Charity Dinner at the Hay-Adams Hotel, Washington, DC
Sadly, the food from the restaurant at Hay-Adams was mediocre, but the wines made up for it. I have already referred to the great 1989 Laville-Haut Brion, a youthful, vigorous wine with 40 years of longevity. The 1995 Kistler Chardonnay Cuvée Cathleen is vibrant, full-bodied, gorgeously textured, ripe, and complex Chardonnay that probably has another five years of life left in it. The youthfulness of the 1982 Bordeaux continues to amaze even me. Not surprisingly, from large format bottles, they taste like four or five-year-old wines. Both the 1982 Lynch-Bagesand 1982 Ducru-Beaucaillou, from imperials, were decanted well in advance, but were still ruby/purple to the rim and hardly evolved. The axiom that wine ages better and longer in large format bottles certainly was vindicated at this tasting.
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Petit Louis Bistro
A lookalike, authentic French bistro, Petit Louis in Baltimore's Roland Park is the creation of restauranteurs par excellence Cindy Wolf and Tony Foreman. You feel like you’ve walked into a bistro on the Left Bank of Paris when you enter Petit Louis. The food is classic bistro, and they do it well. All of the courses we had were flavorful, sometimes a trifle rustic, but delicious in their intensity. This was good comfort food prepared extremely well. The wines started with one of the major surprises for me over the last year, the 2006 sparking wine from Tony Soter in Oregon. I had this several times while I was out visiting Oregon, and I had always been impressed, but this is a 10-year-old sparking Rosé that is just sensational, and I’m talking world class—it’s that good. Something this good from France would cost at least two to three times as much, so kudos to Tony Soter. The 1995 Billaud-Simon Chablis Mont de Milieu was oxidized and undrinkable. The 1996 Zind-Humbrecht Pinot Gris Clos St. Urbain Rangen de Thann was sweet, and although it went well with the foie gras, it was just a little too unctuous and sweet a wine...