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Showing posts from November, 2006

Waveney Hospice Care charity fundraising tasting.

Fifteen wines turned out to be a few too many for this event, probably because I was asked (at the last moment) to make it a tutored tasting. The Beckers' Crémant d'Alsace (out of stock) impressed, as always, as a better-than-most-champagnes-at-half-the-price. Good yeasty character and elegant mousse. The white Rioja Reserva from Bodegas Hermanos Laredo is very much a wine for people who like the flavour of oak although I am convinced this will
soften in time leaving the fruit (quite sweet and robust) to shine.

The two reds from MarcoMaci both impressed: the Barocca is a light red that doesn't knock you off your feet but has a lovely elegance and surprising length - it keeps going long after most wines in the same bracket have disappeared without making any great impression. This one, however, has a lot of food friendliness (it went pretty well with most of the tapas that was being served alongside the tasting) probably because of its apparent (but certainly nor unbearable) …

The Reform Club Wine Pool dinner

To start, a couple of white wines then with the starter(!), Mas de Daumas Gassac, Vin de Pays de l'Hérault 2001 is showing spectacularly well with lots of brambly fruit. Definitely Cabernet but quite plummy at the same time, it fills out the mouth with a lovely warm fruitiness and has quite a dense structure: a meal in itself.

With lamb (the main course) the Bastide Blanche, Bandol 2000 "Estagnol" started out a tannic brute when opened and decanted a couple of hours beforehand but by the time it was served it had softened a lot allowing the fruit to come forward (it makes me want to try the "Fontanieu" again to see how it's shaping up). It has that elegance that mature, ripe French Mourvèdre does so well. The high point of the evening wine-wise, though, has to be Beaucastel's 2000Châteauneuf-du-Pape, very rich and complex: an experience rather than a myriad of flavours and structural elements.

With the trio of desserts, the fortified red Raste…

ASDW's second wine tasting

The second ASDW tasting arrives. As usual, I seem to be the only merchant interested in trying others' wines! There is a good Gattinara from one of my colleagues and another has some palatable Australian wines (don't get me started!).

Of my own line-up, the Roussannes from Domaine des Anges and Raymond Usseglio came through superbly as I rather suspected they would and I found Xavier Vignon's "Lili" has really come together: a few months ago the Viognier was knocking everything else out of the picture but today it was working in real harmony with the Roussanne element, the Marsanne providing a good spicy backbone. The real stars for me were Domaine de Cristia's 2003 Châteauneuf-du-Pape, big and beefy and just beginning to drink well now and Luigi Einaudi's stunning 1999 Barolo from the Cannubi vineyard, all oak and fruit to start with but with coffee and chocolate emerging throughout the day (the better-priced 2003 Barbera was rather good too, a…