Saturday Night Tasting Chez Ido Meir (Nov. 15, 2008)

Willi Schaefer, Mosel-Saar-Ruwer, Graacher Domprobst, Spatlese, 2005

This wine reminded Ran Shapira of the Jos. Christoffel 1994 Spatlese we all love dearly and we all walked into the same trapdoor with him, agreeing with him. At least we got Mosel right, but how did three responsible adults who drink German Rieslings regularly screw up the vintage so badly? Excuses, excuses: I'm not saying it's aged prematurely but the fruit isn't upfront anymore and while there's no petrol aromas, there's enough dill notes to suggest age. In hindsight, I found some apple pie and dough to suggest youthful yeasts, but hindsight is worthless. I would say it's delicate enough and the alcohol low enough that its utter drinkability fooled us all.

Price unknown.

Gaja, Barolo, Gromis, 2000

We serve the wines at our tastings blind and the sport is to try to identify them and you don't really want your wine to be identified too quickly. This was my wine and when, two sentences into his anlysis of the wine, Amir Sheinman said it reminded him of the Gromis, I blanched. A wine of two minds in that its nose is very modern and barrique-infested while the palate has length, depth, terrific acidity and an Old World personality. Actually, I'm a bit harsh in my short depiction of the nose: it's not as outstandingly oak-ish as my mini-rant may read, it's just that when you taste the excellent fruit, you realize a more introverted winemaking style would have produced more complex aromatics. Drinking well, albeit needing time in glass. And food.

Imported by WineRoute, sold for 250 NIS-ish about three years ago.

Chateau Canon, Saint Emilion, 1990

I thought it was a super-Tuscan and when Amir wanted to know why, my logic was very convoluted. The thing is, I really know shit about Bordeaux but Ran Shapira can usually spot the village and I can often reverse-engineer his logic and spot the specifics that led to his deduction. But this wine seemed lack a certain specificity at first, despite its obvious quality, and I had a hunch Ran wouldn't be able to place it. Not the clearest of thought processes, I admit, so I was relieved when Ran confirmed that, had he not known what the wine was, he probably wouldn't have been able to make a successful guess. It's very elegant with few Cabernet Franc green notes and keeps unfolding and undressing, showing chocolate and leather. A winner.

Price unknown.