La fleur petrus 1973 %281%29

Cellar Favorite: 1973 La Fleur-Pétrus

cellar favorite, Cellar Favorites, France: Bordeaux

Neal Martin, Feb 2024

The latest in the series of “Don’t dismiss a poor vintage ‘til you’ve tasted it first” is a bottle of 1973 La Fleur-Pétrus that was poured blind at the excellent Lorne restaurant in London in January. Several years earlier, at the inaugural “Grouse Club”, Lord Bruce had left us dumbfounded by a 1973 La Fleur-Pétrus from his legendary cellar. This bottle left us equally lost for words.

Cf feb192024

Cellar Favorite: Château Latour: 2024 New Releases

cellar favorite, Cellar Favorites, France: Bordeaux

Antonio Galloni, Feb 2024

For more than a decade now, Château Latour has released their wines in bottle only after several years, when the team feels they are ready to start drinking. This year’s releases provide an opportunity to revisit wines from three very different vintages, each with something to offer. I tasted the wines with Technical Director Hélène Genin during a visit to the château in December 2023.

Pol roger 1982 wc copy

Cellar Favorite: 1982 Pol Roger Brut Cuvée Sir Winston Churchill

cellar favorite, Cellar Favorites, France: Champagne

Neal Martin, Feb 2024

Our greatest Prime Minister, after Liz Truss, had impeccable taste in Champagne. Though I must drink far less bubbly than Sir Winston Churchill, which is probably why, like most people, I have always enjoyed the cuvée created in his honor. As the story goes, the PM met Odette Pol Roger in 1944 at the British Embassy in Paris, and their families struck up a close friendship.

Bonin 2020

Cellar Favorite: 2020 Domaine Bernard-Bonin Meursault La Rencontre

France: Burgundy, cellar favorite, Cellar Favorites

Neal Martin, Feb 2024

Domaine Bernard-Bonin is a Meursault-based producer that I would dearly love to visit. For reasons I will not go into here, so far, that has not been possible. This has not prevented me from enjoying the occasional bottle that has come my way.

Le pin 1981 bottle %281%29

Cellar Favorite: 1981 & 1992 Le Pin

cellar favorite, Cellar Favorites, France: Bordeaux

Neal Martin, Jan 2024

I have been fortunate to taste every vintage, though it is over a decade since I encountered one of the early ones. Visiting the estate in December, Thienpont served a bottle blind, a bottle that drew gasps from the audience…even from his better half.

Hermitage 1967 bottle %281%29

Cellar Favorite: 1983 & 1967 Domaine J.L. Chave L’Hermitage

cellar favorite, Cellar Favorites, France: Rhône & Beaujolais

Neal Martin, Jan 2024

Last year was such a treasure trove of amazing bottles that I completely forgot a dinner in February that finished with a pair of outstanding wines from Jean-Louis Chave.

Cf jan152024

Cellar Favorite: 1985 Ridge Vineyards Zinfandel Canyon Road & 1985 Monte Bello

cellar favorite, Cellar Favorites, United States: California

Neal Martin, Jan 2024

I am not familiar with Californian wines like some of my Vinous colleagues. However, during 2023, I enjoyed several mature bottles from Ridge Vineyards, which is certainly one of my favorite producers.

Unico 1969

Cellar Favorite: 1969 Bodegas Vega Sicilia Unico

cellar favorite, Cellar Favorites, Spain

Neal Martin, Jan 2024

Unico is Spain’s most iconic and historical wine. You don’t need me to tell you that. Though Unico has been bottled for many decades, the consensus is that the 1960s is the decade during which its reputation was really consolidated through a string of outstanding vintages bookended by the brilliant 1962 and 1970.

Cf jan022023 1

Cellar Favorite: 2010 Château Canon

cellar favorite, Cellar Favorites, France: Bordeaux

Antonio Galloni, Jan 2024

The 2010 Château Canon is interesting to revisit today, especially considering the vintages that have come after it, some of which will take their place among the greatest ever made here.

Yquem 1899

Cellar Favorite: 1899, 1947 & 1970 Yquem

Cellar Favorites, France: Bordeaux

Neal Martin, Dec 2023

This Cellar Favorite comes from a private dinner held at Château Yquem last April. In-house chef Olivier Brulard, who worked with Michel Guérard at his fabled restaurant in Eugénie-les-Bains for many years, cooked a sublime array of dishes to accompany the wines. I understand some who say that an evening devoted to Sauternes is too much. I guess it depends on the Sauternes.