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Jun 16, 2007 11:32 AM

1997 vintage recommendations

I have a wedding anniversary and was thinking of surprising my husband with a 1997 bottle of wine, the year of our wedding. Any recommendations? I was leaning towards Champagne, but not tied to that idea.

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  1. I know 1996 was the great vintage of the decade for Champagne, but don't think 1997 was particularly good.

    If you both like California cabernet, the 1997 Silver Oak, Alexander Valley was exceptional.

    1. '97 was an amazing year for Napa and you should have no problem picking up a decent Cab from the area that will show quite well.

      On the high-end scale, think Silver Oak, Stags Leap, or any of the big names from that ilk. I fondly recall Rabbit Ridge's Aventura (a Cab/Sangiovese blend) was astonishing and that was before Rabbit Ridge plummeted. Gundlach Bundschu's Vintage Reserve still rings true as one of the best wines I've ever had and while possibility not available as a 750ml, I know they have magnums of the wine (thanks for reminding me, actually - I think I'll buy one!).

      2 Replies
      1. re: Carrie 218

        The 1997 Rabbit Ridge Aventura, remains one of my favorite bottles of wine of all time. I bought 2 cases initially and have been hording my final bottle, I wish I could find more.

        1. re: Carrie 218

          rabbit ridge's winemaker, erich russell, also made a very good 97 cab under his own name.

        2. '97 was a very good year for Alsace. If you're leaning towards something sweet, a late harvest or noble rot Tokay Pinot Gris or Gerwurztraminer can be excellent. Trimbach and Zind Humbrecht are good producers.

          1. 1997 was a stellar year for Brunello de Montalcino. Happy anniversary!

            3 Replies
            1. re: oolah

              This is the ticket. 1997 was the "harvest of the century" in Italy and most of Europe. That year, without question, is one of the single greatest years ever for Brunello, especially the Riservas. The 1997 Biondi Santi Brunello Riserva was one of the greatest wines I've ever tasted in my life. [wine geek talking] Expensive, though, and other '97 Brunello Riservas would also work. Tell us what you decide to buy. Happy ten years!

              1. re: maria lorraine

                hello, from what you're saying, the '97 Brunellos are peaking now? I had a couple of different '97 Chianti Classico riservas last year that were very pleasing, if the Brunellos are too pricey that's another option (food match up another factor of course). cheers

              2. re: oolah

                and also for Chianti Classico Riserva!

              3. What great suggestions! I'm glad we got married in such a good year. I'll check some of these out and report back on the decision.

                2 Replies
                1. re: gatordoc

                  1997, above all, was a great year in Italy. Barolos, Brunellos.... one of the greatest Italian vintages that we'll probably see in our lifetime.

                  California Cabernet also excellent and the Vintage Port's not bad either.

                  1. re: Chicago Mike

                    I tend to like 1999 from Tuscany better than 1997 -- 1997 seems more "international" in style, while 1999 is an excellent representation of how very good Sangiovese can be. 2004 is looking really good too...especially Rosso di Montalcino, which when good, is one of the best values in wine...I know you know this ; )