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Drouhin, Bailly, Bersano, Heitz, St. Cosme, Chadwi


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Blind tasting lunch notes:

2005 Matua Paratai Sauvignon Blanc – grassy varietal nose, medium full body, soft – almost like there was a touch of RS, then long clean finish.

Alianca NV Tinto Bruto – a sparkling red but unlike most Aussies, a dead dry one made from 93% Baga and 7% Touriga Nacional. Fizzy, purple, dry…..that’s about all one can say.

1985 Drouhin Beaune Clos des Mouches – getting quite pale, elegant nose, smooth and very mature with good fruit at the end. Not for holding.

1975 Ch. Boyd Cantenac – not a big name having had an execrable 80s and 90s, but I have always found this vintage to be very presentable. Cedar and tobacco nose with a medicinal element, colour now getting lighter, and ends with acidity rather than tannin (unlike many of this hard vintage which still have pretty significant tannin, though not always enough fruit to balance it).

1988 Haut Bailly – this little Graves was delightful, showing good fruit in the nose, but lacking the solidity of this vintage, the tannins soft and length good. No rush.

2000 Tolo Asini – a blend of 61% Sangiovese and 39% Zinfandel from Paso Robles. Mint nose, big mouth presence, very long and intense. Interesting. 16.2% alcohol but not notably hot.

2001 Bersano Generala Barbera d’Asti – unlike any other Barbera I have tasted. Caramel and fruit nose, smooth sweet and plump in the mouth with an unusual (for the area) dry extracted finish. Quite good!

1994 Heitz Napa Cabernet – Wood in the nose! Dark with good fruit and acidity but not much tannin, this regular cab is very pleasant and will hold awhile.

1999 St. Cosme Cote Rotie – I headed for the Rhone pretty quickly, and for the Northern Rhone as this seemed a Syrah based wine, but I stopped short of Cote Rotie as I was getting none of the typical violets in the nose, nor for that matter any pepper. Instead it was a mature nose with obvious old wood aromas and blackberry, the colour was fairly youthful, and it was sweet on palate. Very nice now – no rush here.

2002 Hazyblur Baroota Shiraz (Clare Valley) – this 15% alcohol wine was dark with a sweet ripe nose of coffee and cocoa. Smooth and long – no real rush here.

1990 Penfolds Bin 707 Cabernet – always a favourite of mine. Fairly clearly cab based with a eucalyptus nose sweet approach but not much tannin remaining. Good acidity and balance. No longer really a blockbuster, this has mellowed to a nice drinking cab with some time left but won’t improve.

2001 Errazuriz Vinedo Chadwick - this cab, cab franc and carmenere blend was very impressive. Dark and young, with a youthful chocolate and black cherry fruit nose, tons of fruit on palate, a big wine, still tannic, finishing dry and very classy. This is the one that has been blind tasted against first growth Bordeaux, blind, and come out on top.

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