An ongoing gathering of the exquisite, fun, and hard-to-find,
for the hard-to-buy-for friend on your list.
Like you, I’m on a zillion email lists. Much of it typically goes unread. A fair bit of it is wine porn. But a recent email from Morrell’s, the famous high-end retailer located (physically) just across the sidewalk from the Rockefeller Center ice-skating rink and the Christmas tree and Liz Lemon’s office, got my attention.
“For today’s offer,” it begins, innocently enough, “we have dug deep into the cellar to bring you a selection of wines that range between 18 and 101 years of age plus a very rare selection of spirits that date back to 1904—that’s 117 years old!”
I put that boldface in myself. Because, well, that’s not something you see every day.
I was fortunate recently to dine out with some old friends and, feeling the festiveness of reuniting at a decent restaurant, we splurged on a 1994 Pomerol. More specifically, it was a Chateau Petit Village. Over time, the wine and vintage have received mixed reviews, but the provenance on this one had to have been correct. The somm assured us it was drinking well and it did not disappoint—far from it. The bottle was a reminder of the profound pleasures of aged wine, properly stored (and, it may be added, properly served).
Among the terms often associated with senior citizen wines is “resolved,” and that’s generally a touch negative. But this bottle had become certain, the other side of the coin. The wine, as my pal put it to me, “knows who it is.” Beautiful, settled, and still gloriously alive.
But I digress. On to some of the oldie goodies from Morrell’s.
Perhaps there’s someone you love a lot, born in 1973. Consider, then, the 700ml bottle of the limited release “43 Year Old Islay Single Malt” from Bowmore, sure to be drinking well right about this holiday season, and just $12,000.
If you’re content to just come close to the birth year, there’s a 1974 Barolo from the legendary Mascarello, knocked down from $1,012 to $869. A wine like that is a bit of a crapshoot; it might well be unspeakably exquisite (back then, they were made to lay down longer) or utterly gone.
There’s a 1947 d’Yquem. Several whiskies from 1916; a small flock of 1982 Bordeaux, many in large format; a scattering of 100-pointers of various stripes; a pair of 1988 Barbarescos from Gaja (and, a case of Lafite Rothschild from that year); a 97-point, 1995 Chateau de Beaucastel Chateauneuf-du-Pape Grand Cuvee Hommage a Jacques Perrin, in Jereboam…
You get the picture. Now get shopping!