Sunday Night Dinner: The Return of The One Word Tasting Notes

Certainly, it can be said, that one word from the right person is worth more than 1000s from someone you don’t trust. In my continuing war against the tasting note (which i may or may not be doing well on, you tell me, dear reader) i will reserve a soft spot for the one word tasting note. Originally conceived by one of my favorite bloggers Lyle Fass at rockssandfruit (at least on the internet, or at least that is where i first saw it, please inform me if credit is not going where credit is due, but for now, Lyle gets the nod) it’s a concept that is more akin to conversation than writing. Hardly anyone launches into a paragraph long explanation of black cherries and wildflowers when you’re talking to them in person, but they will often say that a wine is simply “good” and if it’s the right person, that’s all you’ll need to get interested (this assumes that you trust me).

Most of these wines were drank at a dinner at a friends house, some were drunk at my last night at Terroir, and others still when chatting with Joe Dressner. Some of these are just bad free association, so pay them no mind if you want. All the wines (except one) i could simply describe as “good.”

NV Vouette et Sorbee Blanc d’Argile: Rich
2007 Jean Foillard Cuvee du Corcalette: Dusk
2004 Rollin Pernand Vergelesses 1er Cru “Sous-Fretille”: Outlined
2004 Paolo Bea San Valentino: Off
1985 Morey 1er Cru “les perrieres” (i haven’t a clue if i got that right. no reason to write stuff down during a dinner like this): Ahhhhh
1994 Donnhoff something i can’t remember: Marvelous, nay this one gets two words “fucking marvelous”
2000 Overnoy Savagnin: Heliotropic
2008 Puzelat Brin de Chevre: Good
2008 Chateau Musar Cuvee Rouge: Recondite
NV Lassaigne: Motrix

And finally, a wine that can’t really be summed up in this way was a 1999 Vallette “Clos du Mr. Noly” graciously opened by Luc at work. This is, to put it lightly, a “strange” wine. Chardonnay allowed to botrytize and then kept in barrels for 4 years so it oxidizes. When people speak of “extreme” (i hate that word) winemaking, they should be talking about this, because hardly any other wine comes as close. We opened it, and at first it was wonderful, strange, aromatic. Fifteen minutes later, weird and undrinkable. Almost down the drain, but into the fridge for science. Two hours later it was singing, shedding all the fucked up acid and getting some minerality back (burgundian even). One hour after that, dead and gone. If you ever get a chance and have some time, try this wine. Even if you don’t like it, it’s well worth the experience.

~ by Cory Cartwright on March 4, 2010.

7 Responses to “Sunday Night Dinner: The Return of The One Word Tasting Notes”

  1. I loved the couple of Valette bottles I’ve had at Terroir. Tho they weren’t the strange roller coaster ride you had. In fact, there was more finesse than any other oxidized whites I’ve had. I heard they aren’t imported here anymore…a real shame.

  2. Another great skirmish in the war, Cory. I’d say a victory, but who the hell am I?

    Anyway, the next step is an even more economical form of tasting note. I do remember a J.D. Considine (was it him? Damn, I’m old!) review of a record by the Eighties’ bullshit supergroup GTR (members of Yes, Air Supply, Genesis, Judas Priest and Weird Al Yankovic were in it, I think) which simply read: “SHT.”


  3. I don’t mean to be an obnoxious stickler or grammar obsessive, but you’re a really talented writer, yet your usage in one instance is to me like nails on a chalkboard. The form of the verb “drink” as used above in the first sentence of paragraph two must be the past participle “drunk,” not “drank.” Minor I know, but it’s like seeing the phrase “were took” instead of “were taken.” Sorry if I seem like a huge asshole for pointing this out. Oh, and your blog is really fantastic. I wish I drank a fraction of the cool wines you’ve experienced.

    • Aaron: Well done! I’ve often had the urge to point out typos in posts, but have never dared to do so!!!! (I also work as a translator/reviewer and I can spot a typo from 5 yds!!!).
      Excellent interesting blog.

  4. Good catch.

  5. And vinosambiz, never be afraid to correct someone. bloggers don’t have editors, so it’s nice to be reminded to slow down and double check our work.

  6. The Overnoy was the Ploussard? Savagnin? Chard? Just curious… missing having readier access to them.

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