- Cline Cotes d'Oakley 1994 (6.99) A fairly good value Rhone Ranger with spice and violets. Lacking some structure. 85
- Champagne Brut Blanc de Blancs, Jacques Selosse Disgorged in early 1996. Initial smell from the bottle very yeasty. Mineral flavours with apple acidity and good use of wood. Medium weight. 88+
- Rieslaner Spatlese 1993, Mussbacher Eselshaut, Muller-Catoir I guessed this as Alsatian Riesling. Big wine with Riesling like acidity and a fair amount of balanced sweetness. Drinking well. 89
- Montepulciano d'Abruzzo 1993, Cornacchia Good, but slightly rustic and closed on the night. Better (and quite classy) the next day with a rose petal nose emerging. 86-89
- Eiswein Cuvee Suss 1992, Alois Kracher Marmalade nose. A bit duller on the palate than I remember its being - the initial fruit disappearing. I wonder if it will come round again as tertiary flavours develop? Still good though. 88
- Lafon-Rochet 90 Classic blackcurrent nose, and the vintage's excellent sweet fruit masking more than eenough structure. Should be pretty good. 89.
- Quarles Harris 77 Nice blackberry nose, attractive, sweet fruit and beautiful chocolate in the mouth. As Broadbent notes, this is really a very good 77! 91(+)
OFW Xmas tasting 28/11/1996 (TNB)
- Corton-Charlemagne 90 (Tollot-Beaut) Big and delicious, but tight and structured too. Long and balanced. New world, where are you! 92+ (59.99)
- Pommard Epenots 90 (De Courcel) Pinot fruit with well integrated oak. Rustic, and the fruit has a boiled-sweet edge. Good, but not refined - perhaps typical Pommard? 87 (32.99)
- Leoville las Cases 83 Dense blackcurrent nose, good colour. Classic claret. What we were originally told the 83's should be! (49.99)
- Hermitage La Chapelle 91 Chocolatey, brambley fruit. Rather elegant and quite long. Better than I expected. 91 (24.99)
- Figeac 86 From magnum. Woody and fleshless. A major disappointment. Possibly a bad bottle, given the reputation. 82. (99.99/mag)
- Cab Sauv 93 (Tongi) Fleshy meaty blackcurrent fruitiness, without (lord be praised) any mintyness. Long enough, lovely to drink, but is it going anywhere? 88 (29.99)
- Ducru Beaucaillou 82 "Sawmills" nose casts doubt (as ever) on something to do with Ducru's treatment of wood and/or bottling. Elegant balanced claret. Perhaps just needs time? 90. (68.99)
- D'Yquem 89 Shher class. Bags of bottrytis, and concentrated but elegant fruit hiding the wood. Stunningly long. Delicious, but doubtless fantastic in time. 94(+) (129.00)
Barolo vs. Brunello at V&C with Michael Garner 26/11/1996 (TNB)
- Brunello 91 (Banfi) Light colour, lacking concentration. 78 (16.00)
- Barolo 91 (A. Fantino) Gentle rose-petal nose. Pleasant enough 83. (20.00)
- Brunello 91 (Poggio Antico) Much more concentrated, nicely balanced, cherry fruit. Fine effort. 87 (20.00)
- Barolo Bussia Soprana 91 (A. Conterno) Good colour, tar and roses, really quite complex. Lovely for the vintage. 88.
- Barbi Riserva Vigna del Fiore 90 Quite rustic, touch of SO2. Good, but no better than the Poggio. 87 (35.00)
- Barolo Cordero (Monfalletto) 90 Lightweight modern, simple. What a cop-out! 82 (22.00)
- Brunello 89 (Cosanti) Nicley crafted, smooth, concentrated. Atractive, but is it possibly too amenable? 89 (20.00)
- Barolo 89 (Cogno) Very tarry, stern, very tannic. Serios, probably be very fine in 20 years. 90(+) (21.50)
Niepoort port and some table wines at Atrium, with Raeburn Fine Wines 25/11/1996 (TNB)
- Dry white port, Niepoort This reall is quite a pleasant medium sherry-like apperetif.
- 95 Calcos do Tanha white (V dos Freires, Douro) Dry, austere, characterless, like french vin de table. Not very interesting (5.99)
- 95 Redoma Branco, Niepoort Second time: Interestingly complex, vaguely burgundian, in a barrel-aged style.
- 91 Goncalves Faria, Antonio Faria, Anadia, Bairrada Second time around, this is still ferociously tannic, but the bitterness has gone, and it does have impressive length. Tempting to squirrel; a few bttles away. 87(++?) (9.99)
- 91 Redoma, Niepoort Again second time. Pleasant Chateauneuf substitute. Still needs time. 86(+) (8.99)
- 80 Colheita tawny, Niepoort Sparkyl-red colour. very pleasant, but in the end a bit light. Not a patch on the 1983. 87. (18.95)
- 80 vintage, Niepoort Really beautiful balance. Lovely cherryish fruit. Somehow reminiscent of good 85 clarets. A fine 1980. 90. (29.60)
at Mark's 23/11/1996 (RJB)
- Gosset Grand Millisime Brut 1983 Medium weight yet elegant Champagne with tight citric acidity. Not showing its age. Very impressive. 92
- Gruner Veltliner Spatlese 1983, Langenloiser Berg Vogelsang, Brundlmayer Another '83 not showing its age. I guessed 1990 Alsace Pinot Gris. Good weight in the mouth, but perhaps verging on the flabby. 90
- Beaucastel Rousanne Vielles Vignes 1990 Not as good as previous bottles - lacking acidity. Perhaps it's just a dumb phase. I thought it Burgundy (as have the previous two people that Mark has given this wine to). 88+?
- Rosenblum Cellars Mitchell Holbrook Trio 1994 Good wine with spicey oak and brambly fruit. A fair amount of structure. Well made. I would like to try this again, but until then: 90
- L'Arossee 1986 Not showing well (at least not as well as I was expecting). Lacks the vibrancy of the Rosenblum and was fairly subdued. 88
Cambridge University Tasting Team 23/11/1996 (RJB)
- Chianti Classico 1994 Castello di Volpaia, Stiati Standard well made Chianti with a toasty nose. 85
- Cosme Palacio Y Hermanos 1994 Rioja Textured oak with a soft plummy/beetroot nose. 84
- Mont Gras Merlot 1995 Odd wine. Sharp plum jam nose with astringency. 82
- Potensac 1990 Austere, thin and short. 83
- Crozes-Hermitage Les Meysonierres 1994, Chapoutier Medium weight Crozes with a touch of VA. Not keen. 84
- Tim Knapstein Cabernet/Merlot 1994 Unknit with chocolate and liquorice flavours. It might come together, but on this showing: 83
- Casa Lapostolle Merlot 1995 Stewed plum nose. Simple and with a fair whack of acidity. 80
- Meerlust 1991 Cabernet Sauvignon Big and with soft tannins. Rather obvious and relying on its oak. 83
- Cape Mentelle Cabernet/Merlot 1994 Big soft and juicy. Merlot much in evidence. A bizarre, sharp 'farmyard' (to be polite) nose. 85
- Langi Shiraz 1994, Mount Langi Ghiran My third bottle of this - and I still failed to recognise it! However, this time I could see what the fuss is about. Silky, spicey Rhonish style nose - like a juicy Cote-Rotie (which is what I guessed it to be). Excellent. 91+
- Caymus Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 1993 It's been a month of exciting Californian Cabernets for me. Some have been very obviously New World, and some like this have fooled me (and others, I hasten to add!) into thinking them to be top clarets. Perhaps this is just too lush to be Bordeaux, but it is seriously good wine with good structure and fine oak and fruit integration. 92
Dinner at D.L.'s, 23/11/1996 (TNB)
- Winkeler Hasensprung Auslese 75 (Baron von Brentano) Zippy, slightly petrolly, still nicley fruity riesling from Rheingau producer none of us knew.
- Vega Sindoa Barrel Fermented Chardonnay 94, Navarra Cheapest bottle in OFW, used for cooking. Nice fruit, quite decent.
- Pernand Vergeleses, Iles de Vergeleses 83 (Rollin) Drying out and 83 harshness is a fearful combination. This was for cooking too!
- Tokay Kirchberg VT 89 (Klipfel) F.E. May's Alsace producer aparently. Good tokay flavours, quite sweet, but overall a bit flabby. Fades a bit. 85.
- Gewurtz Clos Kisser 89 SDGN (Klipfel) Amazingly, this was drier than the Tokay. Quite a nice gewurtz, but light (and dry) for SDGN. 87
- Mer Soleil Chardonnay 93 Another Californian wonder. A bit fruit-salady, but nice. 87 (16.99 OFW)
- Grands Echezaux 83 (Mongeard-Mungeret) Lovely, complex pinot nose, evolved in the glass. Fine, but sometimes a a metallic touch and 83 harshness ambushes you in the mouth. Excellent, but demanding. 90.
- Grands Echezaux 80 (Mongeard-Mungeret) Fascinating to compare. Less fine on the nose than the 83, without the ablity to suprise when you return to it. In the mouth though a complete pleasure, with lovely balance. 89.
- Richebourg 84 (Jean Gros) Good colour, rather high acid. Fruit clearly there. Concensus seemed to be that one should keep it a few years, although it is clearly a gamble. 85.
- Ruissec 83 Big, a bit obvious, quite dry, bags of botrytis. Very nice! 90.
- Cline Cellars 1990 Mourvedre, Costa County Excellent Rhone Ranger with good spicey maturing Mourvedre flavours. Still needs time (5 years?). Delicious. 89
Niepoort port and some table wines at Raeburn Fine Wines (plus dinner after) 22/11/1996 (TNB)
- 95 Casa de Saima Branco, Sangalhos, Bairrada Floral, dry, pleasant. Like Alsace Pinot blanc of a restarined style. (5.99)
- 95 Redoma Branco, Niepoort Bags of oak, not "fruit-driven". Would like to resample.
- 94 Tinto Colheita, casa de Saima, Bairrada Beajolais with a tannic kick. Not really for me! (5.99)
- 91 Goncalves Faria, Antonio Faria, Anadia, Bairrada Quite a lot of wood and fruit, with a very bitter finish. Some aficianados claim this will come round in a century or two. (9.99)
- 94 Calcos do Tanha, V dos Freires, Douro Very medicinal, slightly sweet. Not my sort of thing!
- 91 Redoma, Niepoort Interesting balanced, structured young red. I'd like to try this again. My impression is that it is not long enough to be really classy.
- Dry white port, Niepoort Real wine, not a factory concoction. Vaguely sherryish nose. Not unpleasant. (6.99)
- Ruby port, Niepoort Not a bad ruby. (6.99)
- Vintage character, Niepoort Hints of real port fruit and chocolate. Not bad. (8.30)
- Senior tawney (8 y.o.), Niepoort Really quite nice. (10.65)
- 83 Colheita tawny (bottled 95), Niepoort Wonderful! One can see why Niepoort are famous for their tawnys. Nutty, with an amazingly luxurious, viscous feel in the mouth! 91. (16.50)
- LBV 87, Niepoort Again, a very good example of the style. Some real port character here. (9.95)
- 82 vintage, Niepoort Charming, lifted fruit. Elegant and balanced, with an almost leafy Cab Franc nose. Port for when you have to work next day! 88. (27.60)
- 94 vintage, cask sample, Niepoort Small yields all over in 94, so tiny quantities of what seems to be regarded as a great vintage. Concentrated, complex and balanced. I guess this will be good! (225.00/doz IB)
- 94 Quinta do Passadouro, cask sample Made by Niepoort for the vinyard owner Diter Bohrmann. A bit weightier that the Niepoort, with more chocolatey character. Lovely! (225.00/doz IB)
And with dinner at the Vintners Rooms:
- Chardonnay Wolfspierre 91 (Swann) Very vegetal, "green pea", possibly slightly faulty?
- Tokay "Reserve Millesme" 92 (Roly Gasmann) Powerful, unevolved, rather impressive.
- Cornas 90 (Clape) Good colour and moderate weight. Quite refined and silky. Nice. 89.
- Gould Campbell 80 A particularly good 80, nice blackberry fruit, lovely but time will improve.
- Cornas Reynard 91 (Allemand) Initially very blackberry. Quite silky, serious wine without quite Verset's concentration in 91. Clearly a serious grower. 89.
Crabtree Wines, Clare Valley, with Robert Crabtree at Noel Young Wines 20/11/1996 (RJB)
- Crabtree Riesling, Watervale 1995 (8.29) Pears on the nose. Full and fat. Needs time to open out -- fairly youthful at the moment. 85-88
- Crabtree Riesling, Watervale 1994 (8.29) Subdued lanolin nose. Some limey fruit showing through, but shorter than the '95. Robert Crabtree thought this a better wine than the '95. Possibly going through the dumb phase that can hit these wines. 85
- Crabtree Semillon 1993 (8.29) Subdued and slightly smokey. Similar to the '94 Riesling. Soft deadish 'plastic' finish with watery acidity. 83
- Crabtree Grenache 1995 (7.99) Part carb. mac. Dull and one-dimensional. 78
- Crabtree Grenache 1994 (7.99) Again rather simple and one-dimensional, but this time with more body. Beefy (I wonder if this is the carb. mac. part of the wine decaying?). 82
- Crabtree Shiraz-Cabernet 1992 (8.49) Leather and menthol. A touch of VA. Not bad mature wine. Not going anywhere. 85
- Mitchell Cabernet Sauvignon 1994 (10.29) A couple of wines from a neighbouring winery to finish with. Deep, dark and tarry. Subdued nose with some mintiness. Good balance -- big and chunky. 87
- Mitchell Sparkling Peppertree Shiraz (19.79) Very clearly the wine of the evening. Lovely zingy nose with liquorice fruit. The base wine must be pretty good, and the bubbles complement it well. Refreshing and peppery. I've had so many disappointing 'Sparkling Burgundies', but this is good, not too sweet and with perfect balance. A difficult style of wine to score, but: 90
- Beaujolais Nouveau 1996, Paul Boutinot As the clock struck 12! Clean, with textbook carbonic maceration and lashings of nothing. Impossible to score such hedonistic vacuity.
CU Tasting Team 17/11/1996 (RJB)
- Serriger Vogelsang 1990 Riesling Kabinett, Statedomain Trier Tightly knit and sharp Riesling fruit (touch of botrytis?) - lacks the concentration to be really good. 87
- Sainsbury's South African Sauvignon Blanc 1996 Gooseberry flavour pear drops. 75
- Geysheimer Monschspfad Riesling Spatlese 1990, Schumann Nagler Woody mature wine. 85
- Montagny 1er Cru 1994, Caves de Buxy Thin, soft and toffeed. 81
- Errazuriz Chardonnay 1996 Modern, thin and smokey. Plastic finish. 79
- Tim Adams 1993 Semillon Good acidity with a faint buttery edge. 87
- Julienas 1994 Clos du Fief, Michel Tete Softer than expected, but a good example of well made Gamay. 85
- Bourgueil 1995, Yannick Amirault Good, juicy and weedy Cabernet Franc with no earthiness. One of the best I've had from this region. 87+?
- Langhe Nebbiolo 1993 Rocca Albino Corked
- Martinborough Vineyard 1994 Pinot Noir Soft and jammy with a slightv spritz. Everything I hate in New World Pinot. 81
- Givry La Grande Berge 1990, Gerard Mouton I thought this an odd Tempranillo. A touch of volatility, but very subdued. 83
- Senorio de Sarria Reserva 1986 Nuttily oxidised.
Dinner at Maciocias' 16/11/1996 (TNB)
- Chablis Vaillons 89 (Tour Vauborg (=Michel)) Pure flinty fruit, a little fatter than average for chablis. Drinking nicely. 87.
- Nebbiolo d'Alba 94 (Sandrone) 15 quid job from cult barolo producer. Very pure strawberry and vanilla nose, lightweight, few tannins. Very pleasant. 86.
- Spanna 83 (Vallana) Coming round nicely, plenty of fruit and some tannins. No hurry to drink. 86.
- Barbaresco 82 (Giacosa) Infanticide. Monsterous tannins hiding quite a fine nebbiolo. 88.
- Langi Cabernet 1989, Mount Langi Ghiran Medium weight with subdued, but pleasant flavours. 86
California, Oddbins 15/11/1996 (RJB)
- Marietta Zinfandel 1994, Sonoma County (10.99) Soft brambles and vanilla with just enough acidity - metallic finish. 87
- Peterson Zinfandel 1994, Dry Creek Valley (11.99) Subdued toffee apple nose. Unknit softness with a leathery astringent finish. 82
- Random Ridge Red 1993, Mt Veeder, Napa (13.99) Green pepper nose with dull fruit and an odd astringent finish. 82
- Viader Cabernet 1993, Howell Mt, Napa (18.99) Soft minty plummy fruit with well integrated oak. Well made wine. 88+
- Wing Canyon Cbaernet Sauvignon 1992, Mt Veeder, Napa (18.99) Thin to rim and showing a touch of age. Reductive, berry and toasty sweetness. Soft end, but again with astringency. 87
- Robert Mondavi Cabernet Sauvignon 1992, Oakville (19.99) Subdued nose with unknit leathery finish. Difficult to get much from it. 84
- Pahlmeyer Proprietary Red 1993, Oakville (22.99) good colour with a soft plum fruit nose. Good length with a good (but soft) structure. 89+
- Laurel Glen Cabernet Sauvignon 1993, Sonoma Mountain (21.99) Stalky with dusty tannins. Rather hollow and one-dimensional (perhaps the fact that this is 100% Cab. explains this). 84
- Matanzas Creek Merlot 1993 (25.99) A vegetal edge to the nose, but rather good maturing flavours. Fruit comes through with time in the glass. 90
- Orion 1993 Sean H. Thackrey, St Helena (23.99) Excellent colour and with a zingy nose. Quite chewy and seems to taste as though it's unfiltered. A notch up from the rest on the complexity front. 87-90
- Philip Togni Cabernet Sauvignon 1993, St Helena (29.99) That green, astringent tannic edge again. Reasonably full, but certainly not worth the price tag. 87
- Caymus Special Selection Canernet 1992, Rutherford (29.99) Subdued nose initially which opened out. Good balance and good acidity. The best length of those on show, but a bit obvious. 91
- Cousino Macul Antiguas Reserve 82 Extremely toasty, probably to a fault, but a fault I can live with. Reasonable fruit. 82.
- Notaparnarro 88 (Taurino) Nice to have a proper look at this. Very sweaty, leathery nose, in an attractive way (not unlike Ch. Musar). Medium weight, niceish fruit, but a bit simple overall, but a good five quid's (or seven quid's, as they call it at Threshers) worth. 85.
Gang of Five 'Predominantly Cabernet' Tasting 14/11/1996 (RJB)
Numbers in brackets indicate the overall position in the tasting taken from the average of the scores
- Cos d'Estournel 1986 (5) Stalky slightly dirty nose. Odd green oak. Very tannic (too tannic?). 85
- Beringer 1986 Private Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon (1=) Fragrant, good balance, medium weight claret (Oh well, can't get it right all the time). 89
- Olmaia 1992 Cabernet (7) Good colour with a toast and pebbles reductive nose. Perhaps a bit obvious, but fairly well put together. 88
- Marietta 1994 Geyserville Cabernet Sauvignon (1=) Liquorice and brambles. New Worldy. A bit lacking in complexity. 88
- Leoville Barton 1985 (8) Mature colour and a classic claret nose. Shorter than I was expecting and with dusty tannins. 87
- Petaluma 1988 Coonawarra (10) Thin and undistinguished with an odd green, almost rancio nose. 82
- Jekel 1991 Cabernet Sauvignon (6) Youthful nose. Slight spritz. Leathery but with a weak toffeed finish. 87
- Montrose 1982 (4) Good maturing Bordeaux which, together with the next wine, caused the most diversity of opinions. Not a top '82, but a fine claret none the less. 89
- Torres Gran Coronas 1981 Black Label (9) Vegetal, oxidised and past it I thought. Others liked its sweet fruit and thought it nicely mature. 75
- Ridge 1981 York Creek Cabernet Sauvignon (3) Slightly dusty, but delicious. I thought it an '85 claret. Good wine. 90
- Dornfelder 94 (95?) Chilford Hundreds A fizzy finish to the evening - an English Blanc de Noirs. I guessed it as a fairly good Chenin Blanc. Perhaps a bit clothy, but I would actually be interested in trying this again. Quite autolytic.
- Champagne NV (A. Gratien) Lovely yeasty autolytic nose, with lovely ripe round underlying fruit. Fairly full-bodied, but marries this with a lovely drinkable elegance. Everything an NV champagne should be (unless it is Krug). 91 (19.99 Oddbins).
- Cote Rotie 90 (Gentaz) Nice pure blackberry/raspberry fruit. Moderate weight, quite dry. A little underwhelming at the moment, but is it perhaps hiding something? 88.
CU Tasting Team 10/11/1996 (RJB)
- Sancerre 1995 Les Ruettes, Celliers de Ceres Musty and clothy. Not very varietal - could have been anything. 73
- Montana 1996 Sauvignon Blanc, Marlborough Creamy gooseberries rather than the straight fruit one expects from Montana at this stage. A touch buttery/vegetal. 82
- Vouvray Cuvee Gaston Dorleans Demi-sec 1994, F. Bourillons (4.99 at Tesco I believe) Singed-hair Chenin nose, fairly dry for this style (lacking ripeness), but it seems to have structure and good acidity. Should age well in the short to medium term. Difficult to assess at this stage, but for now: 87
- Gewurztraminer 1994 Scherer Light and lacking. 80
- Chablis 1994 1er Cru Cuvee Roberet C.C.C. Chablisienne Steely, green, fairly well made Chablis, but a bit dilute. 86
- Edwards & Chaffey 1994 Unfiltered Chardonnay Medium weight Oz Chardonnay. Good use of oak, if a touch sweet overall. I thought it Californian. Impressive, without quite hitting the right note. 88
- Tesco Cava 1992 Stale, old and earthy. 70
- Chablis 1990, A. Parent Clean lightweight Chablis. Not really enough to it to be anything other than food wine. 82
With dinner at the Three Horse Shoes, Madingly 06/11/1996 (RJB)
- Langi Shiraz 1994, Mount Langi Still rather unclear about why Parker rates this quite so highly. It is good, but this bottle was already showing more age than the one I had a month or so back. Very peppery with goodish structure. Not too extrovert. 88
- Pinot Blanc Cuvee Caroline 93 (Schoffit) Big, Parker-pleasing, fat, extrovert Pinot Blanc. This sort of thing can be a bit over the top even with a class grape, and with Pinot Blanc it can be just a bit tiresome. A tour de force, but.......
Californian Wines, Noel Young Wines 05/11/1996 (RJB)
- Rochioli Sauvignon Blanc 1995 (9.39) Not bad creamy gooseberries. OK acidity but a touch too buttery. 86
- Seghesio Zinfandel 1994 (7.99) 90% Zin. 10% Petite Sirah. Coffee and raspberries. Biggish with oak and hotness showing through at the end. 86
- Marietta Old Vine Lot No. 17 (7.99) Unknit spicey cherry fruit. Lacks vibrancy. 84
- Sierra Vista Syrah 1994 (8.49) Closed youthful nose. Thin, but hot finish. 85
- Alban Vineyards Reva Syrah 1993 (13.99) 3% Viognier in this. Very Rhonish nose to this - smoky and gamy. Palate not so impressive, but perhaps it just needs time. 88+?
- Marietta Syrah 1994 (11.49) Mushy violets - soft and unhappy. 83
- Sierra Vista Zinfandel 1994 (8.99) Juicy and minty - odd bitter (astringent) finish. 87
- Seghesio Old Vines Zinfandel 1994 (10.99) Hot nose - soft and toffeed. 84
- Marietta Zinfandel 1994 (11.99) Sharp cherry nose and flavours. A bit short. 87-
- Marietta Angeli Cuvee 1993 (15.99) Good easy drinking for now - minty and weighty, but not a keeper. 89-
- Joseph Swan 1994 Zeigler Vineyard Zinfandel (13.49) Liquid tunes (the cough sweets, that is). Idiosyncratic, but pleasing for it. I'd like to taste this again on its own. 86-90
CU Tasting Team 03/11/1996 (RJB)
- Chinon Les Garous 1995, Couly-Dutheil thin, earthy and leafy. 80
- Chianti Rufina Riserva 1990, Selvapiana Smelt of new oak to begin with, but this then turned to varnish. Dry finish. 81
- Villiera Estate Wine Merlot 1993, Paarl Liquorice nose, but thin and weedy for a Merlot. Out of balance - not impressed. 78
- Baron de Milon 1990 Fully mature lightweight claret. Pleasant, but unremarkable. 84
- Old Bush Vine Pinotage 1995, Warwick Estate I thought this an Oregon Pinot. Mushy and soft. 82
- Chateauneuf-du-Pape 1991, Dom. Saint-Benoit A reasonable effort that lacks drama. I though it Northern Rhone. Silky, but not as hefty as might be expected. 85
- St Hallet's Old Block Shiraz 1993 Yawn. Hadn't had this for ages. Typical middle of the road well made Oz Shiraz. 86
- Zinfandel 1992, Voss Soft with a hot finish. Dull. 83
- The Fergus 1994 Old Vine Grenache, Tim Adams This had been open for 24 hours. Smelt of aniseed, but I didn't experiment to see if it would go cloudy with water.
- Langhi Shiraz 1991, Mount Langhi Spicey and juicy, but slightly unknit. Still fairly youthful. 87
- Chianti Classico 93 (Monte Bernardi) Zubair's chianti, and listed as a winery to watch in the next century in Decanter recently. From what seems a reasonable chianti vintage, this has excellent colour, and a dense nose hinting at cherries and chocolate. In the mouth, quite tannic, reasonably long. Needs some time. 87 (?+)