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Sunday Afternoon Bordeaux


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Notes from a Sunday brunch.

Kir – I suppose the only consolation is that the white wine used here for this sort of drink is not as lean and nasty as some of the stuff used in France, which really requires the addition of something sweet to soften the edge. But given that, the question remains – why not just drink the white wine? Oh well.

2001 Ch. Chantegrive Cuvee Caroline (graves) – 50% semillon, 30% sauvignon blanc, 20% muscadelle. Showing some colour, and a lemony nose, good acid but a little lacking in the middle, finishing a tad short. Ho hum.

Served with truffled quail and sweetbread terrine.

2001 Ch. l’Arrivet-Haut Brion – 60% sauv., 35% Semillon, 5% muscadelle. Much nicer, with a grassier nose with ripe melon notes, clean and fresh in the mouth with a hint of anise on the finish.

With seared filet of Thai snapper on fennel pureé

1995 Ch. Grand-Mayne (St. Emilion) – there was an interesting difference of opinion on this wine. It showed a ripe sweet fruit nose with some interesting spiciness, and good fruit in the middle. In my opinion the wine is just starting to drink well, but several others thought it was getting tired. Either different bottles or different tastes.

With roasted lamb chops with goat cheese panna cotta

1986 Ch. Pichon Lalande (Pauillac) – I was expecting an uncharacteristically big hard unrelenting wine based on past experience wit this a few years ago, so was rather surprised to find that this was presenting much better than I thought it would. Ripe fruit nose with good depth, now starting to show some complexity, smooth and rich in the mouth with obvious but not off-putting tannins. It drinks quite well now, with a pleasant sweetness. This conflicts with other’s recent notes on this wine.

With cheese.

1988 Ch. Guiraud – I was really impressed with this Sauternes. Great nose of Botrytis, honey and spice, excellent balance, not coming across as too sweet and with bright acidity, the honey coming in again at the end. Drinking very well now and with years to go!

With pear frangipane tart.

All in all, not an unpleasant way to spend a Sunday afternoon!

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