From the department of “somehow, some way, I just keep drinkin’ funky ass wines like every single day (we gonna drink a Balthazar to this)”…
“Arriving or departing?” wrote my friend Ken Vastola, author of the excellent Fine Wine Geek, yesterday on my Facebook. He was commenting on a photo of Manhattan island that I had snapped as my plane touched down at LaGuardia.
In the PM that followed, he generously and graciously suggested that I stop by his table where he and a group of like-minded Nebbiolo collectors were opening some of their favorite bottles.
Not wanting to push my good luck, I only tasted five of the roughly 12 wines they were pouring before I headed off to dinner with an old and cherished friend. But, man o man, what wines!
Of those, the 1989 Gaja (classic) Barbaresco and the Bruno Giacosa 2000 Barbaresco Asili Riserva (above) were highlights.
The 2000 vintage is remembered for its warm summer and the ripe wines it delivered. Many Nebbiolophiles lament that it was overrated by the American wine media with inflated scores.
But this wine was a great example of how top growers and winemakers made extraordinary wines that year. I was blown away by how expressive this wine was, with rich fruit and remarkable freshness on the nose and in the mouth.
Thank you again, Ken and crew, for including me. That was such a treat!
Posting on the fly from the city this week… stay tuned. And if you happen to be in town, please come and taste my favorite Franciacorta, Arcari + Danesi, with me at Chamber Street Wines from 5-7 p.m. on Friday.