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Puligny - Champs Canet..... Ch. de Beaucastel..... Clos de Beze.....


Very nice Friday night dinner for six at our home. The evening was in fact a "reunion", for our guest were two couples with whom I've been very close friends more than 20 years ago but hardly met them during all these years...

Shrimps Fondue
1990 Puligny - Champs Canet, E. Sauzet
Duck in Shiraz
1989 Chateau de Beaucastel, Perrin
Cheese Plate
1978 Chambertin - Clos de Beze. P. Gelin
Pears in red & white wine
Coffee & Cognac

Puligny - Champs Canet 1990 E. Sauzet

5/97. Acquired from England Feb-96 for $59 (imported from London for $77 net).
I had this famous Puligny-Montrachet 1er Cru from the impeccable house of Sauzet about a year ago. I wasn't much impressed then. Has it improved?...
The wine accompanied the first course of 'Shrimps Fondue'.
COLOR: Deep golden-yellow color. Quite 'fat' and viscous.
NOSE: Relatively restraint, even after some 20 minutes in the glass. Whatever little fruit is there is masked by heavy-handed wood. Still very elegant Puligny nose with a touch of honey tones.
TASTE: Relatively rich and complex in the mouth. A bit austere yet elegant on the palate. Still a bit closed but 1990 was not a very concentrated year for white (B) so who knows... Again, could use a little less would.
LENGTH: Long and round finish and aftertaste.
TEXTURE & BALANCE: Pretty fat and viscous wine. Firm, elegant, under-fruited, over-oaked. Good acidity but not a greatly balanced wine.
OVERALL: Excellent wine though one would expect more from such a star producer.
MARK: 17/20.aaaaaaaaBUY MORE? No.

CdP - Chateau de Beaucastel 1989 Perrin

5/97. Acquired from Chicago Jan-97 for $70 (imported for $96 net).
This rightly-hyped wine Chateauneuf du Pape is one of my favorite Rhones. The wine accompanied the 'Duck in Shiraz' main course.
COLOR: Dark purple, almost black. As deep and promising color as one can think of. Hardly any clearing towards the rim.
NOSE: Immense! An amazing plethora of fruit, spices and flowers attack the nose as soon as it gets near the glass. Not a hint of bret or any other negative element. Pure, complex vibrant and delicious. No doubt the melange of the grape varieties this wine is made of contribute to the celebration of aromas and bouquet.
TASTE: Every bit as good as the nose. Assertive, multi-flavored, multi-layered and concentrated nectar. Every sip changes and transforms in the mouth from the attack to the finish. Simply divine!
LENGTH: The only department in which this great wine is short of perfect. The mouthfilling effect is gone almost as fast as it comes. Surprisingly short but still fantastic aftertaste.
TEXTURE & BALANCE: Full bodied, rich and flamboyant. Plenty of 'wininess', perfectly balanced by fruit, wood, acidity and tannins. To my palate the wine is at its youth's peak.
OVERALL: Extraordinary+!! Hard to think of a more pleasurable wine. Will probably transform in years to come to a more graceful and harmonious pleasure, but I LOVE it now!
MARK: 19+/20.aaaaaaaaBUY MORE? Yes.

Chambertin - Clos de Beze 1978 P. Gelin

5/97. Acquired at auction May-96 for $107 (imported from Chicago for $123 net).
My last bottle of this fantastic Grand Cru from the superb 1978 vintage. The wine accompanied the 'Cheese Plate'.
COLOR: Much lighter than the Beaucastel of course, but very good and healthy color for a 20-years-old (B). Lots of sediment too.
NOSE: Simply magnificent! Gobs of sweetish mature fruit, raw meat, 'sous bois' wet earth - enticing 'Bourgogne Nose' at its best.
TASTE: Silky Grand Vin on the palate. Plums and ripe cherries, plenty of stuffing, good acidity, some soft tannins - all these give a complex yet totally harmonious feel of a sacred, delicate and rare elixir.
LENGTH: Extremely long and reverberating aftertaste. Every sip lives long after it was swallowed.
TEXTURE & BALANCE: Smooth, harmonious and delicately full bodied as only great mature Grand Crus red (B) can be. Though graceful balance between the prime components means years of pleasure ahead, the wine is 'en point' now.
OVERALL: Extraordinary! The epitome of a grand (B). If you're lucky enough to own a bottle now is the time to do it justice.
MARK: 19/20.aaaaaaaaBUY MORE? Yes.

Reach Me? yak@yakshaya.com

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Jacob "Yak" Shaya.