The wine of the month, 2020, part 3 of 4
June 2020: Il Seggio, Poggio al Tesoro, 2017 (19 EUR/21 USD in Sweden) red dry blend wine, Bolgheri, Tuscany, Italy, 3,5 NJP of 5,0 NJP (85 points of 100 points) (07-06-2020 by Nenad Jelisic)
The last time I tasted such a good red wine in this price range from Italy as this was in December 2019 when I tasted Il Seggio Poggio al Tesoro 2016. This vintage is much closer to 4,0 NJP than the vintage 2016 thanks to a better tannin structure and a better balance. Unfortunately, nowadays, to be able to enjoy of a good so-called Super Tuscan-red wine from Italy like this one, one has to pay minimum 800 SEK. I take my hat off to both the Systembolaget and the wine importer (Iconic Wines). The wine is austere and nuanced, and it has a really good balance between its fruitiness, tannins, sweetness and acidity. The aroma is big, complex, sweetish, fruity and nuanced. It is filled with sweet spices (cardamom, cinnamon and vanilla), Crème de Cassis, freshly brewed dark roasted coffee, dried fruits and tobacco. The flavour is big, complex, moderate sweet and moderate fruity. It is filled with dark cherries, freshly brewed dark roasted coffee, cocoa-rich dark chocolate, tobacco, sweet spices and Crème de Cassis. Il Seggio Poggio al Tesoro 2017 consists of 40% Merlot, 30% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Cabernet Franc and 10% Petit Verdot. This is a so-called Bordeaux blend. The wine, as this one, with such aroma and flavour richness will fit really well with Pasta Carbonara, made from fresh pasta, or with Lasagne, made from fresh lasagne plates, or with Pizza Capricciosa or with freshly baked baguettes stuffed with butter and garlic with air-dried ham (Jamon Iberico, Jamon Serrano, Prosciutto Crudo or Prosciutto di Parma) or with Camembert cheese or with (Swedish) meatballs with cream sauce and buttery mashed potatoes, without any berry jam. It should be served at 18 to 19°C in Bordeaux glass, if possible, from Orrefors, Kosta Boda, Spiegelau or Riedel. Another option is to serve it at 16°C (when room temperature is above 20°C or outdoor temperature is above 23°C) and then enjoy it as it begins to open/grow in the glass. Il Seggio Poggio al Tesoro 2017 has a really good aging potential, at least 8 years i.e. until at least 2028. The grapes for the wine are harvested by hand. After very careful selection in both vineyards and wineries, careful destemming and pressing, the wine is fermented/macerated in stainless steel tanks at a temperature between 28 and 30°C for twelve days. After the fermentation and the maceration, the wine is aged in 70% second time filled 225 litres French oak barrels (barriques) and 30% new 225 litres French oak barrels for 70 months and finally in a bottle for a few weeks. The soil on which the grapes for this wine grow consists of gravelly, sandy, silty and clayey soil.
May 2020: Morlet Family Vineyards, Cœur de Vallée, Cabernet Sauvignon, 2014, red dry blend wine, Oakville, Napa Valley, North Coast, California, USA, 4,0 NJP of 5,0 NJP (90 points of 100 points) (02-05-2020 by Nenad Jelisic)
This wine benefits a lot from decanting. Its aroma richness, flavour richness and complexity are strongly favoured by it. The aroma is wonderful, sweet spicy and complex with sweet spices, cocoa-rich dark chocolate, sweet tobacco, dried dark cherries, crème de cassis and dried plums. The flavour is complex and sweet spicy with cocoa-rich dark chocolate, sweet spices, dark ripe cherries, sweet tobacco and black pepper. The interplay between tannins, acidity and fruitiness is really good. Morlet Family Vineyards Cœur de Vallée Cabernet Sauvignon 2014 will developed for at least 10 years i.e. until at least 2030. It consists of 75% Cabernet Sauvignon and 25% Cabernet Franc. The soils on which the grapes for this wine grow consists of alluvial soils. The grapes for the wine are harvested by hand. After careful selection in both vineyards and winery, careful destemming and crushing, the wine is fermented/macerated with natural yeast in stainless steel tanks and puncheons (600 litres oak barrels). After the fermentation and the maceration, the wine is aged in new barriques (225 litres oak barrels) for 16 months and finally in bottles for a few weeks. The wine is not filtered. Morlet Family Vineyards Cœur de Vallée Cabernet Sauvignon 2014 should be served at 18 to 19°C in Bordeaux glasses, if possible, from Orrefors, Kosta Boda, Spiegelau or Riedel. Start by serving it at 16°C (when room temperature is over 20°C or outdoor temperature is over 23°C) and then enjoy it when it starts to grow in the glass. If the wine would be drank today, it should be decanted for at least two hours. It should be enjoyed with reindeer stew with buttery mashed potatoes or with wild stew (wild boar, deer and moose or any of these) with chanterelles or porcini and jasmine rice or with burgundy meat stew (boeuf bourguignon) or with Swedish meatballs with cream sauce and buttery mashed potatoes or with hard cheeses such as Västerbottensost, Grana Padano and Parmesan. Morlet Family Vineyards Cœur de Vallée Cabernet Sauvignon 2014 is a really good wine, but if you want to get in the wine heaven, you have to taste the Morlet Family Vineyards Passionnément Cabernet Sauvignon 2012, which is a 100 Cabernet Sauvignon-wine that got 5,0 NJP of 5,0 NJP (100 points of 100 points) of NJ Wines in November 2018.
April 2020: Gérard Bertrand, Rivesaltes Ambré, 1985 (11 EUR/12 USD in Sweden; 375 ml) white sweet fortified wine, Rivesaltes, Languedoc-Roussillon, France, 5,0 NJP of 5,0 NJP (100 points of 100 points) (07-04-2020 by Nenad Jelisic)
This is without a doubt the best white sweet fortified wine that I have tasted from Languedoc-Roussillon so far. It is absolutely fabulous. Bravo Gérard Bertrand! Regardless of the age of 35, it shows no signs of age. The balance between its sweetness, acidity and fruitiness is absolutely fabulous. This fabulous balance does that Gérard Bertrand Rivesaltes Ambré 1985, after its 35 years, still has at least a 20 years long life (aging potential). The aroma is very sweet, concentrated and sweet spicy. Clear aroma of sweet spices, dried apricots, dried figs, dried grapes, burnt sugar, sweet tobacco and walnuts. The flavour is very sweet, full and bitterly acidic. Clear flavour of sweet spices, dark chocolate, tobacco, burnt sugar, walnuts, dried apricots, dried figs, dried grapes and jam made from oranges and bitter oranges. The aftertaste is very long, sweet and in the end bitterly fresh. Thanks to that the burnt sugar feels clear in both the aroma and the flavour of the wine and that the wine has a good acidity, it will fit incredibly well with crème brûlée. In addition, it will fit really well with grilled duck liver or with blue cheeses like Gorgonzola, Roquefort and Stilton or with tiramisu or with black forest gâteau. Or just enjoy it without any food as a dessert in itself. Gérard Bertrand Rivesaltes Ambré 1985 consists of 80% Grenache, 10% Maccabeu and 10% Muscat. The grapes have grown on granite and gneiss soils. The wine-making process is as follows: the grapes are harvested and selected by hand and after the harvest they are delivered to the winery where they are destemmed and then crushed. After the destemming and crushing process, the grape must, which consists of pulp, skins and seeds, is fermented in the stainless steel tanks until it has an alcohol strength of 6 to 8% when it is fortified to 19 to 21% with 77% grape spirit. The wine is then separated from the grape must and aged in large oak barrels for about 30 years and then in bottle for a few months before it is released on the market. I recommend that you start drink this fabulous white fortified wine at 8°C (unlike what most of web wine pages recommend) and allow it to slowly grow/open in the glass while you drink it. If you can drink Gérard Bertrand Rivesaltes Ambré 1985 from Riedel Vinum Port or Orrefors Difference Sweet or Orrefors Elixir.