I went to dinner with a great friend from Hong Kong last night and Florentine vintner Francesco Mazzei at a "funky town," tiny restaurant in Florence called Tre Panche. The owner works in the 18-seat restaurant with his wife and it’s almost impossible to get a seat. I called a few days before for a table and they were all booked up. I guess Mazzei has more pull?
In fact, I teased the restaurant owner about it during the dinner because he said to me in Italian that "it depends" when I asked for a table reservation. I thought he meant that it depended who I knew so I laid on lots of names, including the owner of the Florence soccer team! I guess it was lost in translation, yet again. He meant that it depended on what time I wanted to go! Oh well …
Anyway, we brought a couple of bottles to dinner. I brought a 1999 La Conseillante, which was really impressive despite that it was slightly corked. What a shame because it had a wonderful depth of fruit to it for this forgotten vintage. I must try to taste a good bottle soon.
The other wine was served blind by my buddy. I had no idea what it was and neither did Mazzei. But I thought it was Cabernet-based and Bordeaux. Sure enough. It was very tight and powerful with loads of black currant, spices, mint and eucalyptus. It was full, fresh and silky. It was very, very classy. I thought it was Médoc and perhaps 1995. Great stuff. 95 points, unofficially. In fact, it was 1985 Margaux!
We were so happy with the wine. It was so wonderful to drink. And it went very well with my slightly overdone breaded veal with arugula and diced tomatoes.
We were all talking about the wine market and how prices can be crazy for trophy wines like Margaux. And how it is possible that brand new vintages are now more expensive than wines with more than two decades of bottle age, like the 1985 Margaux. It just doesn’t make sense.
I guess Italian was not the only thing that was lost in the translation last night.
Marc Robillard — Montreal,Canada — July 20, 2009 10:30am ET
James Suckling — — July 20, 2009 11:25am ET
Dr J Rosenblatt — Montreal, Canada — July 20, 2009 4:11pm ET
Trevor Witt — Waterloo, Ontario, Canada — August 23, 2009 8:45pm ET
Dr J Rosenblatt — Montreal, Canada — August 28, 2009 12:18am ET
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