Bad Fontaine-Gagnard! Bad Fontaine-Gagnard! (Dec. 29, 2013)

The lineup - the murderer is the second from the left.

It's been a while since I caught up with Amir Sheinman, Hagit and Noam Koren and Oron Stern. At Bertie - where else?

Pierre Gimmonet, Fleuron, Brut, 1er Cru Blanc de Blancs, 2004

While I prefer my Champagnes a little drier and more focused, this is tasty. It's saline, full flavored, yet elegant, with flavors and aromas of apples, citrus, toast. Amir says Fleuron is the softest of the Gimmonet bottlings - sounds legit (although the 2002 wasn't that soft, but then, 2002 was likely a better vintage).

 Fat-Guy, about 400 NIS.

Domaine Fontaine-Gagnard, Chassagne-Montrachet Premier Cru, 2006

Simple, sweet, oxidized - and a good example of this domaine's ineptitude. I just can't say enough bad things about Fontaine-Gagnard, and, sadly, I too fell prey in the past to the youthful glamor that is likely the sleight of hand created by their excessive batonnage practices. Never again!

Wine Route, about 350 NIS - go for it, sadists! So glad my own stock is already spent.

Revello, Barolo, Vigna Giachini, 1999

Classic Barolo, earthy and deep, with juicy acidity and dry tannins, almost to a fault. Excellent and delicious, despite my misgivings about the tannins, with a nose that proclaims its roots in the upper echelons of Piedmont.

About 80 USD.

Jamet, Cote Rotie, 1997

I couldn't - didn't - get this at first. A ripe, spicy and meaty wine that at first had me guessing South Rhone, until a bretty stink pointed me northwards. A lush wine that gains length in glass. At first, the nose is more to my taste than the palate, but as it opens, it shows enough salinity to counterpoint the sweetness and becomes very delicious, sweet yet tasty.

Price unknown.