Super Rhone Tasting at Wine Watch

Saturday, September 1, 2018 - 07:30 PM

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Okay we poppin champagne like we won a championship game
- Popping Bottles by Lil Wayne and Birdman 


The wines of the Rhone Valley are some of the most famous in all of France.  The wines of the Southern Rhone Valley starting north of the town of Avignon with the new house of the Pope "Chateauneuf du Pape" whose wines are based on the Grenache varietal but usually contain several other grapes five of which are white!

This region has a lot of great producers and we have three of the best on the table tonight representing Chateauneuf Du Pape.  We have one of the cult wines of this region which is 100% Grenache, Chateau Rayas from the outstanding 1989 vintage.  Chateau Beaucastel is a much larger operation and they are famous for using all 13 varietals in their blend each year.  Domaine Du Pegau is also one of the leading estates and we have three excellent vintages representing the South this evening.

The wines of the Northern Rhone are very different from the South as Syrah is the star of the show here.  The wines of Cote Rotie and Hermitage are rare in that the regions are fairly small and the top wines are made in minute quantities like Guigal's La La wines made from three of the top vineyard sites of the Cote Rotie region.  Tonight we have the famous La Landonne from one of the larger produers here Delas to compare the same dirt from the same vintage only the producer is the x factor here.

The granite hills of Hermitage rise above the Rhone at Tain l'Hermitage where the river bends sharply to the east before resuming a southward flow. This gives the vineyards a direct southern exposure. Vines have been grown here since Roman times, and Pliney wrote favorably about the wines of the region. The locals claim that vines were first planted here by Phocaean Greeks around 500 BC. Although the evidence is not conclusive, Greek coins and amphorae dating back to 500 BC have been found in the area.

Some experts feel that the greatest maker of Hermitage is the firm of Jean-Louis Chave. The Chave family has been growing grapes at Hermitage since 1481. They have a reputation for making good wine in poor years, and excellent wine in good ones. They use low yielding vines (average age 60 years) and a late harvest to produce the ripest fruit, and there is virtually no intervention in the winemaking and bottling with no filtration.

We have three 100 point wines on the table and most of the wines on the table this evening sell for double the price of admission!  Toni Lampasone will be making a special meal to accompany the tasting wines.  The fee for this tasting is $295 + tax, for reservations call 954-523-9463 or e-mail


Image result for rhone valley
Image result for rhone valley

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Super Rhone Wine Tasting at Wine Watch Wine Bar
Saturday, September 1st

Chave Hermitage Blanc 1985.jpg

1985 Jean Louis Chave Hermitage Blanc

(93 points) To show the aging curve, Jean-Louis pulled out a 1985 Hermitage Blanc. A lighter vintage than the 2003, it still showed a lively, fresh profile, with complex acacia flower, lavender, licorice and buttered fruit aromas and flavors as well as medium to full-bodied depth and richness on the palate. Drinking beautifully, it has another decade of longevity. (JD) (4/2014) Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

Image result for 2003 Chapoutier De L'Oree hermitage Blanc

2003 Chapoutier De L'Oree hermitage Blanc

(99 points) Nearly perfect, one of the most prodigious dry white wines I have ever tasted is the 2003 Ermitage Cuvee de l’Oree. A 669-case cuvee fashioned from yields of 10 hectoliters per hectare, it offers aromas and flavors beyond anything I have previously tasted in a dry white. It tastes like a liqueur of licorice intermixed with a liqueur of honeysuckle, quince, and rocks. Opulent, viscous, and full-bodied, at first glance it is seemingly fragile and over the top, but it boasts extraordinary freshness and liveliness as well as monster concentration and a finish that lasts over 60 seconds. I suspect it will drink beautifully for 3-4 years, then go into a funky stage, and re-emerge two decades later. It may be a 100-year wine ... but who knows? Without question, it is a tour de force in winemaking. (RP) (2/2006) Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 Image result for 1988 Chateau Beaucastel Chateauneuf Du Pape Rouge

1988 Chateau Beaucastel Chateauneuf Du Pape Rouge

(90 Points) Elegant and understated, with lovely fruit and structure. Has an excellent deep color, with focused black cherry and refined spice aromas, a full body of refined tannins and spice and berry flavors.  Wine Spectator

Image result for 1989 Chateau Rayas Chateauneuf Du Pape Reserve
1989 Chateau Rayas Chateauneuf Du Pape Reserve

(97 points) A wine that continues to catch up to the 1990 (and probably has greater longevity) is the 1989. A dense-colored Rayas, but not as thick-looking as the 1990, this dark ruby-colored wine exhibits plenty of roasted herb notes intermixed with scents of tobacco, sweet creme de cassis, and kirsch. Full-bodied, highly-extracted, powerful, and tannic (resembling 1995 more than 1990), it is shedding its cloak of tannin and beginning to approach full maturity. (RP) (1/2003) Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

Image result for 2003 Domaine du Pegau Chateauneuf du Pape Cuvee da Capo

2003 Domaine du Pegau Chateauneuf du Pape Cuvee da Capo

(100 points) At present the Capo reveals that extra level of flavor, power, complexity and richness. It is a big wine (16.1% alcohol – less than in the 1998, but more than in the 2000 and 2007) boasting a dark plum/garnet color as well as a stunning bouquet of aged beef intermixed with pepper, herbes de Provence, and steak au poivre. This unctuously textured, full-bodied Chateauneuf possesses enormous body, huge flavors and sweet, velvety tannins. Still youthful, it has not yet begun to close down, and I'm not sure it ever will given this unusual vintage. It is a modern day classic that should continue to provide provocative as well as compelling drinking for 20-30+ years. (RP) (10/2010)   Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

Image result for 1988 Jean Louis Chave Hermitage Rouge

1988 Jean Louis Chave Hermitage Rouge

(98 points) One of my favorite wines of the night, the 1988 Hermitage is simply breathtaking in its beauty and profoundness. Sage, rosemary, sweet tobacco and dried flowers are some of the many notes that lift from the glass in a translucent, weightless, yet wonderfully deep wine. May I have another glass, please? Wow... (AG) (5/2014) Vinous

Image result for 1989 M.Chapoutier Ermitage Le Pavillon

1989 M.Chapoutier Hermitage La Pavillon

(100 points)  The 1989 Le Pavilion is a prodigious wine. Made from yields of 14 hectoliters per hectare, this parcel of old vines (averaging 70-80 years of age) has produced an opaque black/purple-colored wine, with a hauntingly stunning bouquet of violets, cassis, minerals, and new oak. In the mouth, the similarity in texture, richness, and perfect balance to the compelling 1986 Mouton-Rothschild is striking, only this wine is richer and longer. This extraordinarily well-balanced wine will probably not be ready to drink for at least 5-10 years, but it will evolve for three decades or more. It is an enormous yet amazingly well-delineated wine. I lament the fact that there are only 600 cases of this magnificent wine. This great Hermitage was the first of a trilogy (1989, 1990, and 1991) of exquisite Le Pavillons. Last tasted 12/95. (RP) (1/1997) Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

Image result for 2003 Guigal Cote Rotie la Landonne

2003 Guigal Cote Rotie la Landonne
Price: $799.00    Your Price: $639.20          Quantity in Stock: 2

(100 Points) Dense purple to the rim with a nose of graphite, creosote, earth, olives, and black, black, black fruits, the primordial, full-bodied, monumental 2003 Cote Rotie La Landonne is amazing stuff. I suspect this is more akin to a dry vintage port than most Cote Roties ever tend to be, but the purity, the richness, the texture, the length are all out of this world. This wine does need some patience on the part of its purchasers, probably five years, more likely 8-10, but then one of the world’s most compelling elixirs will be at its peak for another 20-30+ years. Wine Advocate #170, Apr 2007



Charcuterie Selections

Mushroom, Beet, Bacon and Fresh Herb Terrine layered with Rose water Aspic Gelee

Wild Boar Shepards Pie with Tombe Cheese and Blackberry Catsup

Peach Cobbler with Berta Grappa laced whipped cream

The fee for this tasting is $295 + tax for reservations call 954-523-9463 or e-mail

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