made.  Golden in color, deep and shimmering bright.  On the nose there is honey, some dust, pineapple and orange marmalade.  Viscous.  On the palate, this is so smooth as it coats the mouth.  Notes or apricots, honey, pineapple and slight caramel.  Long, long finish.  This is not an opulent year for Yquem nor is it lean.  It drinks great on its own.  It would work with a less sweet dessert, but this is one of those wines that deserves 100% attention.  Drink over the next thirty years.  

2009 Château Suduiraut, France, Bordeaux, Sauternes, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2009
Score: 
97
Grade: 
A+
Current Price: 
$99.00USD

One of my favorite dessert wines.  At age 12, this is drinking beautifully from a 375ml bottle.  Light to medium golden in color, clear and bright.  The nose is gorgeous with oranges, blood oranges, honey and spice.  Full bodied.  Viscous texture.  Excellent balance and acidity.  On the palate, oranges, orange peel and honey, layered and complex.  The finish is quite long.  Delicious.  As good as this is, it may still get better with age.  This is contemplative on it own but will work for less sweet (not chocolate) dessert.  A polenta cake would work nicely.  

2008 Taittinger Champagne Comtes de Champagne Blanc de Blancs Brut, France, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2008
Score: 
99
Grade: 
A+
Current Price: 
$190.00USD

First time trying this vintage and it is awesome if still young.  I hate to call it elegant as that is not correct, but it is the kind of wine that fans of the "less is more" philosophy of wine will love.  Light silvery/gold in color, clear and bright with a lot of tiny bubbles.  The nose is great with green apples, minerality, slight lanolin and chalk.  But it is not big, just intense.  The palate is similar.  At first taste, it seemed to be missing something, but it has an energy and persistence that keeps building.  Intensity without volume.  The green apple and minerality carry thru to

2002 Château Gaudrelle Vouvray Clos le Vigneau, France, Loire, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2002
Score: 
90
Grade: 
A-

An interesting wine.  Light golden in color, clear and bright.  The nose has almonds, grapefruits, slight chalk and a hint of salinity.  medium bodied.  On the palate, those qualities came out as well.  Very nice acidity.  Overall, a bit reticent but refreshing.  Perhaps because it came in a 500ml bottle, but I presumed it would be at least semi-sweet.  Not to be, but it did work well with home made vegan ginger snaps.  Well made Vouvray can last a long time as this showed no real signs of age.  I wouldn't worry about another five or ten years.  

2000 Château Pichon Longueville Comtesse de Lalande, France, Bordeaux, Pauillac, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2000
Score: 
95
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$300.00USD

Wonderful wine.  Finally worth opening after waiting all these years.  Bought on release and cellared.  This was open and decanted for sediment and allowed to breather for an hour or so before trying.  Deep ruby in color, purple at the core, mostly opaque and bright.  The nose is classic with cassis, pencil lead, tobacco and a hefty amount of earthy funk.  Full bodied.  On the palate, this is complex and layered but still fresh and vibrant.  Cassis with underlying earthiness and a bit of coffee and mushroom.  Long finish.  Contemplative.  This drinks great on its own and will work well with

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