Visitor nominations 2019

Each Christmas Tom Cannavan announces his Wines of the Year and invites visitors to do the same. See Tom’s 2019 awards here.

Entries for Visitors’ Wines of the Year 2019 are now closed.

Darren Band

Red: 62 Anniversario Riserva Primitivo Di Maduria San Marzano 2016
White: The FMC, 2009, Ken Forrester
Budget Red: Vigneti del Salento ‘I Muri’ Negroamaro 2018
Budget White: Three Choirs Silver Jubilee 2018
Rosé: Cantina San Marzano Tramari Rosé Di Primitivo 2018
Sparkling: Nyetimber Blanc de Blancs 2013
Sweet: Château Suduirat 2009.
Fortified: Sainsbury’s Vintage Port, Taste the Difference.
Extra choice: Château Bandsville 2019 (Not great but fun to make!)
Dud: Very Rare Oloroso for Marks & Spencer
Thing: My Gretsch 5230T guitar!
Comments: The Primitivo was my birthday wine and I absolutely loved it. Managed to make it to Glasgow Festival for the first time to make it a double. Need to aim for all three in a year next time! Tried the FMC at the masterclass at Glasgow and completely agree with why it got called The FMC! Discovered the budget red at my local wine shop and at less than a tenner, couldn’t resist buying a few times since. Been a great year for learning about new wines (you might have noticed the Puglian trend above!). First experience of Oloroso… But taught me that I really don’t like Oloroso sherry! The wine making improved this year. Made completely from scratch using home grown Chardonnay and Trollinger grapes, giving a bumper crop of almost five bottles! A tad acidic pale Rosé that was… drinkable. Also a good year for music… new guitar, started messing about with a pedal board, and discovering Restricted Code! You’ve got outstandingly good taste in music Darren 🙂 A nice, adventurous list. Oloroso? A taste for sherry *might* develop with time, but it is a such a weird set of flavours compared to table wine – or even a sweet sherry – that some people never, ever get on with it – Tom

David Band, Scotland

Red: Louis Jadot Gevrey-Chambertin 2014
White: Greywacke Pinot Gris 2016
Budget Red: Thymiopoulos Xinomavro jeunes vignes
Budget White: Aldi Exquisite Lyme Block 2018
Sparkling: Gosset Celebris Extra Brut 2007
Sweet: Pelee Island Vidal Ice Wine 2011
Fortified: Justino’s Madeira 10 years old
Extra choice: Channing Daughters Bianco Pet Nat
Dud: My memory and lack of notes!
Thing: James Bond Bollinger 2011 Millesime 007 (Although it’s not for drinking – yet!) Another very adventurous list, from Greece to Canada to England. Greywacke does make fantastic wines across the board, and nice to see more experimenting with natural wines in the Pet Nat – not too many appearing this year – Tom

Ben Fawcett

Red: DuMOL Meteor Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon Coombsville Napa 2016
White: Domaine de Chevalier Pessac-Leognan 2009
Budget Red: Cantina Kaltern Kalterersee Classico Superiore Alto Adige 2017
Budget White: Pichler-Krutzler Pinot Bianco 2017
Rosé: Domaine Tempier Bandol Rose 2018
Sparkling: Champagne Bollinger Grande Annee 2004
Sweet: Chateau Tirecul La Graviere Cuvee Madame Monbazillac 2006
Fortified: Niepoort Vintage Port 1994
Extra choice: Stella Di Campalto Cuvee Benedetta Brunello di Montalcino 2011
Dud: Tarriffs for the love of god!!!
Thing: Being a Father – and I bloody love it (huge unnecessary angst during pregnancy)
Comments: Wow, what a year, the second half being utterly dominated by my beautiful daughter Olive. Fatherhood & parenthood is an utter joy and privilege and blessing and I love it. Wines. V difficult for red wine of the year but the DuMOL scrapes through on sheer drinkability and unadulterated joy, it’s a stunning wine and Andy Smith has to be ranked at the very pinnacle of truly great winemakers, biased maybe but this is tremendous stuff. Spending a day in the vineyards and winery with Stella di Campalto was both a privilege and education. For me she is the pre-eminent (living) Brunello producer, her Cuvee Bendetta is simply stunning, so delicate, yet deep – a profound wine in every sense of the word. Bolly Grande Annee is astounding value, 2004 on real form at the moment. Niepoort ’94 first Port I bought a case of, just hitting it’s stride. Pickler-Krutzler Pinot Bianco is wonderful (Pinot Bianco a current favourite grape generally). Congratulations on the baby Ben. Yes, the lunch I had with Andy Smith from DuMOL a couple of years ago backs up what you say; some terrific wines. And another white Bordeaux taking the honours too – Tom

Mahmoud Ali

Red: 1981 Monte Real Reserva, Rioja
White: 2009 Moreau Chablis ‘Vaillon’, Burgundy
Budget Red: 2016 Gabriel Meffre ‘Homage’ Cotes du Rhone
Budget White: 2016 Santa Rita Limited Release Rosé, Chile
Rosé: 1998 Charles Melton ‘Rose of Virginia’ Rosé, Barossa
Sparkling: 1998 Schramsberg ‘J. Schram’, Napa
Sweet: 1984 Mas Amiel ‘Cuvee Special’ Maury
Fortified: N/V Lindeman’s Show Reserve Oloroso Z273, Australia
Thing: 20 year-old wines – 1999 Portale, Donnafugata ‘Sedara’, and Lesec Pic Saint Loup ‘Tonneaux’
Comments: This year a number of my early cellaring efforts paid off as they came of age. My runner-up red, the 1985 Chateau Mouton Baronne Philippe ‘Homage a Pauline’ was very good, but the fragrance, elegance, and lingering finish of an aged Rioja was hard to beat. The Moreau ‘Vaillon’ just edged the exotic 2009 Greywacke Chardonnay. The 1998 Melton Rose of Virginia was a remarkable 20 year-old rose, looking and tasting like a light red instead of a rose. Two 1998 sparklings vied for the honours but the ’98 Schramsberg belied its age, the high chardonnay content making it a blanc de blanc look-alike giving it the nod over the fully mature 1998 Pol Roger. The Lindeman’s Oloroso, a blend of components with an average age of 30 years at the time of bottling, with its intensity, depth and length, could easily have vied for WOTY. My budget red reflected the quality of the ’16 vintage. Meanwhile reds from 1999 that I bought many years ago and that are now 20 years old have really given me pleasure. Great to see those 20-year-old moderately priced wines not only lasting the pace, but giving such pleasure. And old Rioja can be such a treat – people often compare to old red Burgundy, and I’ve tasted quite a few where I’d agree – Tom

Jonathan Mitchell, UK

Red: Chateau Phelan Segur 2003 Double Magnum
White: 2014 Jean Pascal et Fils Puligny-Montrachet 1er Cru Les Chalumeaux
Budget Red: Masi Campofiorin 2016 Our ‘house red’!
Budget White: Paul Jaboulet Aine Viognier 2018. Best Viognier and only £8
Sparkling: Lanson Extra Age. My favourite Champagne.
Fortified: Calem 1963 Vintage Port. Stunning
Extra choice: Chateau Du Tertre 1939. Drinkable even after the cork fell in.
Thing: 25th Wedding anniversary and a trip to Iceland.
Comments: Love this website and the chat in the forums. Thank you. Thank you for being part of it Jonathan. I must try that Lanson extra age – keep seeing it in M&S and wondering what it is like. Agree on Campofiorin too, and was again very impressed by it on my trip to Masi last year – Tom

Stephen Pickles, UK

Red: Domaine de la Romanée-Conti, Échézeaux Grand Cru 2000
White: Chave Hermitage Blanc 1988
Budget Red: Domaine Gros Noré Bandol 2000
Budget White: David Sadie Aristogos 2014
Rosé: Champagne Francis Boulard Les Rachais Rosé 2009
Sparkling: Billecart-Salmon Champagne Les Clos Saint-Hilaire 1996
Sweet: Bodegas Toro Albala Don PX Gines Liebana 1910
Fortified: Taylor’s Quinta de Terra Feita 2008
Extra choice: Soldera reserva docg Brunello Montalcino 1999
Thing: The NHS
Comments: A magnificent year for me wine wise, many of these wines were drunk with dear friends, met through the forum. The others were drunk whilst sailing the Norwegian coast. The Taylor’s wasn’t the best port in the world, but it tasted very good with toasted cheese at 0100 in the morning, in the daylight of the midnight sun. Sometimes context is everything. Port and toasted cheese – a variation on some sort of theme! Great list, the DRC also my red of the year and a candidate for WO the decade, now that we are into a new one. The Aristogos is another brilliant wine, and example of what makes South African whites one of the hottest tickets of the moment – Tom

Will Taylor

Red: 1976 Domaine du Jaugaret
White: 1999 Domaine Leflaive Bienvenues-Bâtard-Montrachet
Budget Red: 2016 J.L. Chave Sélection Côtes du Rhône Mon Coeur
Budget White: 2014 Alice et Olivier De Moor Bourgogne-Chitry
Rosé: 2012 Domaine Cotat Sancerre Chavignol Rosé
Sparkling: 2002 Pierre Péters Champagne Grand Cru Oenotheque BdB Les Chetillons
Sweet: 1983 Château d’Yquem
Fortified: Graham Porto 20 Year Old Tawny
Extra choice: 2001 Joh. Jos. Prüm Wehlener Sonnenuhr Riesling Spätlese (25 02)
Dud: 2015 Domaine de la Côte Pinot Noir La Côte
Comments: The year was book ended by a couple of wonderful dinners, great wine in the company of good friends, nothing better. My wine of the year was probably the Chetillons, it was served blind and has to be the finest champagne I have tasted to date. This coming year will be more focused on searching out quality producers form lesser known regions as Burgundy and Bordeaux EP seasons appeal less and less. Isn’t it interesting how so many serious wine lovers (including myself) begin to seek diversity away from the Bordeaux/Burgundy axis, which of course is something we can do with relative ease nowadays. 40 or 50 years ago there were far fewer alternatives within reach, and classic Europe dominated the whole drinking/collecting life of wine lovers back then really. Must seek out that Champagne… – Tom

Nick Amis, UK

Red: 2007 Arnoux-Lachaux Vosne-Romanée 1er Cru Les Suchots
White: 2006 Bernard Moreau Chassagne-Montrachet 1er Cru Grandes Ruchottes
Budget Red: 2016 Thymiopoulos Terra Petra Rapsani
Budget White: 2015 Castell del Remei Costers del Segre Oda Blanc
Rosé: 2015 Domaine François Cotat Sancerre Chavignol Rosé
Sparkling: 2008 Paul Dethune Champagne Grand Cru Brut Millésimé
Sweet: 1989 Domaine Huet Vouvray Moelleux, Début Pressée Le Mont
Fortified: 1960 Riveyrac Rivesaltes
Extra choice: 1999 Fritz Haag Brauneberger Juffer-Sonnenuhr Riesling Auslese
Dud: various “Super Tuscans”
Thing: Wine-pages offlines!
Comments: Have had a lovely 2019 of wine following my discovery of wine-pages in late 2018. Quite a few of my wines of the year, and their runners-up, were either purchased from this site’s VinXchange forum (e.g. the absolutely à point Moreau Grandes Ruchottes) or drunk at an offline (Cotat, Huet, Haag). Looking forward to 2020 and in particular to drinking more Champagne, Nebbiolo and Sangiovese as well as plenty of Burgundy. Fantastic to have you join our community with such gusto Nick, and to get so much from it. More Champagne, Nebbiolo and Sangiovese? Sounds like a plan! – Tom

Paul Day, London UK

Red: Latour 1920, Bordeaux
White: Haut Brion Blanc 1959, Bordeaux
Budget Red: Bartolo Mascarello, Langhe Freisa 2016, Piedmont
Budget White: Julian Haart, Piesporter Schubertslay Kabinett 2017, Mosel
Rosé: Roederer, Cristal Rose 2002, Champagne
Sparkling: Krug, Clos de Mesnil 1979, Champagne
Sweet: d’Yquem 1945, Bordeaux
Fortified: Quinta do Noval 1931 (btld George Sandeman, Glasgow)
Extra choice: Louis-Benjamin Dagueneau, Pouilly-Fume Asteroide, 2015, Loire
Dud: d’Yquem 1893 (badly corked)
Thing: Dining in France
Comments: I enjoy Bordeaux, but it is perhaps more a coincidence that there I have three Bordeaux choices above. For red wine, I am increasingly happy at home with modest young reds from good producers in Piedmont and just the very occasional bottle of Burgundy, Bordeaux and Northern Rhone to remind me what they taste like. I’m not the biggest fan of d’Yquem but a perfect bottle of the 1945 is as good as it gets: 2009 is also proving really great and gave much pleasure on the three occasions I tried it in 2019. Sadly, a good provenance 1893 at a dinner I attended before Xmas should have been the highlight: the colour and condition were perfect, but it was badly corked. The state of the bottle did not – of course – stop the usual posts to social media implying that there was nothing wrong with it. I put in the Asteroide as my extra choice, as I can’t recall ever having such a good Sauvignon Blanc. Sorry Paul, but I can’t extend too much sympathy on the 1893 Yquem given the other wines in your list – what a line-up! I always remember one of my first tastings of Yquem back in the early 90s at a wine club tasting. I was last to be poured and the rest of the room was already oohing and aahing over it. It was horrendously corked and undrinkable! – Tom

Alex Jagger, Thailand

Red: Groth, Reserve Napa Valley, Cab Sauvignon, 1991, USA
White: Laville Haut Brion Blanc ’83
Budget Red: La Chenade ’09
Budget White: PYCM St Aubin En Remilly ’11
Rosé: Clos des Lambrays ’17
Sparkling: DP ’08
Sweet: d’Yquem ’73
Fortified: I don’t think I had even a sherry!
Extra choice: Taittinger Comtes ’00
Dud: Politics and ‘politicians’ again I’m sorry to say.
Thing: Friendships. And enjoying hitting a little green ball around a tennis court.
Comments: Most of my best wines were shared and drunk with friends in my annual UK trip, some wine-pages’ forumites and some who just enjoy a wine from my cellar! The Groth is featured in Julian’s list too, a great lunch. The Laville at my annual Harwood bash. I did really well with champagne this year it seems – the absolute best was DP P2 ’98 but I put a purring DP ’08 as it was shared with a new friend who is getting interested in Champagne, the good stuff! Also big shout to a Comtes ’00 which really shone. I hope the 2020’s will see more kindness and compassion and a turning point to something better for all. I think we can all share your latter sentiments Alex. Some lovely drinking there, including an often underappreciated white Bordeaux: time for me to renew my annual resolution to drink more of it! – Tom

Ronald Massard, Thailand

Red: Château Pibarnon (France), Bandol 1990
White: J-F Ganevat (France), Chalasses Marnes Bleues Côtes du Jura 2014
Budget Red: Domaine de la Grange aux Belles (France), cuvée 53 2016
Budget White: Domaine de Bellivière (France), VV éparses Coteaux du Loir 2014
Rosé: Bonny Doon Vineyard (USA), vin gris de cigare Central Coast 2017
Sparkling: Domaine de la Bohème (France), Festejar vin de France 2017
Sweet: Jidvei (Romania), traminer Târnave 1955
Fortified: Domaine La Soumade (France), Rasteau VDN 2012
Extra choice: Château Palmer (France), Margaux 1998
Dud: Château Clinet (France), Pomerol 2003
Thing: Bras restaurant, Laguiole, France: middle of nowhere, and above the clouds
Comments: Very nice surprises this year, for a list topped by fresh, fragrant, and very elegant Pibarnon 1990. More and more fruit and digestibility in wines over the last few years, and I truly enjoy them : Ganevat, Bellivière, Grange aux Belles, Bouju at La Bohème are vivid examples of this evolution. And from an improbable past: an evanescent Traminer highlighting a lovely terroir, in spite of the poor vinification techniques of 1950’s Romania. Absolutely fascinating list Ronald, full of diversity and regionality, so either your location in Thailand has an amazing wine store or, as I suspect, you buy and collect from overseas – Tom

Duncan McLean, Scotland

Red: Chateau Saint-Roch, Lirac ‘Cuvee Confidentielle’ 2016, France
White: Vie de Romans, Chardonnay 2017, Friuli Isonzo, Italy
Budget Red: Chateau de Valcombe, Costiere de Nimes 2018, France
Budget White: Framingham, Classic Riesling 2015, Marlborough, New Zealand
Rosé: Saint-Jean lez Durance, Les Quatre Reines 2018, Provence, France
Sparkling: Bellavista, Franciacorta ‘Saten’, 2015, Lombardy, Italy
Sweet: Cave de Turckheim, Gewurtztraminer VT 2008, Alsace, France
Fortified: Offley, Porto Colheita 1999, Douro, Portugal
Extra choice: Patrick Corbineau, Chinon ‘Beaulieu’ 1989, Loire, France
Thing: Breakout Stornoway band Peat & Diesel performing ‘That’s the Way We Do It in the Western Isles’ on YouTube, complete with spoof local TV news introduction: joyous!
Comments: It seems to have been quite a modest year, with even my best red coming in under £20. All round, a great deal of pleasure for very little outlay! “a great deal of pleasure for very little outlay” – now that’s the holy grail Duncan! great producers in here of course, including favourites of mine like Framingham and Bellavista. Off to Youtube now for me… 🙂 – Tom

Gavin Davies

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Red: Principiano Barolo Boscareto 2011
White: Von Buhl Jesuitengarten Grosses Gewächs 2016
Budget Red: Hanewald-Schwerdt Spatburgunder Trocken 2016
Budget White: The Liberator – The Teeth Of The Dog Chardonnay 2017
Rosé: Domaine Treloar Planète Rose 2018
Sparkling: Pol Roger bdb 2004
Sweet: Malivoire – Cabernet Franc Icewine 2013 – Niagara
Fortified: Krohn Colheita 2001
Extra choice: Perrier Jouet Belle Epoque 2007
Dud: Losing a 101yo grandmother. Also Brexit…for yet another year
Thing: Visiting new vineyards across France, Germany and Hungary during the summer, feeding an ever increasing interest in viticulture. Exploring more Scottish hills and looking forward to even more through 2020.
Comments: Very few trade tastings attended through 2019, though far more wonderful bottles consumed at home and at the cellar door. On reflection, wine choices above might well have as much to do with the situation in which they were consumed as to what was actually in the glass. It’s no cliche to say that great wine memories are about context as much as what’s in the glass. Same with great restaurant experiences for example: the food and wine is part of it, but company, service, ambience, etc. is what really forms the memories. Condolences on your grandmother’s passing, and I am sure I am not the first to say – now that was a good innings – Tom

Craig Thomson, NZ

Red: Torbreck, Run Rig Shiraz 2015, Australia
White: Pyramid Valley, Field of Fire Chardonnay 2016, NZ
Budget White: Fromm La Strada, Riesling Spatlese 2019, NZ
Sparkling: Moet Chandon, Dom Perignon 2008, France
Sweet: Akurua, Alchemy Ice Wine 2018, NZ
Extra choice: Puriri Hills, Pope 2013, NZ
Dud: Pyramid Valley, Orange 2018, NZ
Thing: “A Seat at the Table” movie. A must watch for anyone interested in NZ wine
Comments: A big year for me including trips to Waipara, Islay (and the Faroe Islands), and the Barossa Valley. Add to this dozens of top notch tastings, 25th wedding anniversary and my twin daughters 21st birthday and you can be assured I have trucked through my fair share of fine bottles this year! Although there are some not so great vintages on the shelves at the moment, picking and choosing wisely has led to NZ impressing me with it’s continued progress especially with Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Bordeaux Blends, and Syrah. I look forward to the 2019’s beginning to appear in 2020 and 2021. I was highly impressed with the development of Shiraz in the Barossa too. It certainly is a more classy beast than it was 20+ years ago when I Iast visited. Islay was fantastic, but Edinburgh itself was a let down. Way, way too touristy. The Royal Mile is a disgrace to things decent. Sorry Tom but how many cashmere and shortbread shops does a place need? Happy New Year!! Certainly plenty of reasons to celebrate last year, and looks like you did! I’m making a long overdue return visit to NZ on a nine-day wine trip a couple of weeks from now, so looking forward to seeing the changes since I was last there eight years ago. Edinburgh? Honestly, it is a wonderful, beautiful city with so much to offer, but I kind of agree that the tourist tat of the Royal Mile is a bit of a blight on a historic area. I’ll give you an insider’s guide next time 🙂 – Tom

Rainer Guntermann, Germany

Red: 1979 Chateau Margaux
White: 2016 Chardonnay Gantenbein
Budget Red: Bourgogne Rouge Perrot Minot 2005
Budget White: Bourgogne Blanc Boillot 2014
Rosé: Chateau de Selle Domaine Ott 2015
Sparkling: Dom Perignon 2008
Sweet: 1981 Chateau de Fargues
Fortified: Taylors Vintage Port 1955
Extra choice: Gusbourne Blanc de Blancs 2014
Dud: Summer heat which made life quite miserable
Thing: Installing a photovoltaic device which seems to produce more electric energy than we need
Comments: All in all a good year with lots of half bottles coming in which give hope for drinking well when getting even more old than we are already. Sadly less visits to the UK and therefore less offlines with the UK Forum community and no WIMPS lunches. Second vote in a row for the 2008 Dom Perignon, and lots of 2008 Champagnes being nominated; a vintage living up to its hype I think. Good to see an English wine in the list too! – Tom

Mark Carrington

Red: Penfolds Grange ’95, Oz
White: Grosset Polish Hill ’05, Oz
Budget Red: Domaine Benjamin Passot Juliénas Vayolette ’17 France
Budget White: Patrick Piuze Bourgogne-Aligoté “1953” ’18 France
Rosé: R. López de Heredia Rioja Rosado Viña Tondonia ’08 Spain
Sparkling: Paul Bara Champagne Grand Cru Special Club ’08 France
Sweet: Joh. Jos. Prüm Wehlener Sonnenuhr Riesling Auslese Germany
Fortified: Graham’s 1970, Portugal
Extra choice: Arnaud Ente Bourgogne Blanc ’10 France
Dud: Delas Frères Ventoux ’13 France
Thing: Jofra Archer vs. Steve Smith, Lords, Saturday.
Comments: The two top wines were both drunk, whilst watching cricket. The Penfolds was shared with my cousin, MAS, as part of his 60th, at the Rose Bowl; the Grosset with Travis W at Lords – Our Man in Canberra, he diverted on the way to meeting us in Burgundy. Were they best this year? Who truly knows, objectively. But they fulfilled their task, on the day. Passot may become a shining star. Piuze’s reputation is on the slide: on this showing, ignore the naysayers. Tondonia rosé wins again, this time with ’08. Wanted to select Black Chalk & wave the St. George’s flag, but the Bara is rather good+ & will be great. Graham’s ’70 wins, again. Delas – the ultimate fault: utterly boring. The Arnaud formed part of a lunch with Mrs C, to mark a significant milestone for us. It delivered & moreover surpassed a grander/excellent red Burgundy. Wine: more than just a beverage. Big thanks to you, Tom. And here’s to a good 2020, for everyone. (Tasted only wines excluded). Nice selection Mark spanning Oz to some classic Europeans. And congratulation on the milestone celebrations; I agree whole-heartedly that wine is more than a beverage (a message we have to keep repeating in face of anti-alcohol pressures) – Tom

Barry Dean, Scotland

Red: 2010 Ridge Geyserville
White: 1980 Union Champagne Orpale Grand Cru Blanc de Blancs
Budget White: 2015 Dr. Loosen Graacher Himmelreich Riesling Kabinett
Rosé: 2016 Renardat-Fâche Cerdon
Sparkling: 1988 Bollinger La Grande Année
Sweet: 2012 Darting Estate Fronhof Riesling Eiswein
Extra choice: 2016 Pikes Riesling Traditionale
Dud: Current affairs
Thing: Wireless Noise Cancelling Headphones
Comments: I devoted much of 2019 to getting a lot fitter, but there was still time for wine – ‘drink less, drink better’ is a good adage, and I’m finding as I get older my focus is on a narrower range of styles anyway. I’d rather have a few bottles of old vintage champagne than almost anything else. That being said, something really unusual is still worth trying – sparkling pinks from such places as northern Greece and Gloucestershire piqued my curiosity (the latter being pretty good). yes, plenty of diversity here Barry, even if the classics are well represented. Trying to cut-down the wine consumption as part of a get fit campaign is tough (I know!) but as you say, it’s ensuring it is quality you drink when you do open a bottle, is the key – Tom

Duncan Watt, Hong Kong

Red: Château Pontet-Canet 2005
White: Julien Pilon Condrieu Vernon 2015
Budget Red: Savage Red Blend 2012
Budget White: Pierre-Yves Colin-Morey Saint-Aubin La Pucelle 2015
Sparkling: Krug Collection 1990
Extra choice: Sake – I must confess to still only having a limted understanding of Sake but am thoroughly enjoying the learning process!
Dud: Domaine Gauby La Muntada 2007
Thing: The fist 6 months were all about buying a flat in Hong Kong. The second six months were all about the Hong Kong protests. Hopefully 2020 will bring about a speedy and much needed political resolution.
Comments: Amazing that 12 months has passed without a glass of Rose, Sweet or Fortified wine having been drunk. I am sure that this is wrong – maybe this speaks more of my record keeping that anything else. The highlight was undoubtedly the bottle of Krug which was enjoyed during a spectacular meal at Aulis in Hong Kong. must be an extraordinary time to be in Hong Kong Duncan, so I hope life returns to some sort of stability over there. I’ve enjoyed Sake on the very few occasions when a real expert has been able to pour me some top examples and explain more about them to me, though still a fairly vague part of my drinks knowledge – Tom

Andrew Stevenson, UK

Red: Rene Rostaing, Côte-Rôtie Cuvée Classique Ampodium 2011, France
White: Ken Forrester, Chenin Blanc Old Vine Reserve 2007, South Africa
Budget Red: Masia Barril, Priorat Clásico 1995, Spain
Budget White: MF. Richter, Graacher Himmelreich Riesling Spätlese 1989, Germany
Rosé: Camel Valley, Pinot Noir Brut Rosé 2013, Cornwall
Sparkling: Llopart, Cava Leopardi Brut Nature Gran Reserva 2012, Spain
Sweet: Quinta de Sant’Ana, Mafra Late Harvest Riesling, Portugal
Fortified: Quinta da Pedra Alta, Pedra No 3 White Port, Portugal
Extra choice: Musar of the Year: 1998 red.
Dud: The last two bottles of 1999 Paul Jaboulet Aîné Hermitage Blanc Chevalier de Sterimberg that were completely shot. No way that should even have been over the hill by now.
Thing: My eto wine preserver/decanter things, which are saving undrunk half empty bottles going down the sink. Though that means I’m opening fewer bottles in total. Obviously also need to mention Tom’s Festivals of Wine under thing too. While I miss the old SuperBOWLs, these are so much more civilised than most large tastings.
Comments: Slightly startled by how little I’ve drunk/tasted this year: just 279 TNs in 2019, and the majority of those are from two or three large tastings. The Rostaing Ampodium narrowly pipped a gorgeous Bouchard Finlayson Hannibal 2004, and the Ken Forrester Old Vine narrowly pipped a 2010 Josmeyer PG Hengst. The Camel Valley just beat 2008 Tondonia rosé on sheer deliciousness and usefulness. The budgets are a bit of a cheat, as they’re based on purchase price around 2000/01, but a couple of terrific wines that inevitably I wish I’d bought more of. I suppose 2009 Suduiraut was probably a better wine than the Portuguese riesling, but the latter was more fun & more interesting. Fortified was a toss-up with a 1995 Peter Lehman Bin AD2016 “port”. I’ll end up with praise for sommeliers Alex at Moor Hall and Didier at the Box Tree for testing me with various infallibly interesting wines from their by-the-glass wine-pairing selections, especially Alex who’s opened some very weird stuff for me. You’ve still managed to taste and drink (and eat!) pretty well Andrew, and it’s terrific that my Festivals of Wine have been part of that of course. I must try to track down that Cava, which sounds intriguing – Tom

Ian Amstad, UK

Red: Chateau Lafite Rothschild 1953
White: Aubert Lauren Chardonnay 2009
Budget Red: Burlotto Pelaverga 2015
Budget White: Epesses, Rive D’Or, Lavaux, Switzerland
Rosé: Perriere Jouet Belle Epoque
Sparkling: Krug 164
Sweet: Chateau d’ Yquem 1959
Fortified: Taylor’s 1970
Extra choice: Cheval Blanc 1982 and other d-mags at Howard’s 80th
Dud: Lying politicians
Thing: My new Renault Megane RS Sport. As usual, some amazing older vintages in this list – and a double magnum of 1982 Cheval Blanc was surely a wonder to behold, never mind taste! – Tom

Mark Priestley

Red: Fabio Gea “Back Grin” Grignolino 2015 Piedmont Italy
White: Ferrando Erbaluce di Caluso “Cariola” 2017 Piedmont Italy
Budget Red: SRC Etna Rosso 2016 Sicily Italy
Budget White: Soalheiro “Granit” Alvarinho 2018 Portugal
Rosé: Montenidoli Canaiuolo Rosato 2016 Tuscany Italy
Sparkling: Krug Brut Rose NV Champagne France
Sweet: Massolino Moscato d’Asti 2017 Piedmont Italy
Extra choice: Greenstone Vineyard Sangiovese 2009 Heathcote Australia
Thing: Birth of my Son
Comments: An interesting year; the highlight being the birth of my first baby back in February. Wine wise its been wonderful drinking less well known varietals especially from Piedmont. I always find that these wines have a lot of personality, are still good value price wise and and are not typically swamped lots of oak. The Piedmont WIMPS back in January was a fun lunch and two of the wines that made my final list were from this lunch. I didn’t have as much time as I would have liked this year to organise many offlines but the two Rose offlines on consecutive Tuesdays were a lot of fun. Really want to venture over to the Azores this year as I’m loving the wines that are making it over to the UK. The usual Italiaphile list from Mark, but interesting to see Portugal coming in to the picture more, especially the Azores, perhaps the least known of all the Portuguese wine regions – Tom

Kris Kubiena

Red: God Only Knows 2010, Cayuse Vineyards, Walla Walla Valley
White: Coteau de Vernon, Georges Vernay, 2016, Condrieu
Budget Red: Produtorri del Barbaresco, Barbaresco 2007
Budget White: Circa 2015, St Joesph Blanc, JL Cave
Rosé: Domaine Tempier 2018, Bandol
Sparkling: Coeur De Cuvee 2006, Vilmart, Champagne
Sweet: Chateau La Tour Blanche, 2001, Sauternes
Fortified: Palo Cortado Tradicion, VORS 30 Years, Bodegas Tradicion
Extra choice: Les Granits, St Joseph Blanc, 2011, M Chapoutier
Dud: A good year, no particular duds.
Thing: I discovered African wine this year. So many really good wines and still such good value.
Comments: The wines of the year selections have always been one of my favourite features on Wine-Pages and after years of lurking I have decided to list my own selection. The God Only Knows may not have been the “greatest” wine but it was so joyful that it has to be my red of the year. Overall WOTY was probably the Coeur de Cuvee – a magnificent champagne. I chose the Granits as the extra choice as I was slightly surprised at how good it was, on a par with many a great Hermitage Blanc. Fab to have you participate this year Kris, with a really interesting list: I don’t know the God Only Knows at all, but fully agree on the quality of Vilmart, Bodegas Tradicion and, basically, all of those choices! – Tom

John Wigglesworth UK

Red: 2005 Château La Conseillante
White: 2012 Willi Schaefer Graacher Domprobst Riesling Spätlese
Budget Red: 2016 Ripasso della Valpolicella Classico Superiore La Casetta Domini Veneti
Budget White: Masseria Pietrosa Verdeca 2015
Rosé: Bird in Hand sparkling PN
Sparkling: 2002 Krug
Sweet: 2015 Schloss Lieser Niederberg Helden Riesling Auslese Goldkapsel
Fortified: Grahams vintage port 1985
Extra choice: 2007 Rockford Shiraz Basket Press
Dud: Sparkling NV De Bortoli Shiraz Woodfired Sparkling
Thing: Failure of Spurs to actually win anything again!
Comments: Always fascinating when individuals put up their WOTY, different tastes, different cellars, different budgets, all get an airing and all are justified for different reasons. My Rosé choice was limited to the one surprisingly good bottle that was actually another sparkler a great value one at that. Other duds were all of my surviving 2010 Savennieres from Domaine aux Moines and Joly, all oxidized beyond redemption, so much for the live for ever claim, yet all well cellared with all my other wines, and my last bottle of Emidio Pepes Montepulciano d’Abruzzo, like the others volatile to the end never again, so much paid for so little reward. Other good buys/near misses include: 2010 Albert Mann Pinot Gris Hengst; 2006 Charles Cimicky Shiraz Reserve 2006; Mastroberardino Taurasi Radici Riserva; 2017 Viñalba Cuvée HJ Fabre Malbec/Bonarda; 2005 Château Ducru-Beaucaillou; 2014 Franz Künstler Hochheimer Hölle Riesling Großes Gewächs Second vote for that Bird in Hand sparkling Pinot, which I also reviewed and rated highly this year. And I have to agree on the dud choice too: pretty much a travesty of an iconic Australian style – Tom

Anders Lind, Sweden

Red: Ch. Haut Brion 1998
White: Caroline Morey Chassagne-Montrachet Vielles Vignes 2016
Budget Red: Chantereves Bourgogne Pinot Noir 2017
Budget White: Vouvray La Dilettante Breton Chenin Blanc 2017
Rosé: Savart Bulle de Rose
Sparkling: Lacourte Godbillon 2008
Sweet: Clos Haut Peyraguey 2001
Fortified: Graham Malvedos 1998
Extra choice: Sandro Fay Costa Bassa Valtellina 2016 – reminding me that outside Barolo/Barbaresco there are many elegant (burgundy-like) Nebbiolos at nice prices
Thing: Further investigations into non-vintage cuvées from small growers in Champagne, such as A. Margaine Le Brut, Perseval Farge Cuvée de Pinots and Pierre Paillard Les Parcelles XIII
Comments: Had the Haut Brion twice: in March it was opening up – in November it was really soaring, complete wine (left an otherwise wonderful Ducru 1995 totally behind). Tasting at home and travelling to Paris with new wine compadre Bourgogne-Pål has been behind many of 2019’s highlights. Lastly: the perennial New Year’s resolution: Next year I will drink more Champagne! Always a good resolution Anders! I have such a soft spot for Haut-Brion among the 1st growths, and although I don’t have the 1998 I do have the second wine, the Bahans Haut-Brion 1998, so hope it gives at least some of the pleasure – Tom

Ray Tilney UK

Red: 1982 Cheval Blanc (Double Magnum)
White: 2013 Beaucastel Blanc Roussanne VV
Budget Red: 1985 Leoville-Las Cases (Magnum)
Budget White: M&S Hospices Meursault’s
Rosé: 2008 Roederer
Sparkling: 2004 Taittinger Comtes de Champagne
Sweet: 2007 Cypress de Climens
Fortified: PX No25
Extra choice: 2008 Bollinger
Dud: Salon champagne
Thing: 65″ Oled TV
Comments: The Clarets were neck and neck so “Budget Red” is a cheeky squeeze, both shared by special friends at milestone Bdays. Champagnes of the year 08 Roedererer Pinkie which is actually pinkie of the decade and 04 Comtes from March which was just an off the graph bottle never surpassed. Those M&S Les Moines bottlings have all been such a Billy Bargain, they felt budget. Salon continues to mystify me and throughout the year bottles that should have thrilled were beyond disappointing. After 5 failed attempts to replace our ageing Plasma Debbi and I treated one another to the 65 Oled for Christmas…stunning! Well, I have to presume it is the same double magnum of Cheval Blanc that Ian nominated above – what a treat – but as a Champagne expert, good to get Ray’s thoughts on those various houses/cuvees. The Bolly is superb (made my list) and I do know what you mean about Salon – for its vast price it does tend to underwhelm on occasion, though I have had a few scinitillating bottles – Tom

David Crossley, UK

Red: Casse Basse Soldera Montalcino 1990 Riserva
White: Bindi Quartz Chardonnay 2017
Budget Red: Clonakilla Hilltops Shiraz 2018 (this vintage)
Budget White: Du Grappin Aligoté 2017, Burgundy
Rosé: Koppitsch Pretty Nats Petnat, Neusiedl-am-See
Sparkling: Black Chalk Wild Rose 2015
Sweet: Heidi Schröck Ruster Ausbruch 2002
Fortified: Palo Cortado Viejissimo “GF” (Bota 51), Equipo Navazos
Extra choice: Crémant d’Alsace Rietsch or Dehours Terre de Meunier
Thing: Finally seeing Purcell’s King Arthur (Vienna, last January)
Comments: The Soldera was one of finest wines I’ve ever drunk, the Bindi one of the purest (tho’ young). Drunk lots of fab Champagne but the Black Chalk deserved a plug. Our Aussie trip featured, so many good visits, too many wines to mention here. I keep hoping to drink more old Madeira but until I do my top fortified wine will usually be from EN. Previous years I’ve gone serious rosé. This pink is fizzy and frivolous, but I just love the fun this Burgenland producer brings. There are too many wines, I could mention hundreds, but I hope this gives an idea of my drinking. The past twelve months have seen two Vienna trips, and aside from opera highlights were as ever Mast Weinbistro, and visiting Stefanie Renner at Gols. Australia’s were Bindi and Clonakilla and my birthday at Dear Ste-Eloise in Central Sydney. The gastronomic highlight of the year is always the annual Sportsman trip though…back in Feb. Fine, pretty catholic line-up. I picked a Soldera as my red of the year too, and theat Clonakilla Hilltops is a cracker that could have made my list of reserves at least – Tom

Will Devize, UK

Red: Château Mouton-Rothschild 1985
White: Didier Dagueneau Pouilly-Fumé Silex 2004
Budget Red: Aurora Barricadiero Marche IGT 2010
Budget White: Suertes del Marqués Valle de la Orotava Trenzado 2015
Rosé: I Dream the Tangerine Sangiovese-Verdelho Rosé 2019, Konpira Maru
Sparkling: 2008 Paul Bara Champagne Grand Cru Special Club
Sweet: Rieussec 1985
Fortified: Château d’Yquem 1997
Extra choice: La Stoppa Ageno 2013
Dud: Domaine Fourrier Gevrey-Chambertin 1er Cru Les Goulots 2005 (corked!)
Thing: The most amazing summer of cricket I have seen since 2005
Comments: A tidy year’s drinking whose volume was diminished by a necessary and overdue commitment to shift some timber. My increasing enthusiasm for BBQing reopened the door to a long-abandoned appreciation for bigger reds, a development which was as surprising as it was welcome. Have also found myself dabbling speculatively in orange/natural/petnat type wines and I can see myself getting more into this scene over the coming years. Personally and professionally fairly solid – my family are well and I was thrilled that an album which I orchestrated received a Grammy nomination but less thrilled that it didn’t win as I was REALLY looking fwd to opening the mag of DP2002 which I’d put on ice. No more visceral sense of failure than in transporting the ice-cold bottle from fridge back into the rack. Emma finishes her Master’s next year so may shift the criteria and open it then instead! Commiserations on the Grammy Will – next time! 1985 continues to the the most loveable Bordeaux vintage, and great to see the fine Suertes del Marqués in the list – superstars of Tenerife winemaking – Tom

Ben Cain

Red: Screaming Eagle 2015
White: Newton unfiltered Chardonnay 1982
Budget Red: Domaine Drouhin Oregon Pinot Noir 2016
Budget White: Cullen Chardonnay 2017
Rosé: Domain Ott 2018 Rosé Clos Mireille
Sparkling: Salon 1990
Sweet: Chateau Filhot 1990
Fortified: Taylor Fladgate 10 year old Tawny Port 2009
Extra choice: Quintarelli Amarone della Valpolicella 2011
Dud: Les Forts de Latour 1975
Thing: Coravin wine preserver
Comments: I had a pretty interesting year, wine wise. Got hold of Screaming Eagle after a number of years trying and it did not disappoint. Glorious nose and such richness. I also carried on with studying and have nearly completed my MA. The Les Forts was just too old and in an off vintage, a pity. The Salon was a beautiful mousse filled glorious colour of deep amber and pronounced flavours of bread and some oak character. I’ve never tasted Screaming Eagle, which given that I’ve tasted all the first growths and Romanee Conti cuvees (for example) shows its rarity in the UK at least. Watch out for a big report on visiting Taylors and Fonseca which I will be publishing in January – Tom

Chris Piper – UK

Red: Châteauneuf-du-Pape 1978 – Domaine de Vieux Télégraphe
White: Bâtard-Montrachet 2009 – Domaine Jean-Marc Morey
Budget Red: Côtes de Nuits Villages “VI” 2016 – Domaine Xavier Durand
Budget White: Mercurey 1er Cru les Barraults 2016 – Domaine Jean Maréchal
Rosé: Pol Roger Brut Rosé – Vintage 2008
Sparkling: Winston Churchill Brut Vintage 2002 (en Magnum)
Sweet: The Merchant Prince Liqueur Muscat – Campbells, Rutherglen, Victoria
Fortified: Warre 1955
Extra choice: Mas de Daumas Gassac 1995
Dud: Orin Swift Abstract 2015 – California Red Wine
Thing: Celebrating 40 years of Christopher Piper Wines in July 2019! Well, congratulations on the 40th anniversary Chris, and what a nice line-up of classics – I think we can safely acknowledge Rutherglen Muscats as classics – Tom

Derek Salmon (Adelaide, Australia)

Red: Grant burge Meshach 1996
White: David Franz margs blood semillon 2009
Budget Red: Tomfoolery black and blue
Rosé: Charles Melton roses of Virginia
Sparkling: Bollinger rose NV
Sweet: David Franz 2017 ‘Sticky’ Botrytis Semillon
Fortified: Wild duck creek fortified duck 2018
Dud: D’arenberg fortified Shiraz 1993 (from auction)
Thing: Meshach Tasting 2013 2003 1993 and seeing how the wine develops
Comments: Visiting new wineries and stepping away from my norm. Good to see Champagne can still deliver in the face of so many excellent local sparkling wines Derek; the wines from Tasmania and Adelaide Hills especially were really impressive on my most recent visit – Tom

Hans Stahl, UK

Red: 2000 Luis Pato Quinta de Moinho, Beiras, Portugal
White: 2018 Ramos Pinto Douro Duas Quintas Branco Reserva, Portugal
Budget Red: 2017 Casa Ferreirinha Douro Papa Figos, Portugal
Budget White: 2015 Chenin Blanc, Delaire Graff, Swartland, South Africa
Rosé: 2018 Rathfinny Estate Cradle Valley Pinot Noir Rosé, East Sussex, UK
Sparkling: 2014 Bride Valley Blanc de Blanc, Dorset, UK
Sweet: 1989 Domaine Huet Vouvray Cuvée Constance, Vouvray, France
Fortified: NV Ramos Pinto 30 year old Tawny, Portugal
Extra choice: honourable runners up for red: 2009 Adega Regional de Colares Colares Arenæ and 2006 Pulenta Estate Gran Corte VII
Dud: Unfortunately another year with too many to mention
Comments: Many things this year: 1) first ever visit to Lisbon, Porto and the Douro valley – can’t wait to go back. Discovering the fabulous wines made from Baga (Beiras) and Ramisco (Colares). On the whole fabulous QPR for Portuguese wines bought in Portugal which heavily influenced the selections above 2) too much time and effort spent tracking down wild goose chases at Lidl and M&S 3) (re)discovering quality English sparkling wines and great visit to Rathfinney Estate 4) tried many different combinations of Gin and Tonic. I’ve been banging on for a decade and more about the interest level, quality and value of Portugal, so great to see a strong line-up here. And we have not had too many English sparkling wines nominated so far, so again nice to have a couple in this list – Tom

Julian Seers-Martin, USA

Red: Groth, Reserve Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon, 1991, U.S.A
White: Domaine Louis Michel, Chablis 1er Cru Montee de Tonnerre, 2011, France
Budget Red: Chateau Pesquie Terrasses, 2015, France
Budget White: Donkey & Goat Gadaboutit California White Blend, 2018, U.S.A
Rosé: Copain Tous Ensemble Mendocino County Pinot Noir, 2017, U.S.A
Sparkling: Vouette et Sorbee Cuvee Fidele R15 NV, France
Fortified: Equipo Navazos La Bota de Manzanilla Pasada #60 Sanlucar de Barrameda, NV, Spain
Dud: Chateau Larrivet-Haut-Brion Blanc, 2013, France
Thing: Charles Heidsieck Brut Reserve NV en magnum c/o Dr. P.
Comments: Much the same as last year really – still exploring the wines from this part of the world, and continuing to be appreciative of the depth and variety on the doorstep. The Groth really was knockout and contextually, brilliant value. The LHB Blanc was infuriating, 4 out of 6 poxed. When on, it was lovely. Yet again Fidele wins out as sparkling – I’m not sure there’s anything else on the planet I’d rather drink. The “thing” of course has to be SP’s generous thank you gift for dragging the old wine-pages forum back from the depths, temporarily(!). A big thank you to the community as always. A nice mix of European and US wines, and once again, some new names for me among the latter – more and more evidence that California is not all about the flag-bearing old guard. And yes, tech maestro Julian worked his socks off to fix a forum issue, which was much appreciated – Tom

Cameron Clark, UK

Red: 1976 Wynn’s Black Label Cabernet
White: 2017 Le Clos de Mailles Anjou Blanc, Pierre Menard
Budget Red: 2017 Cabernet Franc, Terrasson
Budget White: 2016 Salio, Ruggabellus
Sparkling: 2016 Chardomany-Savignan, Friends of Punch
Sweet: Chambers Grand Muscat
Fortified: NV Muscat, Pimpernel, Yarra Valley
Extra choice: Ruggabellus Solumodo 2016
Dud: 2018 19 Crimes Pinot Noir
Comments: Nothing to really choose between the 76 and 82 Black Label at a tasting a few months ago. 82 was the first vintage of John Riddoch and I wonder if the Black labels since are either too young or missing the quality fruit. Ruggabellus have been the find of the year. The 3 Orange wines are stunning and at $27 in Auz the Salio is the best value wine I drank this year, just pipping a Terrason Aligote. The reds from Terrason are good as well, hence the Cab Franc getting Budget Red. Auz sparkling wine is pretty poor, but the Punch, with a screw cap, offers interest and value. Apparently the 19 Crimes wines are now the 2nd best selling Auz Brand in America. The Shiraz was fine for my father, but the Pinot, given as an Xmas present, was by far the worst wine of the year. Sweet, oaky and devoid of Pinot flavour. Strong showing for the ‘orange’ wines so far – could it be a new category of its own in the future? For those who do not know 19 Crimes, the big selling point are the virtual reality labels, which come to life when you point a smart phone camera at them. I think that’s a bigger selling point that the liquid 🙂 – Tom

Richard Zambuni, UK

Red: Rioja Reserva Vina Ardanza La Rioja Alta 1995
White: Chateau Laville Haut Brion 1983
Budget Red: Teroldego Vigneti delle Dolomiti Foradori 2009
Budget White: Longuicher Maximiner Herrenberg Kabinett Carl Schmitt-Wagner 1999
Sparkling: Dom Perignon P2 1998
Sweet: Chateau d’Yquem 1983
Fortified: Dow vintage port 1994
Extra choice: Cornas Noel Verset 1998
Dud: Cornas Reynard Allemand 1999
Thing: Reconnecting with old friends
Comments: Yet another good year of wine! I think I’ve already had the 1998 Verset twice as wine of the year, so time to ring the changes. Domaine de Chevalier blanc 2001 was a very close runner-up to the Laville. White Graves are still under-rated in the great scheme of things. as for the Ardanza 1995, perhaps not the most impressive wine drunk this year, but it was caught at a perfect moment. It’s also still tremendous VFM. The Foradori is semi-natural, but still gets a shout. I’m generally skeptical about natural wines, but the truth is in the bottle. Happy 2020 to you all. Lovely spread of classic European regions there Richard – spreading the love around. And nice to see you can vote two Cornas wines into top and bottom spots – objectivity is important – Tom

Richard Ward, UK

Red: Aldo Conterno Barolo Bussia 2000
White: Yves Cuilleron Condrieu Les Chaillets 2005
Budget Red: Caiarossa Pergolaia Rosso Di Toscana 2013
Budget White: Jean-Louis Chavy Bourgogne Blanc 2015
Rosé: Chateau Sainte Marguerite, Provence
Sparkling: Krug Grande Cuvee NV (11 years cellaring)
Sweet: Chateau D’Yquem, Sauternes, 1999
Fortified: Dow 1985 Vintage Port
Dud: A Penfold’s reds horizontal – good enough but disappointing considering the price and reputation
Thing: Seeing England win the cricket world cup.
Comments: Probably not as many truly “grand” wines drunk this year, and a definite swing to more Italian (specifically Tuscan) and southern French reds, but again I have continued to be more sociable in my vinous habits, attending more wine forum offlines (particularly enjoying the Manchester pasta factory lunches). Thanks to all who have shared bottles with me throughout the year, more of the same to come in 2020 please! And another European only list (well, apart form the dud). Of the wines I know, like that ’89 Yquem and Krug with a bit of bottle age, a very nice list too – Tom

Robbie Ward

Red: Soldera Brunello Riserva 1990
White: Richard Leroy Les Noels de Montbenault Chenin 2014
Budget Red: JL Chave Mon Coeur CDR 2017
Budget White: The Foundry Grenache Blanc 2016
Rosé: Tempier 2017
Sparkling: Taittinger Comtes de Champagne 2006
Sweet: Donnafugata Ben Rye 2014
Extra choice: Burlotto Barolo Monvigliero 2008
The Foundry was my udget white choice too – the personal label of Meerlust’s winemaker Chris Williams, and all of his wines are well worth seeking out – Tom.

David Ludlow

Red: Guigal Brune et Blonde Cote Rotie 2004
White: F Trimbach Cuvee Frederic Emile Riesling 2006
Budget Red: Clos Puy Arnauld Castillon 2009
Budget White: Pra Otto Soave Classico 2016
Rosé: Bird in the Hand Sparkling Pinot Noir 2017
Sparkling: Veuve Clicquot Vintage 2004
Sweet: Moulin Touchais Coteaux du Layon 1996
Fortified: Churchill Vintage Port 1985
Extra choice: F.X. Pichler Grüner Veltliner Loibnerberg Smaragd, 2010
Thing: Attending a private lunch hosted by BBR in BBR’s dining room in St James
Comments: Another great year including some great tastings including the Berry Brothers event. Attended the Decanter Sparkling event for the first time and was blown away by the different style of Proseccos – so different from the commercial offerings. Tasted many fine Bordeaux and Italian reds. Focus continues on smaller regions and stranger grape varieties with Italy a treasure trove. South African wines continue to be a major focus especially the chenins and white blends, but am taken aback at how the prices have risen. Keep up the good work. This is my favourite wine website. Aw, thanks for that David. Some lovely choices here, and classic favourites of mine like the Frederic Emile. Sometimes it’s easy to forget those as you get excited about new regions and new wines, but then you taste one and remember… – Tom.

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