The Bernard Roth Archives
We are happy that Bernard, who has sampled so many wines, has shared his notes with us. We do have, or have had for sale a few of the wines Bernard writes about, and we include a link to our stock page whenever it is a producer we carry (but since the stock page is kept up-to-date and the wines are sold, don't expect any but the newest of wines to show up in our stock!). Mostly though, since we specialize in County of Santa Barbara Wine and Central Coast Wine, we don't carry a lot of the wines Bernard writes about. But we think it is important that you be able to have an idea what they're like in case you are planning to buy some somewhere, or have them in your own collection. Enjoy.
Here are Bernard's notes from October 7, 2002:
|The Tomassi Pinot Grigio (00 or 01) we started
with was very nice, balanced, good acid and some mineral complexity.
About 88 pts. Next was David's 97 Dehlinger Goldridge Syrah, quite
succulent, supple, with lovely black fruit and just enough tannin
to sustain the finish. Call it a 93. Then we had 94 Montelena Cab
that David also brought. It is surprisingly drinkable at this age, typical
Montelena fruit, but the structure has softened and broadened much more
rapidly than I would have guessed from sampling it on release. About
93 now, with room for improvement over the next 6-10 years. Then
owner Doug Gooch insisted we try the 99 Luce (Mondavi-Frescobaldi)
on the house (that's Bama hospitality at its finest!). Quite
young and not totally integrated, more structured than I'd have presumed
for a Sangiovese-Merlot blend, it came across more like Cabernet
than merlot. Black fruit, tar, tannins, OK acidity. Possibly good potential,
drinkable, not my cup of tea. About 88 now, possible gain of 1-3 points
in 4-8 years. For dessert, Mr. Gooch insisted on opening a bottle
of 85 Delaforce Port, a house I'd not had before. The vintage
acquitted itself quite well, as 85's have tended to show good drinkability
at an early age from a number of houses I've had. A medium-light
port, still some grip and a bit of heat, but quite good with the
chocolate dessert. About 88 points.
Saturday night, we had dinner with Larry and Laura at their Montecito seaside condo. Unlike past meals, this time I did a good amount of cooking. The star dish, IMO, was my zucchini faux linguine with spicy carrot sauce (I'll post it on the Food Board when I have a chance). Anyway, on to the wines...
99 von Simmern Erbacher Marcobrunn Riesling Kabinett had excellent concentration, luscious golden and white fruit, and it was hard to stop drinking it while I was cooking. Easily, 90 points.
Next, with the heirloom tomato salad with bufalo mozzarella, the 95 Verget Chablis Valmur was a decent match. On its own, the wine showed a titch much residual oak, but it had good acidity to match the salad. 86 points.
The carrot sauced zucchini was perfectly paired with 92 Zind-Humbrecht Pinot Gris Windsbuhl. This is a great bottle of wine, intense gold fruit, pretty dry, but tasting slightly sweet, like dry honey. Great acidic structure, dense and very long. Hard to stop drinking this. Seems to have a good decade of life ahead, if not longer. Best dry PG I've had. 95 points.
The next course was Laura's homemade papardelle with fresh black chanterelles (trumpets, I think they are). Really yummy served with 91 Saintbury Reserve Pinot Noir, showing good complexity and balance. Still alive and will last another few years. 91 points.
I then served seared and roasted duck breast seasoned with a blend of crushed corriander seeds, black pepper, and lavender salt, served over farro with a rosemary red wine reduction sauce and Eilene Cross's homemade tea-flavored chimmichuri sauce on the side. The wines were 2000 ABC Talley Rosemary Pinot Noir and 97 Clarendon Hills Blewitt Grenache. The PN was very youthful, good fruit, showing promise, but in need of 4-5 years to lose its baby fat. 89 now, a few points better in time. The grenache was the better match to the dish, showing some mulberry fruit and a bit of gaminess. Nothing out of place. Drink over the next 3-5 years. About 91 points.
There was a 94 Ridge Lytton Springs served with the cheese course, but inebriation has hindered my recall. It was nothing special, nothing memorable.
Finally, with dessert (Eilene's homemade oolong-flavored chocolate cake with milk chocolate frosting), Larry opened 83 Taylor Port. Classic Taylor, black fruit, tight structure, fine tannins, anise, lotta grip. 93 points.
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