1995 Paul Jaboulet Aîné Hermitage La Chapelle (France, Rhône, Northern Rhône, Hermitage)

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France, Hermitage, Northern Rhône, Red Wine, Rhône, Syrah

This is the kind of wine that excites me. As good as the Bressler was that preceded this, the La Chapelle was a screaming wine. For one thing, it kept evolving in the glass over hours. And I mean that in a good way. It showed different nuances at different stages, but it was always delicious. An amazing amount of blackberry and black currant fruit was perfectly balanced by a beautiful acid structure, and lovely tannins. Meat juices, bacon fat, earth, black olives, black pepper and cold smoke were obvious flavors and aromas. The La Chapelle was very juicy and sappy…not unlike a nice Burgundy in that way. It is worth mentioning that I had the 1990 only last weekend and this bottle (the finest of three or four I have had the privilege of tasting) was almost as good as the 1990 I tasted the weekend prior. Surely, the fact that this bottle was pristine had something to do with it. I wish I had a few more of this one. I can only imagine what this will be like in 5-10 years when it will truly drink at peak.

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I am not a professional wine taster, nor do I have any professional training in the wine trade. I am a wine enthusiast who has spent countless hours tasting wines of many different styles. My palate is not aligned with a single wine critic, and I call all wines "as I taste them". My site is a source of tasting notes and wine recommendations as well as warnings without conflict of interest. You'll just have to figure out how your palate aligns with mine. My palate generally tends to veer towards Old-World wines that put a premium on terroir and lovely balance and finesse, rather than raw power...please keep that in mind as you read my notes.

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