A new grape for us! We picked this bottle of 1995 Hop Kiln Valdiguie up on our honeymoon while at Hop Kiln. They had taken a few cases out of their library to release the day we were there and we thought we’d take home a bottle. Overall, only 400 cases of this wine were produced and we had never heard of the varietal, so we were sold.
On the nose I found spicy raspberries, with the fruit being oddly fresh for a 12 year old wine. I expected the fruit to be duller and more muted given the age, but no, it was as if the raspberries were fresh off the bush. I also found fresh black cracked pepper which was where the kicking spice of this wine really seemed to come from.
I decanted because I read on CellarTracker that it was spicy, but I think that was a characteristic of the wine, not an aging thing. We also drank this outside the window suggested by CellarTracker…it said through 2006….we’re not that far off, right?
In the mouth there were fresh strawberries and fresh raspberries (can you tell yet that I am impressed by the fresh flavors in this wine?) And more spice, mostly the black pepper, but something else I can’t put my finger on. We had a weird thought on this wine. The fruit was really fresh on the front of the palate, but then it dropped off in the middle and finish, as if someone had poured water into it in the middle of the sip. I realize that sounds incredibly strange, but I can’t really think of a better way to describe it.
The verdict? Certainly not worth the $50 price tag. It lacked depth and complexity for a wine at that price point. Not sure we actually paid that much, as I think we got a 20% club discount, but even at $40, too much money for too little wine.