Friday, 13 April 2012

Downing MCR Tasting

Wednesday, 11 April 2012.

An eclectic range of wines put together for a tasting for Downing College MCR. Retails prices are indicated, where available and known.

2010 Hidden Rock Colombard Chardonnay. South Australia.
Cambridge Wine Merchants £5.99 | B+

White fruits, very forward on the nose; tropical, quite sweet; citrus and melons too. On the palate its bursting with citrus fruit, ripe grapefruits; fresh and clean, a good quaffing wine.

2010 The Society's Exhibition New Zealand Chardonnay. Auckland, New Zealand.
The Wine Society £12.50 | B+

Oak dominates on the nose, more towards the vanilla sweet, creamy and buttery kind, but with slight hints of toasted nuttiness too. Plenty of fruit on the palate; its large and textured; the citrus and tropical fruit is ripe and supports the oak treatment; theres a hint of savoury notes too. Relatively low in acid, makes it feels quite heavy, but in all very tasty and well put together.

2009 Domaine Escaravailles Rasteau Blanc 'La Galopine'. Southern Rhone, France.
Cambridge Wine Merchants £19.99 | B+

Lots of sweet notes on the nose; white stone fruits, peaches and nectarines (even the tinned variety) along with honey and floral touches; elderflower and lime cordial springs to mind; attractive and lifted on the nose. The sweet stone fruit caries onto the palate, its fat, ripe and quite heavy; very filling and textured on the palate, feels substantial; theres a touch of oily / waxiness too; holds no punches at 14.5%, but doesnt feel too hot. Fairly low acidity, this needs food.

2010 McHenry Hohnen Burnside Vineyard ‘Wine Society Selection’ Sauvignon Blanc. Margaret River, Western Australia.
The Wine Society £8.95 | A-

Hints of green notes - bell peppers, paprika and asparagus, with a wet stone note too. On the palate theres ripe grapefruit; fruit is really ripe and sweet, slight hints of ripe gooseberries with some minerality too; feels perhaps a touch off dry (a few g/l of residual sugar maybe?). More restrained than NZ Sauv Blanc whilst still showing opulent and varietal character; balanced, very drinkable.

2009 Oberhauser Leistenberg Riesling Kabinett, Donnhoff. Nahe, Germany.
The Wine Society £14.95 | B+

Somewhat closed on the nose; maybe sweet limes and cordial, with overlying citrus fruit. On the palate its again citrus dominated; definitely off dry, maybe 10-15g/l; feels sweet but balanced. Light and dainty; acidity keeps things moving.

2006 Latria Garnatxa Carinyena. Montsant, Spain.
The Wine Society £7.50 | A- (value)

Initially quite earthy and smoky, with ferral / gamey and sweaty leather on the nose; but this gradually moves on to reveal some dark plums in the mix. Fresh acidity, the fruit is soft and rounded; sour cherry and red plums but somehow feels wild / hedgerow like. Its plush and bright yet has a touch of sandy grip at the end; very well put together, tremendous value to boot. This was incredibly well received by the wine trade press tastings in March 2012, and I can see why.

Rosso di Palazzone. Tuscany, Italy.
Cambridge Wine Merchants £11.99 | B+

Quite pale but belies the power hidden within; lots of floral and lifted nose, sweet cherries and earthy notes, rosehip and turkish delight, with sweet incense thrown in; very fragrant. Palate is filled with ripe red cherries with bittersweet chocolate and mocha touches; interesting palate with many things going on, including a touch of savouriness too; decent finish, doesnt just disappear; fresh acidity. In all, bright yet still long and complex; great fun.

2007 Weinert Carrascal. Argentina.
The Wine Society £7.50 | B+

Dark fruits, blackberry compote, black plums; smells quite dark if you will, also some aromatics and sweet vanilla and fragrant woods thrown in. Bags of sweet black fruit on the palate; blackberries again; not fully extracted, doesnt feel heavy or cumbersome; feels fresh and silky no the palate; touch of tannins at the end. Not terribly complex but well put together.  

2000 Henschke 'Abbotts Prayer' Merlot Cabernet. Lenswood, Adelaide Hills.

Mulberry on the nose, along with a slight green leafy tinge; wine gums and slightly confected nose, smells quite sweet and cordial like; sweet red paprika perhaps. Soft and lush on the palate, clearly quite settled; fresh acidity and fills the mouth; core of sweet red cherries and strawberries, rather attractive.

2003 Fox Creek Short Row Shiraz. McLaren Vale, South Australia.

Port like and alcoholic on the nose; leaps off the glass; cordial and blackcurrant jam, smells quite hot, ribena, lots of high notes. Good fruit hit on the palate, clearly this didnt fade with age but the fruit disappears quickly on the palate; vibrant black cherry and currants but no lasting power; fresh fruity acidity. Correct but one dimensional.

2003 Clarendon Hills ‘Moritz’ Syrah. Clarendon, South Australia.

Very opague still; nose feels dense and thick, dark fruits brooding, blackcurrants but with a good dose of crushed black peppers, hints of wild herbs / garrigue. Lots of fruit showing on the palate; dark cherries and plums with lots of spiciness; fresh acidity, doesnt feel heavy despite its concentrated flavours; generous and lengthy on the palate. Nice texture, really does have some presence and class; ripe and sweet tannins towards the end, this still has life ahead of it; drink now - 2020+

2005 Chateau Reynon Rouge, Cotes de Bordeaux.

Dark fruit coulis; jammy on the nose, still overtly fruity, sweet oak and vanilla still showing too, smells quite hot and lively actually. Nice red fruit on the core; sweet red cherries; quite rusty / bloody on the palate, with hints of spice. Settled fruit, pleasant but not very complex. All components are together.

1971 Chateau La Tour St Bonnet. Cru Bourgeois Medoc, France.

A novelty, tawny orange in colour with hints of pink. Bells peppers, paprika and leafy notes on the nose, along with an earthy, musty and rustic notes. On the palate the fruit has mostly faded, leaving a warmth and acidity; feels it tasting almost of citrus and preserved limes, quite hard to describe.  

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