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Cellar Favorite: 1972 Paul Jaboulet Ainé Cornas

cellar favorite, Cellar Favorites

Neal Martin, Feb 2018

For my maiden “Cellar Favourite”, the obvious choices would be either Bordeaux or Burgundy because I am fortunate to drink a hell of a lot of old and rare bottles. But instead, I opted for a Northern Rhône that I drank before Christmas with friends at one of my favorite London restaurants, Chez Bruce. It was a BYO with serious bottles flying around to bid farewell returning to warming climes for the winter. I took a chance with the 1972 Cornas from Paul Jaboulet Ainé, partly because I had never encountered such a venerable Cornas. I was curious.

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Cellar Favorite: 2000 Domaine Méo-Camuzet Clos de Vougeot Grand Cru

France: Burgundy, Cellar Favorites, cellar favorite

Antonio Galloni, Feb 2018

About ten years ago, I was served Méo-Camuzet’s 2000 Clos Vougeot at a lunch. I immediately went out and picked up six bottles. Since then, the wine has aged at a leisurely pace. Sweet, floral and aromatics and bright, red-toned fruit give the 2000 much of its sensual, gracious personality. Lithe and gracious, the 2000 is an unusually finessed, delicate Clos Vougeot, and yet all the elements are very much in the right place. Hints of kirsch, new oak rose petal, raspberry and white pepper add brightness throughout. Although not especially complex or structured, the 2000 is a wine of pure and total pleasure.

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Cellar Favorite: 2006 Quintarelli Amarone della Valpolicella Classico

Cellar Favorites, cellar favorite

Antonio Galloni, Jan 2018

I so thoroughly enjoyed Quintarelli’s 2006 Amarone della Valpolicella Classico that I wondered why I don’t serve these wines more often. It’s not just a matter of price, but rather finding the right moment. Or maybe wines like this are the moment.

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Cellar Favorite: Philip Togni Library Releases: 2007 - 1997 - 1987

featured, cellar favorite, Cellar Favorites, United States: California

Antonio Galloni, Jan 2018

Philip Togni has crafted memorable, riveting Napa Valley Cabernets for at least six decades. The Cabernet Sauvignon Togni made at Chappellet in 1969 remains one of the greatest and most singular wines I have ever had the pleasure to taste and drink, from any region in the world.

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Cellar Favorite: 1969 Domine Duroché Gevrey-Chambertin Lavaux Saint-Jacques 1er Cru

France: Burgundy, Cellar Favorites

Antonio Galloni, Jan 2018

My timing this past fall at Duroché wasn’t great, as Pierre Duroché had just bottled his 2016s. Or, maybe it was, because Duroché opened his 1969 Lavaux Saint-Jacques and a few other bottled wines rather than showing me all of his 2016s.

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Cellar Favorite: 1994 Rochioli Pinot Noir West Block

Cellar Favorites, cellar favorite, United States: California

Antonio Galloni, Jan 2018

Rich and sumptuous on the palate, with superb aromatic intensity, the 1994 Rochioli Pinot Noir West Block is super-expressive today.

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Cellar Favorite: 2000 Smith Haut Lafitte

France: Bordeaux, Cellar Favorites, cellar favorite

Antonio Galloni, Dec 2017

At seventeen years of age, the 2000 Smith Haut Lafitte is in a gorgeous spot. A dense, powerful wine, the 2000 offers notable depth and textural richness. Game, smoke, tobacco, licorice and leather give the 2000 notable aromatic breadth and expansiveness to play off the generous fruit. The toast and torrefaction notes are typical of the heavily extracted style favored during the late 1990s and early 2000s.

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Cellar Favorite: 2002 Bollinger Vieilles Vignes Françaises

Cellar Favorites, cellar favorite, France: Champagne

Antonio Galloni, Dec 2017

Bollinger’s 2002 Vieilles Vignes Françaises remains one of the most compelling wines of this iconic Champagne vintage.

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Cellar Favorite: 2002 Spottswoode Cabernet Sauvignon

Cellar Favorites, cellar favorite, United States: California

Antonio Galloni, Dec 2017

Tasted from magnum, Spottswoode’s 2002 Cabernet Sauvignon is gorgeous and in a great spot right now. The exotic bouquet, with its myriad shades of smoke, graphite, espresso, savory herb and spice, is super-inviting. Deep, pliant and resonant on the palate, the 2002 captures the natural radiance of this warm Napa Valley vintage in its voluptuous fruit and soft contours.

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Cellar Favorite: 2002 Taittinger Comtes de Champagne

France: Champagne, Cellar Favorites, cellar favorite

Antonio Galloni, Nov 2017

Several recent bottles of Taittinger’s 2002 Comtes de Champagne have been nothing less than stellar. In a vintage in which many Champagnes show the raciness and flamboyance of very ripe Chardonnay, the 2002 Comtes remains fresh, vibrant and nuanced.