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Oct 11, 2006 02:07 AM

Côte-Rôtie quandary

Am planning a birthday dinner for friends this weekend. The friends have never tasted a Côte-Rôtie and have requested that one be among the bottles opened. Which of the following would you consider the best introduction -- both representative of the appellation and closest to being ready to drink?

Rostaing's 1994 La Landonne
Jamet's 1995, 1996, 1997
Ogier's 1996
Gerin's 1996 Champin le Seigneur, 1996 Les Grandes Places

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  1. '96 wasn't that great a vintage in Cote-Rotie. Ones I've had have been pretty tough and tannic. '95 Jamet is too young. I haven't had the Rostaing. The '97 Jamet should be drinking very nicely. I also like Jamet as a producer. Most '97s are open and ready to go. That would be my choice.

    1. Hope this isn't too late to be useful.

      Like Larry, I'd skip the 96s. I've had quite a few in the last two or three years and they all lack charm. Plus, I'm not that fond of Gerin. I don't have any tasting experience with 97s so can't comment on those other than the reputation of the vintage. I do like Jamet a lot too.

      I cellared three bottles of the 1994 Rostaing "La Landonne". I opened the first one in 2001 for an Afghan dinner in a 1994 horizontal. It did not do well. While I don't recall the exact ranking it was close to the bottom. I remember it as thin, gangly, too acidic, and when it was unblinded, I was beside myself that it showed so poorly.

      Then I opened the second one 2 years ago. This was an entirely different creature! This was very harmonious, lush and silky on the palate with great depth and expressiveness. It was still a little young, but it showed the breed that one would expect of this producer and cuvee.

      I have one more bottle and I've been thinking that it might be time to drink the last one. The two additional years in the cellar should be just about right to catch it at peak.

      So, I hope that you'll open yours and let us know how it shows.