Sunday, 24 May 2015

Priocca Barbaresco 2011

Tasted 22/5/15, 14% abv, cork closure, £11 Sainsburys Taste The Difference.
This is a co-op wine but a genuine Barbaresco that should not be as good as this for 11 quid! One would normally askew Barbarescos at this price but this is a cracker and as good as some merchant wines at £25.
Drinking well now - nice medium red colour the nose is attractive - red fruits, hint of vanilla with darker fruits too. The wine is quite well structured, elegant and certainly well made. I suspect this is made from younger vines and hence probably will not have a life of some of its more expensive cousins but this is a great wine to drink now. 17/20, from 2014.

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Sunday, 3 May 2015

Chianti Azienda Agricola Cignozza DOC 2009

Tasted 03.05.15, 13 % ABV, cork closure, c. £12 from Genesis Wines. A really good value Chianti from friends at Genesis. It is not Chianti Classico but it has all the features you would want of an ‘weekday’ Chianti that is a notch higher than average. Cherry red with slightly browning tinges. Lovely cherries on the nose, slightly tarry and dark fruits. The palate is very dry, with smooth tannins and great dark fruits on the finish. Good layer of vanilla and a little white pepper. Lovely wine. From 2014, 16/20


Roversi Pecorino Terre di Chienti IGT 2013 Abruzzo

Tasted 5.5.15, 12%, cork closure. £8 in Asda (currently on offer £6). Surprisingly elegant and structured white wine from Abruzzo. Pale yellow, citrusy and hint of tropical fruits on the nose. Off dry, a great light aperitif. Palate is reminiscent of a light southern French white. A true bargain. Drink now 16.5/20

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Monday, 6 April 2015

Robert Oatley Finisterre Chardonnay 2013, Margaret River

Tasted 3/4/15, 13% ABV, screw cap closure, ca. £18 - £22 UK retail (e.g. Waitrose, Wine Society). This is a top class wine from winemaker Larry Cherubino using some of the putatively oldest Chardonnay vines in Australia. This wine regularly receives 90 PP or 18+/20 for most vintages and it certainly can compete with many of the best (though perhaps not the best) that Burgundy can offer. Quality wise, it is certainly up there with a Grand Cru Chassagne-Montrachet, though a somewhat different.This is now one of my favourite New World Chardonnays, along with Catena Alta from Mendoza,
Firstly, let's get out of the way my usual hobby horse which turned me off Aussie Chardonnay for a long while - the excessive use of oak. This wine has had 9 months in new French oak (rather than American oak) which pays dividends, as though the oak is certainly more prominent than in a Burgundian style, it balances the richness and acidity of the wine. This wine is complex and elegant. There is an underlying palate of almonds, apricots and citrus but with a fine minerality. Finish is incredibly long and complex. A superbly balanced wine with a good life ahead of it. From 2015, 18.5/20

Tuesday, 17 February 2015

Paracombe Pinot Noir 2009 Adelaide Hills

Tasted 15.02.15, 13%, screw cap, £20 UK retail,
(First point to make here: Amazon have started selling wine in the UK but beware the pitfalls of a non-specialist retailer for wine - I ordered 3 bottles, wanted the 2013 and got 2 x 2009 and one 2011!)
Anyway, this wine lived up to its 17.5/20 billing in a recent Decanter tasting of Aussie Pinot Noir.
This a lovely cool climate example of this varietal. Hitherto I have not been too keen in Aussie PN - always thinking it a poor relation to Kiwi Pinot noir - but clearly progress has been made.
This is a rich fruity wine, dark pink in colour and bursting with strawberries on the nose. The palate is red fruits and vanilla, with a hint of Burgundian farmyardiness.
I would drink this now - a good fine wine alternative to classic Burgundy or Chilean Pinot noir. 17/20, from 2012.

Sunday, 8 February 2015

Chianti Classico Riserva DOCG 2010

Tasted 7.2.15, 13%, cork closure, £9 UK retail (Asda Extra Special). This is a co-op wine from CSPA. Whilst perhaps not the most elegant or distinctive Chianti Classico that I've ever tasted, this does represent good value for money. It has all the hallmarks that one would expect of a good Chianti: bright mid-red colour, very distinctive cherries on the nose And a very dry mouthfeel. There are red fruits on the pallet and the wine has quite a lengthy finish. Whilst this does not represent the highest echelon of Chianti production, - it is basically a co-op blend after all - it is a decent every day wine. Drink now - 2016. 15.5. / 20

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Castelfelder Pinot noir 2011 Alto Adige DOC

Tasted 1.2.15. 13.5%, cork closure, £18 UK retail. I discovered this gem of a wine at Tuscan (sic) specialist Negozio Classico in Primrose Hill. This is made from the Blauburgunder grape from the Germany speaking region of the Sudtirol in the Italian alps. A great alternative to New World Pinot Noir if you want something different (and cheaper) than fine Burgundy.
This is a lovely wine, ready now but would benefit from some more time in bottle. Light pink in colour, classic rise hips on the nose with just a hint of farmyardiness. Quite acid but balanced by forward red berries fruit. Recommended and good value. From 2014. 17/20