Browse Tag

synthetic cork

Sole Custoza

Corte Gardoni 2006 Custoza (Veneto) – Oxidized. 100% oxidized. Not even useful as cooking wine, at this point. Undoubtedly a closure effect. (11/10)

Francly, my dear…

C&P Breton 2006 Bourgueil “Franc de Pied” (Loire) – Cellar-culling, and here I found a bottle unwisely stashed amongst the ageable Loire reds. No, not with this closure. It is still just barely appealing, with highly aromatic herbal/soil notes dominant, but the fruit is well on its way to complete desiccation and the tannin is harsh and sandpapery. Don’t make my mistake (though if this advice is still useful, I guess you already have). (11/10)

Nera word

Nera “La Novella” 2008 Terrazze Retiche di Sondrio Chiavennasca Bianco (Lombardy) – I’m trying to drink up what is rather a quantity of this, given the lurid neon white closure. Absent that abomination, I’d be aging this. Who wouldn’t age nebbiolo, even if it’s white and nearly unrecognizable? It might be a disaster, but the experiment would have been fun. Alas, not under plastic dildo. And so: a little more tropical in flavor while less tropical in form, if that makes sense. The wine, in other words, has faded just a touch. Maybe my imagination. In any case, it’s still crisp, aromatic, zippy, and appealing. (10/10)

Nera “La Novella” 2008 Terrazze Retiche di Sondrio Chiavennasca Bianco (Lombardy) – The most nebbiolo-like bottle yet, by which I almost certainly mean that I am fooling myself into thinking so and would never even approach the word “nebbiolo” were it not on the label. But the aromatics are, with the benefit of knowledge, turning rose-ish. Otherwise, there’s the vibrant peach honey fruit and lively acidity. And yes, there’s just a little bit of fraying, for which I blame the closure rather than the wine. But it’s still quite good. (10/10)

Mens’ lawn

Gaillard 2002 Saint-Joseph Blanc (Rhône) – Bitter and woody. Absolutely horrid. Why did I hold something with a synthetic cork for this long? Argh. (9/10)

Gaillard 2002 Saint-Joseph Blanc (Rhône) – Less trashed than the previous bottle (and thankfully, this is my last), but still heavily oxidized due to entirely predictable closure failure. That is, predictable if I’d thought to yank the capsules off and look. But who puts plastic plugs in a wine that should have been able to age? Oh, right: screwcap-fearing French winemakers, that’s who… (10/10)

Seven stages of K

Kubler 2008 Pinot Blanc “K” (Alsace) – Fairly firm, with a good deal of acidity countrapuntal to the stark off-white fruit. This is a guess, but as a rule this sort of profile indicates a preference towards actual pinot blanc rather than the traditional blending partner auxerrois, which fattens and en-fruits. This is pretty bare, and washes as much as it fills. There’s minerality, and I’d hazard a guess that there will be more in a few years, but it’s an ungenerous walk on the tart side at the moment. (9/10)


Podere Castorani 2009 Montepulciano d’Abruzzo Cerasuolo “Majolica” (Abruzzi) –It’s wine. It’s red. It’s drinkable. It’s drinkable red wine. (8/10)

Greco-Roman Rousseling

Roussel & Barrouillet “Clos Roche Blanche” 2007 Touraine “Cuvée Gamay” (Loire) – I like these young about 50% of the time, thinking the other half insufficient, and am repeatedly proven wrong by even a little bit of maturation (which is all I’ll allow under this closure), so my generalized displeasure with this bottle should be taken to mean absolutely nothing. It’s the tangy red fruit and earth that make the wine, and the grating, flaky, stale peppercorns and overaged herbs that ruin it. And the next bottle will be spectacular. I’m blaming taster variation rather than any of the usual suspects. (8/10)

Steel-cut griottes

Chermette 2009 Beaujolais Rosé “Les Griottes” (Beaujolais) – Yearning. Not quite acquiring whatever it’s in the mood for, though. Simple cherry analog, tarragon analog, dust analog…nothing really seems entirely present here. There’s no obvious sign of damage, and yet I wonder. (8/10)


Carrel & Fils 2009 Jongieux (Savoie) – Like snow on a seashore, crisp and flaking, a brittle carapace disintegrating around a wet, slightly saline chill. Someone might once have walked on this beach carrying a lime, but they left with it ages ago. The stark absence of this wine is very appealing. (8/10)