This year, after a brief California hiatus in 2016, ThanksGavin returned to Philadelphia last year — and continues in 2018 at my cousin Matt and his wife Andrea’s place.
From my cellar: 2006 Domaine des Comtes Lafon Meursault 1er Cru Charmes. BH 93. This is quite a bit riper though there is no overt exoticism present with aromas of peach, spiced pear and apricot that merge into exceptionally rich and relatively big flavors blessed with ample amounts of palate coating dry extract that completely buffer the firm spine of ripe acidity and intense finishing minerality. This is balanced and driving with a linear finish that slowly fans out as it lingers. Superb.
The infamous caponata.
From my cellar: NV Paul Bara Champagne Grand Cru Grand Rosé. BH 90. Oeil de perdrix color introduces a fresh and mildly fruity nose of strawberry and raspberry scents where additional breadth is present in the form of yeast and citrus nuances. The cool and relatively crisp middle weight flavors possess good if not better depth before culminating in a relatively dry finish that is shaped by moderately firm effervescence. This is certainly very pretty but not particularly deep.
From my cellar: 2003 Gros Frère et Sœur Grands-Echezeaux. BH 89-92. This too is very toasty but the spicy black fruit nose manages to transcend the wood and complements powerful, dense, borderline massive flavors of superb depth, all wrapped in dusty, firm and ripe tannins. This is a big wine and while it’s no model of elegance, one has to admire the muscle and sheer concentration. This will take its time coming around.
Raw cranberry salsa — my least favorite but some love it.
My mom’s cranberry chutney with a bit of citrus and cayenne — probably my favorite.
From my cellar: 1999 Paitin di Pasquero-Elia Barbaresco Vecchie Vigne Sorì Paitin. AG 92. The 1999 Barbaresco Sorì Paitin Vecchie Vigne is dark, powerful and opulent, with more than enough stuffing to age well for the better part of the next decade. Smoke, menthol, tar, black fruit and French oak blossom in the glass as this resonant, exuberant Barbaresco show off its unique, totally compelling personality. The French oak is present, but well balanced at the same time.
The turkey and stuffing plate!
From my cellar: 1975 Dow Porto Vintage. 93 points. Very nicely developed and it is drinking perfectly now.
Tower of sweets including Grandmom’s (recipe) brownies and blondies. Plus the every popular Jagielky candy’s.
Overall, the best ThanksGavin food yet, even beating out the awesome 2017! It usually is, as the standards keep going up and up!