Wine Talk

Snooth User: Giacomo Pevere

What's your pick for Christmas?

Posted by Giacomo Pevere, Dec 24, 2011.

That's what i'm going to uncork tomorrow.


• Marguet - Champagne Blanc de Noir (100% pinot noir) Brut s.a.

• Tocai 1994 - Kabaj Morel (Slovenia)

• Calabrone 2007 - Bastianich (yes it's Joe Bastianich winery, just 10 miles from home) blend of Refosco 70%, Schippettino/Pignolo/Merlot 10%

• Moscato d'Autunno 2010 - Saracco (Piedmont)


What's yours?

Happy Holiday!




Reply by outthere, Dec 24, 2011.

We celebrated last night with 05 PAX Cuvee Keltie, 2010 Bedrock Sonoma Coast Syrah and 05 P.J. Valckenberg Reisling Beerenauslese. Following dinners will be hosted by others so I have no wine slated for them.

Reply by dmcker, Dec 24, 2011.
Edited Dec 25, 2011

Sounds pretty tasty, outthere. Hope the later meals can keep up. Will be interesting to hear, giacobbe, how your wines drink, if you care to share.

Started yesterday evening over here with margaritas (a family tradition that took over from the older eggnog after several holiday seasons in the tropics), briefly, then on to a couple bottles of Vilmart NV champers (a gift, very stylistically interesting and I'll be hunting down more of their offerings) with pear and gorgonzolla/avocado and grapefruit salad/prosciutto and prunes/salmon mousse on toast points/etc. starters.  Then went on a merlot (and mostly Moueiux) jag with braised lamb shanks and risotto. Couple bottles each of Moueix's 2006 Pomerol regional blend (also used in cooking the lamb), then Dominus Estate '97 and Magdaleine 2001 at the same time, and when those ran out a bottle of Luce 2007 superTuscan which was a different animal indeed. '82 Guiraud sauternes with persimmon pudding (also a family tradition) and coffee/tea for dessert. Big dessert wine showing like it hadn't even begun to age or even fully mature. Seemingly nowhere near its peak, and it was showing better than recent Rieussecs and Suduirauts I've had from the same vintage, though it's stylistically different in the first place. Some grappa slipped in with the coffee, too.

No complaints, at all, on the food, wine and company (and not even a hint of a hangover today). A great Christmas eve gathering with family and a few close friends. Guess my elder daughter liked her birthyear sauternes, so she's promised something mysterious for dinner and drinks today (Christmas day) with just family. Nice to be in the dark sometimes...

Merry Christmas to everyone here!

Reply by spikedc, Dec 24, 2011.

Two Christmas lunches for me one today (eve) with my wifes family and tomorrow with my family.

Today Started the morning with Prosecco followed by a fantastic bottle of Rioja Prado Enea Muga 2004 with Lunch (Roast Turkey with all the trimmings), then a glass of Campbells Rutherglen Muscat with dessert (Chocolate profiteroles). Just finishing the evening off with Coffee and couple of glasses of Spanish Cuarenta Y Tres 43 Liquor.

Roast beef tomorrow, and more Rioja.

Both are Families are Spanish (Both my wifes parents and my Mother) hence the Rioja dominated two days.

Reply by Dennis Lim, Dec 25, 2011.

Had a GREAT family dinner or roast beef ribeye, tur-duck-en, japanese salad, steamboat, log cakes, macaroons and stollen... and of course the bottles!

2009 Tini Montepulciano d'Abruzzo

Campos de Estrellas Brut Cava NV

2009 Brown Brothers Moscato (a gift from a cousin)

2010 Porta Rossa Moscato d'Asti

and the grand dame: 2003 Moet and Chandon Grand Rose Brut!!! (FANTASTIC!!!)

Now getting ready to lap up the leftover log cakes with a fine Moscatel :)


Reply by Gregory Dal Piaz, Dec 25, 2011.

I shared a 1990 Carretta Cannubi Barolo which was coarse, rather rustic needing many hours to fully come around but it did show nice Cannubi fruit. Also popped a magnum of 2000 Bosquet des Papes Châteauneuf-du-Pape Chante Le Merle Vieilles Vignes which was absolutely singig. Not  powerhouse but perfectly resolved and wonderfully aromatic. Everyone loved it!

Merry Christmas and Happy Chanukah everyone!

Reply by JonDerry, Dec 26, 2011.

How was that 2010 Bedrock Syrah Outthere? How would you compare it to their standard 09 Syrah?

Unfortunately I had a pretty subpar wine christmas this year, did enjoy that 2003 Cabernet Sauvignon from Villany (Hungary), but then I decided to open a Napa Cellars 2008 Cabernet Sauvignon last night to a non-wine drinking crowd, and it was pretty good. Tonight back with my family, my dad could only stomach Riesling, so that's what we had. The semi-sweet was alright, though the dessert wine wasn't so hot. Both sourced from Trader Joe's.

Reply by EMark, Dec 26, 2011.

Two family meals over the weekend.

On Christmas Eve we visited the in-laws and started with Korbel Natural, 2008.  I do not drink a lot of sparkling wine, but I consitently enjoy the freshness of Korbel Natural.  With our dinner (the traditional pizza) I had Kirkland Estate Alexander Valley Cabernet Sauvignon.  Kirkland is, of course, the Costco (big warehouse store for those not familiar) generic brand, and I figured that would impress my frugal (more of a joke than anything else) father-in-law.  I've had this wine before and, for the price, it is pretty darned good.  Also, for the price, I knew it would be a reasonable match for the anticipated pizza.

On Christmas we went to my brother's house, and my other brother brought a Carmenere.  I was unfamiliar with the label and and did not jot it down.  So, cannot report that.  It was from Trader Joe's, and it was a 2010.  I enjoyed it very much with the meal--ham, manicotti, green salad and some kind of potato/cheese/mushroom/with or without chicken casserole thing.

Spike, I like your end of the day choice.  Licor 43 is my wife's favorite.  She probably would have appreciated a glass (or an I.V.) after spending the day with my family, yesterday.

Reply by duncan 906, Dec 26, 2011.

I went to my sister's house in Scotland and I provided the wine as usual,On Christmas eve she served roast venison with a bottle of Clos Trimoulet St Emillion Grand Cru 1986 and both were superb.On Christmas day we had a Cremant de Beaujolais from Eric Morin as an aperitif.before the meal of roast goose with a bottle of Veuve Aubert Aine Santenay 2000 which is a very nice Burgundy.To accompany the Christmas pudding we had a bottle of Andre Simon Sauternes.which was a non vintage wine but I knoiw it was from the 1970's.It was a deep amber colour and everybody thought it superb.

Reply by dmcker, Dec 26, 2011.

Sounds good, Duncan. What was the pudding?

My daughter outdid herself on Christmas day. She decided to go with an Italian seafood theme in memory of a trip we took from Geneva to Rome then points south. Due to availability and knowledge issues, the wines she chose weren't Italian, except for the grappa at the end.

Some light but tasty homemade eggnog (grappa, not rum or whisky) before dinner. Starters were first some clams steamed in garlic and parsley and wine, with croutons. Then mixed fritto of octopus legs lengthwise and wild mushrooms and zucchini flowers with bits of mozzarella (she still won't tell me where she got the zucchini this time of year). Fresh from the fryer directly to the plates, crispy and delicious! With them we drank a white Rioja (2005 Marques de Murietta Rioja Reserva Capellania Blanco: plenty of oak but also rosemary with anise and other herbs, orangy/lemony/citrusy to keep it fresh even with the vanilla--a very good wine; I felt it was probably not yet even mature, but don't have enough experience with the area to be sure; she chose it because she liked the rias baixas albarino she'd had from them, though did comment on the greatly lesser acidity in the rioja blanco than the albarino).

Main was a richly complexly creamy seafood (scallops, yellowtail, salmon and uni in different layers) lasagna. A Meursault (2008 Jean-Philippe Fichet Les Gruyaches: she'd found a 2001 but chose this not only for budgetary reasons, but also because I'd told her in the past about premature oxidation worries these days, which perhaps had her overly concerned; still a very young wine to my palate, since there's not much that matches up to an aged meursault; nonetheless a good wine even now; laser focused even while rich and big bodied, lots of 'minerality' ;-) and floral harmony, good acidity and great finish made me wonder what it'll be like several years down the line), with that.

Thought her choice of wines quite good, with the louder (yet still not too much) oakiness of the Rioja finessed by the extremely well balanced and transparent Meursault. Dessert her (locally) famous tiramisu including fresh raspberries, with the aforementioned grappa then Italian roast parchment coffee (filtered, not espresso). Lots of Christmas cheer and joy, even with a perhaps unorthodox menu. We all were very happy, even without any red! 


Reply by JonDerry, Dec 27, 2011.

Sounds like quite a nice dinner D, was this in Japan?

Reply by dmcker, Dec 27, 2011.

Yeah, Jon, both of them in Tokyo (Christmas eve I cooked and Christmas day my daughter did).

Reply by duncan 906, Dec 27, 2011.

Dmucker;You are probably an American so your Christmas traditions are slightly different to ours but in Britain 'Christmas pudding' does not refer to any desert served at Christmas.Christmas Pudding is made of dried fruit,butter,sugar and brandy amoung other ingredients.It is a very rich desert and when it is brought to the table the tradition is to pour more brandy over it and then set fire to it.When the flames have died away it is served with cream,brandy sauce or custard.I only got a sip of the old Sauternes because my sister had been drinking it throughout the meal.Sauternes is her favourite wine so I always take a bottle when I visit her.In fact,if my box of wines did not include a Sauternes she would think she had been short-changed

Reply by dmcker, Dec 27, 2011.
Edited Dec 27, 2011

Thanks for the explanation, Duncan, but I've found that every household I've visited in GB and Ireland (or at offshore expat digs) has a slightly different version. From an American sensibility some might look like particularly spiced up steamed gingerbread, others like the ubiquitous fruitcake, though doused even more than usual in liquor for a couple months leading up to Christmas. Yet others like rather spectacular bread puddings. Certainly in most cases 'rich' (indulgently so) doesn't even begin to describe the sensation. Was inquiring what yours might be?  ;-)

Do like me a good aged sauternes, too.

Reply by duncan 906, Dec 28, 2011.

My sister prides herself on the quality of the food she serves to her guests so she made the Christmas pudding from scratch but most people buy a ready made one from a supermarket.Forgive my ignorance but do our cousins across the pond not get Christmas pudding at Christmas?As I said my sister does like her Sauternres,a wine I also like,but unfortunately it can be expensive so I keep my eye on ,which is where I got the very aged bottle we had at Christmas. If you type into your computor you will see a picture of the actual bottle we had.It had come from a house clearance.The other alternative is to wait until my next visit to Calais where a negociant or branded version is around 10 Euros but that would not be the same  

Reply by dmcker, Dec 28, 2011.

Duncan, thanks for the link. You have an extra letter in the URL, though--remove the 'l' after the 'uk' and it works.

Haven't run across that sauternes before. How did you find it to drink, from your 'sip'? Glad your sister enjoyed it, all through the meal!

I've received a number of those storebought Christmas puddings in the past as part of Christmas baskets. Usually different brands from anybody from GB, but somehow the Japanese seem enamored of Harrods, with an occasional Fortnum & Mason slipping in. They love their brandnames, without a doubt.

Does anybody you know over there re-gift storebought Christmas puddings they've received in the same way people I know tend to re-gift American-style fruit cakes? So much so that it's become the cliche regift item....

Homemade, of course, is worlds better.


Reply by duncan 906, Dec 28, 2011.

I had not come across that Sauternes before either but as it is a now defunct brand name from the 70's we are unlikely to see it again.I thought it a very nice wine,very dark amber in colour and very sweet to the taste almost like honey or syrup with a hint of apricot and vanilla,in other words a typical Sauternes.It was very similar to the other bottle of wine in the lot,the 1979 Clos Saint George Graves Superieure which I served at my sister's dinner party a couple of months ago and wrote up a review for Snooth.I am visiting my sister again in February and I will probably take the bottle of 1996 Chateau Myrat Sauternes that I have in my cupboard and which I also got on .That was a second growth in the infamous 1855 classification of Bordeaux hopefully I might write up a review of that as well

You may already realise this but most of the goods for sale in Harrods or Fortnum and Mason are available for less money elsewhere but the reason they stay in business is brand-name snobbery.Re-gifting is an expresion I have not heard before.Perhaps it is the latest Americanism to hit the English language.I think you would have to be careful regifting Christmas puddings becauise they have a sell-by date on them and anyway,after Christmas all the stores make drastic price reductio0ns on what they have left.

Reply by Giacomo Pevere, Dec 30, 2011.

@dmcker: i try to write something about my christmas wines as u ask me.

Marguet Blanc de Noir: nice nose, pineapple and peach, citrus (mandarin mostly), iodine and my sister tell me limestone, fine sip, very fine boubbles close with tipical lime but not aggressive. I like it! Not exactly a top cuvee but i enjoy it!

Tocai 1994: very advanced and mature flavors, brackish over all, not bad but have lost freshness. Sip better than nose, still fresh and tasty.

Calabrone 2007, very fine and complex nose, blackberry and blueberries marmalade, black pepper, cocoa and cigar tobacco. Sip is powerfull, red/black fruits over all, soft, maybe too much soft, quite tannicity. Generally i like it, 35% of withered grapes make it a little juicy.

Reply by dmcker, Dec 30, 2011.

Great description, giacobbe, sounds like a very nice Christmas!

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