TN A few nice wines and one horror

Discussion in 'UK Wine Forum' started by Richard Zambuni, May 15, 2018.

  1. Last night with friends we trekked out to Sager+Wilde Paradise Row for some good food and a few bottles of wine. There's no corkage (if you ask in advance) on Mondays.

    We started with A William Fevre Chablis 1er cru Vaillons which was attractively mature and beautifully poised. The nose was redolent of crushed sea shells and oysters, while the palate was dry, subtly secondary, slightly lemony and long, finishing with a lick of chalk. There's just a bit more body than usual from the sunny 2010 vintage, but this is still a lean and mean Chablis. Tasting fully ready to go. ****

    Clos Floridene Graves blanc 2009 - what a difference a few years make to this wine. It has filled out, the colour has deepened, developed complex flavours, and the semillon component is now more in evidence. It finishes with a mineral twist. More of a food wine and slightly more fuller-bodied than the Chablis and not shown up by a good 1er cru either. Really delicious and superb value for what it is. ***1/2 nudging ****

    Chateau Giscours 2000 - just entering the drinking window this wine shows a quite exotic nose of tobacco and blackcurrant fruit with a twist of something like Asian spices. Long and fine-boned on the palate with good flavour intensity. The tannins are fine and ripe and beginning to soften. This is a beautiful claret. Clear ****

    And then the the scary one. The 10kg (I exaggerate only slightly) glass bottle was probably giving the game away. The Mira Winery Hyde Vineyard Pinot Noir Carneros 2013 was a horror show. Dull, muddled and woody on the nose, and then over-ripe, over-oaked, over-extracted, and vastly over-alcoholic on the palate at 15.2%. For me, this was literally undrinkable. Pinot noir like this is one of the most unpalatable drinks known to man. I felt sorry for the person who had brought it (not a wine geek) - he genuinely expected it to be a good wine based on price and presentation.
     
  2. What's remarkable about the Carneros PN is that (a) we can assume that the winemaker has chosen to make wine like this (b) there are plenty of appreciative consumers willing to pay for this kind of wine, so that it is worth his/her while
     
  3. Richard, the Clos Floridene sounds lovely - where can that be bought?

    Joel
     
  4. Tim - so many people buy expensive bottles not knowing what to expect for a start, and I'm sure there are people out there (especially in the USA) that might even enjoy this sort of wine. Lots of aspirational Californian wine is made to a similar recipe, but when you apply that recipe to pinot noir it can go horribly wrong - at least to those who are looking for some fragrance, elegance and balance in the wine.
     
  5. Joel - Winesearcher is your friend. The 2009 is available, but many other vintages are just as good. I buy Clos Floridene blanc regularly and it ages well into the mid-term (say up to ten years). I've never experimented with aging it longer. It's one wine that is still good value.
     
  6. Thanks Richard. A good white bordeaux is always a good thing to have on hand. I'll locate some via wine searcher.
     
  7. We opened a Clos Floridene 2011 on Sunday. It needed plenty of air in order to transform into a lovely drink. This is a consistently good property for top quality white Graves & is better than plenty of Pessac-Leognan. It's a shame BBR no longer stock it.
     
  8. Joel, The Floridene usually shows up in the TWS EP list and given their low storage charges, that may be a good way to go...though not for immediate access of course!
     
  9. Tom Cannavan

    Tom Cannavan Administrator

    Joel Clos Floridene is the late Denis Dubourdieu's family estate, and he was particularly famed for his touch with white wines. It's remarkably well priced and always delightful.
     
  10. It pops up in the Waitrose sales from time to time too.
     
  11. But whether one would receive the correct vintage........
     
    Alex Jagger likes this.
  12. and Clos Floridene "good with food"?
     
  13. The Co-op sells it currently on the 2015 I think.
     
  14. The Mira Pinot has one review on CT

    "Pretty rose/light ruby color. Smells of sweet cherries, strawberries, rose potpourri, white pepper – so much going here aromatically. Such purity and freshness on the palate with crisp acidity and fine tannins. Silky but full of tart red fruit (raspberry, strawberry, some fig elements, too). I get a complex mixture of leather, sage, rose potpourri. Long and vibrant, enough structure to last but kicking in its youth"

    Hmm. Same wine?
     
  15. Well, I would take Richard’s impression of the wine over any CT note!

    I drank a far more modest but equally challenging Californian wine at the weekend - Bread and Butter Pinot ‘14. The label read elegant, restrained, classically styled and suggested 13.5%. It was a boring sweet fruit bomb with two big licks of oak.
     
  16. Certainly - I find most white bordeaux can be a bit extreme on its own.
     
  17. It's all subjective in the end, but really, the wine was appalling, and I think most forum members would have given this the cold shoulder. I did suggest that some Americans will like this sort of wine but you really would have to like over-ripeness, massive new oak and high alcohol to even get started. If you are prepared to look beyond the packaging and presentation of a lot of $40-50 Californian wines there are a good number that fall massively short of being balanced wines. By the way, if you want to taste the absolute dregs of the barrel in CA pinot noir - try a glass of Mark West California Pinot Noir. It's ubiquitous by the glass in average bars and restaurants because it is cheap. I tried it once by mistake.
     

Share This Page