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CLONYC's Holiday Bash-CLONYC 34

Last night we gathered for CLONYC 34-The Holiday Bash.
12 of the usual suspects bringing whatever they wanted to bring. No rules.
What we got was a myriad of all things Cab. We got old stuff, and new. Black fruit and blue.

I have an recent edict I would like to share: Any Bordeaux that finds its way into one of my dinners will only do so under a cloak of aluminum unbeknownst to me. Last night that was put to the test.

5 flights, 14 wines (16 with a 2001 Dunhoff and a 2004 Hartford Court Chardonnay Seascape thrown in). 4 flights of 3 wines and 1 flight of 2 wines. A merry time was had. Onward I go.

The Blind Flight

1998 Allegro Vineyards Cadenza (blend - 96 cabernet Sauvignon) York County, PA.- This was very interesting as it showed some age and was very expressive. I get some red fruits of cherries and raspberry with some cedar shavings, soy and cardamom. I figure it to be about 20 years old as it showed some brown on the edges and seemed pretty much fully resolved. I was thinking maybe something like a Spottswoode partially because I know Steve and part because I have seen some older Spottswoodes show like such. Some said new age Bordeaux. An outlier to start the evening. Never seen that before. 89

1999 Karl Lawrence Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve Herb Lamb- pretty nose of spring flowers with a touch of vanilla. This is lively and youthful still with a deep black core and perfect balance. Interestingly enough, as it sat it developed a slight popcorn nose. Very nice. 93

1994 Château Léoville Las Cases- this was funky and dirty with a drying woodiness. Dump.

The group loved the Karl Lawrence and gave it 8 votes for WOTF. The Cadenza came in second with 9 second place votes and 3 first place votes. The Bordeaux had 1 first place (The ‘bringer’) and 1 second place vote.

The ‘Little of this little of that’ flight

2003 Dominus Estate- Elegant red black fruited nose with graceful lines. Red cherries, raspberry and cassis driven with a touch of cola and graphite. Very nice if just slightly outclassed on the night. 90

2003 Cayuse Cabernet Sauvignon The Widowmaker En Chamberlin Vineyard- very distinctive cool climate style with some blue-black fruits. Not much of a set of bones though and acidity seems non-existent. Faded quickly as well. 88

2004 Buccella Cabernet Sauvignon- These are always fun to taste. Tonight’s had too much plushness and an almost candy-cane feel to it. I have had this 4 or 5 times and this is the worst showing yet. (Still have 2 more!) 88

The ‘new world sandwiches old world’ flight

2005 Bevan Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon Showket Vineyards- This was a bit contentious with the left hand side of the table. I like the big boned structure this shown. Some said too much oak, to which I said….so? I never see oak as an issue, especially when it goes in its diverse flavor explosion and brings other interesting thing. This was pure and fragrant. 91

2006 Mayacamas Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon- A bit one dimensional and ‘pedestrian’ for me tonight. (I love that word). Red black fruits and varietally correct, but since when is that just good enough? 89

2007 Greer Cabernet Sauvignon Greer Vineyard- This was full throttle with big black fruits of currants, black berries and plums. I got some nice warm vanilla notes, cedar and graphite but this really shined when the steak hit the table and became the mustard sauce’s best friend. Wow. 91

The Bevan got 5 votes for WOTF, the Mayacamas got 5 as well. The Greer the last 2. Voting for the second position was pretty even across the board. I Chose the Bevan in the number one spot and Greer as number 2.

The 2007 redemption flight

2007 Beringer Private Reserve-(served blind) beautiful creamy texture with pretty floral notes, this has much going for it tonight. I guess placement is important but had this been served in any of the top 6 positions, it would have been a contender. 92

2007 Ovid- Late night wines never show as well as they should/could. I liked the mouth-feel and presence of this one. Great dark fruits sitting on a feminine set of pretty bones. Nice.92+

This flight of two (Should have had the Realm in there had I not forgotten it atop the ice) had the Ovid outpacing the Beringer, 7 to 5.

The ‘Super Star Winemakers’ flight

2008 Seven Stones- I am a fan of Aarons wines. This had a beautiful showing, I just wish I could read my notes. I do know that it was my WOTF. 93

2010 Rivers-Marie Cabernet Sauvignon Panek Vineyard- The 2009 was probably my wine of the year for 2012 (and I have had some awesome stuff this year) I was both excited and a bit apprehensive to open this tonight; If the 2009 RM Panek was any sort of indicator, this really needed 24 a hour slow-ox. There was much going on in the 2009 that it was mind boggling. As this sat in my glass is just blossomed into an expression of pure cabernet seldom encountered. I did not actually choose if as my WOTN because I know it has not shown itself fully and I will be patient and hold out my final determination at a later date. Lucky me to have 4 stored away. 92+

2006 Realm Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon Beckstoffer To-Kalon Vineyard- OK, I am guilty of letting this sit on ice for too long. These have long been favorites of mine. This has some dark sweet currants, cocoa powder, cola and more. Pure and long, with balance and grace. Tannins are intricate and well resolved, but this should have a decent life ahead of it, especially if the Mayans were wrong. 91

The Realm garnered 6 votes for WOTF. The Seven Stones 4 and the Rivers-Marie 2. Should have slow-ox’d.

In an unscientific vote for wine of the night, the Karl Lawrence came out with 4 votes (me too) which tells me everyone had a good time as the rest is just scribble on a wine stained page……