1985 La Lagune - This is the first Chateau on D2, the main road through Bordeaux just as you clear the suburbs of Bordeaux. Geographically, it is frequently lumped with Margaux, but, in fact, it has a style all of it's own - not refined and elegant like most Margaux, more linear and upright, kind of like a tall thin man, among elegant, refined, sexy French women. In any event, even French women lose it eventually and this wine is a little too old to be described as sexy. As with almost all old wines, the fruit is diminished and the acid and remaining tannin dominate. Nevertheless, if you like older wines, this one is still thrilling under the right circumstances, that is, with food.
1986 Chateau de Beaucastel - A jaded old man who is still a player. Faded fruit, but this guy still has style. Even a day later he was still up to the task. This old gent didn't even need Viagra.
1986 Chateau Mouton Rothschild - Now this 21 year old wine is still going strong. We drank this guy for Sam's 86th birthday. Let me tell you, it is nothing to sneeze at. It's not fruit forward, jammy or a giant, but it has presence, it makes a statement, it tells you who it is with authority. Not big, not fruity, not American, it is authoritative, kind of like DeGaulle and it is unforgetable. It resets your standards for Bordeaux. Totally awesome!
1999 Chapelle Chambertin - Livera. There's no doubt about it. Miles, of Sideways fame, was totally neurotic. Neurotic is totally retro. Perhaps you could say that Pinot Noir is neurotic and retro, but erratic would be more accurate. Burgundy is beyond neurotic, high-strung , perhaps. This one is actually fairly normal. It is balanced, stable with good, if unidimensional fruit. Way above average for Burgundy, yet, ultimately not that complex. Pinot and Burgundy lovers are seekers, always on a quest. The French philosophers say that desire comes from "manque" or lack and there is plenty of that with Burgundy. This one at least is not lacking, as so many of its compatriots are. Give me Merlot!
1983 Taylor Porto - Ahhh! Now, this is beautiful. Exquisite, in fact - mellow, gentle, subtle, nuanced. Something to dream about, to enter into reverie with, to totally relax into a big overstuffed chair with, to not worry about dangling participles with! Gentle cherry and vanilla flavors without a hint of acidity or tannin, so mellow, you wouldn't want to ruin it with cheese or a Havana cigar.