An exquisite series of some of JK's extraordinary 2018 tasting adventures!
One More Night
These 12 Days of Christmas are starting to wear me down, I think I need to do 10 Days instead. Where am I, five, six? What’s a lost day or two amongst friends? Speaking of days, there was one more left on this particular trip to Europe, one in Alsace. The Paradox and I had a cellar to close over lunch, which we did, and the Mogul and Jetski were rendezvousing for dinner at Auberge de l’Ill, a 3 star Michelin restaurant and hotel in Alsace. We missed another Bacchanalian lunch with them but that was probably for the better at least for me! The Ambassador had to bid farewell after their lunch, although I think he regretted not making our final dinner of this trip.
Great Decor
Great Decor
Tough Steak
Tough Steak
Sole White
Sole White
The restaurant was pretty fabulous, super swanky with great décor. The meal was excellent, although my main course was a bit disappointing as my Entrecote was a bit tough; maybe that’s how they like it in France lol. Back to the main event, the wines. There was something missing from the middle of the 2011 Domaine Roulot Meursault Perrieres we ordered off the list, and Jetski agreed. I found this quite perplexing, as a Clos des Boucheres magnum we recently had was outstanding, but this was a bit light and lacking that usual Roulot complexity. This had musk, caramel, and some citrusy goodness, but this turkey was definitely missing some stuffing. The mid-palate had taken a vacation, and we were missing it along with the expected acidity on its finish (90?).
That was it for the whites on this night, and Jetski plucked a 1961 M. Gaunoux Pommard Grands Epenots off the list. It had a strong nose full of sweet red fruits, strawberry, beetroot, and great musk. This was rusty and oily with a bit of the squareness of Pommard but with a beguiling jasmine floral side. I am not a Pommard fan in general, but I liked this wine (93).
The French Paradox was the first to call out the ‘sexy leather’ on the 2010 G. Roumier Musigny, and it could not be denied. It was deep and lingering with a whiff of youthful oak. The Mogul appreciated its more ‘soft and delicate’ side. There was a little cedar to the nose, and its finish had lots of red fruits and great forest floor. The Paradox saw it get more savory and ‘dense,’ while I was loving the way it kept putting on richness and oiliness as its fruit expanded. While still young, there was no mistaking this wine’s greatness. It really opened up and strengthened with time (98+).
Pretty Pommard
Pretty Pommard
Young Bucks
Young Bucks
It Was A Very Good Year
It Was A Very Good Year
The 2002 Comte Liger-Belair La Romanée was its first vintage under Louis Michel, and there was no question it was an outstanding wine. Jetski commented that starting in 2005, he felt Louis Michel’s wines, in general, reached another level after a handful of vintages under his belt. I found great purple fruit, spice and even honey. There was a lovely lavender note and big-time oriental spices. The Paradox loved its ‘red cherries,’ and I was digging its fleshy fruits as well. There was tender citrus, too, with all the trademark La Romanée deliciousness (95).
A 1928 Chateau Mouton-Rothschild had a great nose full of caramel. This was elegant, light and tender. Its flavors were full of carob and caramel, and it was delicious and showed the quality of this long-lasting vintage (95).
The last wine of our night and our trip was definitely not the least. There was a lonely bottle of 1937 Domaine de la Romanée Conti Richebourg on the list, and after a careful inspection, we went all in. Given some of the prices achieved for old DRC recently, at 2000 Euros a glass, it seemed like a relative bargain. The theory of wine relativity! There were no regrets, as this was a red cherry sex bomb. We were deep in a bamboo forest with curds and whey frolicking with its sweet and sexy fruit. Its tender, brown sugar goodness was the perfect counterpoint to the ‘nice tang on the finish’ per Jetski. This was all purity and delicacy gently setting into a dusty and stylish finish. Great stuff (97).
The One And Only
The One And Only
Now That's A Cheese Tray
Now That's A Cheese Tray
The Four Horsemen
The Four Horsemen
I can’t remember where I headed next, but I would see all of these gentlemen again in Europe the following month, but there were other drinks and company to be had first, although the bar had been set very high for the rest of my Fall. Some nights may be better than others, but as long as there is an open bottle of good wine on the table, it will all work out in the end.

FIN 

JK