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Jan 2023: 2013 Leroy Puligny Folatières, 2018 Bertrand Bachelet Maranges Fussière, 2018 Florent Garaudet Monthelie Taupine, 1993 Robert Ampeau Volnay Santenots 1er, 1995 Williams Selyem Olivet, 2001 Solaia, 2017 Mongeard-Mugneret NSG Les Plateaux, 2019 Evening Land Seven Springs

January 31, 2023

2016 S de Suduiraut. Popped and poured at home, 03 Jan 2023. Pale. Moderate nose of distant green fruits, glycerin and vanillin that impart mild sweetish overtones, well replicated on the medium-bodied palate. Very clean with fine clarity but somewhat narrow in spectrum, the vanillin being a little too prominent.

2018 Domaine Bertrand Bachelet Maranges La Fussière 1er, by the glass at 67 Pall Mall, Singapore, on 04 Jan 2023. Fairly darkish for pinot. Quite effusive in ripe raspberries and dark cherries with a hint of varnish. Medium-full. Very beautifully contoured with sleek acidity and silky tannins that impart understated intensity with a highly refined presence. Good finish. This is a real find.

2019 Arnot-Roberts Watson Ranch Chardonnay, by the glass at 67 Pall Mall, Singapore, on 04 Jan 2023. Greenish hues, exuding a weighty bouquet of wildflowers, wet grass and rye. Medium-bodied. Well proportioned, showing good integration and clarity but somewhat narrow with a bit of mid-palate glare. Could do with more stuffing.

Château de Champteloup Crémant de Loire Brut NV, from the list of Cafe & Bar Gavroche, 06 Jan 2023. Pale. Attractive flinty nose with distant floral tones, cool icing and white incense. Excellent fullness and dry intensity with plenty of zest, developing more of lime, pomelo and bitter lemon over time with cutting acidity on a bed of ferrous elements, revealing a bit of subtle detail.

2013 Maison Leroy Puligny-Montrachet Les Folatières 1er, courtesy of Alvin at Imperial Treasure Great World, 08 Jan 2023. Pale. Softly contoured with subtle velvety textures. Medium-bodied, but richly layered with exquisite floral characters that struck a perfect balance against the ripe elegance and sublime acidity, so much so that one is left speechless by its regal beauty. Outstanding!

2018 Domaine Florent Garaudet Monthelie La Taupine 1er, by the glass at 67 Pall Mall, Singapore, 14 Jan 2023. Deep crimson. Distinct mentholic lift allied with a certain earthiness. Very good presence of fruit with darkish hues, structured with silky oily tannins that exert lovely svelte intensity. Surprisingly rich in layering. Excellent freshness. Almost sexy. Good finish. Highly recommended.

2020 Domaine A et P de Villaine Bouzeron, by the glass at 67 Pall Mall, Singapore, 14 Jan 2023. This aligoté proffers a sweet creamy nose with an enticing lift of delicate citrus and fresh morning dew. Medium-bodied, boasting excellent presence of lemons and clear citrus that teased with deft agility and sleek acidity, framed by distant green fruits. A refreshing change from chardonnay.

2005 Fontanafredda La Rosa Barolo. Aired in bottle for ninety minutes prior at the in-laws, 15 Jan 2023. Opaque dull red. Moderate bouquet of preserved red plums and dark rosy hues. The fruit, though fairly ample, is somewhat restrained, allowing the sleek acidity to dominate the medium-full palate against a backdrop of bramble, briar and earthy characters. Another bottle drunk over 29-30 Jan 2023 was similar, though it developed chewy crushed raspberries and red fruits after ninety minutes in the glass.

2018 Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars Chardonnay. Popped and poured at Corner Grill, 17 Jan 2023. Nose of warm pebbles with a pronounced oily density, giving way to distant buttery notes. Rather full and racy in its gleaming white tones, quickly turning more minerally before settling with a cool relaxed demeanour, retaining its slight austerity. Not unlike a Saint-Aubin.

Bellavista Franciacorta Alma Brut, from the list of Otto Ristorante, 19 Jan 2023. Pale greenish. Delicate lift of pomelo, green fruits and fig with a full excellent teasing presence, showing cool clean refreshing zest and good refinement.

2016 Domaine Philippe Chéron Gevrey-Chambertin Clos des Varoilles 1er. Aired in bottle prior to dinner at Otto Ristorante, 19 Jan 2023. Deep ruby. This wine proffers a generous bouquet of raspberries and dark cherries, leading to an ample palate subtly layered with crushed fruit that impart some velvetiness, settling down with a feminine rosy fragrance and quiet verve. Plenty of promise here. This monopole has been bought over by Prieuré Roch, appearing under its label from 2020 onwards.

1994 Altesino Brunello di Montalcino, courtesy of Sir Bob at Otto Ristorante, 19 Jan 2023. Deep ruby. Very attractive subtle earthy funk on the nose amidst a lovely glowing warmth. Very supple and plump, its fruit having evolved with ripe plumminess on a highly subtle minerally base sprinkled with white ash.

1993 Domaine Robert Ampeau et Fils Volnay Santenots 1er, courtesy of LF. at Otto Ristorante, 19 Jan 2023. Evolved red. Slightly murky though the nose is quite resplendent in its rosy hues of mature red fruits tinged with a gentle pungent earthiness. Medium-full. Still retaining that excellent acidity (always an Ampeau hallmark) and freshness of fruit. Very lively with great verve and integration, developing superb agility with a warm plummy feel.

1995 Williams Selyem Olivet Lane Vineyard Pinot Noir, courtesy of LF at Otto Ristorante, 19 Jan 2023. Evolved murky red. Distinct bold presence of mature dark fruits with a liqueured note, neither complex nor layered initially but it snapped together with superb focus after a short time in the glass, displaying lovely glow and maturity. Good balance.

2001 Antinori Solaia, courtesy of Vic at Otto Ristorante, 19 Jan 2023. Deeply coloured with a floral rosy lift. Medium-full, softly contoured with a slight tannic edge, laced with sleek acidity. Slightly forward, displaying good depth with a bit of velvetiness underscored by a deeper darker vein of fruit amid cedary tones. Beautifully nuanced. Still yet to peak.

2019 Maison de Montille Montagny 1er Les Coères, by the glass at 67 Pall Mall, Singapore, 21 Jan 2023. Deep greenish hue. Fairly effusive in green fruits, fig and brioche. Medium-full with an excellent oily density, fanning out with even textures and good detail of delicate tropical fruits and peaches. Good refinement.

2019 Evening Land Seven Springs Vineyard Pinot Noir, by the glass at 67 Pall Mall, Singapore, 21 Jan 2023. Darkish pinot tint. Attractive nose of ripe raspberries, mulberries and intense cherries. Medium-full. Beautifully contoured with a rounded supple presence. Subtly layered with excellent fruit and freshness that lingered with quiet persistence.

2016 DeMorgenzon Maestro Red. Popped and poured at Dorothy’s on 23 Jan 2023. Deep purple. Ample presence of dark plums, mulberries and wild berries cushioned by forest floor and earth. A little bright at first before settling with glimpses of crushed red fruits that exert fine intensity, finishing with a spicy dash.

2020 Les Heritiers Du Comte Lafon Macon Chardonnay Clos De La Crochette. Poured from magnum at Barrie’s lunch party, 24 Jan 2023. Gleaming white tones on the nose, marking its entry with fine clarity and clean precision. The fruit is somewhat backward, matching the recessed chalkiness, developing a subtle peppery intensity in the glass.

2017 Domaine Mongeard-Mugneret Nuits-Saint-Georges Les Plateaux. Poured from magnum at Barrie’s lunch party, 24 Jan 2023. Good color. Delicious rosy hues on the nose, displaying superb purity of fruit on the sleek medium-bodied palate with just the slightest hint of sandy floor typical of an NSG. Shows excellent linearity, balance and integration. An astute choice.

2017 Domaine René Cacheaux et Fils Vosne-Romanée Les Suchots 1er. Poured from magnum at Barrie’s lunch party, 24 Jan 2023. Deep ruby. Earthy minerals on the nose in sharp contrast to the layered ripe plummy fruit and refined acidity that exert superb mouthfeel. Just a little bright at first, settling rather quickly with good balance though its finish is short. Drinking very well.

2004 Mount Mary Quinet. Poured from magnum at Barrie’s lunch party, 24 Jan 2023. Dense purple. Medium-bodied. Very supple and fresh, showing very fine cabernet character with a deeper core of tangerines. Rather understated on the whole but all the better for it.

2018 Cristom Vineyards Mt Jefferson Cuvée. Poured from magnum at Barrie’s lunch party, 24 Jan 2023. This pinot noir from the Eola-Amity Hills of Willamette Valley opens with restrained rosy hues though its superb craftsmanship is never in doubt, evident by its slim proportions and feminine character, drinking well with open sleek lines and refined tannins, just a tad forward in fresh darkish fruit but its balance is impeccable. Excellent.

2016 Tenuta San Guido Le Difese. Popped and poured at home, 25 Jan 2023. Comprising 70% cabernet sauvignon and 30% sangiovese, this brownish-red wine opens with aromas of dark plums, ripe wild berries and mint that carry over onto the medium-bodied palate, equally brackish in characters of iron ore, earth and bramble, still a little tight and spicy with understated intensity.

2020 Domaine Moreau-Naudet Chablis Forêts 1er, by the glass at 67 Pall Mall, Singapore, on 31 Jan 2023. Dense golden greenish hue. Highly attractive bouquet tropical citrus, fresh morning dew and floral characters. Medium-full. Fairly weighty in dense caramelised tones of roasted cashews with a deeper vein of coiled minerality that exude an oily density. Settled down with a laidback glowing intensity, finishing well.

2017 Domaine Alexandre Parigot Pommard Les Vignots, by the glass at 67 Pall Mall, Singapore, on 31 Jan 2023. Good color. Red plums and mahogany dominate with a dark rosy fragrance, turning a little minty over time while the youthful palate is imbued with a fresh incisive intensity underpinned by a deeper darkish vein of fruit, imparting excellent verve with a trace of paraffin. Impeccably balanced, tapering to a lingering finish.

La Conseillante: 2012, 2011, 2009, 2008, 2007, 2006, 2004, 2003, 1999, 1998 & 1996

January 25, 2023

The Jürade de Saint-Émilion du Singapour met for an informal dinner on 10 January 2023 at Imperial Treasure Great World, featuring largely a vertical of Château La Conseillante, one of my favourite Bordeaux properties. Owned by the Nicolas family since 1871, its 12 hectares are split into 18 sub-plots planted with 80% merlot and 20% cabernet franc on soil that is 60% grey clay and 40% sandy gravel. Planting density is cropped at 7000 vines per ha, where the average age of the vines is about 35-40 years. The juice from each sub-plot is individually fermented in concrete vats and subsequently aged in 70% new oak for up to 18 months. About 10% of pressed wine is added to the final blend for additional flavouring, colour and intensity. The 2007 was almost everyone’s favourite, proving that every vintage has its day, while the 1996 is superb in every way. Many thanks to all for your generosity.

Champagne Mousse Fils l’Extra Or d’Eugène Blanc de Noirs Extra Brut NV, courtesy of Russ. Poured from magnum. Clear golden. Predominance of dense pomelo and bitter lemon within a sheen of soft bubbles. Very cleanly structured with great crystalline clarity and refined depth, its pronounced acidity exerting some lovely intensity before ferrous elements emerge to impart austere overtones.

2012 Domaine Joseph Drouhin Puligny-Montrachet Les Folatières 1er, courtesy of Ewen. Poured from magnum. Dull golden. Cool glacial tones of icing laced with a trace of salinity, taking on a chalky shine that became more distant along with floral overtones, the fruit distinctly backward as well, glowing with refined intensity and simmering vibrancy as it sat in the glass. Clearly into its mature phase now. Ideal for those who like their chardonnay aged.

2012 Château La Conseillante, courtesy of Dolly. Poured from magnum. Impenetrable deep garnet. Rather full and darkish, densely layered with pristine black fruits and dark currants, structured with pliant tannins and understated minerality. Fleshed out with a very fine even tone. Very fresh. Plenty of stuffing here but clearly still primal.

2011 Château La Conseillante, courtesy of Lawrence. Purplish crimson. Some early evolution is evident, the wine showing a predominance of bright plummy red fruits imbued with excellent acidity though the medium-full palate is somewhat narrow, laid on an earthy floor of dusty tannins. Drinking well.

2009 Château La Conseillante, courtesy of Russ. Deep purple with some bricking. Surprisingly restrained on the nose and palate, displaying a moderate depth of evenly toned dark plummy fruit still laced with varnish, well-integrated but somewhat withdrawn, not showing much. Unexpectedly short as well. Probably going through an awkward phase now. Best to lay down another five years.

2008 Château La Conseillante, courtesy of Bowei. Opaque purple with some crimson. Restrained nose of darkish fruit. Gentle entry with a subtle saline lift. Soft, fleshy and supple, imbued with some ferrous elements. Opened up well with a balanced warmth, noticeably more nuanced, taking on a savoury tone.

2007 Château La Conseillante, courtesy of Iqbal. Distinctly evolved into reddish-brown. Surprisingly attractive bouquet of warm red fruits with very good levels of ripeness. Medium-bodied. Soft, fleshy, beautifully nuanced with a bit of savoury character. Almost seamlessly integrated. Just a little short but this is really drinking superbly.

2006 Château La Conseillante, courtesy of Sok Cheng. Reddish-brown. Somewhat reticent. There is a focused but restrained intensity of mature red fruits and haw on the medium-bodied palate with a slight velvetiness, structured with subtly sweet tannins. More seamless over time, showing excellent balance. Drinking well.

2004 Château La Conseillante. Poured from magnum. Deep garnet. Excellent presence and depth of dark plummy fruit that impart exciting verve. Quite boldly structured with subdued minerality but still somewhat unresolved, exerting some sharp attack and intensity, finishing with a distinct note of soy. Very different from a 750 mL bottle tasted just the night before which was highly supple and floral with a predominance of red fruits.

2003 Château La Conseillante, courtesy of Daphne. Purplish brown. Opens with a restrained fragrance though the medium-full palate is plump with a velvety suppleness, fanning out with savoury warmth. Good transparency but a little subdued in acidity. Doesn’t betray the heat of the growing season. At its best.

1999 Château La Conseillante, courtesy of Marc. Opaque evolved red. Secondary characters of plummy red fruits, raspberries, black truffles and cedar dominate on the medium-full palate with teasing intensity and very lovely integration, almost exuberant in its excellent freshness and lively acidity. A revelation.

1998 Château La Conseillante, courtesy of Kieron. Translucent brownish. Cool complexity of capsicum, green chilli and bell hoppers amid evolved fruit. Medium-bodied. Softly delicious and plump, still imbued with quite a generous depth of dark fruit, displaying very fine integration and linearity, just a little short.

1996 Château La Conseillante, courtesy of Stephen. Evolved red, exuding an attractive earthy pungency amid that irresistible glow of mature dark fruits. Medium-bodied and fleshy. Beautifully open with refined acidity and understated tannins, imbued with very fine intensity and verve. Excellent.

2011 Château Hosanna, courtesy of KC. Crimson hues. Medium-bodied. Elegant presence of predominant red fruits and plums, rather relaxed in feel with a certain cool ripeness. Subtly layered. Drinking well.

2014 Château Hosanna, courtesy of Alvin. Deep crimson. Surprisingly soft. Concentrated presence of plummy red fruits and ripe raspberries with floral overtones, proffering fine detail of crushed dark cherries and stony minerals amidst the density of fruit and sophisticated tannins. For the long haul.

2000 Château Trotanoy, courtesy of Melvin. Deep crimson. Incredible bouquet of delicious berries and dark currants touched with splashes of salinity and savoury characters. Equally effusive on the palate where the wine is still tightly structured, its ample expanse spread onto a bed of ripe velvety warmth tinged with overtones of green capsicum and Chinese tea leaves, seamlessly layered with refined intensity. Still far from its peak, but thoroughly superb.

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2005 Joseph Drouhin Montrachet MdL, 2013 Domaine Lambrays Clos des Lambrays, 2011 Domaine Joseph Drouhin Musigny, 1990 Veuve Clicquot La Grande Dame Brut, 2015 Harlan Estate The Maiden

January 19, 2023

The great Dr Ngoi booked out Iggy’s on 09 January 2023 for his special twin-digit celebration, curating a list of wine from his private cellar as well mostly in large format. The burgs were drinking better than the clarets, and I’m surprised that both examples of Hospices de Beaune were showing so well; truly, it is most important to get the correct producers to manage the élevage if you’re planning to bid for a barrel. With Ignatius himself on hand to execute the customised menu, it was a lovely evening from start to finish. Many thanks, Grace & SS, for your friendship and generosity, and may you be blessed with many more years of great health.

1990 Champagne Veuve Clicquot Ponsardin La Grande Dame Brut. Poured from imperial. Gentle nose of mandarins and mature citrus. Still rather full, brightly lit with an intense presence of lime and clear citrus that impart dry intensity with a refreshing icy glow, laced with traces of saline minerals. Finished with fine linearity and length.

20230109_203851.jpg2017 Hospices de Beaune Meursault-Charmes 1er Cuvée Bahèzre de Lanlay. This came from the barrel we bid successfully at the Hospices de Beaune auction with the élevage carried out by Bouchard Père et Fils. Poured from magnum. Dryish. Medium-full. Very elegant and stylish in its delicate bouquet of dry summer hay matched by a soft rounded velvetiness, excellent in concentration yet so understated and demure in its relaxed charm. An absolute beauty.

2005 Joseph Drouhin Montrachet Marquis de Laguiche Grand Cru. Poured from magnum. Dull golden. Rye and summer hay initially on the nose, changing quickly to a dense floral lift with gleaming white tones of Puligny. Somewhat plump but structured with very fine precision, displaying refined clarity with slightly velvety textures, rather understated in chalky minerals. Quite ethereal, fleshing out eventually with elegant depth and controlled power. Still hasn’t quite peaked.

2017 Hospices de Beaune Beaune Cuvée de Maurice Drouhin. Poured from magnum. Brilliant pinot tint. Quite ample in raspberries on the nose. Medium-bodied, boasting sleek acidity within a rather condensed mid-palate but there is no question about its top-drawer fruit. Very subtly nuanced with teasing depth without any vegetal trace. Delicious. Finished well. Robust enough to match the ouef en meurette. Very successful. Élevage by Joseph Drouhin, naturally.

2013 Domaine des Lambrays Clos des Lambrays Grand Cru. Poured from magnum. Deep ruby hue, exuding a glorious lift of red cherries with a superb rosy fragrance. Quite seamlessly layered and bright with a highly refined tannin structure, yielding great definition amid overtones of charred toast on a distinct minerally base. Very lovely purity of fruit and balance, displaying good power as well. Its pedigree shows. Really excellent.

20230109_184754.jpg2011 Domaine Joseph Drouhin Musigny Grand Cru. Poured from magnum. Deep dark rosy hues, exuding a sublime gentle fragrance. Equally darkish on the highly supple palate, rounded with good balance and fleeting power, seamlessly layered with a dash of earthy salinity. Doesn’t call attention to itself.

2010 Château Léoville Las-Cases. Opaque deep garnet, evoking a darkish demeanour with traces of vanillin though the fullish palate is saturated with a concentrated presence of predominant red fruits supported by great acidity and sophisticated tannins. Seemingly approachable as it opened up with glimpses of dense inner detail, very finely balanced though, given its masculine proportions, it probably needs at least another decade before it’s ready.

2003 Château Montrose. Deeply coloured. Aromatic lift of ripe red fruits and dark currants on a subtle bed of gentle forest floor. Medium-full. More savoury over time with a pronouced pungent earthiness as its supple tannins take on a slight velvety feel. Good finish.

2004 Château La Conseillante. Still deeply coloured, its floral lift anticipating the ample predominance of concentrated red fruits on the medium-bodied palate. Highly supple, seamlessly structured with refined inner definition. Excellent.

2015 Harlan Estate The Maiden. Deep purple. Broad swathe of red fruits and currants on the nose with an enticing warmth and some early complexity. Still rather primal with a full presence of delicious ripe fruit still shrouded in hues of varnish and vanillin though very evenly toned and expertly balanced with superb acidity, fanning out after some time with some inner detail amid an intense savouriness. Approachable but far from ready.

1989 Château Suduiraut. Poured from magnum. Dull golden. Effusive lift of apricot and nectarine amid intense diesel fumes. Appropriately weighty, the fruit distinctly mature and slightly backward though its acidity is still fresh. Still has the legs but it should be drunk.

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2012 Clos de Tart, 1988 Dom Pérignon Rosé, 2015 Louis Jadot Puligny-Mont Pucelles, 2011 Roger Belland Criots Bâtard-Montrach, 2012 Joseph Drouhin Bâtard-Montrachet, 1989 & 2017 Lambrays Clos des Lambrays, 2009 Faiveley Chambertin-Clos de Bèze, 2013 Groffier Chambertin-Clos de Bèze

January 14, 2023

A big party thrown by the great Dr Ngoi ahead of his special day at Imperial Treasure Great World on 08 January 2023 attended by several luminaries including Mr Rudy Kurniawan, while a certain Monsieur Frèdéric Mugnier was only a few doors away. Dr Ngoi’s parties are always riotous, overflowing with great wine but it’s certainly a wonderful privilege, not least to be able to taste another 2011 Roger Belland Criots Bâtard in a space of ten days. Thank you very much and good health, Sir, so that we may drink more of your good stuff.

20230113_132327.jpg1988 Champagne Dom Pérignon Rosé, courtesy of SC. Poured from magnum. Deeply coloured, proffering a deep burnished tone of burnt toast, chestnuts and grapefruit. Still amazingly fresh with an even intensity though the bubbles have softened considerably with open refinement, the mature fruit still holding up well, developing mild undertones of pungent earthiness over time tinged with a juicy sweetness.

2015 Domaine Louis Jadot Puligny-Montrachet Les Pucelles 1er, courtesy of Dr Ngoi. Poured from magnum. Pale. Outstanding bouquet of fresh morning dew amid early notes of caramel and peaches with a floral intensity while cool icing, vanillin and distant chalk dominate the medium-full palate. Fleshed out quite rapidly with a sheen of white tones and paraffin, imbued with subtle minerality before settling down with superb clarity and refinement, exuding a quiet feminine glow. Almost on par with Grand Cru.

2011 Domaine Roger Belland Criots Bâtard-Montrachet Grand Cru, courtesy of Dato’ CJ. Poured from magnum. Pale. Opens with a restrained elegance of subdued white tones laced with traces of salinity that lead to a lovely rounded fullness with structured precision, imbued with a distinct ferrous mid-palate. Settled down with a very slight velvetiness, displaying excellent clarity. My second bottle in as many weeks. Highly consistent and elegant.

2012 Domaine Joseph Drouhin Bâtard-Montrachet Grand Cru, courtesy of MH. Lovely luminosity. Refined lift of brioche, honeysuckle and distant floral tones. Impeccably proportioned with a restrained elegance, just a tad more minerally against a backdrop of white tones where there is a hint of medicinal powder, finishing well with fine linearity.

1998 Remoissenet Montrachet Grand Cru, courtesy of John. Rather deep in colour, exuding mature oxidative tones with a distinct macerated note almost like apricot. The fruit appears to be fading at first, though it fleshed out with rounded fullness after an hour to match the fine acidity, tinged somewhat with a slight Chinese medicinal tone as its autumnal character remains. Not advisable to cellar any further.

2011 Domaine Prieuré Roch Vosne-Romanée Les Suchots 1er PURE Cuvée Ngoi Sing-Shang, courtesy of the man himself. Poured from magnum. Highly evolved in colour, proffering a good lift of distilled red fruits and cherries though surprisingly thin on the palate in spite of the excellent purity of fruit. Definitely evolving much faster than expected compared with other bottlings I’ve had from Dr Ngoi. Probably just an isolated case of bottle variation.

2012 Domaine du Clos de Tart Clos de Tart Grand Cru, courtesy of Dr Ngoi. Poured from magnum. Slightly darkish in colour with a generous bouquet of delicious dark cherries, raspberries and rose petals. Medium-bodied. Beautifully rounded and nuanced with moderate depth. Very lively and agile on a minerally base, its unobtrusive tannins ever so smooth and elegant, suffused with subtle character. Drinking better than a previous bottle tasted last year in the presence of Jacques Devauges. Superb.

1989 Domaine des Lambrays Clos des Lambrays Grand Cru, courtesy of Sir Bob. Lovely purity of mature red fruits on the nose, absolutely beguiling, though the fruit is much more distant on the palate where it is clearly fading, marked by orangey tones. Distinctly autumnal.

2016 Domaine Arlaud Chambolle-Musigny Les Noirots 1er. Good colour. Medium-full palate of raspberries and cherries, wonderfully ripe, structured with silky smooth tannins. Superbly balanced. Crafted with great sophistication. Rather understated but everything’s there. Very classy, just a tad short.

2009 Domaine Faiveley Chambertin-Clos de Bèze Grand Cru. Surprisingly evolved in colour, proffering a fine lift of haw and mature red fruits. Open with superb refinement, amply layered with a dash of mocha. Entering its drinking window and will hold.

2013 Domaine Robert Groffier Chambertin-Clos de Bèze Grand Cru. Some development is evident, displaying predominant red fruits on a deeper base of currants and shiny ferrous elements that impart a bit of glare, though it settled down with better balance and integration, showing intensity.

2017 Domaine des Lambrays Clos des Lambrays Grand Cru, courtesy of Vic. Rosy hues and ripe cherries dominate, beautifully ripe and delicious. Still a little tight, where the ample presence of red fruits, raspberries and a dash of wild berries promise plenty of potential though, presently, it is the deeper vein of earthy minerals that hold sway with moderate intensity. Great balance, finishing well.

1985 Dom Pérignon, 1982 Pichon Lalande, 2009 Domaine Leflaive Bâtard-Montrachet, 1997 Domaine Ramonet Bâtard-Montrachet, 1989 La Conseillante, 1988/2001 d’Yquem, 2000 Zind-Humbrecht Rotenberg SGN & 1989 Château Lafite Rothschild

January 10, 2023

The great Sir Robert very generously hosted dinner ahead of his special day at Imperial Treasure Great World on 29 December 2022, where he had also specially curated eight different wines!! It is amazing how much bottle variation exists in Leflaive, for this was the second bottle of 2009 Bâtard I’ve had in two weeks with very contrasting results. Thank you very much, Sir, and may you continue to be blessed with robust health so that we may help you finish up as much of your wonderful collection as possible.

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1985 Champagne Dom Pérignon, courtesy of Vic. The bubbles have dissipated at this stage though this wine is still amazingly fresh and lively in the mouth, exuding an alluring soft fragrance amid overtones of yeast, icing and varnish with a superb fullness, displaying clean dry intensity with understated complex citrus that eventually fleshed out with white intensity. Good finish. Excellent.

2011 Vin de l’Abbaye de Saint-Vivant Hautes-Côtes de Nuits Bourgogne, courtesy of Sir Bob. Tasted blind. Luminous tones of distant citrus and mandarins. Medium-full. Exudes a cool relaxed charm with a hint of sweet enamel whilst remaining somewhat elusive in spite of some early secondary development, taking its time to flesh out with greater fullness and slick acidity against a growing chalky glow that overshadowed its fruit.

2001 Kistler Dutton Ranch Chardonnay, courtesy of Sir Bob. Tasted blind. Dull golden. Rather minerally and pungent on the nose. The palate is smoothly contoured with a solid presence of mature citrus that impart a slight orangey dash, subtly structured with understated intensity, finishing well on an austere note of ferrous elements.

2009 Domaine Leflaive Bâtard-Montrachet Grand Cru, courtesy of Sir Bob. Tasted blind. Dull golden. This wine is stamped all over with the classic Leflaive signature, a mature weighty nose of sun-kissed rye and malt within an effusive chalky glow. Equally weighty on the medium-bodied palate though its breed and pedigree are clearly evident in its regal tone, laced with a dash of spice towards its moderate finish. Surprisingly different from another bottle tasted just a fortnight ago which was a lot more delicate, agile and youthful (click here).

1997 Domaine Jean-Claude Ramonet Bâtard-Montrachet Grand Cru, courtesy of Sir Bob. Tasted blind. Luminous gold. Somewhat hesitant and elusive at first. Medium-full, showing good linearity and definition though it still took a full two hours to develop a plump floral exuberance, becoming fuller and more minerally before blossoming with intense Chassagne white tones.

1982 Château Pichon Longueville Comtesse de Lalande, courtesy of Sir Bob. Tasted blind. Deep crimson core. Outstanding bouquet of rich plummy fruit and red capsicum amid that indescribable glow of sur-maturite that accompanies every bottle of aged claret. Medium-bodied. Open with supple fleshiness, proffering refined inner detail of haw and mature red fruit that is still unbelievably fresh and vibrant, tinged with a distinct note of soy. Impeccably balanced and proportioned, perhaps just a tad short but still truly a wine of stature and pedigree. We were unanimous in declaring it a First Growth before the wraps came off. Superb!

1989 Château Lafite Rothschild, courtesy of Sir Bob. Tasted blind. Deep ruby. Superb bouquet of alluring rosy hues, distinctly feminine. Still intense and pretty full in spite of its thirty-three years, fleshy and generously layered with gorgeous fruit that is still wonderfully fresh, developing velvety textures with overtones of haw and some capsicum, tinged with a spicy trace at its moderate finish. Utterly seamless and radiant. Very lovely.

1989 Château La Conseillante, courtesy of Sir Bob. Tasted blind. Highly evolved in appearance, sporting an effusive fragrance leading to a well-layered medium-bodied palate of mature red fruits imbued with traces of powdery elements, structured with supple tannins laced with glycerin. Still quite optimal, holding up very well.

IMG-20221229-WA0016.jpg1988 Château d’Yquem, a half-bottle courtesy of Alvin. Deeply coloured. Cider, enamel and smouldering ember dominate whilst the generous palate displays a cool cultured sweetness. Still effusive and fresh, amply layered with refined acidity. Feminine.

2001 Château d’Yquem, a half-bottle courtesy of Kieron. Great lift of crème de la crème and coconut, leading to a rich ultra-smooth palate that is superbly even in quality, layered with sublime acidity within a supreme complex of citrus, apricot and nectarine. Concentrated yet never dense, maintaining a lovely agility that makes this wine so utterly graceful and effortless. Outstanding.

2000 Domaine Zind-Humbrecht Pinot Gris Rotenberg Sélection de Grains Nobles. Very deeply coloured. Effortless lift of nectarine, apricot and honeyed toast. Wonderfully lithe and graceful with superb deft agility. Rather understated intensity on the whole, finishing with excellent linearity.

2011 Roger Belland Criots Bâtard-Montrach 1986 Château Mouton Rothschild

January 6, 2023

The great SC closed the year in similar fashion as he had in previous years – a long lunch on New Year’s Eve, 31 December 2022, at Omakase@Stevens where Chef Shu Kubota has redefined his culinary art, now aided by his new partner Chef Kazuki. The wines have also been carefully curated by SC in the same manner as he does for all his bespoke properties where it’s all about balance and good taste to accompany the exquisite cuisine, avoiding any vulgar excesses. It’s certainly a privilege to be able to taste another Criots Bâtard in as many months while I don’t think anyone will tire of drinking the 1986 Mouton. Many thanks Sir, and good health to all in 2023.

20221231_145452.jpg2011 Domaine Roger Belland Criots Bâtard-Montrachet Grand Cru. Poured from magnum. Displaying greenish hues, this wine opens with a delicate bouquet of fresh morning dew and clear citrus whilst the medium-bodied palate shows a restrained regal elegance. Like a virginal debutante, it took its time to flesh out with greater power where its distant minerally tones gained greater intensity and visceral presence, fanning out beautifully with beguiling fullness and whitish inner detail, establishing its Chassagne identity. More expansive and aristocratic than the 2013 tasted last month (also from magnum, courtesy of SC as well). Excellent.

1986 Château Mouton Rothschild. Decanted on-site from magnum. Deep garnet with a crimson rim. Whereas this wine had previously been seemingly immortal, all that structured bottomless density has melted away, now replaced by a certain restrained depth of glorious dark fruits and currants, wonderfully supple and mellow with a tinge of capsicum. Distinctly medium-bodied, proffering that unique hallowed glow only possible from a truly mature claret, imbued with a subtle ferric earthiness. Perfectly balanced and feminine, developing greater velvetiness and sleek acidity as it sat in the glass though it no longer commands the kind of fabulous layering and complexity that laid the foundations for its reputation. Moderate finish. I’d say it is distinctly autumnal now though many would prefer their clarets drunk at this stage.

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Dec 2022: 1990 Bruno Paillard Les Mesnil, 1999 Ampeau Auxey-Duresses Ecusseaux, 2009 Gouges NSG Clos Porrets St-Georges, 2015 Roagna Pira, 2010 Chasse-Spleen & Hamamoto 7

January 1, 2023

Champagne Ruinart Blanc de Blancs NV, courtesy of Mr Tay WB at Jade Palace, 02 Dec 2022. Light golden. A little muted on the nose though there is a lively presence of white fruits and golden citrus tinged with brilliant graphite that exert a fragrant balanced intensity on the palate, not too dry. Excellent.

2018 Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars Karia Chardonnay at Jade Palace, 02 Dec 2022. Creamy white tones dominate. Medium-full, almost Chassagne-like in tonal quality. Displays excellent clarity with a relaxed charm, subtly layered with a tinge of capsicum. Fleshed out with even depth. Drinking well.

2010 Château Malescot Saint-Exupery at Jade Palace, 02 Dec 2022. Rather dark in colour and tone. Fairly full, imbued with a predominance of black fruits that have evolved with early characters of cedar and licorice. A tad woody but supple enough, structured with subtle dusty tannins that turn a little austere towards its finish, laced with spicy vegetal overtones.

2019 Louis Jadot Mâcon-Villages. Tasted at home over 4-5 Dec 2022. Fairly full, generously endowed with crisp citrus and green melons that exude overtones of brioche with a high-toned clarity contrasted against a firm ferrous minerality, turning more austere over time.

1990 Champagne Bruno Paillard Les Mesnil, courtesy of CHS at Hamamoto, 07 Dec 2022. Deep golden. Very lovely on the nose where mature citrus, yeast and smouldering ember combine to produce a superb aromatic lift with a deep burnished tone. Still amazingly fresh and full with a solid expanse of mandarins and clear citrus that cut through the palate with cold incisive precision, yielding refined detail and sleek acidity with impeccable balance. Seemingly good for another thirty years. Outstanding.

20221207_191509.jpgHamamoto 7, from the list of Hamamoto, 07 Dec 2022. This is a sake from the Yamagata prefecture of Japan where the rice has been polished down to 7%. Such severe reduction often sacrifices complexity for ultra-smooth textures but, here, it still manages to display both qualities. This wine opens with a nose of cool distant mist, beautifully clean and rounded on the palate, imbued with dense minerally elements that yield sharp definition with chiseled precision. It fleshed out further with excellent presence and depth, proffering subtle detail and layering with a splash of minerally intensity before developing a full velvety warmth, delivering its distilled essence with considerable power and refined elegance that lingered with a sweet glowing persistence. Outstanding.

2019 Domaine Paul Jaboulet Aîné Le Chevalier de Sterimberg Hermitage Blanc, by the glass at 67 Pall Mall, Singapore, on 08 Dec 2022. Golden greenish, imbued with dense white tones that intone frangipani, enamel and petroleum. Rather full but somewhat elusive in character, evolving further notes of pineapples and distant lychees that produce slick intensity, finishing with lengthy glow. Good value.

2018 Domaine Serene Yamhill Cuvée Pinot Noir, by the glass at 67 Pall Mall, Singapore, on 08 Dec 2022. Heavier tint of pinot, proffering a deep fragrance of dark roses and black cherries. Amply endowed with a warm ripeness on the medium-full palate, displaying very good balance and refinement with decent depth. Subtle glowing finish. Very fine.

2015 Roagna Barolo Pira. Decanted on-site at Origin Grill, 10 Dec 2022. Very pinot-like tint, exuding lifted red fruits and strawberries with sharp delineation. Medium-full. Soft and fleshy, surprisingly mellow, yielding good detail on a ferrous minerally base with superb slick acidity, opening up further with attractive intensity. Drinking well.

2010 Château Chasse-Spleen. Popped and poured at home, 15 Dec 2022. Deep purple. Surprising wealth of dark fruits and currants that offer supple fleshy depth with delicious overtones of ripe plummy tones, structured with understated tannins that yield good inner detail. Very fine.

2010 L’Hospitalet de Gazin. Popped and poured at Asia Grand, 19 Dec 2022. Deep crimson. Rich expressive bouquet of cherries and dark plums. Medium-full. Fleshy and highly supple, lifted with excellent ripeness and freshness, yielding spicy elements with delightful soft inner detail. Good finish.

2018 Domaine Roc des Boutires Pouilly-Fuissé Aux Bouthires. Popped and poured at Eastern House of Seafood, 20 Dec 2022. Intensely floral with an enticing delicate sweetness. Quite richly layered with excellent fullness, fanning out over time with a slightly austere chalkiness underscored by tense acidity.

2006 Château Pontet-Canet. Decanted for ninety minutes prior to stuffed turkey at home, 22 Dec 2022. Distant dark plums, currants and raspberries dominate on the nose while the medium-bodied wine has mellowed considerably, fairly supple and fleshy with fine acidity and structured presence, displaying enough of Pauillac character matched by a slightly forward fruit balance.

Domaine de Montille Saint-Aubin En Remilly 1er. Popped and poured at Crab At Bay, 23 Dec 2022. Clear golden hue. Excellent expanse of incisive pomelo, green fruits and yellow citrus matched by dense ferrous elements that confer at once lively acidity with a distinct dash of austerity against a backdrop of distant chalk.

2016 Château Peyredon Lagravette. Poured from magnum at the in-laws, 24 Dec 2022. Medium-full. Somewhat darkish and nondescript initially but it fleshed out very well after ninety minutes, fuller in mulberries, and wild berries with supple intensity and decent depth, showing early secondary development.

2016 Laurent Ponsot Chambolle-Musigny Cuvée de la Violette. Popped and poured at Bedrock Bar & Grill, 26 Dec 2022. Red plums and dark roses on the nose, somewhat restrained. Medium-bodied. Rounded with sleek smooth tannins, subtly layered with good depth and balance, developing a sweet intensity of crushed red fruits after some time. Correctly nuanced with good refinement.

20221231_192415.jpg2009 Domaine Henri Gouges Nuits-Saint-Georges Clos des Porrets St-Georges 1er monopole to go with lunch at Otto Ristorante, 27 Dec 2022, after a brief aeration. Darkish in colour, fleshing out well with a fairly luxurious sheen of red fruits, cherries and dark rosy hues that exude cool ripeness with a highly refined presence and acidity, displaying just a trace of the NSG earthiness as it tapers to a slightly minty finish with very good length and linearity. At its best.

1999 Domaine Robert Ampeau et Fils Auxey-Duresses Ecusseaux 1er. Popped and poured at Imperial Treasure Great World, 31 Dec 2022. Rosy hues with a soft fragrance. Medium-full. Well-layered with a darker vein of fruit on a distinct base of earthy ferrous elements, displaying a refined intensity of sun-dried cherries. Slightly sweeter over time, developing further complexity with overtones of paraffin, still laced with very fine acidity.

2003 Château Leoville-Poyferre, courtesy of Sir Bob at Imperial Treasure Great World, 31 Dec 2022. Very deep purple, proffering whiffs of enamel and vanillin over a dense weighty palate ample in dark fruits, black currants and soy, revealing only glimpses of a softer inner detail of Chinese tea leaves after much coaxing. Still quite primal.

 

2019 Pierre Boisson Les Grands Charrons, 2019 de la Vougeraie Le Clos Blanc Vougeot, 2009 Domaine Leflaive Bâtard-Montrachet, 2008 Comte Liger-Belair V-R Aux Reignots, 2015 Faiveley Clos de Bèze Ouvrées Rodin, 2006 Georges Roumier Bonnes-Mares & 2003 Harlan Estate

December 27, 2022

Sir K closed the year with a bang on 12 December 2022 at his bespoke residence where Chef Joseph Yeo was called upon, once again, to display his culinary art on the all-V-ZUG equipment to match the superb line-up of wines served in Zalto stemware by sommelier Kok Hong. It is an entirely different take on c’est la vie. Thank you!!

20221212_203041.jpg2006 Champagne Dom Pérignon, courtesy of Kieron. Poured from magnum. Somewhat muted on the nose but the medium-full palate shows a lively presence of fresh citrus and green fruits, brightly lit by refined ferrous minerals. Open with great balance and dry intensity, though there is a persistent understatement (probably because of its large format bottling), the wine coming into its own with greater layering and rounded warmth only much later in the glass. Still far from peak maturity.

2019 Domaine Pierre Boisson Meursault Les Grands Charrons, courtesy of Tim. Light luminosity. A little shy though icing, vanillin and raw nutmeg become more evident with further coaxing, eventually exuding sweetish overtones that matched the distilled mid-palate of apples and orchard fruit that linger with subtle precision, fleshing out with seamless white tones that took on further weight and purity. Superb.

2019 Domaine de la Vougeraie Vougeot 1er Le Clos Blanc de Vougeot. An uncommon white from Vougeot, from a 2.29-hectare monopole. Clear golden. Quite amply proportioned, imbued with understated chalky tones and minerally elements that conferred a distinct subtlety that is certainly preferable than chunky stoniness that would, otherwise, have emerged from its structured expanse. Fairly slick with shiny hues, developing greater depth and layering over time. Good finish. Almost Puligny-like. Deserves further cellaring.

2009 Domaine Leflaive Bâtard-Montrachet Grand Cru, courtesy of Kieron. Clear luminosity. Very restrained at first, taking its time to reveal a light stony minerality within a refined medium-bodied palate that is showing early secondary characteristics. Still rather lithe and floral, exuding more of lychees within its depths, tinged with a mentholic dash. Very prim and proper. This will last the distance.

2008 Domaine Jean Grivot Vosne-Romanée Aux Reignots 1er, courtesy of Russ. Raspberries and ripe plummy tones dominate with rasping intensity where the medium-full palate has evolved with clean precision and definition, structured with youthful supple tannins tinged with mocha that exude certain charm and swagger. Highly attractive.

2008 Domaine Comte Liger-Belair Vosne-Romanée Aux Reignots 1er, courtesy of Russ. This wine opens with an arresting bouquet of predominant red fruits nuanced with a dash of laksa leaf, notably more evolved than Jean Grivot of the same vintage. Medium-full. Beautifully rounded with supple warmth, displaying a refined gentle intensity stamped with impeccable pedigree. Very seamlessly integrated with elegant charm. Very correct in every way. There’s a reason why Comte Liger-Belair commands such premium.

2009 Domaine Jean Grivot Échezeaux Grand Cru, courtesy of Kieron. Superb lift of red fruits suffused with a warm ripe plumminess. Highly understated in spite of the abundance of fruit, seamlessly layered with velvety depth and soft-focus refined intensity. Almost aristocratic.

2015 Domaine Faiveley Chambertin-Clos de Bèze Grand Cru Les Ouvrées Rodin. Good colour. Clean lift of cherries, red fruits and luxurious currants that display lovely cool ripeness. Instead of the expected youthful heft, this wine is highly integral, structured with subtle supple tannins and beautifully nuanced with a dash of mocha and dark chocolate. Transcends the palate with effortless grace and sleek refinement without calling attention to itself. Made from a centrally-located 0.32 hectare plot (one of four discrete plots of Clos de Bèze owned by Faiveley) of 60-year-old vines towards the southern end of Clos de Bèze. Only 1300 bottles annually.

2006 Domaine Georges Roumier Bonnes-Mares Grand Cru, courtesy of Kieron. Deep crimson core with a cool lift of darkish fruit that is wonderfully ripe. The medium-bodied palate is a little understated though the tannins are structured with great detail and masculine precision, proffering superb definition, softly imbued with a subtle earthy minerality. Outstanding.

2018 Jean-François Ganevat Côtes du Jura Sous la Roche Plein Sud, courtesy of Tim. Made from trousseau, this wine displays a remarkable misleading pallor that makes one think that it’s old, especially when the nose features a certain distant sweetness with a hint of burnt cider. Medium-bodied, it is surprisingly tight and juicy on the mid-palate, displaying a refined freshness with keen precision.

2003 Harlan Estate, courtesy of Melvin. Deep lift of blueberries and sweet dark berries amid overtones of emulsion. Distinctly muscular, exuding a very deep dark intensity laced with an understated sweetness and, perhaps, a trace of burnt from its tightly structured tannins. Still highly youthful. This is controlled hedonism at its best.

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Ric’s 55: 1991 Leflaive Bienvenues-Bâtard, 2014 Bouchard Chevalier-Mont La Cabotte, 2008 Lafite Rothschild, 1982 Lynch-Bages, 1996 Latour, 1986 Heitz Martha’s Vineyard, 2008 Dominus & 1990 Penfolds Grange

December 15, 2022

A wonderful evening at Imperial Treasure Great World on 06 December 2022 where the theme was any white and any red that befits the occasion, knowing that this group would not fail. Many thanks, everyone, for your generosity.

2008 Champagne Dom Pérignon, courtesy of GPP. Clear luminosity. Very refined minerally lift on the nose, proffering subtle detail. Medium-full. Rounded with refined density of clear citrus that exert terse acidity, a little bold but seamlessly integrated. Impeccably proportioned.

2002 Champagne Louis Roederer Cristal, courtesy of Sir Bob. Luminous. Superb lift of gun smoke amid yeasty overtones. Medium-bodied. Copious concentration of lemon and yellow citrus, imparting supple intensity with lovely secondary characteristics. Still remarkably full and expansive with subtle shades and refined depth, oozing with sweet enticing detail.

1988 Champagne Krug, courtesy of Vic. Dark golden. Evolved characters of yeast, cinnamon and pomegranate on the nose. Still superbly fresh and full, covered in a sheen of very soft bubbles lit by bright ferrous elements within that conferred a slight medicinal tinge (not unlike pochai pills).

2010 Domaine Bouchard Père et Fils Meursault Les Gouttes d’Or 1er, courtesy of Kieron. Dull golden. Immeasurably complex on the nose, boasting cool icing and glacial tones tinged with mature oak. Superbly balanced with a lovely plump translucence that befits the expanse of white fruit and vanillin. Excellent.

2016 Domaine Pierre-Yves Colin-Morey Chassagne-Montrachet Abbaye de Morgeot 1er, courtesy of LF. Pale, proffering a distant stony lift that some would term as “reductive”. Medium-bodied. Chiseled with clean precision, yet imbued with a distinct lithe agility and deftness, superbly balanced. Blossomed beautifully over time on the nose as it gained further transparency in the glass with a lingering presence. Excellent.

2014 Domaine Bouchard Père et Fils Chevalier-Montrachet La Cabotte Grand Cru. Pale, exuding a restrained elegance consistent with its subtle layering and cool balance. Rounded with an ethereal presence, just a little shiny on the mid-palate before fleshing out with more floral tones tinged with a whiff of menthol. Shows tremendous poise. Almost regal, just like a true Montrachet.

1991 Domaine Leflaive Bienvenues-Bâtard-Montrachet Grand Cru, courtesy of Sir Bob. Weighty golden tint. Surprisingly restrained on the nose though it is still superbly fresh, displaying a relaxed placid presence imbued with subtle minerally shades that linger long after its quiet finish. Utterly seamless. At its best.

20221206_172249.jpg2008 Dominus, courtesy of Vic. Tasted blind. Deep purplish. Delicious depth of dark currants and raspberries. Medium-full, structured with dryish tannins tinged with sweetish enamel that gave away its New World origin though it is superbly nuanced like a Right Bank in every other way. Perfectly balanced with layered detail, yielding sharp definition as it lingered with a glowing spiciness. I nailed it.

1990 Penfolds Grange, courtesy of Sir Bob. Tasted blind, but it is immediately recognisable as the Grange. Deep garnet, boasting generous swathes of dark currants and black fruits with a minty forward balance laced with distinct notes of licorice, eucalyptus and bacon bits. Seamlessly integrated with dark supple intensity. Quite elegant and beautifully balanced in spite of its boldness, not at all hedonistic. May not even have peaked but it is truly excellent. I was spot-on.

1986 Heitz Cellar Martha’s Vineyard, courtesy of LF. Tasted blind. Beautiful deep crimson. Superb nose of mocha, chocolate and dark currants. Refreshingly supple. Still remarkably youthful, structured with understated sweet melted tannins. So wonderfully elegant, seamlessly layered with a hint of Pauillac likeness so much so that I’d thought it to be a 1982 or 1986 Mouton Rothschild. Outstanding!

1996 Château Latour, courtesy of Kieron. Deep ruby, generously endowed with a glorious inky expanse of black fruits and currants that exude that classic glow of mature claret, recalling capsicum, black truffles and wild berries. Superbly ripe and supple, having evolved into mellower proportions, subtly structured with impeccable balance. Like all great wines, this doesn’t call attention to itself. Quite the perfect aristocrat. Caught at its peak and will hold for many, many more years.

2008 Château Lafite Rothschild. Deep crimson. Classic Left Bank on the nose, though there is a hint of early secondary development, yielding dried wood, twigs, cedar and some earthiness. Medium-full, dominated by excellent depth of dark cherries punctuated with brilliant graphite from its ferrous mid-palate. Wonderfully fresh and lithe, glowing with superb balance. Highly successful. This vintage is specially embossed with the Chinese character in red (for luck and anything auspicious) on the bottle.

1982 Château Lynch-Bages, courtesy of Hiok. Deep crimson with a predominance of red fruits and raspberries still has that freshness about them. Medium-bodied. Fully mature with a velvety softness, yet still so wonderfully lively and lithe, retaining its tannin structure, albeit very subtly shaded with dark capsicum, tinged with a dash of tobacco. Great stuff.

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November 2022: 2002 Hudelot-Nöellat RSV, 2017 Ch de Chamirey Mercurey La Mission, 2006 Pierre Damoy Chambertin-Clos Bèze, 1985 VCC, 2009 Pichon Longueville Lalande, 2014 Ao Yun, 2005 Torbreck RunRig

November 30, 2022

2013 Champagne Bollinger B13, courtesy of LF at Imperial Treasure Great World, 01 Nov 2022. A 100% blanc de noirs. Beautifully luminous, exuding intense yellow citrus with a forward presence. Fairly open and not too dry, imbued with subtle ferrous minerals. Brighter and drier over time with a more distinct austerity even as it developed mild yeasty overtones.

2014 Didier Dagueneau Silex, courtesy of Vic at Imperial Treasure Great World, 01 Nov 2022. Tasted blind. Pale luminosity. Morning dew and mint dominate with a trace of sweetness on the nose. Equally unusual on the medium-bodied palate where it is open and fairly relaxed with a light tinge of rye and ginger, slightly short and dryish. Rounded and highly refined.

2014 Ao Yun, courtesy of LF at Imperial Treasure Great World, 01 Nov 2022. Tasted blind. Deep crimson. Quite rich in dark fruits, black berries and currants on the nose and medium-full palate, tinged with capsicum and spice box, displaying a lovely fullness with superb layering, tension and concentration. Structured with great refinement. Moderate finish. We were unanimous in declaring it a Left Bank; that’s how good it is.

2016 Bollinger La Côte aux Enfants Coteaux Champenois, courtesy of at Imperial Treasure Great World, 01 Nov 2022. Tasted blind. Deep rosy fragrance of haw and red fruits. Medium-bodied. Rounded and fleshy with a rather placid character. Well integrated though somewhat straightforward, lacking true complexity. A dry red from Aÿ. Fooled us all into thinking it’s a burgundy.

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2001 Château Léoville Las-Cases at Imperial Treasure Great World, 01 Nov 2022. Tasted blind. Dark brownish red. Most unusual on the nose, rather heavy in soy and licorice cushioned by a velvety barnyard pungency that threw everyone into thinking shiraz (!). Medium-full. Has a lithe teasing quality within a muscular frame of sweet tannins. Opened up further with smoky tones though it’s finish is unexpectedly short. Certainly not corked, but it is most unlike a Saint-Julien.

2011 Domaine Confuron-Cotetidot Gevrey-Chambertin Les Crapillot 1er, courtesy of Vic at Imperial Treasure Great World, 01 Nov 2022. Sensual rosy hues, distinctly feminine in its perfumed fragrance. Open with subdued restrained, showing good balance and integration although it is equally understated in structure, finishing short as well. Lacks true complexity.

2009 Rockford Black Shiraz. Popped and poured at Sin Chao Gardens, 03 Nov 2022. Red currants with deep plummy tones on the nose tinged with licorice, unmistakably Barossa in character. Medium-full. The fizz in this bottle has largely dissipated, leaving behind a wine imbued with lithe subtle minerality within a refined tannin structure, developing greater layering over time with gentle notes of liqueur amid a herbal medicinal lift.

2010 Château Chasse-Spleen, drunk at home over two days 6-7 Nov 2022. Deep garnet. Quite alluring on the nose, boasting a vivid depth of dark cherries, black currants and wild berries that saturate the darkish palate with lively acidity and intensity, imbued with a subtle vein of stony minerals that impart a trace of hardness in spite of its fleshy frame. Drinking fairly well, but I really think it needs another eight years of cellaring.

Champagne Laurent-Perrier Brut NV, courtesy of Melvin at Long Beach Seafood, 08 Nov 2022. Pale. Gentle tones of yeast, nutmeg and cinnamon. Very fine body and presence, displaying decent depth and dry intensity but generally nondescript.

2016 Valandruad Blanc, aired for an hour at Long Beach Seafood, 08 Nov 2022. White creamy tones precede a smooth rounded presence with a distinct note of vanillin, well-layered with refreshing acidity without any hint of its 15% abv, showing early secondary characteristics.

2006 Domaine Comte Georges de Vogüé Chambolle-Musigny 1er, courtesy of Sir Bob at The Fullerton Hotel, Singapore, on 10 Nov 2022. Rosy hues and dark flowers on the nose and palate. Medium-full. Darkly delicious and rounded with smooth sophisticated tannins. Very well-balanced.

2017 Domaine Chavy-Chouet Meursault Clos des Corvées de Citeau, courtesy of Kieron at The Fullerton Hotel, Singapore, on 10 Nov 2022. Poured from magnum. This monopole exudes a lovely oxidative lift of floral scents and delicate citrus. Beautifully opulent with an oily density on the palate, displaying refined intensity and acidity.

2002 Domaine Hudelot-Nöellat Romanée-Saint-Vivant Grand Cru, courtesy of Kieron at The Fullerton Hotel, Singapore, on 10 Nov 2022. Classic pinot tint. Medium-full. At optimal maturity now, every sip bearing the distilled essence of cool ripe fruit still wonderfully fresh with lithe intensity and just the right degree of acidity. Absolutely beguiling. Quite the complete wine.

2014 Domaine Robert Groffier Chambolle-Musigny Les Amoureuses 1er, courtesy of Pipin at The Fullerton Hotel, Singapore, on 10 Nov 2022. Cool ripe fruits dominate with gentle charm, slightly darkish from its deep minerally vein and dryish tannins in spite of a gorgeous expanse of red fruits, almost veering on austerity.

2006 Domaine Pierre Damoy Chambertin-Clos de Bèze Grand Cru, courtesy of Kieron at The Fullerton Hotel, Singapore, on 10 Nov 2022. Good colour, showing darkish tones on the nose while dark fruits and plummy notes dominate on the palate, already developed with secondary characters. Highly refined with supple intensity. Impeccably proportioned and balanced.

2018 Domaine Gérard Duplessis Chablis Les Vaillons 1er, by the glass at 67 Pall Mall, Singapore, on 12 Nov 2022. Rather greenish in colour, proffering a gentle floral lift with soft perfumed scents. Medium-full. Very well layered and taut with good clean precision. Modest finish. Chablis can be most rewarding.

2008 Château Carbonnieux Rouge, by the glass at 67 Pall Mall, Singapore, on 12 Nov 2022. Deep garnet with a crimson rim. Mature nose of gentle dark velvety tones. Softly contoured with a very refined seamless presence, structured with sleek tannins and understated acidity. Good finish.

2015 Domaine Roblet-Monnot Volnay Saint-François, by the glass at 67 Pall Mall, Singapore, on 12 Nov 2022. Dark impenetrable red. Whiff of spicy capsicum and wild berries on the nose while the medium-full palate boasts a lithe bold agility, generously layered with dark plummy fruit and lively acidity that culminated in a lengthy minty finish.

2017 Château de Chamirey Mercurey La Mission 1er, popped and poured at Otto Ristorante, 14 Nov 2022. Rather pale but this wine is still as wonderful as ever, softly cushioned with a velvety density even on the nose, imbued with understated sophistication as it unfurled layers of floral characters and white fruits topped with a dash of delicate crème, eventually attaining a transparent clarity and unforced elegance. A real steal.

Champagne Pierre Baillette Coeur de Craie de Verzenay Extra Brut, courtesy of Russ at Yan Ting, St Regis Singapore, on 16 Nov 2022. Blanc de Noirs. Heavier tint of gold, proffering attractive tones of mature chalk and yeast. Excellent bright minerally presence on the mid-palate, subtly shaded with delicious complexity with a tinge of austerity towards the finish.

2019 Sandhi Central Coast Chardonnay, courtesy of Russ at Yan Ting, St Regis Singapore, on 16 Nov 2022. Pale. Distinct notes of lemongrass and light green fruits on the nose. Medium-bodied. Decidedly relaxed and rounded with fine clarity and subtle acidity. Well integrated with soft intensity. Drinking well.

1985 Vieux Château Certan, courtesy of Kieron at Yan Ting, St Regis Singapore, on 16 Nov 2022. Decanted on-site. Dark crimson. Marked earthiness on the nose tempered with haw and soft rosy hues. Highly supple with refined acidity and fleshy charm, still quite ample in its glorious fruit, subtly layered with clean fresh savoury tones that taper to a moderate finish. Very ’85 in character. At its very best.

2015 Château Clos Fourtet, courtesy of Melvin at Yan Ting, St Regis Singapore, on 16 Nov 2022. Tasted blind, though its modern Saint-Émilion character is easily discernible. Deep garnet. Dense sweet overtones of black fruits, licorice and bacon. Big, forward, and open with dark delicious tones, fairly taut, imbued with mocha, soy and sweet medicinal spices coated with a sheen of enamel. Firm finish.

2002 Barossa E&E Estate Black Pepper Shiraz, courtesy of Melvin at Yan Ting, St Regis Singapore, on 16 Nov 2022. Deep crimson. Forward balance of dark plums, licorice and cedar with a velvety warmth. Boldly structured with supple intensity and lithe agility, still carrying traces of enamel and varnish. Excellent.

2005 Torbreck RunRig, tasted after a brief aeration at Yan Ting, St Regis Singapore, on 16 Nov 2022. Very deep purple with a crimson rim. Somewhat restrained on the nose, but the palate is superbly layered with a vast expanse of gloriously ripe Barossa shiraz that exude a pervasive sweet velvety warmth laced with glycerin and varnish within a sheen of ultra-smooth tannins. Immaculately proportioned and balanced, displaying elegant youthful intensity. Drinking very well, but it can easily be cellared for another 2-3 decades.

2010 Domaine Joseph Drouhin Beaune Clos des Mouches 1er Blanc. Poured from 6-litre imperial at Dr Ngoi’s lunch party, 19 Nov 2022. Dull golden tint. Good presence and clarity, imbued with supple chalky intensity. A little high-toned from its refined acidity. Drinking well.

2016 La Forge de Tart at Dr Ngoi’s lunch party, 19 Nov 2022. Classic pinot tint. Restrained rosy hues on the nose. Soft and fleshy, showing good clarity with plenty of feminine charm tinged with a dash of salinity.

2015 Chapelle d’Ausone at Dr Ngoi’s lunch party, 19 Nov 2022. Deep crimson. Quite richly imbued with camphor and red fruits on the nose and full palate, exuding a warm ripeness amid overtones of enamel. Very lively with supple intensity, just a tad spicy towards the finish.

2009 Château Pichon Longueville Comtesse de Lalande at Dr Ngoi’s lunch party, 19 Nov 2022. Dark plums and dark roses dominate amid a savoury liveliness. Medium-full. Highly supple but darkish, laced with sleek acidity that impart a soft fleeting intensity. Fleshed out a little more in the glass, morphing into its usual feminine stance.

2016 Domaine de la Côte La Côte at Dr Ngoi’s lunch party, 19 Nov 2022. A Californian pinot, displaying classic tint with a forward balance of red fruits, dates and cherries with excellent presence. Very well balanced, not overly extracted. Finished well with great charm and confidence. Very correct.

2013 Saffredi Elisabetta Geppetti at Dr Ngoi’s lunch party, 19 Nov 2022. Poured from double magnum. Deep crimson. Darkish tones of wild berries and currants, very generously imbued with a warm velvety ripeness. Structured with svelte supple tannins that exert understated sweet intensity. Very lovely.

2010 Château Pontet-Canet at Dr Ngoi’s lunch party, 19 Nov 2022. Deep garnet with a certain restrained warmth on the nose. Similarly understated in ripeness even though there is ample density of black fruits, slightly velvety against an early cedary floor. Good balance but evolving very slowly.

2018 Domaine Thierry et Pascale Matrot Meursault-Charmes 1er at Dr Ngoi’s lunch party, 19 Nov 2022. Pale. Rather restrained. The medium-bodied palate is also rather unusual, dominated by a distinct note of coconut, lavender and white fruits. Ample but somewhat dryish, subtly structured.

2005 Château Grand-Puy-Lacoste. Aired for an hour ahead of dinner at Summerhill, 21 Nov 2022. Deep garnet. Delicious depth of gorgeous black fruits and currants on the nose though the palate is distinctly medium-bodied, structured with tightly knit tannins that exert supple intensity, imbued with fairly rich darkish tones though there is a certain initial glare that disappeared after the wine had fleshed out adequately, yielding further notes of ripe raspberries with gritty earthy detail. Still not quite ready.

2016 Château Prieuré-Lichine. Popped and poured at home, 23 Nov 2022. Deep purple. Controlled bouquet of raspberries, ripe wild berries and strawberries. Surprisingly soft and relaxed with a cushioned feel, showing glimpses of gritty tarry detail before firming up with a dash of graphite minerals that impart a tinge of austerity at its finish.

2019 Domaine Henri Gouges Bourgogne Pinot Blanc, by the glass at 67 Pall Mall, Singapore, on 26 Nov 2022. Light greenish hue. Cool lift of icing and vanillin, beautifully fresh and clean, matched by an excellent glowing presence of firm white minerally tones that fan out with lovely precision, finishing with refined understated intensity. Great value.

2016 Domaine Launay-Horiot Pommard Les Perrières 1er, by the glass at 67 Pall Mall, Singapore, on 26 Nov 2022. Very deep ruby, proffering delicious cherries and dark roses with a soft velvety intensity, yielding dense red fruits and supple tannins amid overtones of earthy ferrous elements. Moderate finish. Drinking well.

2020 Shaw & Smith Adelaide Hills M3 Chardonnay, drunk over dinner at home after an hour’s aeration, 26 Nov 2022. Pale straw-coloured, proffering raw nutmeg, olives and white floral characters with lovely expanse and density, yielding further detail of pineapples and tangy citrus. Very well-balanced and rounded. This wine really deserves to be drunk in a large delicate burgundy glass.

2017 Le C des Carmes Haut-Brion, at Parkway’s cocktail party at Marina Bay Sands, Singapore, on 28 Nov 2022. Distinct Médoc character of forest floor and dark berries with a light easy presence, displaying fine tannin structure and gentle intensity. Good finish. A decent drop.

2018 Laurent Ponsot Meursault-Blagny 1er Myosotis, at Parkway’s cocktail party at Marina Bay Sands, Singapore, on 28 Nov 2022 Fragrant white tones, creme and vanillin on the nose. Medium-bodied, imbued with classy fruit that exert understated intensity. Good balance. Drinking well but deserves further cellaring.

2018 Jean et Sébastian Dauvissat Chablis Les Sechet 1er, at Parkway’s cocktail party at Marina Bay Sands, Singapore, on 28 Nov 2022. Pale. Rather light on the palate with fine clarity though the fruit is way too subdued.

2012 Champagne Dom Pérignon, at Parkway’s cocktail party at Marina Bay Sands, Singapore, on 28 Nov 2022. Cool clear refreshing tones of delicate citrus and distant green fruits, displaying lovely fullness and clarity with impeccable balance. Yet to really flesh out with further depth and detail but it is delightful.

2017 Château Léoville Barton, at Parkway’s cocktail party at Marina Bay Sands, Singapore, on 28 Nov 2022. Dominant notes of vanillin oak amid creamy overtones, replicated in equal measure on the medium-full palate. Clearly ample in ripe dark fruits and currants with well-managed tannins, but the wood is too prominent at this stage.

2005 Château Pichon Longueville Comtesse de Lalande, at Parkway’s cocktail party at Marina Bay Sands, Singapore, on 28 Nov 2022. Deep ruby. Still youthful, displaying a restrained regal elegance with a gentle lift of secondary characters. Well-balanced and integrated though subdued in intensity. Rather demure. May be best to rest another 5-8 years to allow full maturation.

2003 Paolo Scarvino Carobric Barolo, at Parkway’s cocktail party at Marina Bay Sands, Singapore, on 28 Nov 2022. Brownish red with some evolution, displaying ripe plummy tones laced with cedar, cinnamon and licorice on the medium-full palate, imbued with slick acidity and sweetish tannins.

2006 Château Grand-Puy-Lacoste, at Parkway’s cocktail party at Marina Bay Sands, Singapore, on 28 Nov 2022. Subdued on the nose with darkish tones throughout. Medium-full. Fine depth and intensity of fruit, marked by a firm minerally presence that imparted some glare.

2018 Massetino, at Parkway’s cocktail party at Marina Bay Sands, Singapore, on 28 Nov 2022. A blend of merlot and cabernet franc. Impenetrably dark, delivering an unfathomable depth of sheer black fruits freshly layered with vanillin and enamel. Fleshy with refined intensity, finishing with a slight vegetal after note. Clearly set for the long haul.

2019 Domaine Michel Niellon Chassagne-Montrachet Clos de la Maltroye 1er, at Parkway’s cocktail party at Marina Bay Sands, Singapore, on 28 Nov 2022. Pale. Classic Chassagne nose of dense white fruits that shone with cool clarity, delivering on its promise with lovely intensity and acidity, just a tad austere towards its minerally finish.

2019 Yann Durieux Love And Pif Recrue Des Sens. Popped and poured at Sin Chao Gardens, 30 Nov 2022. A bourgogne aligoté. Light golden. Muted on the nose though the medium-bodied palate features a high-toned acidity imparted by a very fine presence of clear citrus tinged with distinct saline and ferrous elements. Fairly tight and lively with good clarity, though somewhat austere with attenuated depth.