Browse Tag


Fifty Cent (x2)

Druet 1997 Bourgueil “Les Cent Boisselées” (Loire) – There is a spectacular classed-growth 1975 Bordeaux on the table, yet this wine makes an aggressive bid to steal the show. It’s a ’97, yes, and thus a showy vintage that’s mostly in full flight or slight decline by now, but wow does this make a spectacular attempt at brilliance. Mixed pepper dusts with a lavish velour texture, plus an intense, humid, almost sweaty aspect; I feel transported to some remote Zulu hut during the intensity of a war council. Yes, ridiculous analogies are the bane of tasting notes, but a wine this good deserves only the most abstruse flights of fancy. In the end, it’s like drinking dryness, but the most exciting dryness you’ve ever experienced. Wow. Just: wow. Purchased at the property. (7/12)


Guion 2009 Bourgueil “Cuvée Prestige” (Loire) – So very hard. Under the tannic weight-slam measured by its tonnage there’s dark, dirty, punk rock fruit that will, one day, clean up enough to be presentable at the Kennedy Center. Come that day, I expect that the aromatics will be rather lavish. But there’ll always be that hard edge. Gravity doesn’t go away. (2/12)

Guion, guioff

Guion 2009 Bourgueil “Cuvée Domaine” (Loire) – Hard. Surprisingly hard. There’s some barely-viewable blackened herbfruit behind the barbed tannic fencing, but this wine is under maximum security at the moment. Some extended aeration might have helped, but I lacked sufficient opportunity. (12/11)


Breton 2005 Bourgueil “Nuits d’Ivresse” (Loire) – Since I’m incapable of holding on to this wine long enough to see how it ages, I have to rely on more responsible pals to find out how long the nights of drunkenness can last. It turns out: at least this long, and quite possibly longer. This is one of the most overtly appealing wines from this appellation, grape, or producer I’ve ever tasted…it practically sings with polychromatic beauty. (10/11)

To Grand Mont’s house we go

Druet 1997 Bourgueil “Cuvée Grand Mont” (Loire) – Beautiful. Rounded green-black berries, tarred and then ground into fine mineral dust. Satiny, but with a rough country dusting in the interstitials. It’s hard to really express all that’s going on in this wine, but there’s a lot, and not all of it is televised; sitting down and reading the preface, footnotes, and even the index is also required. Long, gorgeous, absolutely at peak. (9/11)

Stolen Christmas

C&P Breton 2009 Bourgueil “Trinch!” (Loire) – Scratchy wild berries and herb, all a-stew, brightened by acidity and sharpened by a quinine-like bitterness. Its structure creates an appealing gluggability that empties the bottle in awfully short order. (7/11)

A little overheated

Petit 2006 Bourgueil “Cuvée Ronsard Sélection Particulière” (Loire) – Completely baked. (Norwich Wine & Spirits was the store, Neal Rosenthal the importer, any other middlepersons unknown) (7/11)

Where’s Grandpont?

C&P Breton Bourgueil 1997 Grandmont (Loire) – The fruit hangs on, still, and what’s most notable about it isn’t its presence, but its largely primary nature. There’s not much of it anymore, but its keening hum is still as rounded and dark-berried as it was in this wine’s youth. Mostly, though, the fruit’s fade has slowly revealed the post-burn minerality and fine-ground herbs within. As befits a ’97, it’s all a bit forward and upfront; more “classic’ vintages show less fruit but more temporal balance and persistence. (6/11)

Chets nous

C&P Breton 1996 Bourgueil Galichets (Loire) – Dusty, finely-honed structure. Graphite powder clouds. Black, sullen strips of flesh-torn berries. Still solid, though the tannin is getting a bit abrasive, and I think most folks will want to think about drinking this. Optimistic necrophiles can wait; the fruit’s not yet mature. (5/11)

Sénéchal we dance?

C&P Breton 1997 Bourgueil Clos Sénéchal (Loire) – A spice blend of dark grey minerals and ground-up herbs, more tactile and powdery than liquid at this stage. There’s a dark, quinine-like note to what little liquidity there is. I don’t know if this is quite as appealing as it was a few years ago, but I’d call it fully mature at this point, though I suppose in no real danger of collapsing; what’s left seems pretty sturdy. (5/11)