Tuesday, March 15, 2005

Erie Avenue Blind Tuesday Tasting (#2)

This month's "theme" was Pinot Noir under $50 (well, almost under $50). Tonight all 11 of us met in Yajan's main dining room at Cumin to review 8 Pinots. There were 3 from Oregon, 2 from California, 2 from France and 1 from Spain. Spain! Yes, Spain does make Pinot although I think this is the only one. The results are a little different than the ones announced tonight at the tasting due to some math errors, but the results have been triple checked now. If the total number of points is divisible by 36, then the results are good. Next month, the 3rd Tuesday in April, we will review Syrah's under $30. Thank you Yaj for the space, the Nan and the Chilean Sea Bass appetizers. Thank you Mike for the lovely Champagne, although I only got a small taste. Ta Dum!

  • 8th -- 63 points -- 2001 Domaine Lorenzon, Mercurey Champ Martin ($35) -- This one got 5 votes for 8th place (ouch!). Two comments guessed the French origin, but two commented with the adjective "glue". I don't think this is a positive adjective with wines althought I have heard "petrol" being used for German wines.
  • 7th -- 60 points -- 2000 Calera, Jensen Vineyard ($51) -- 1 vote for 2nd, but 3 votes for 8th or 7th.
  • 6th -- 60 points -- 2001 Torres, Mas Borras ($36) -- 2 votes for 1st and 2nd, 4 votes for 7th and 1 vote for 8th. A tie with the Calera on points but 1 more top vote, but more bottom votes. OK, I voted it #1 on the big bacon nose and over the top fruit. One judge called it an "animal"! I like that in a wine! A Pinot from Spain!
  • 5th -- 55 points -- 2002 Louis Jadot, Beaune Boucherottes -- 1 vote for 1st, 1 vote for 7th, but 7 votes for 5th or 6th. Several judges commented on the alcohol here.
  • 4th -- 49 points -- 2001 Domaine Drouhin, Laurene ($53) -- 3 votes for 1st or 2nd, and 3 votes for 7th or 8th. I am surprised at this result as this producer is well regarded and has done well in previous international blind tastings. It is also the highest price at $53. I would like to try the 2002 vintage.
  • 3rd -- 39 points -- 2001 Archery Summit, Premiere Cuvee ($38) -- From Oregon, the 2002 just got a Gold at the Cincinnati Wine Festival. 3 votes for 1st and 2nd and only 1 vote for 7th. Comments included "elegant" and "exotic nose, rich with nice finesse".
  • 2nd -- 39 points -- 2002 JK Carriere, Willamette Valley ($36) -- A tie with the Archery on points, but had 4 votes for 1st and 3 votes for 7th and 8th. If not for the 7th and 8th votes might have ranked #1. Comments included " style and balance", "complex nose", "balanced", "smooth", "fruit on finish".
  • 1st -- 31 points -- 2002 Ceja ($40) -- California. Sometimes nice guys finish first. 6 votes for 1st or 2nd and only 1 vote for 8th. (Sorry Armando, I am not a big fan of cherry! Can I still come out to visit in June?) Beside my 8th place vote, the lowest vote was for 4th. This wine just got a Silver at the Cincinnati Wine Festival. Comments included "great balance", "long finish", "smooth with finesse", "lush fruit, well rounded".

If I were looking for a Pinot for this weekend, I would suggest either the #1 or #2 or #3, although all the judges had difficulty tonight in ranking these wines as they were all very good wines. Many commented that the wines seemed to change and evolve with time and votes changed frequently. It's a tough job, but someone has to do it!


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