January 9th, 2011


Wine tasting


'Eroica', Chateau St Michelle & Dr Loosen, Columbia Valley, Washington State, USA - 2008

A straightforward fresh summery citrus Riesling, showing the charm of the grape when young.

'The Contours', Pewsey Vale, Adelaide Hills, Australia - 2005

And a total contrast - the bouquet had that powerful blast of petrol and burnt rubber that an older Riesling can develop as it matures. This is an old vineyard (a century and a half before this was made) and they won't release the wine till it's gone 5 years old.

Munsterer Rheinberg, Kabinett Halbtrocken, Weingut Goettelmann, Nahe, Germany - 2005

An unctuous apparent sweetness that belies the fact that it's almost dry. At 12.5%, it's also very strong by German standards.

Grand Cru Schlossberg, Albert Mann, Wettolsheim, Alsace, France - 2004

Oh come here and be my friend. An absolutely classic Alsation Riesling - this couldn't be from anywhere else, it's closer to the Alsatian Gewurtz than it is to Riesling from elsewhere.

Pinot Noir

Gevrey Chambertin Clos St Jacques, Vielles Vignes, Domaine Fourrier, Burgundy, France - 2000

This may be a classic GC - but a bit disappointing. And with a current market price well into 3 figures, grossly overpriced.

Cuvaison Winery, Carneros, California, USA - 2007

Fruitier than I would normally go for in a Pinot Noir, but still nice, and much better value for money than the previous wine.

'Peter Max', Crystallum, Elgin Bay, Western Cape, South Africa - 2008

About 50% more expensive than the Californian, but probably about the same as far as enjoyment is concerned.

Saint Clair 'Strip Block 15' Pioneer's Block, Marlborough, NZ

Personally, I reckon the Kiwis are making the best PNs I'm tasting, and St Clair are one of the great makers. I definitely prefer this to the Gevrey, and at a tenth of the price, it is vastly better value.