Wine dinner at St Bernard's Crescent 28/06/1999 (TNB)Brief notes as usual, because of cooking, etc!
- Schlossbockelheimer Kupfergrube Spatlese 1975 (Staat Dom.) Ullaged, dodgy cork, oxidised.
- Rauenthaler Rothenberg spatlese 1983 (von Simmern) Good fruit, appley acidity, nice length. Surprisingly evolved though. Almost 4-star quality, but perhaps just a good
- Pouilly Fuisse 1969 (Latour) Very pleasant old chardonnay, acceptably vegetal and quite fat. (Magnum)
- Chassagne Montrachet Premier Cru 1969 (Ch de Maltroye) Very classy, lovely tertiary flavours, yet almost fresh fruit. One might guess it as 86 blind. Nice acidity.
- Pavie 1966 Corked, but suggests class underneath. (Magnum)
- Siran 1953 Lovely, delicate, fragrant, perfumed wine. I enjoyed this as much as anything, but perhaps objectively
- Lannesan 1953 Chunky, still tannic, rustic wine. Suggests it might need another few years(!) Certainly impressive.
- Haut Brion 1966 Very fine, medium weight, smoky, complex. A leafyness about the fruit stopped it being an absolute star for me, excellent though it is.
- Ferreira 1958 A bit weak and clearly fading. Drinkable though.
- Sandeman 1958 More interesting nose, but very spirity on the palate.
- Port Dow 1970 Young seeming, dense, concentrated, excellent. Needs some years.
- Champagne Charlie 1979 (Heidsieck) Lovely mousse, fine fruit, completely fresh and alive but with the complexity of age. Really good!
Tasting notes added to Fine Wine Diary 28/06/1999 Return to top
Niepoort at Raeburn Fine Wines 27/06/1999 (TNB)
- LBV 1995 (Niepoort) Cherry, chocolate, coffee. Attractive nose. Round, fruity, nicely balanced. (This is the more or less the grapes that would have been the vintage 95, if declared.)
- LBV 1994 (Niepoort) Softer - a bit duller although perhaps a stronger wine in some ways.
- Quinta do Passodouro 1997 (Niepoort) Large-scaled, soft, but with ripe, tannic background. Very good.
- Quinta do Passodouro 1992 (Niepoort) Fine, elegant. A bit closed now. Probably even
- Five components from which Niepoort 1997 was blended, tasted for interest: (1) Slightly leafy - warm climate herbs, lighter in the mouth; (2) Deeper, cherry fruit. mouthfilling, jammy, shortish; (3) Lovely blackberry fruit, cherry later in the palate, multidimensional, nice balance; (4) Liquorice and menthol, good long palate, lots of backbone; (5) Warm, almost toffeed, bags of fruit.
- Port 1997 (Niepoort) Slight smokyness, herby notes. Most of the best individual features of the component wines are present almost unattenuated in the blend. Seems very promising: Niepoort feel they have really hit the jackpot with this.
- Port 1985 (Niepoort) Something slightly animal, smokey complex nose. Seemed a shade light in the mouth, but that is probably just following the 97.
Tasting notes added to Fine Wine Diary 27/06/1999 Return to top
Rioja at the Atrium with "Wines from Spain" 24/06/1999 (TNB)All a bit dull I'm afraid: old names, some performing wellish, some not. Some pretty disgusting stuff, and some OK. Little better. Rioja needs a wake-up, hopefully without infecting it with "modern winemaking" or Parkerisation!
- Marques del Puerto Blanco, Joven 1997 Pleasant, slightly old-fashioned nutty palate. Not bad. (c. 5.25)
- Ygay Reserva Blanco, Murietta 1992 I'm not convinced this estate is what it once was, but this seems as you might hope. (7.99)
- Bodegas Sonsierra Tinto Joven 1998 Dull boiled-sweety modern stuff. (5.99)
- Frederico Paternina Crianza 94 Woody and drying. This is really rather poor. (c 5.99, and Safeway named as sole retail outlet.)
- Vina Pomal Reserva 1994 Better, tolerable length, and fault free. A bit dull though. (c. 8.99)
- Faustino V Reserva 1994 Very dirty, very evolved. Not at all good. (7.49)
- Marques de Riscal Reserva 1994 Much better, proper wine and reasonably priced at 7.99ish.
- Marques de Caceres Reserva 1991 Another fairly decent wine, with a bit of age. (c. 12.99) perhaps more
- Bordon Gran Reserva 1991 And back to one of those drying out, woody, "is it corked or is it just the house style" wines to finish.
Tasting notes added to Fine Wine Diary 24/06/1999 Return to top
- Savigny-les-Beaunes Tete de Cuvee 1996, Les Caves des Hautes Cotes Lacking fruit, but not lacking acidity. Terrible.
- Rocca Guicciarda 1996 Chianti Classico Riserva, Barone Ricasoli Good, but feeling a bit too alcoholic for perfect balance. Smokey fruit.
- Moscato d'Asti 1996, Cascinacastle't Opened this and the Sun promptly disappeared. I thought it might be suffering from age (the wine that is), but it was as fresh as I remember from last year.
Tasting notes added to Fine Wine Diary 20/06/1999 Return to top
- Vouvray Le Haut Lieu Sec 1988 (Huet) Just becoming mature: honey and grass - quite rich. Huet wines are so rarely disappointing.
- Erdener Treppchen Kabinet 1989 (Moenchof) "House white" at the moment at 4.99 a bottle from J&B's Centenary sale. Drinking well. 15 quid for this quality from anywhere remotely fashionable, whether French or New World! Easily
- Romeo, Colli Piacentini Gutturnio Riserva (Fugazza) 1990 Slightly unclean on opening, but dense blackberry fruit and nice acidity. (A Barbera mix, I seem to remember.) A wine of character. A Raeburn find from a less known part of Italy. Easily
- Palacio de Monsalud 1988 Old-fashioned, seems to have seen a few years in large casks. Done well though: mellow, but still good fruit. Pleasant drinking.
Tasting notes added to Fine Wine Diary 19/06/1999 Return to top
Oddbins Champapne & Sweeties 09/06/1999 (TNB)
- Dom Perignon 1988 Floral, yet oaky. Old-fashioned. Slightly off-dry. A bit soft overall. Certainly not showing terribly well at the moment. (Magnum) I suspect this will improve
- Taittinger 1990 Ripe, but excellent acidity. Classic, full-bodied. Excellent. (Magnum)
- Chardonnay 1990 Pol Roger Lightish-bodied, high acidity, apple crumble, decent finish. Fizz vanishes rather rapidly, however. I'm not sure about this but let's say
- Condrieu Eguets VT 1997 Cuilleron Fat, floral, a shade flabby, but dramatic, as usual. Good wine, but I'm not sure I'm a great fan of sweet Condrieu, and while good this certainly isn't worth the huge price that Parker has driven it to!
- Bonnezaux, Ch. De Fesles 1997 Very fat, sweet, but just in balance. Very impressive.
- Doisy-Vedrines 1996 Pretty correct young Sauternes, but not absolutely exciting. Perhaps just an average vintage. Scrapes
- Rayne-Vigneau 1996 Coconut and honey, but closed. More dramatic, but finishes a shade guick perhaps. It would be interesting to taste this and the previous wine in 10 years. They are certainly both pretty decent. Juts about
- Coutet 1996 Rather 1-dimensional. Lacks botrytis. Weak beside the previous two.
- Guiraud 1996 Burnt sugar, lots of botrytis, quite classy. The best of the Sauternes.
Tasting notes added to Fine Wine Diary 09/06/1999 Return to top