My tasting notes of fine wines I have enjoyed.
This bottle of Pinot Gris from Alsace is a personal import by friends of the family of the vigneron, a memorable wine that is a rare pleasure and which is impossible to buy in a shop. My friend for lunch has met four generations of the winemakers and stayed many times in the hotel near the vines. Note the tall shape and brown glass style of the bottle, which is mandated for the Alsace appellation. The Rhineland wine-glasses are my own.
Classic pairing this, and easier shopping for us while being in France where these bottles are available in many supermarkets. The 2021 Roc de Breyzac, Monbazillac was a reminder of the GLME summercamp of 2005 in Limeuil (Dordogne), where we enjoyed this style of wine as Vin de Table with meals. Tonight in Marseille I paired the Monbazillac wine with premium duck pâté and salad, a substitute for Foie Gras. The wine was a delight, smooth and of course sweet but fragrant and not syrupy. Premium ducks may think they are special but in the end they are just pâté...
A Saint Emilion Grand Cru of a vintage nearly thirty years ago, one of the last of my Father’s cellar. It’s a long time ago: in 1995, John Major was Prime Minister, the €uro had not yet been introduced and the UK enjoyed a long summer heatwave. My Father would have been just seventy, still contributing research papers to the academic journals of biology. Me, I was lighting television studio programmes in London.
My friend Mike brought round this bottle of fine 2004 claret last night which we definitely enjoyed with our dinner of roast lamb. Great to enjoy a bottle from Chåteau Léoville Barton again. The classic, 2ième Grand Cru, vintage was one of my Father’s favourites. We visited the vineyard in the Sixties, I remember flying kites with my Father in a stiff breeze over the Garonne estuary near the village of St. Julien. I guess he had been negotiating an order for Magdalene College, Cambridge.
Single domaine red wine from Savoie, another personal import from my trips to Haute-Savoie in June. There are two Domaine du Vieux Pressoir, this the Savoie one gets good listings for its white wines. Their Mondeuse 2022 showed a fine cherry red colour but unfortunately the wine in our bottle had gone off, tasting sour and looking cloudy. The plastic cork had looked intact and the bottles of other wines I’d carried back from this trip have been good so I hadn’t kept it badly. This doesn’t happen as often as it used to as vinification methods have improved even with the small producers, but it’s always disappointing.
We continued our apéro (strolghino with olives) and then smoked haddock paté salad with a bottle of screw-top Beaujolais Supérieur from a UK supermarket.