- Champagne Dom Ruinart Blanc de blancs 1982 Creamy, fragrant, delicate, quite fine. Butterscotch background to greengage fruit. Completely fresh with a long finish. (Magnum)
- Persia Cotes de Ventoux blanc 2003 (Fondreche) Excellent - tropical-edged very lemony fruit. Some oak I think. Nice balance and very rich. Big - a bit modern but very good. Aiming at the Beaucastel Rousanne VV style perhaps.
- La Soula 2001 (Gauby) Very fizzy to the extent of being a fault. But it wears off enough to form a judgement - quite mineral and characterful. Serious wine that I'd like to try again. At least a good
- Meursault Clos de la Barre 1993 (Lafon) Lovely, creamy, fine acidity, good length. Appetizing. Lovely.
- Meursault Rougeots 1993 (Coche-Dury) A touch closed and struck matches too. Opens out - great concentration. A top - may even make 5 stars in time.
- Volnay 1er cru 1993 (Coche-Dury) Nice rich fruit, dry long. top
- Ambonnay 2000 rouge (Egly-Ouriet) Still red Pinot Noir from Champagne. So soft and silky. Gorgeously round. Easy-going. One of the best non-Burgundian Pinots I have tasted. Top
- Volnay Santenots 1993 (Lafon) Beetroot fruit - harder than the previous wines. Very baked and extracted. This is really not a success.
- Mazis Chambertin 1994 (D. Laurent) Lots of grippy tannins. Highly-wrought and oaky. Not my sort of thing - but striking. Certainly needs time but what will happen? ?
- Cote Rotie La Landonne 1993 (Guigal) Very fine - deep, rich, silky with a lovely refined, dry palate. Splendid for vintage, but could one regret the lack of C-R typicity?
- Jurancon Symphone de Novembre 2002 (Cauhape) Rich pineapple, nice acid. Very pleasant. Bare
- Pacherenc du Vic Bilh Novembre 2000 (Brumont) Lighter at the final analysis - although more mouthfilling. Top
- Grahams 1983 Bright, both metaphorically and literally. A touch hard on the finish still although coming round to drinking. A touch short of the richness you might hope for from Grahams in this vintage. Still worth
Tasting notes added to Fine Wine Diary 30/11/2005 Return to top
- Champagne Cuvee Marie de France 1988 (P. Bara) Acacia, nuts. Intense, dry, long. Drinking but no hurry.
- Vina Tondonia Blanco Gran Reserva 1976 Lime, herbs, cream. Not heavy on the palate - lovely. Top
- Batard Montrachet 1999 (Morey-Coffinet) Big and muscular - grand cru intensity and rich finish. Very good.
- Clos de la Roche Vieilles Vignes 1986 (Ponsot) Fragrant, piquant cranberry, yet meaty (bovril) nose. Excellent for the vintage. Partly on the basis of interest - a bare
- Hannah Cab Franc / Merlot 1999 (Wantirna Estate) Promoted conversation - apart from anything else putting a wax seal on an Australian wine is making a statement. A touch mineral, quite complex fruit - pure too and not overstated. Personally, I still find an overlying minty sweetness in the finish not to my taste although that might be less noticable with the right food. Interesting wine that somebody with more of a taste for Australian style might rate a bit more. Still
- Trier Deutschherrenberg Riesling BA 1976 (R. Becker) Fat, nice botrytis, a touch of paint-stripper and not so long. Good
- Trier Deutschherrenberg Riesling BA 1975 (R. Becker) Less intense, less flawed and follows through a bit better to the finish. Nice.
- Colheita 1966, bottled 1985 (Niepoort) Lightweight yet concentrated. Ethereal, complex chocolatey fruit. Lovely.
Tasting notes added to Fine Wine Diary 27/10/2005 Return to top
- Chiroubles 2003 (Domaine du Cret de Ruyere) Earthy, fresh fruity zingy nose with a hint of vanilla - good texture on the palate. My favourite of the three wines for drinking now.
- Morgon Les Charmes Cuvee Vielles Vignes 2002 (Domaine du Cret de Ruyere) I'm afraid I couldn't really get on with this wine - it seemed light and dilute and was a touch green at the end. Possibly a faulty bottle so I won't score
- Morgon Cuvee Prestige 2000 (Domaine du Cret de Ruyere) Quite a soft wine - maturity taking over from the earlier gamay vibrancy I guess. Initially a bit dumb and subdued, but after time the wine opened out. It would be interesting to try this in another couple of years to see whether it is just at a bit of an inbetween phase. For now
Tasting notes added to Fine Wine Diary 01/10/2005 Return to top
- Chianti Classico Riserva Rancia 1995 (Felsina Berardenga) Excellent condition at 10 years old, very good fruit too, although for some reason I could not get that excited about it. Still a decent
- Barbera d'Alba 1993 (Sandrone) My last bottle of this - and hasn't it kept well. Completely fresh but fully mature, quite soft and very pleasingly drinkable.
- Montefalco Riserva 1999 (Arnaldo-Caprai) Very juicy with a touch of Italianate bitterness to give it a grown-up appeal. Finishes a touch abruptly perhaps. A good
- Vintage Tunina 2001 (Jermann) A glass at Valvona's Vincafe, even so clearly very elegant, refined, blanced and generally yummy. plus
- Flaccionello 2000 (Fontodi) Very classy, loads of fruit, fairly forward, drinking very nicely. Top
- Dolcetto d'Alba Rocchettevino La Pria 2001 (Accomasso) On opening, quite tough - you have to like tannins for this. It does have the most fantastic ripe fruit though and 24 hours after opening it had really opened out. Delicious. Easy
- Barolo Riserva Vigneto Rocchette 1997 (Accomasso) This guy is one hell of a winemaker. This has concentrated tarry raspberry fruit on the nose, bags of tannins (which are ripe enough to be enjoyable even at this stage), super concentration and texture and a long finish. High-toned, despite being a bit more forward than the 96. Excellent. Easily
- Barolo Bussia Soprano 1998 (Aldo Conterno) Written from memory a day or two later: surprisingly old-fashioned orange-rimmed colour. Quite forward and easy-going, drinking OK at the moment in fact but surely more time can only improve matters. Very classy. and rising.
Tasting notes added to Fine Wine Diary 09/09/2005 Return to top
- Champagne Silver Brut NV (A. Clouet) Quite dry, fairly austere but very good, particularly with some nibbles. Bare even
- Champagne Grande Reserve NV (A. Clouet) More forward and fragrant, not really noticably sweeter. Good
- Champagne Special Club 1996 (J. Michel) This is half Chardonnay and half Pinot Meunier - the latter not that apparent. Very yeasty, seems a bit four-square at the moment (perhaps that is where one sees the P-M). Rich and really very long. Clearly need quite a lot of time, and I can see it could well be very good in a decade or so, although it might be a bit light on finesse. Bare
- Champagne Comtesse Marie de France 1990 (P. Bara) Curious - very exotic, vanillan, and highly vinous. Not everyones idea of Champagne, but you can't say it lacks character. I need to drink this over an evening (with food) and see how my relationship with it develops. For now a top
- Puligny Montrachet La Garenne 2002 (Larue) Dry, real Puligny, quite intense. Not special but it does what it says on the tin.
- Puligny Montrachet La Garenne 1999 (J-M. Boillot) Quite rich, mouthfilling wine. Lacks the classic finesse that marks out the stars. Top
- Morey St Denis 1er cru Les Ruchots 2001 (Arlaud) Nice fruit - pure, intense. on the up.
- Chambolle Musigny 1er cru Les Groseilles 2001 (Digioia-Royer) A bit more oaky - but quality fruit again.
- Morey St Denis 1er cru 2001 (Dujac) Seepage round the cork (under the capsule). Odd but not undrinkable - clearly faulty.
- Gevry Chambertin 1er cru Les Cherbaudes 2001 (Fourrier) Depths, depths and more depths. Really lovely, both rich and piquant. Very top
- Clos de la Roche Grand Cru 1998 (Ponsot) Burnt, dense, exotic, meaty. Tannic. Austere, difficult. This might yet come good, and even now it is arresting and interesting drinking. Risky to rely on it evolving well, but if all goes well
- Madeira Malvasia Colheita 1994 Casco 18a (Barbeito) Attractive green rim - never a bad sign. On the palate, like a really fine old Madeira in every way except there is not the real intensity or searing acidity on the palate. The flavours however are very fine and this is a lovely drink. Top
- Colheita 1960, bottled 1979 (Krohn) Chocolatey fruit - very nice old Colheita. Top
Tasting notes added to Fine Wine Diary 25/09/2005 Return to top