Saturday, November 27, 2021

Paul Jaboulet Aine Crozes-Hermitage Domaine Thalabert, 1980

Even though it's a Domaine Thalbert, I didn't have much hope for this wine. The cork had obviously leaked, leaving a stained capsule and considerable ullage. It is 41 years old, for crying out loud, and Robert Parker advised drinking it by 1985 or 1986. For a backup, I opened a bottle of 2011 J. Chave Crozes-Hermitage Silene. It didn't take me long to discover that the Thalabert is alive and kicking, as are most vintages of this wine from the 1980s.

The color has faded compared to the 2011 Silene, of course, but it is still rather dark and deep. Oh yes! The smell of a mature Thalabert always enchants me. Olives, herbs, black fruits, cassis and ash. Incredible nuances of mature Syrah. And these carry over to the flavors. Intense, deep and complex. Medium bodied, fine texture. This is a wine I could sniff and sip for hours without getting tired. For my second glass, I go to the 2011 Silene, along with the rest of the table. While it's a very fine wine, I still perfer the Thalabert, one of my favorite wines in every vintage since I started buying it in 1979.


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