Entries from 2009

a return to taste: de montille 06 bourgogne

By Peter Sidebotham on September 23, 2009 #degustation#peter's posts

It’s been a long time since I posted, and I think there have been too many “harvest” entries and not enough slurping – so here is a TN for you.

It may have been the occasion – a pique-nique en famille – or merely the fact that this bottle was a gift (and therefore free of intellectual investment on my part) – but this one simply delighted, and delighted simply. Highly recommended, and adds its modest weight to my personal view that 2006 is going to turn out to be a very pleasing vintage for the lover of red burgundy – a vintage I continue to buy for my personal cellar.

2006 de Montille, Bourgogne Rouge
Pale bright cherry red, with a broad paler rim showing pinkish still. Bright but slight, spicy cherry, nose. Fresh youthful and rustic, it makes me think of rolling in hay. Mouth entry is pure and sweet, but very small. Nice flavours – very fresh red fruit and spicy, bubblegummy, earth. The mid-palate shows good acidity and grip but no real size, and then it ends. Not quite clipped, but certainly short, though in a way that leaves you wanting more, rather than dissatisfied. Not a serious wine, but just the ticket for a picnic or a roll in the hay.

A week or so later we tried a bottle of the 2004, which was a different kettle of ladybirds. Not one to drink now, but I will hold and hope.

faded beauty, or lady in waiting ?

By Peter Sidebotham on June 06, 2009 #degustation#peter's posts

1998 Confuron-Cotetidot, Clos de Vougeot
1998 Confuron-Cotetidot, Clos de Vougeot

1998 Confuron-Cotetidot Clos de Vougeottry to find this wine...
Medium pale ruby, just touched with garnet. Medium tapering rim, clear at the very edge. Paler than I expected from a “modern” producer in a robust vintage. Nose is robust and earthy, and also high-toned, with some sweet red cherry fruit sandwiched in the middle. It comes across as sappy and loose-knit, but quite oaky. Not really attractive – a touch of the beauty salon about it, but slipping behind the front. Mouth entry is also loose-knit, even dilute, and smoky. Mid-palate shows dark earthy tones and a little tannic grip. But those tannins – while not too big – turn bitter on the finish. There is so little delight here I wonder whether it is closed, but I suspect not and decide not to list it on this showing. Just about nice enough to suggest drinking up if you have it (though you may prefer to hold and hope), but not a buy if you don’t !
Rebuy – No

hot pinots from chile

By Peter Sidebotham on May 14, 2009 #etrangers#peter's posts

vina cono sur pinot noir 'ocio' casablanca valley

A couple of contrasting examples of Chilean Pinot Noir for you this time. The first is one of Decanter’s “Top 50 New World Pinot Noirs”, the second didn’t gain that honour. And, true to my title, both are ‘hot’, one with alcohol, the other – punished by my writing – in the sense of American sexual slang.

Secano Estate Pinot Noir 2006, Leyda Valleytry to find this wine...
Leyda is one of the most promising sites for Pinot Noir in Chile, supposedly (I’ve never been there) cooled by sea breezes. I’ve had several good Pinot’s from this region, but this, Decanter **** rated or not, is not one of them:
Very deep pure ruby, narrow paler rim shows almost clear. Dark and dirty nose – there is dark cherry, chocolate and well-rotted horse manure here. Really very good – apart from a slight, spicy, hot, alcoholic overtone. Mouth entry is sweet and round – really jammy and alcoholic. There is good black cherry and dark plum fruit, with earthy, dark chocolate flavours too, but then the heat gets too much for me to keep it in my mouth. The finish is hot and sweet, with just a touch of acidity, and reminds me of flavoured vodka. Making allowances for my aversion to excessive alcohol, I just manage to give this 2/5.

Viña Cono Sur Pinot Noir ‘Ocio’ 2006, Casablanca Valleytry to find this wine...
Deep limpid ruby, touched with purple; barely any paler rim. Fresh, lively and refined nose. Lovely fresh cherry and plum fruit, and the merest hint of sousbois. Barely detectable oak. Super stuff. Mouth entry is amzingly supple, with lush fruit and a nice earthiness to it. Mid-palate shows really good sappy density and great balance – just detectable tannins and acidity. Very composed and nicely cool fruit. Great poise. On the finish there is dark fruit, more earthiness and just the merest hint of heat. This is a very, very good example. A super, well-made wine, and better than many a Burgundy, but it just doesn’t speak to me of a place – of its ‘terroir’. Oh – I almost forgot – this is a 4/5.

The 2005 – reviewed here is, for me, a better wine – quite a bit fresher and without even that trace of excessive alcohol.

And finally, in case you are wondering, an editorial note: I do not write on here about any wine we are selling or intend to sell.

a nice suprise

By Peter Sidebotham on May 09, 2009 #degustation#peter's posts

Remoissenet 1976 Le Montrachet
Remoissenet 1976 Le Montrachet

Well back in March Bernard Repolt had said we were in for a treat “if the bottle is good”, but when the cork came out so did all my fears.

I’d never seen anything like this before, but the good news was that the clean end was in the bottle and the mess had eaten less than half way towards the wine. First sniffs weren’t promising but after about half an hour the wine settled down to the business of wowing us.

1976 Remoissenet, Le Montrachettry to find this wine...
Quite deep gold, just touched with bronze. Very rich on the nose – initially nutty and honeyed and, I worried, just a touch oxidised. With time it grew in stature and complexity, adding notes of candied apricot, truffle and yellow apples. In the mouth it was fabulously rich and full, yet quite restrained – perhaps structured would be a better word – with great complexity and length. The flavours were fresher than on the nose including green apples but it was whole and majestic. A splendid bottle, my one and only and a huge gamble purchased at auction last year. Sometimes the sun shines…
Rebuy – fat chance !

Comment from Bill:
For info, Peter has a super tasting of 2003’s recently added to his own site – here.

Not quite Burgundy …

By Peter Sidebotham on April 22, 2009 #etrangers#peter's posts

Kooyong Meres Pinot Noir
Kooyong Meres Pinot Noir

… but this one comes about as close as I have tasted from Australia. I am constantly trying out New World Pinot Noirs at home as well as at trade fairs, looking for the delicacy and definition that excites me in Burgundy. Oh – and looking for better values too. I find it hard work, as I am burdened with a palate that is very sensitive to alcohol levels, and loves – perhaps even craves – acidity. I mention those things because for anyone more tolerant of alcohol than I seem to be, this would be an absolute gem. The only downside is that it costs pretty much the same as a decent premier cru. Vive le marketing.

Kooyong – Meres Pinot Noir 2005 (Mornington Peninsula, Victoria)
Medium-full ruby, broad paler rim showing a touch pinkish. Lovely full Pinot nose. Juicy and ripe with a very refined oak frame. This is really lovely and classy, spicy and with a touch of game meat – could be a fat Vosne-Romanee. Mouth entry is nice and taut but with juicy cherry fruit right behind. Good acidity and a real sense of compressed energy here. Fat and spicy in style on the mid-palate, but paradoxically seems to lack body. There is a touch of licorice and very refined cherry/damson fruit. Finish is firm, slightly drying, and just a touch hot (i.e. too alcoholic). This has real beauty at the start, but became less convincing on the mid-palate and worrying on the finish. I feel (hope?) it should come good, but that alcohol on the finish is too much for me.

the one that got away

By Peter Sidebotham on April 20, 2009 #peter's posts

Clos St.Jacques Pernot-Fourrier
Clos St.Jacques Pernot-Fourrier

A little tardy, but I thought I would share with you my notes on probably the only dinner that Bill didn’t get to in Glasgow last month. There were some beauties here, not least of which was the gorgeous Pernot-Fourrier. This is the same domaine as is run today by Jean-Marie Fourrier. Before Jean-Claude took over the domaine, the wines were made by his uncle Fernand Pernot … and a darn good job he made of it, if this bottle is anything to go by.

Raveneau Chablis Grand Cru Blanchots 1992
Rich, even slightly madeirised on the nose. Very rich in the mouth – touches of pinepapple, but with a hard mineral core. Surprisingly little acidity showing here, fully resolved, and with a very long finish. Impressive rather than loveable. 4

Potinet-Ampeau Meursault Charmes 1966
Initially quite fat and waxy, quite unpromising, but this blossomed sensationally over 30 minutes in the glass. Nutty and complete. Broad and ample in the mouth, but with an astonishing lightness too. Lovely. 5-

Remoissenet Corton Charlemagne Grand Cru 1986
Big and bold on the nose, still with an edge of citric freshness to it. Very big and bright in the mouth, even buxom, but with a core of minerality. Good length on the finish too, but isn’t really harmonious and lacks sophistication after the Meursault. 4+

Meo-Camuzet Vosne Romanee Cros Parantoux 1993
Big, intense and heady perfume : “in your face”. Great perfume and suppleness in the mouth. Meaty and intense, with overtones of violets. Dense and dark but with real purity. Big and long. Still really very tight, and still didn’t come together even after an hour in the glass. Hold for 10 years plus. 5

Pernot-Fourrier Gevrey-Chambertin Clos St Jacques 1978
Almost feral on the nose, but there is lovely ripe red fruit beneath aswell as that earthy gaminess. A classic mature Gevrey, though it doesn’t display the sheer class of the CP. Wonderfully smooth and together in the mouth with great acidity pointing up the fruit (but not intruding). Great drinking with the deer, but not truly great. 4+

Burgundy Report

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