Our lunch group re-convened at our monthly venue, the Santa Barbara Club, for another fine luncheon.
The wine theme was a very atypical request for vintage champagne and white Burgundy deviating from the BIG RED theme that occurs most every month.
All in all, we had 6 champagnes, 9 white Burgundy and 2 desert wines shared amongst the 13 of us.
Scallop with crab-ricotta ravioli with caper cream sauce
Chicken breast with potato puree and chowder sauce
Triply cream le Delice de Bourgogne
Pina colada cobbler with ice cream
In order, we drank:
2008 CHAMPAGNE LANSON GOLD LABEL BRUT- 53% Pinot Noir, 47% Chardonnay; I’ve had a few bottles of this wine and all have been consistent with similar notes; its full bodied, rich and loaded with butterscotch and almond accents to the concentrated citrus notes with lemon and orange most evident. The house style seems to be more toward an oxidative one as these and past notes suggest.
Table talk seemed to indicate many were not familiar with the producer; however, Lanson is one of the oldest houses in Champagne, founded in and family owned since 1760.
2008 PAIUL BARA SPECIAL CLUB GRAND CRU BRUT- spicy citrus notes abound in this medium bodied bubbly; there’s some saline showing up, but the spicy accent is most prevalent throughout; its less than sweet as in sort of dry especially at the end.
2009 MOET & CHANDON DOM PERIGNON BRUT- a nice bring and certainly the best of all the champagnes, if not all wines on the day; I’ve had lots of the 09` albeit way too young and yet to really unfold and give all of its treasures and I still have enjoyed every sip and never felt guilty of robbing the cradle; there’s mild spicy and toasty brioche to embellish the lemon dominated citrus fruit; it has that Dom sting to it as well as an element of elegance and yet enough stuff to provide structure for longevity and future pure drinking pleasure.
NV BILLECART-SALMON BRUT ROSE- well, this is not vintage, but this Rose can show up anytime as far as I’m concerned; as with most recent bottles I’ve had, it is very fruit forward with generous amounts of strawberry, red raspberry and red cherry with a touch of spice and much more notable sweetness; its also more full bodied, but still retains a certain degree of elegance.
2008 VEUVE CLICQUOT BRUT ROSE- the 2 Veuve Roses were brought by the same person to compare and compare we did and most preferred the NV over the 08` which I would have expected to be the opposite; this bottle was really understated with everything being suppressed but identifiable as spicy red fruit; it had a medium body at best and not a lot of length. Perhaps in a dumb stage or a bottle variation?
NV VEUVE CLICQUOT BRUT ROSE- so much more going on here with more depth, body, feel and finish; some spice accents to a fine strawberry fruit profile plus a lot of elegance helped to make the decision as to which one is the winner on this day.
We moved into the white Burgs:
2014 CHRISTOPHE et FILS PETIT CHABLIS- I’ve had a few of this one and liked every bottle, so it became essential to buy some and this is the first of a 6 pack thankfully, as it is really good and works well with lots of food pairing options; it has such an inviting nose with mellow accents of minerals, flint and citrus which expand on the palate; it has a viscous, lush texture and the finish is redolent of citrus flavors with hints of flint and minerals coming in mildly again.
2016 DOMAINE FRANCOIS GAUNOUX MONOPOLE LE CLOS de TAVAUX MEURSAULT- the nose is mostly dominated by minerals, but pear, green apple and white nectarine comes on once tasted with a touch of saline.
2013 HENRI CLERC LES PERRIERES MEURSAULT 1er Cru- I liked this a lot; honeyed mineral infused citrus, apple and pear are evident from the nose through the tail; it had good feel and length and hit all of the sensory receptors with grace and charm.
2013 BRUNO COLIN LA TRUFFIERE PULIGNY-MONTRACHET 1er Cru- very nice wine with mild notes of minerals, white flowers and citrus fruit being delivered in a medium body and weighted texture; loved the marriage of the flavors.
2013 PIERRE-YVES COLIN-MOREY LES CHENEVOTTES CHASSAGNE-MONTRACHET 1er Cru- I`ve long been a fan of just about everything PYCM, but this bottle was just over the hill with huge, dominating flint, minerals and graphite barely allowing the lemon, green apple and pear fruit to express; its as if someone had just struck a match or 10 as in an immense amount of hydrogen sulfide.
2009 HENRI BOILLOT MONOPOLE CLOS de la MOUCHERE PULIGNY-MONTRACHET 1er Cru- this had a huge nose with serious doses of flint and minerals which balanced out on the palate once joined by nice white peach and citrus fruit along with a touch of brioche; it had good feel and length and seemed to improve greatly in the glass and it started out good.
2013 LOUIS NIE MORGEOT CHASSAGNE-MONTRAChET 1er Cru- I`m not familair with this producer, but became very fond of this wine and rated it 2nd to the 08` Boillot as the top white Burg; it gave generously and consistently throughout with nice spicy lemon zest notes; it had bright acidity, a very pleasant mouthfeel and a long, satisfying finish.
2005 HENRI BOILLOT CORTON-CHARLEMAGNE GRAND CRU- this had very weird aromatics and I hesitated to venture on, but lo and behold, the taste profile was superb and the creamy mouthfeel was maybe the hallmark; mild notes of white pepper and spice provided accents to the fresh and rich flavors of citrus and golden delicious apples; past mid palate, a nice hit of white flowers came in and all stayed the course though the finish.
We ended with 2 dessert wines:
2005 DOMAINE BAUMARD QUARTS de CHAUME LOIRE- 375ml; I always feel privileged to have another taste of this consistently fine dessert wine made from Chenin Blanc; multiple flavors abound in this full bodied, rich and viscous dandy; its loaded with honeyed cumquat, kiwi, guava, apple, pear and most especially apricot as in nectar.
2006 DOMAINE de la BONGRAN CUVEE BOTRYTIS MACON-VILLAGES- 375 ml; 204 gpl of residual sugar; golden brown color; it had honeyed apricot aromatics continuing on and later joined by almond butter for the final blend; it was thick and almost chewy; our Prince of Sweets has graced us once again with the consummate sweetie.
Ho hum! Just another stellar luncheon with the gang and a big reminder of remaining grateful for this wonderful opportunity for fine fellowship, great food and wines.