Sunday, December 23, 2007

Mini Vertical #3: 2000 vs. 2001 Quinta Quietud

Getting out of the house, but not getting away from my cellar, we decided on an early sitting at Toucheh, a local BYO resto known for great food at a reasonable price. To match the Iranian/Italian inspired fare I brought two Spanish reds, in keeping with my mini-vertical theme.

The 2000 Quinta Quietud comes from Toro, a Spanish appellation down river from Ribera del Duero. This wine, 100% tempranillo (Tino de Toro), was bright cherry red in the glass. Oaky and peppery on the nose at first - crisper fruit and more subtle - it later showed some plum, white cherries, rose, hay, mint and coffee. Very dry, with fresh acidity and supple tannins, it was a bit awkward and less balanced. Very enjoyable, but less complex than the 2001 below. Drink now.
cork. 14.3% alcohol
Score: 17/20
Price: $39.75 (SAQ)

The 2001 Quinta Quietud was a deep, dark cherry red (much darker than 2000) and very aromatic. Lots going on - spicy at first, supported by attractive violet, blackberry, strawberry, cherry, oak, earth, pepper, tea and smoke aromas. The spiciness continued on the palate. Very dry, with ripe berry fruit and ample oak, it had a nice backbone of firm tannin and fresh acidity. Elegant, harmonius, with a very long finish, this wine could use much more time in the cellar. My type of Spanish red - dry, spicy and beautifully textured. Great price.
cork. 14.5% alcohol
Score: 18/20
Price: $30.75 (SAQ)

For dessert I brought a Jurancon Sec, the 2005 Domaine Cauhape "Symphonie de Novembre". Golden yellow in the glass, the nose was all apples, quince, pears, cantaloupe and fig. Honey, green melon and apples on the palate, it had a nice bitterness and acidity on the finish. Rich, smooth, balanced, it was not too sweet, viscous, or fruity. Terrific.
cork. 14.5% alcohol
Score: 17/20
Price: $38.00 (SAQ)

I highly recommend Toucheh - the chef came to our table and explained the fine selection of 10 different entrees (incl. some vegetarian), and service was very attentive. But don't count on them to be wine nuts - the glassware was weak and there were no decanters (I brought my own) to be seen, but they did bring an ice bucket for the Cauhape. Not a problem, just prepare yourself.


David McDuff said...

Nice post, Joe. I wrote up the 2002 Quietud for WBW 35 back in July and found it quite good. The 2003, on the other hand, is a bit over the top in its fruit and alcohol, no doubt the effects of a hot, dry vintage in an already hot, dry region.

Joe said...

Hi David. I just saw your post - I went for the plastic bull and you pulled a Quietud?! I am surprised the 2002 was that good - wasn't that supposed to be a horrible vintage? I am very curious as the 2002 is in the stores here right now ($32.75). I may pass on the '03 given your description.

David McDuff said...

Don't fall into the vintage chart trap, Joe. Vintage can operate as a rough guide when selecting wines from unknown estates but I try never to overlook wines from proven estates because of a "bad" vintage. Good farming and conscientious wine making can overcome all but the most disastrous conditions.

Joe said...

Hi David - I am not fussed about the Vintage charts per se. I mostly avoid really bad vintages, but I will buy even those if someone recommends a wine, or if I am trying to build a vertical, love the maker, etc. I will post my thoughts on vintages at the end of my mini-vertical week. Cheers!

RougeAndBlanc said...

I like your photos of wine bottles on the snow, and this one is the best. Very clean presentation and the bottles just jump out on the clean white snow.
Cheers and happy holidays.

Joe said...

Hi Andrew. The snow seems to be a photographer's friend, providing a nice backdrop and scattered light. I am having fun with these. Cheers, and all the best to you in 2008.