The sun showed up this past Friday at one of my favorite quarterly traditions, the Landmark Wine Club party.
And the timing feels right and it feels necessary. For inexplicable reasons I didn’t get around to reviewing the wines from their first soiree this year. Maybe at the time it wasn’t meant to be. Perhaps I was saving it for this go around. More on that later. And thankfully the weather worked in everyone’s favor. It only enhances this and any event.
The three bottles in this package are all first-timers. When I initially saw the list I was intrigued. I had no idea what to expect. Unfamiliar territory is a good thing. But how quickly we soon forget. Landmark members got the first taste of our first wine, back in November.
The 2015 Viognier was my second favorite of the collection. That’s saying a lot. I really enjoyed it. The summer fruits and floral aromas really came to light immediately. I don’t want to open this immediately but I may be tempted too. A friend in our group said he tasted grapefruit, so it should come as no surprise that the first thing I tasted was the same. In essence, it’s a light-to-medium bottle that tastes and feels like summer. And summer makes most folks happy. So yes, this is a crowd pleaser.
A pleasant surprise was the ample amount of oysters available to pair with this wine. And I wish I had more. Initially most folks were taking two-at-a-time but as the event was winding down, they were there for the taking. I never used to love oysters but now I’ll try any. And his worked masterfully. Oh how I adore the warm weather traditions.
But what I’m impressed with the most is how this wine (or any wine) has evolved. What we had six months prior, in its infancy stages, compared to now is so fascinating. It’s a part of the harvesting and aging process that I’m familiarizing myself with more. I’m astounded and grateful to have been one of the guinea pigs. The picture above is from November 2015.
The 2015 Albarino was my least favorite of the three. It’s never been a favorite grape of mine to begin with. Where was the Viognier had a sour and bitter taste to it, the Albarino was a bit too sweet for me. That’s not to say I wouldn’t have a glass but it’s not one I’ll be actively seeking. My palates have expanded significantly. Five years ago I’d be saying this was my favorite.
Finally, the crown jewel, was the New Vintage Petit Verdot. Only 97 cases were made and only available to members. This is where I wish my plan was for more than one bottle a piece. I’ve overused the term life-changing for things. I’m over-the-top and campy with it. It may be a trite but this felt like that. When I think of a wine should taste this is up there. I want smokiness, dark fruits, and blatant tannins. I want it heavy and full-bodied at its finest.
There is a familiarity with the wine largely in part that the grapes have been a part of their Landmark Wines in the past. I have included the newsletter that expands on that along with the other 2 varietals.
My peers and some of the staff saw my reaction to the tasting. It was genuine and that’s what the wine tasting experience should be all about. What works for one may for another, but where is the fun in that? It’s good that our palates and our tastes are all over the place. We all don’t love the same grapes, the same aromas, and the same notes, and that makes this journey phenomenal.
This was a laid-back atmosphere and the crowd seemed a tad smaller than usual. Which makes me think most folks would be attending the Saturday party. But nevertheless, the Petit Verdot is one for the ages. The suggestion is optimal tasting will be in two years. I will be waiting a while to open this one. And the event will symbolize the genius of this wine. I’ll know when to uncork.
For more info on joining their wine club, click here.
A huge thanks to Justine, Gerry, and Diane for being cordial as always.
Until the next party…