Wednesday, 9 June 2010

A few nice wines from the last week or so

I've been slack, this week, having not posted for 5 days. I've not been lazy - honest, Guv - I've just been too busy with lots of other stuff. So here's a round-up of some interesting wines tasted and/or consumed over the last week or so, beginning with an interesting quartet from just another week at Nottingham Wine Circle.

Meursault-Genevrieres Cuvée Philippe-Le-Bon 1984 Hospices de Beaune
Yellow/gold and perhaps turning just a bit oxidised, but still hanging on nicely. Rich, lemony, mineral and just so Burgundy! Nice grip and nice length - a lovely old wine.

Bonnezeaux 1980 Rene Renou
This was a stunner - petrol, lime oil, wet wool and slate on the nose. On the palate, it had such amazing acidity, with the sweetness just beginning to fade, revealing a herby, slatey, zingy wine with gorgeous lemon and lime flavours. Lots of secondary/none wine-specific things going on too. 30 years old and just perfect.

Bourgogne Rouge 1990 Madame Leroy
Earthy, smoky, still very fruity, with forest fruits and undergrowth - a glorious perfume. Complex and still fruity on the palate. Elegant and very feminine. A glorious example of a "basic" Burgundy from a top, top grower, which is just fantastic to drink now, but with years of life left in it.

Corton-Pougets Grand Cru 1991 Louis Jadot
If it hadn't followed the above wine, this one might have stood out more - but it paled in comparison somewhat. Smoky, secondary, earthy. Bigger and less refined than the Leroy, though still a very enjoyable old Burg.

Carrying on the Pinot theme at home the following evening, I opened this little beauty. The colour is ultra-pale for a red wine - almost a deep-ish rosé, in fact, with hints of ruby and tawny. The nose is spectacular - wild strawberries and raspberries, with notes of brioche and rotting leaves, cinnamon and herby nuances. There is a hint of woodiness, but at the cedar end of the spectrum, rather than full-on oak, suggesting careful use of older barrels.The palate is a mélange of strawberry, raspberry and peach, with even a hint of lychee, all coated in a big dollop of fresh cream - a wonderful combination. What tannin remains is like velvet, and there is plenty of mouth-watering acidity (bordering on VA, which is just fine by me). A wonderful wine, from a wonderful grower. Incidentally, it actually goes brilliantly with milk chocolate!
Available on my website at £21.50.

Domaine de Montesquiou Jurançon Sec 2005
Some fabulous weather last weekend made me crave for something zingy and refreshing, but just a little bit serious - and Jurançon Sec fit the bill. This has turned a lovely golden colour, shiny and limpid. The nose is quite beguiling, offering a combination of lime zest, marmalade, honeysuckle, oregano and wet stone – you really can smell the minerality. The palate has a certain richness of flavour, with subtle hints of toffee and honey, yet is so zingy, lemony and laser sharp that it remains brilliantly focused and tightly-knit. It really is intense, mouth-watering stuff, and actually seems to have a good few years of development left. It also happens to be an excellent advert for DIAM corks – the one in this bottle remains in perfect condition and has obviously done a great job in preserving the wine. All-in-all, this wine provided a lovely surprise and a wonderful pick-me-up on a balmy early summer’s evening. What a shame it was my last bottle!

Heathfield Ridge Patrick Cabernet Sauvignon 1998 Coonawarra
After presenting a tasting of my wines to a local group, I popped into the Lincolnshire Poacher, to see a couple of people at the Wine Circle and stayed to sample a few of the wines in the weekly "bottle blind" tasting. There were some nice wines, but one that appealed to me in particular was this lovely Coonawarra Cab. Which is surprising, because I don't have much time for Australian wines, these days. But this one isn't a big blockbuster. It screams Coonawarra, simply because it possesses a relatively light touch, in that it has some elegance and bags of acidity (along with the ever-present mint and eucalyptus leaf aromas and flavours) and even a refreshing touch of "greenness". There's plenty of tangy, almost red cherry fruit, with a bit of blackcurrant, and lots of leafy, earthy flavours. There is some oak influence, but it is relatively subtle and restrained. Some of the others didn't care for it, but for me it made a refreshing change from the (usually) 90-odd percent European wines we tend to taste at the Wine Circle and it had a good degree of elegance and charm. Sometimes one simply has to appreciate that Australian wines are, well..... Australian. Put simply, no other county makes wines like them, and there are obviously still a few Aussie wines out there to please even the most conservative of palates - and this one certainly pleased me. I must try more Australian wines.

Diane and I are off to France tomorrow, for a well-earned holiday, leaving the house in the "capable" hands of my boys. I just hope we have a house to come back to after they've finished with it!

Keep watching, as (Internet access permitting) I'll be posting plenty of stuff to do with both wine and the places/people we'll be visiting.


Bernard said...

the Bourgogne Rouge 1990 Madame Leroy was simply amazing and probably one of the best burg i've had for a long time.
weather's looking good for the next few days where you're going.
have a good time.

Graham said...

Trust your heading straight for the Languedoc (or no doubt Roussillon given how fashion prevails these days).
Have a great holiday.