Wine blog

My tasting notes of fine wines I have enjoyed.

A weekend to celebrate a personal milestone, so we enjoyed one of the last of the half-case of this Graves vintage which I inherited from my Father. The family story is that wines from Chateaux Haut Brion and Pontet Canet were the first Grand Cru vineyards that my Father had bought from in his capacity as Wine Steward at Magdalene College, Cambridge.

Read more: Haut Brion 1988 and Liot 1996

Kaisersthul Müller-Thurgau 2007

We rather liked this fine wine from Endinger. It's a complex white neither particularly fruity nor particularly dry. Not the classic Kaisersthul Auslese but a medium dry. At 11%, it's relatively strong in alcohol and felt slightly greasy, we were drinking it slightly old at five years so it was mature but not acidic. It was a fine accompaniment to red salmon cooked by my chef friend.

Tokaji - Princes Piroska from Aszu, 2000

A gift for a birthday I spent in Hungary some while ago with a group of Roman gladiators, this is a classic Tokaji with its characteristic resin taste that was immediately reminiscent of drinking around an open fire outside on the last night of the gladiator training camp. One of those characteristic of tastes like wine that they can be trigger memories so specifically. Unlikely any of those fighters will be read this but if you are, thank you.

For the Jubilee weekend we’re drinking a fine bottle of Sauternes dessert wine from the Haut Barsac plateau, Château Liot 1997. Very full golden colour and equally full flavour of the classic Sauternes grapes, (Sémillon 85%, Sauvignon 10% and Muscadelle 5%) which complemented complemented a raspberry macaroon dessert hand-made by my chef companion.

Read more: Château Liot 1997 - Barsac

Premier Grand Cru Classé - Château Magedelaine 1994

Château Magedelaine 1994
Saint-Émilion Grand Cru
Premier Grand Cru Classé
Jean-Pierre Moueix

Read more: Ch. Magedelaine 1994 + Chianti 1993

Abymes (Adrien Vacher) 2006

Vin de Savoie white so fresh and fruity, redolent of the thrills of the high mountains and clear air

My initial impression was of honey and aromatic herbs or spice. My companion's first impressions were buttery and vanilla; a taste like like a dessert wine without the sweetness.

The wine changed rapidly after opening in the relatively thick though still clean air at sea level in Brighton but kept its distinctive grapefruit nose.

Gigondas 1996, Domaine Sainte Lucie, récoltant Marc Alexandre.

Classic Gigondas tangy red with a good full nose despite having been kept for longer than average for a Côtes du Rhône.

My companion identified a musty air typical of older Gigondas but this bottle had not gone thin or cardboardy.