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Clos Payrol 2006

Saturday, January 1st, 2011

Vintage: 2006
Type: Bordeaux
Country: France – Bordeaux – Pomerol

This is one of the best wines that I have ever had the pleasure to taste. Knowing that the wine would require some time to breathe, I decanted the bottle and let sit for several hours. To get a sense of what was in store, I had a tiny taste of the wine after it was decanted: pure pleasure. The tasting left my mouth watering for more, though I forced myself to wait.

The nose was dark and closed – even after being left to breathe. Classic Pomerol herb-tinged, caramel, and sweet black cherry notes intermixed with mocha and spice box. Tannic with a good level of acidity, many levels of complexity, full body flavours of cherries and plums.

Payrol is right next door to Petrus, a small vineyard – much like Petrus and is ideally placed in Pomerol. flavours of berry and terroir. Quite young, but drinking well. This wine can certainly be set down for another 10+ years. Very highly recommended!

Château de la Grave Hommage 2009

Saturday, November 20th, 2010

Vintage: 2009
Type: Rosé Blend
Country: France – Bordeaux – Côtes de Bourg

This is a very special rose wine. It looks like a rose but acts like a red. On the nose, it has very intense fruity flavours (strawberry-like) but on the palate, it tastes of light spices and subtle oak.

I think this wine would fit in at an al fresco late lunch or early dinner of tapas or a variety of roasted veggies, pitas and dips. Delicious! I hope you find this wine as pleasantly surprising as I did!

Conan the Barbera – Barbera D’Asti 2007

Thursday, September 30th, 2010

Vintage: 2007
Type: Barbera d’Asti
Country: Italy – Piedmont

I purchased this wine after reading a good review of it a couple of months ago. The label, especially the back was quite humorous and jolly — typically a warning for a mediocre bottle. Of course this wasn’t the case.

I decanted the wine around midday and at the time it was closed up tight, so I left it to rest until the evening. One thing to note is that the cork on the bottle was very serious (which is great as this wine will benefit from laying down for a number of years).

In the evening, I poured a glass and began to explore. The colour was incredibly dark, almost opaque. On the nose it was full of berries with a bit of earth on the side. On the tongue it is a true pleasure of tannic acidity (your mouth waters as you taste) filled with vivid fruit flavours. It’s full bodied and serious, so it may not be to everyone’s palette.

Given the acidity and the quality of the bottling, this wine will happily sit for many years. You can find the wine here:

Château Pichon-Longueville Comtesse de Lalande 1997

Tuesday, June 15th, 2010

Vintage: 1997
Type: Bordeaux
Country: France

We had the chance to taste this wine a while ago, soon after trying its cousin, the Château Pichon-Longueville Baron. The wine was less tannic and a little more mellow than the Baron, but was still excellent. There were great earthly aromas and flavours of oak and berries on the pallet. The finish was nice and long.

Château Cheval Blanc 1994 Saint-Emilion

Saturday, May 15th, 2010

Vintage: 1994
Type: Bordeaux – Saint-Emilion
Country: France


This was the third beauty hidden away in the Royal Over-Seas League cellar but realeased in limited numbers to those dining in the restaurant in late 2009. This was a strongly-flavoured wine, with a heady nose and vibrant colour. This is a nice wine to share with friends over a French-inspired menu (featuring Lamb!).

Château Pichon-Longueville Baron

Monday, May 10th, 2010

Vintage: 1997
Type: Bordeaux
Country: France

This is a beautiful, oaky red with an intense aroma that makes me want to keep sniffing it throughout my dinner!

Berry flavours are obvious. Gorgeous colour with nicely faded edges. Excellent with meat dishes. Highly recommended.

John Duval – Plexus

Wednesday, May 5th, 2010

Vintage: 2006
Type: Blend (Shiraz, Grenache, Mourvedre)
Country: Australia – Barossa Valley

This wine is a blend of Shiraz, Grenache, Mourvedre created by John Duval in the Barossa Valley. It has balanced flavours of red and black fruits. The understated oak on the nose is special and overall the wine is superb, hinting of southern Rhone.

It’s excellent now if decanted – but will be age very well and will taste exquisite in a decade.

Baron De Ley Finca Monasterio 2007

Tuesday, April 20th, 2010

Vintage: 2007
Type: Tempranillo
Country: Spain

What can I say, revisiting this wine with a new vintage was a pleasure. Still strong aromas of berry and oak on the nose and excellent finish on the palette. Highly recommended, again.

2002 Lagunilla Gran Reserva

Thursday, March 25th, 2010

Vintage: 2002
Type: Tempranillo
Country: Spain

What can I say about the third type of wine that I’ve tasted from this excellent vineyard except that the best was saved for last! I enjoyed the Crianza and the Reserva, but I love the Gran Reserva. It has an intense ruby colour, fading at the edge. The nose is full of dark berry fruits and oak. The taste is full of velvety, rounded plummy fruit flavours. Highly recommended.

Oh, and it was a Gold medal winner at the The International Wine and Spirit Competition.

Punt Road Shiraz 2005

Monday, March 15th, 2010

Vintage: 2005
Type: Shiraz
Country: Australia – Yarra Valley

An excellent vintage from an excellent vineyard. It’s made from 22 year old vines in the Coldstream area of the Valley. It has been aged in French oak, and you can tell on the nose. The Shiraz has a spicy pepper undertone coupled with strong berries for a medium-bodied wine. This wine will cellar well and is not too expensive.