Happy Valentine’s Day! Continuing our tradition of pulling one of these each year - 11 down, only 1 more to go after this! Reminder that we need to choose a new case of something soon.
This is excellent as always but I’m not sure hits quite the same high note as last year’s bottle. Fine mousse, nose a bit more restrained. Palate is explosive and so deep with wonderful candied caramelized lemon peel. Wonderful pairing with carbonara! — 10 days ago
1990 vintage. Last tasted 01.20.23 (9.6) and 05.16.21 (9.4). This slots in just between. Tastes as if from a colder cellar because this specimen was as fresh (too fresh) as a daisy. Decanted and tasted after 2 hours. Tannins for tannins sake. And I love big tannins. Less evolved than the January visit and drinking better than the 5.16.21 visit. Still bleeping massive as it ever was upon release back in the day. Very little has changed. This wine and the 1989 Gaja Sorí Tilden Barbaresco the two biggest, uncompliant wines with years to go before really revealing those hidden charms that I've tasted in recent memory. Getting closer but not quite ready to settle down any time soon. Out of a larger format bottle, must be positively overwhelming…like jumping to hyperspace accidentally…or on a boozy dare. 9.21.23. — 5 months ago
From magnum. No formal notes. The fill was top-shoulder. Underneath the capsule, the top of the cork looked nasty which I wiped down as best I could. About four hours before service, using a Durand (which is almost essential with old bottles) I was able to pull the cork completely intact and decant for sediment. The cork was completely saturated but appeared to have done its job! At this stage in its life, the 1990 Chateau Mouton Rothschild pours a garnet color but it doesn’t appear particularly tired and the nose supports that. While it’s certainly a vinous wine, there is a lot to like: a mix of red and black cassis, rip and desiccated cherries, tobacco leaf, cedar box, old leather, damp earth, some mushrooms and baking spices. The structure is still sound and while the tannins have integrated and the acid is keeping this very much alive. In fact, this seemed to brighten with air and almost get a second wind! As I find with all great Bordeaux wines once they enter this stage, they seem to live forever. This was a lovely pairing with a Prime, Niman Ranch porterhouse served with corn, squash and porcini. This is squarely in the “drink now” window, not that it will be falling off a cliff anytime soon. Decant for sediment and enjoy through 2030+ — 7 months ago
Deep red. Very wine tasting, no fruit — 2 months ago
Eye catching and provocative with a proud price point - but wow! It works! Barry White singing in the background with lavender and satin sheets Smooooooth. This is incredible from nose to tail on a way most blends don’t achieve. Strong punch, so it’s like an iron fist delivered in a velvet glove. Oh my my - definitely a worthy glass! — 4 months ago
Opened about four hours prior to service and allowed to breath. Two bottles were opened tonight from the same cellar and one of the corks showed some small signs of seepage but both wines showed equally. No formal notes. The 1997 Opus One pours a fairly youthful looking deep ruby color with moderate signs of sediment and a near opaque core. The nose exhibited powerful aromas of dark fruits, organic earth, tobacco, leather, horse blanket (brettanomyces?!), and fine baking spices. On the palate, the wine is dry and the structure remains quite firm but the texture is plush and almost chewy. The notes on the nose are confirmed and the finish is long and satisfying.
But the tasting notes only tell half the story here. This was consumed alongside a 1990 Chateau Mouton Rothschild. Had these been served together double-blind, I would have absolutely understood if someone called both as left-bank Bordeaux. Yes, the texture was plush and yes, the color was dark(er), but only just. It was just waaaay more Old World leaning to me with the earth and presence of brett. Which makes me wonder, why hasn’t brett been noted very often in other TN’s for this wine? Only (Charlie Carnes and OneFive) really address it directly and maybe this is what most are getting at when they mention “Bordeaux-like” and all the Pauillac vibes. What I can confirm is that these notes were consistent between two bottles from the same case, still in their tissue paper, so I’m reasonably confident that this is characteristic of the 1997 Opus One. I digress; I liked the wine. There, I said it. It was a bit of a one foot in Old School Napa, one foot in New School Napa, handled with an Old World touch. I liked it even better side-by-side with the ’90 Mouton, especially considering the relationship between the two. That being said, folks that can’t get down with a little brett will be turned off by this vintage of Opus. In my case, I would enjoy another opportunity to drink the 1997 some time. Great now with some air to stretch its legs and should be enjoyable through the next decade.
— 7 months ago