All eyes are on Brazil right now. I’m not sure if it is just because of ESPN, but I feel like America is collectively and sincerely paying attention to soccer for the first time. While many from all over the world have descended upon Brazil for this incredible celebration of human spirit, most guys that I know in Brazil are currently in America. Of course, they are watching and rooting passionately for their country, but it’s just too much of a disruption to their normal lives. It’s also a good excuse to come to America, which most of the gentlemen I know there regularly do, and I am glad a few of my Brazilian friends were in New York this past week, led by The Ringmaster, a man after my own heart.

We followed market trends and drank Burgundy, Burgundy, Bordeaux. We started with a stunning 1993 Leroy Corton Charlemagne. This wine was singing from its nose, which was big, smoky, powerful and rich. Sounds like an ideal CEO lol. It had plenty of stick to its butter and rippled with minerals. It was full, round and delicious on the palate with great smoke flavors. Corn popped out of its glass, along with corn pops. The Ringmaster noted ‘pineapple’ in this stylish and long wine. Caramel creamed out of this hot wine’s hot pants (96+).

White Knights

The 1995 Coche-Dury Corton Charlemagne seemed overwhelmed by the Leroy at first; in fact, almost everyone preferred the Leroy initially. The Coche was certainly more feminine and elegant, and its sensuality got lost amidst the brute force of the Leroy. However, with time, it kept gaining and unfurling into a longer and more intense experience, and in the end I considered the two wines neck and neck despite the clear difference in style. The Coche had more white fruit, some game and was quite exotic with its almost Brazilian fruit (Brazil has some of its own unqiue fruits that are absolutely wild btw). Its palate was creamy, long and sensual. There were nice broth and earth flavors. The Jeweler came back to the Coche and was the first to voice his new found preference. It held with its balance, had great flesh and was in a perfect spot for maturity, albeit it more mature than the Leroy, perhaps. The acidity kept creeping out more and more, and The Ringmaster admired its ‘cotton candy.’ Don’t call it a comeback, it’s been there for years (96).

I used to drink a lot of Romanee Conti, as in RC from DRC, but it has been getting rarer to see them actually opened and drunk these days. A 1982 DRC Romanee Conti reminded me why this is the world’s most expensive wine. At the beginning of the dinner, we were having the La Tache versus RC conversation, and I remarked how La Tache is always better to drink at a younger age, because RC needs about 30 years to start hitting its sweet spot. The 1982 played the role of ‘exhibit A’ perfectly, and 1982 isn’t supposed to be a great vintage for red Burgundy. Jayer also excelled in 1982, showing that a great producer will make great wines every year…or at least 9 out of ten vintages . The RC had a great nose that exuded signature aromas. Autumn, musk, menthol, red fruit and honey all abounded. The wine was fuller than full and longer than long, and it was quite tropical, even possessing a hint of orange. Its nose was super complex, and its palate was elegant, chalky and dusty. There was Asian spice, tea and broth here. One could see the wisdom of age in the ’82; this was a man, not a boy. ‘Soooo good,’ I wrote. Even though it won’t get any better, and probably is a point less ultimately, it showed so well, and I just had to give it (96).

Heavy Duty

The 1990 Leroy Richebourg that followed seemed almost infantile by comparison. This showed much younger, deeper and blacker. I supposed it was starting to show some skin by Leroy’s usual standards, but the ’82 RC was so deliciously mature, it skewed our perspective. The Richebourg’s palate was big and oaky without being obtrusive; it squared up a bit but its thickness could not be denied. There was a bit of that Leroy gas and ass, both in kiss quantities. It got better in the glass, both fruit and finish-wise (95).

We ended where it arguably all began with a pair of 1982 Bordeaux, specifically a 1982 Pichon Lalande. It was a great bottle, but tighter than I ever remembered it being. There were aromas of peanut brittle, caramel, nutter butter, green bean and a pinch of thigh cream. This was long, elegant and solid, but I definitely felt like I should have opened it up a few hours earlier. This was still my nutty buddy (95).

The Best for Last?

The 1982 Mouton Rothschild was another level. It, too, was tight, but darker and deeper as well. This was a spectacular wine that wasn’t all about the pleasure; in fact, it may more have been about the pain and rain, but it was much longer than anything we had this night. This was a lifetime wine, and while arguably all of the Burgundies gave more pleasure now, there was no question which wine would still be standing long after all of us. The debate of now versus later in the context of greatness will always be debatable, and while I got more pleasure out of the Burgundies, I still recognized that this was the wine of the night (97+).

By the end of the evening, I left cheering for Brazil in the World Cup, against the USA in the final, of course.

In Vino Veritas,

  • Sign Up
Lost your password? Please enter your username or email address. You will receive a link to create a new password via email.


Sign up for Acker exclusive offers, access to amazing wine events & world-class wine content!

    [honeypot newname]