This isn't a review, not even close. But, I got to taste this Peconic Bay Vineyards 1986 Cabernet Sauvignon last night, and it was bound to inspire a post of some sort, right?
I guess I could have waited until next week's What We Drank post, but sometimes I'm just not that patient.
Last night, I was joined by more than a dozen members of the local wine community at a tremendous dinner I helped organize at one of the North Fork's top restaurants, Luce Hawkins.
Modeled after a dinner I attended in the Finger Lakes over a year ago, it's a chance for winemakers, winery owners, general managers and other winery folks to get together, drink some (hopefully) good wines and have a great time. Everyone brought a bottle and we tasted them blind with chef Keith Luce's delicious, locally driven cuisine.
We tasted an array of wines from many regions. There were Napa cabernet sauvignons from 1996 and 1997 that ,at around 13% abv, made me wonder if I could have been a Napa fan in a different era.
Some brought their own wine, including two not-yet-released 2007 red blends that are already showing well and promise to be special well into the future.
We tasted a baby (2007) Chateauneuf-du-Pape that need time, some Nahe Spatlese riesling, a red blend from Paso Robles, a California chardonnay that many of us pegged as White Burgundy (and good White Burgundy at that), and several more unique and interesting wines.
One winemaker even brought a bottle of the 2010 Governor's Cup Winner, which I found underwhelming and lacking acidity.
My "wine of the night" though was this cabernet. Even if it had turned to vinegar by now, tasting a local wine this old — and this is one of the oldest I've had — is always fun for a local wine geek like myself.
But guess what? It wasn't vinegar. Not even close.
In fact, if I had tasted it blind like the others, I probably wouldn't have guessed that it was as old as it was. There was even some fruit left, with lots of licorice and earthy-herbal notes — and some liveliness on the palate too. I'm not saying it could go another 15 years, but I think someone sitting near me was right when he said "If this were old Bordeaux, we'd be going nuts right now."