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Diary index

With RJB in Cambridge 29/09/2002 (TNB)

Wine group at my place 29/09/2002 (TNB)

Gang of Six Gewurz., Pinot Gris and Southern Rhone tasting 23/09/2002 (RJB)

An Oddbins Fine Wine tasting 21/09/2002 (TNB)

At J.M.'s 16/09/2002 (TNB)

A few recent Spanish wines 16/09/2002 (TNB)

Dinner at LJM's in Edinburgh 09/09/2002 (TNB)

Guigal 09/09/2002 (RJB)

Mainly recent Burgundies 01/09/2002 (TNB)

The Diary - September 2002

With RJB in Cambridge 29/09/2002 (TNB)

Tasting notes added to Fine Wine Diary 29/09/2002   Return to top

Wine group at my place 29/09/2002 (TNB)

Brief notes because I was cooking too.
Tasting notes added to Fine Wine Diary 29/09/2002   Return to top

Gang of Six Gewurz., Pinot Gris and Southern Rhone tasting 23/09/2002 (RJB)

Tasting notes added to Fine Wine Diary 23/09/2002   Return to top

An Oddbins Fine Wine tasting 21/09/2002 (TNB)

  • Savigny Les Vermots Dessus 1999 (Baron de La Charriere/Girardin) Clean. Nutty hints. Very marked acidity. Orchard fruits. Good length. A decent white Burgundy at a reasonable price. **(*)
  • Chassagne Montrache Chenevottes 2000 (Borgeot) Richer oaky nose. Hefty style. A little less on the palate than the last wine. Drink soonish. **
  • Rully 2000 (Borgeot) Slightly barnyard - possibly sulphur is subduing the fruit. Pineapple juice. Lower acidity. A shade short. Top *
  • Meursault 2000 (Mestre) Fruit overpowered a bit by vanilla/toffeed oak. There's a bit of oily hazelnut hiding within. Not very French. **
  • Saint-Romain Sous Chateau 2000 (Baron de La Charriere/Girardin) Complex - straw in Summer - perfumed nose. Very forward and a bit flabby. Slightly short finish. Not bad but I prefer the Savigny. **
  • Pesquera 1999 Huge in-your-face cherry nose with a lot of tofee on top. Dense fruit. Nice structure, if with a fairly "modern" balance. Top **
  • Chateau Lafite 1999 Slightly charred, burnt almost - excessively toasted oak? Dry and classy I guess - I didn't like this much at all and nobody else raved about it blind although not all were as negative as I was. It's just too much toast to my mind: possibly this will be brilliant in a few years but I have my doubts. **(*)
  • Tarsus 98 Lifted cherry. Creamy tropical fruit - is it too much? Not so long perhpas. Fun in its way. Decent **
  • Pesguera Reserva 1998 Raisins, cedar and a hint of forrest floor. Dryish palate. Meaty, savoury, herby, stylish. A very pleasant surprise to see what this was. ***
  • La Mission Haut Brion 1999 Spicy berries, raspberry, scented. Dry palate, graphite (somebody said). I think the length is there and it will improve. Better than the Lafite in my view at the moment. ***(*)
Tasting notes added to Fine Wine Diary 21/09/2002   Return to top

At J.M.'s 16/09/2002 (TNB)

Tasting notes added to Fine Wine Diary 16/09/2002   Return to top

A few recent Spanish wines 16/09/2002 (TNB)

  • Fino Sherry Pando (Williams and Humbert) Savoury, salty, appetising. Amazing what 6.99 buys you in Sherry still. **
  • Manzanilla Pasada - Pastrana (Hidalgo) Fresh and yeasty, fruity undertones and a hint of pepper. Nice complexity and length in the mouth, dry and savoury, salty. You can get a lot of quality from sherry for less than a tenner. An easy **
  • Rioja Reserva Vina Ardanza 1995 (La Rioja Alta) Soft vanilla, mellow, quite evolved but probably just because of its large cask aging - I expect it will hold in this attractive, drinkable state for a good few years. **
  • Rioja Gran Reserva Prado Enea 1994 (Muga) Moderate depth of colour and hints of orange (typical of long wood aging - this was bottles in 98). At first mainly rustic, gamey notes but as it opens up hints of spices and coffee and a solid meatyness emerge. On the palate, ripe mulberry fruit and that underlay of mild, warm vanilla that ought to give good traditional Rioja away in blind tastings every time (but doesn't). Nice complexity, good acidity and a long finish. Drinkanble now but it will improve with a while in bottle I feel. I bought a few of these on the basis that it was a good property in a good vintage and I don't regret it. Probably scrapes a ***(*)
  • Rioja Reserva 1998 (Marques de Riscal) Ripe, soft mulberry fruit. Nutty. Seems to finish a bit hot and lacks a little focus, perhaps because it was tasted a bit too warm. Might be more but for now *
Tasting notes added to Fine Wine Diary 16/09/2002   Return to top

Dinner at LJM's in Edinburgh 09/09/2002 (TNB)

Tasting notes added to Fine Wine Diary 09/09/2002   Return to top

Guigal 09/09/2002 (RJB)

Tasting notes added to Fine Wine Diary 09/09/2002   Return to top

Mainly recent Burgundies 01/09/2002 (TNB)

  • Pernand Vergelesses blanc 1997 (Rollin) What a splendid wine from a less glamorous appelation in an average vintage: quite rich yet bone-dry, mineral and appetising. Just merits ***
  • Chassagne Montrachet Les Embrazees 1992 (B. Morey) I had a bottle of this a few months ago that was disappointing: vanilla custard oak and over-evolved fruit. This one is much better - still quite evolved with a herby, vegetable character to a decent core of fruit and pleasant spicy oak. ***
  • Pinot Noir 1998 (Knights Valley Winery) I was told this was from the Peter Michael stable, but there is no mention of that on the label. Be that as it may, I decided to have a proper drink of this after giving it good reports at a couple of recent tastings. I think this wine's best friends would have to say it tends a little towards the jammy, but it is a grown-up beetrooty jam and I think it carries it off. Earthy, with something of mulberry about it. Good acidity and structure - probably for drinking soon, but then it held up very well over night which suggests there can't be a hurry to drink it. Very good for New World Pinot, and decently priced. Scrapes ***
  • Rully Preaux 1er Cru 1995 (Eric de Suremain) Redcurrent fruit, high-toned and meaty on the palate. Quite austere - a food wine certainly, the style of the vintage perhaps. Maybe this will mellow a little but it is a good drink now. An interesting contrast to the far richer and fruitier 98 Pinot from Knights Valley that I was drinking the other night. ***
  • Macon Chardonnay 1999 (Domaine Cordier) Ripe yet restrained nose with a hint of yeasty lees character. Clean, wood-free I guess, decent balance and persistence. Pretty drinkable basic Burgundy. Top *
  • Bourgogne Rouge 1993 (Meo-Camuzet) I had a dreadful oxidised bottle of this, but this is fine: dry, meaty, savoury Burgundy. Probably a shade past its best and for drinking but the class (producer and vintage) shows. Top **
  • Meursault 1988 (Jean Germain) Richard bought this quite cheaply some years ago and it has been interesting to follow its evolution to what is definately old Chardonnay now: honey and vegetables, quite dry and savoury, still fresh with a core of fruit. Top ** almost more.
  • Savigny-Les-Beaune Les Vermots Dessus blanc 1999 (Baron de La Charriere - Girardin) I had this recently at a tasting and it is interesting to study it more carefully. Quite mouthwatering - high acidity - a fair amount of oak I suspect but decent oak, well integrated. It's hard to be sure quite how much fruit there is, but it is at least pretty good Burgundy, especially when you consider the fairly modest appelation. It might make another star in time but for now a conservative **
  • Gevrey Chambertin Clos St Jacques 1990 (Esmonin) Attractive high-toned juicy red fruits on the nose. In the mouth, classic fruit that makes me remember that we are back in the game season: it manages that Burgundian trick of being stylish and savoury and a fruit drink at the same time - very drinkable. Mind you, considering the vineyard and the vintage it is no better than it ought to be. ***
Tasting notes added to Fine Wine Diary 01/09/2002   Return to top