Our wine tasting club AuZone recent held its annual general meeting, and tradition dictates that some liquid painkillers and some blood sugar-boosting nutrition are administered before we move on to boring stuff like audit report, budget, membership fees and so on. Our member S. handled the wine purchase, and K. the food, with some assistance from J., and this year it was possible to increase their budget compared to previous years. Most of this increase ended up in the wine budget, which meant that we ended up with 11 wines, i.e., some more than in our regular Thursday tastings! More AGMs should be like this!
Two of the white wines and one of the red wines were served blind, and the other wines open, directly from the bottle.
2010 Arlewood Sauvignon Blanc Semillion
Margret River, Western Australia. The 2013 vintage (for which I found data) is 55% Sauvignon Blanc and 45% Sémillion.
Nose with flowery notes and smoke, citrus, elderflower, and nettle. Dry on the palate, rather fruity with citrus, nettle, high acidity, and an aftertaste with mineral, citrus, and nettle. Young, 88 p.
This wine was served bling. A typical Sauvignon Blanc style, and I was leaning towards Loire while I heard Bordeaux mentioned from other tasters since they interpreted the smoky notes as oak. Well, at least from a colder part of Australia…
2011 Schloss Saarstein Riesling Alte Reben
Nose with peach, honey, and some perfume. Dry palate with citrus, good concentration, mineral, high acidity and aftertaste with grapefruit. Young, 89 p.
This wine was served blind. Typical Riesling nose with a character of rather ripe grapes and with depth, a somewhat “sweet” nose, but still with good acidity and freshness on the palate, so I guessed Pfalz or Alsace.
2011 Rüdesheim Berg Rottland Rieling Erstes Gewächs, Künstler
Nose with citrus, mineral, a hint of yellow apple, some honey, some peach and elegance. Palate with good concentration, citrus, mineral, high acidity and a long grapefruit aftertaste. Rather young, approachable now, 92(+) p.
Oups, are there Künstler vinyards also on Rüdesheimer Berg? This was news for me, since everything I’ve seen from them used to be sourced from vineyards in their home village of Hochheim. A really good wine, that has the elegance of a good Rüdesheim vineyard but still quite a lot of Künstler’s typical style, i.e. rather fruity and accessible. The combination is appealing.
2011 Deidesheimer Langenmorgen Riesling Grosses Gewächs, Von Winning
Smoky nose with hits of “spontaneous fermentation notes” (i.e., sulfuric notes), as well as mineral and peach; a “firm” nose. Palate with good concentration, citrus, pronounced mineral note, high acidity, and a long aftertaste with mineral. Young, 91+ p
Nose with yellow apple, some yellow plum, some citrus, a hint of honey, and a well integrated oak barrel note. Palate with citrus, yellow apple, mineral, good concentration, high acidity and aftertaste with citrus and mineral. Definitely good acidity and mineral for a 2009. Young, 91(+) p
Olivier Leflaive is definitely a good producer, but this wine is definitely better than I had expected from a village-level Meursault, and it shows the advantage of the ripe vintage (good concentration and deep fruit) and seems to have avoided its typical disadvantages (a bit less of acidity, freshness, minerality and balance)!
2010 Cave de Tain Crozes-Hermitage
Northern Rhône, grape variety Syrah.
Nose with violets, clove, and dark cherries. Palate with blackberries, medium concentration, violets, high acidity and medium tannins. 87 p
Nose with dark cherries, some violets, and discrete flowery notes. Palate with good concentration, some sweetness of fruit, blackberries, and some tannin. Rather young, 88(+) p
This wine was served blind. My thoughts went to Syrah, but the wine felt a little more “hot” without going the whole way to a New World style. Some thought the wine showed more of a Grenache style and came from Southern Rhône. Well, a Syrah-dominated blend with Grenache from a somewhat hotter part of Europe, and a collaboration project with the Southern Rhône producer Xavier. So we weren’t really that far off the mark. Possibly, the two very characteristic Australian wines made this wine come across as quite European (which it also is), and almost French. An interesting wine to taste!
The wine comes from the province of Tekirdağ in Turkey, which is located in the region of East Thrace, which is that part of Turkey which is located in Europe, i.e., that stretches from the border with Greece to the Bosphorous. Tekirdağ faces the Sea of Marmara coast. (Other parts of the historical Thrace region are located in current-day Bulgaria and Greece.)
Nose with blackberries, sweetish notes, vanilla, some flowery notes, and some clove. Palate with blackberries, some sweetness, good concentration, and rather well integrated medium tannins. Rather young, 89 p.
Next to the French wines this wine comes across as so Australian that I almost started to sing Walzing Matilda. Usually, it’s Shiraz from South Australia (e.g., Barossa) rather than from Victoria that gives this impression. To me it was more typically Australian than the Cabernet below.
2008 Wynns Coonawarra Estate Cabernet Sauvignon
Coonawarra, South Australia.
Nose with blackcurrants, some vanilla, slightly sweetish impression, spice, and a hint of animal notes. Palate with blackcurrants, strawberries and some alcoholic fire. Rather young, 88 p.
2010 Domaine Faiveley Nuits-Saint-Georges
Burgundy, grape variety Pinot Noir.
Light red colour. Nose with strawberries, mineral, discrete spice and oak notes, a hint of flowers, and elegance. The palate is medium bodied(-) but with good concentration of aromas, with strawberries, noticeable mineral, some spice notes, rather light tannins and a long aftertaste with mineral. Definitely elegant, young, 90(+) p.
Not at all a typical Nuits-Saint-Georges style, since that village tends to produce wines of a slightly rustic style, while this is increadibly polished and elegant for a village wine from a négociant. This wine clearly demonstrates the makeover of Faiveley from a producer with very tough wines with tannins that demanded long cellaring to a finely polished style where mineral and elegance are in focus. The vintage style of 2010 has of course also helped in this case. I very much like this one, but those that like tough tannins in their wines will probably consider this to be a bit thin to be of interest.
2007 Louis Jadot Morey-Saint-Denis
Burgundy, grape variety Pinot Noir.
Light red colour with pale edge. Nose with ripe strawberries, mature notes in the direction of decaying strawberries, some animal notes, noticeable spice, and some undergrowth. Medium bodied(+), palate with ripe strawberries, cherries, good concentration, noticeably spicy, and with medium tannins. A pleasant wine but a slightly “rough” character, and perhaps a typical Pinot Noir style rather than an obvious Burgundy. Rather ready to drink, 89 p.
Very good power for village level wine from 2007, which is a vintage that is not at top level, but one which has the advantage that it is maturing quickly. I had expected that one had to go up to the premier cru level for a négociant MSD to show this kind of weight in 2007. Normally, MSD from a not-too-good vintage would not be expected to be more heavyweight than NSG. (Actually, someone pointed out after the tasting that the corks of this lot actually say “MSD premier cru”, so possibly there’s a natural explanation why it came across they way it did.)
Swedish version here.