Above: Dan Crane (aka Jean-Luc Retard) found this 1976 Heitz Cellars at his mom and step-dad’s place in Napa. The label reads “Alcohol 13% by Volume.” Today, most Napa Cabernets weigh in at a minimum 14.5% (current vintages of Heitz report 14.4% and 14.5% — I checked around at a few grocery stores and pharmacies).
I know I said I’d be taking a break from the blog and I promise that I will. But I couldn’t resist posting today: so many of friends wrote me to tell me the wines they drank for Christmas eve.
Top entry had to be Uli Wiesendanger (Verena aka Céline Dijon’s father) who opened a 1970 and 1979 Château La Lagune (3rd growth) at their home in the 6th.
“The cork of the 1970 Château de la Lagune broke,” writes Uli this morning, “and I had to decant the bottle. The 1979 came out beautifully. Both wines had a certain sharpness (slight acidity?) and were very light (elegant?). Not tired at all.”
Above: Trader Joe’s 2006 “Reserva” Cabernet Sauvignon from Chile in Winnetka, CA.
Greg Wawro (aka Professeur Harry Covert) writes in from Winnetka, California where he drank a Trader Joe’s 2006 Chilean Cabernet Sauvignon “Reserva.” He didn’t send any tasting notes: a picture, they say, tells a thousand words. I don’t know how you can call a wine from the 06 vintage a reserva but I’m sure he and his family had a nice holiday (I imagine Greg was pining for a 1967 Barolo that we opened recently together).
Greg adds: “Fortunately, I was able to find a 2003 Produttori del Barbaresco at the local BevMo (the last one they had!)” (click to read his subsequent comment).
Above: Me? I drank a 1997 Billecart-Salmon with friends in the Cognac Room at Astor Court (in the St. Regis Hotel). Billecart-Salmon is more famous for its rosé Champagne and it’s hard to find their blanc de blancs. It drank beautifully and even the natural-wine fanatics among us were impressed with this seemingly dosage-free Champagne (i.e., a Champagne to which no or very little sugar was added for the second fermentation). Astor Court has an amazing Champagne list, including a vertical of R[ecently] D[isgorged] Bollinger and the ultra-hard-to-find Selosse (at $500 a bottle, the latter was a little too steep for my tastes).
Above: Then came 2005 Domaine de la Pépière Granite de Clisson Muscadet in magnum with oysters at my favorite steakhouse, Keen’s.