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2017 Ygrec, 2005 Figeac, 2010 Montrose, 2008 Clos Fourtet, 2006 Léoville Las-Cases, 2003 Cos D’Estournel, 1996 Valandruad, 2009 Petit-Village, 2009 Pontet Canet & 2010 Vieux Château Certan

May 28, 2023

67 Pall Mall, Singapore, hosted an exclusive Bordeaux tasting on the evening of 24 May 2023 for its shareholders in the wake of Vinexpo Asia featuring a good spread of estates and vintages. From what I’ve observed, it appears the smaller estates have, nowadays, caught up with the usual big boys; that’s where the smart money ought to be. Many thanks, Sir K, for the invitation!

2017 “Y” d’Yquem. Poured from magnum. Pale greenish. Distinct note of durian with some barnyard pungency which I find highly enticing. Medium-bodied, the clear citrus fruit set somewhat backwards, displaying good clarity with a delicate agile quality graced with refined acidity. Developed a certain waxiness over time, exuding lovely intensity with a dash of vanillin. 

2015 Château Smith Haut Lafitte Blanc. Pale. Wonderfully fresh, displaying cool clarity. Excellent full presence but very subtly layered, finishing with traces of white pepper.

2010 Vieux Château Certan. Deep crimson. Restrained nose of cool ripe fruit and mahogany with emerging early secondary characters. Full darkish palate. Very generously endowed with black fruits, its supple tannins exerting superb tensile presence with sublime acidity, finishing on a minerally note. Far from ready but this has the potential to be one of the vintage’s greatest.

2010 Château Montrose. Very deep garnet. Full presence of dense black fruits, currants and cedar laid on velvety tannins, showing some early secondary development. Wonderfully layered and beautifully nuanced, boasting great balance and amazing agility in spite of its full weight. Exudes superb freshness with sublime intensity, conveying tremendous verve. impeccably proportioned and authoritative. This is Montrose still done in the old style. Outstanding, re-affirming the greatness of this vintage.

2009 Château Petit-Village. Deep crimson. Glowing effusive presence of black currants and dark fruits, wonderfully ripe with a surprisingly deep savoury core that exude great freshness and energy. Fleshy and highly integral. A great success from this under-rated estate.

2009 Château Pontet-Canet. Very dark, proffering deep luxuriant tones of dark fruits, currants and black berries. Beautifully ripe. Structured with refined detailed tannins that exert fine tension with an enticing warmth. Excellent sophistication.

2008 Château Clos Fourtet. Darkish tones dominate on the nose and fullish palate, glowing with ripe raspberries on a structured bed of relatively firm tannins and graphite elements amid overtones of toast and savoury roast. Yet to loosen up with true secondary development.

2006 Château Léoville Las-Cases. Deep purple. The leading estate of Saint-Julien opens with bright pebbly tones (a consistent characteristic of this vintage) against a backdrop of darkish tones and early cedary characters. Generously imbued with black fruits and currants framed within structured dryish tannins on a bed of firm minerally elements. Unsurprisingly stern throughout its length. Still not ready.

2005 Château Figeac. Deep garnet. Restrained glow of dark plummy fruit amid overtones of briar and earth. Equally darkish on the full palate, structured with supple pliant tannins layered with a deep core of glorious fruit. Still rather youthful, evolving at a glacial pace.

2003 Château Cos D’Estournel. Poured from double magnum. Deep garnet. Rounded with darkish intensity, boasting great detail, layering and clarity from its fleshy medium-bodied presence. Very well integrated without any alcoholic flash. Just entering its drinking window.

2000 Château Calon-Ségur. Deep crimson. Good lift of cedar and mahogany underscored by a firm note of soy, exuding early secondary development with a gentle glow. The palate is beautifully structured and balanced but the feel is somewhat underwhelming, the fruit a little too placid with understated acidity. Modest finish.

1996 Château Valandruad. Mature brownish red. Prominent note of glycerin and ripe plummy tones from the mature fruit. Medium-bodied. Very well-layered though rather placid with rounded tannins and subdued acidity, finishing on a note of sweet incense.

View from 67 Pall Mall, Singapore.

Château Angélus 2016, 2011, 2007, 2006, 2004, 2001 & Angélus Grand Vin Blanc 2020

May 23, 2023

20230520_185921.jpgThe Jürade de Saint-Émilion du Singapour had the distinct honour of hosting the Jürade’s Commandeur, Monsieur Hubert Boüard de Laforest, to dinner at Imperial Treasure Great World, Singapore, on 20 May 2023 where, naturally, a vertical of Château Angélus would be lined up. Hubert had sent over his personal stash of the château’s brand new highly exclusive grand vin blanc, the Le Carillon as well as three vintages of its grand vin while we chipped in another three. Looking relatively youthful and relaxed and ever the consummate professional that he is, Hubert turned on his charm throughout the evening, regaling us with countless anecdotes about himself and the château, as well as how Angélus became linked with the James Bond franchise (featured in three films: the 1982 in Casino Royale, 2005 in both Spectre and No Time To Die). Hubert expressed a special affection for the Angélus of 1994, 2001 (which he feels is a better vintage for the Right Bank than Left) and 2007, whilst letting on as well that the reins are gradually being handed over to his daughter Stéphanie de Boüard-Rivoal, who has certain ideas about doing things to move the estate forward. Merci beaucoup Hubert for your time and generosity, and we look forward to seeing you again very soon at Château Angélus.

Champagne Benoît Déhu Cuvée de La Rue des Noyers, courtesy of Russ. Rather weighty and reductive on the nose, contrasting against the clean full palate of pears and apples that shone with sleek high-toned acidity, developing with greater expanse over time.

Champagne Henri Giraud Aÿ MV17 Grand Cru Brut, courtesy of Lawrence. Pale golden. Slightly reductive with an attractive elusiveness, leading to a cool lift of complex citrus that teased with dry intensity amid sultry sexy tones. very open and agile, structured with superb depth and clarity. Exudes lovely refinement and sophistication. Excellent.

20230520_194438.jpg2020 Angélus Grand Vin Blanc. Ex-château. A new initiative from Hubert’s daughter Stéphanie de Boüard-Rivoal, made from a tiny 1.2 ha comprising 50% chardonnay with equal parts of semillon and sauvignon blanc, aged in 50% new oak from Burgundian coopers. Pale. Gentle lift of vanillin oak amid some waxiness, leading to beautifully nuanced white tones of nutmeg and Asian spices infused with a full oily density, held together with sublime tension and cohesion. Very beautifully balanced with understated elegance, developing lovely complexity in the glass with a dominance of yellow fruit. This is its inaugural vintage, only 2000 bottles produced; even Hubert has only been allocated three bottles for his personal stash and we have actually popped those three this evening. At risk of blasphemy, I’d say this is as good as any true burgundy. What a privilege this has been. Outstanding!

2012 Le Carillon d’Angélus. Ex-château. Deep purple. Quite a heavy bouquet of raspberries and mulberries though the palate is only medium-weight, softly contoured and fleshy with pliant supple tannins. Very elegant, displaying youthful agility with lovely balance. Made from younger vines from differing plots within Angélus, gently extracted and vinified differently from the grand vin using 30% new oak.

2016 Château Angélus. Ex-château. Deep ruby, exuding a copious warmth of ripe raspberries, black fruits and currants that sparkle with rich graphite detail. Wonderfully tense with a cool ripeness, tightly coiled within supple understated tannins that slowly dissipated to yield excellent detail on a subtle minerally base. Modest finish. Highly promising.

2011 Château Angélus. Ex-château. Very deep garnet with a predominance of black fruits and currants. Well-extracted but softly structured. Considerably less layered and firm though there is still plenty of stuffing lurking beneath that obvious sheen of vanillin, displaying good integration with relaxed charm.

2007 Château Angélus. Ex-château. Deep crimson. This wine has developed very well in spite of its difficult vintage, proffering delicious red fruits, haw and currants whilst there is a certain refined velvetiness to its tannins, cushioning the fair abundance of fruit that now display early secondary characteristics. Good balance and sophistication. Little wonder that Hubert has professed a special affection for this wine.

2006 Château Angélus. A blend of 47% cabernet franc, 50% merlot and 3% cabernet sauvignon. Deep crimson. Delicious in blueberries, haw and red fruits that exude lovely lift. Suitably weighty. Slightly forward, still quite tightly coiled, exerting refined intensity with a cool tensile presence. Good finish, but it needs another decade of cellaring.

2004 Château Angélus, courtesy of Chancellor Melvin. Still rather dark and restrained though the open palate is wonderfully fresh and supple with an even presence of cool ripe fruit, structured with smooth velvety tannins that yield superb detail. Very well balanced, developing a gentle intensity with further notes of soy. This must qualify as one of the best wines of that classical vintage.

2001 Château Angélus, courtesy of Kieron. Purplish crimson. This under-rated wine opens with a savoury expanse of ripe fruit and currants well into their tertiary development, exuding lovely complexity with a dash of earthiness. Superbly integrated and wonderfully fresh, proffering excellent detail of soft gritty tannins that add further dimension to its lush succulence, finishing well with superb linearity. Outstanding. Hubert spoke of a personal preference for this vintage over the much-vaunted 2000. Enough said.


Coche-Dury Meursault 2008 2014 2016, Leflaive Chevalier-Montrachet 2004 2006, 2010 Comtes Lafon Meursault-Goutte d’Or, 2016 Arnaud Ente Meursault Clos Ambres, 1999 René Engel Vosne-Romanée Brulées, 1996 d’Auvenay Chevalier-Montrachet & 2004 J-F Mugnier Musigny Grand Cru

May 6, 2023

One of the most memorable evenings of wining and dining took place on 26 April 2023 at Ki-sho, very kindly hosted by Anthony Oei, on a theme of Domaines Coche-Dury and d’Auvenay offered by Alvin and Sir Bob (most probably) in a moment of madness. On the other hand, what is the point of hoarding such trophies when wine is meant to be shared, particularly when the company is excellent and so knowledgeable? And so everyone dug deep and generously. The wines were blinded; only the manager Gabriele Rizzardi knew, and he did a superb job organising the flights. It turned out we had a mini-vertical of Coche-Dury Meursault, all correctly identified, as was the trio of Chevalier-Montrachet. The non-Coche Meursaults easily held their ground in spite of the stiff challenge, each retaining its own identity. Even the American outliers were excellent. Amazingly, the d’Auvenay appears to be ageless, all part of the old lady’s magic, whereas Leflaive tends to lose its freshness after about fifteen years, a point to note for those with loads of them. After the long line-up of whites, just a simple trio of reds, each so representative of its own terroir, would suffice to round off a wonderful evening. Many thanks, everyone, for your immense generosity and to Anthony for hosting.

20230426_223700.jpg20230426_210557.jpg2007 Kistler Kistler Vineyard Chardonnay, courtesy of Sir Bob. Deep golden, slightly opaque. Most unusual on the nose at first, rather meaty with a distinct savouriness leading to a dense expanse of warm ripe fruit graced with a pronounced sweetness and sublime acidity, eventually morphing into a seamless entity with a certain elusive velvetiness amid effusive overtones of paraffin. Spicy finish. Excellent in its own right.

2006 Domaine Leflaive Chevalier-Montrachet Grand Cru, courtesy of Sir Bob. Deep golden hue. Clearly mature on the nose, and quite obviously Leflaive in its weighty tones of old chalk, malt and rye replete with caramelised characters, slipping onto the soft velvety palate with a distinct oiliness that fans out with superb mouthfeel, lingering with great persistence amid further notes of cinnamon. Shows tremendous class and sophistication. 

2004 Domaine Leflaive Chevalier-Montrachet Grand Cru, courtesy of Anthony. More developed in colour and tone even though it’s only couple of years older than the 2006. Surprisingly restrained, perhaps even a little musky on the nose though the medium palate is fairly rounded and fleshy, revealing fine definition of layered fruit against a backdrop of distant chalk. Doesn’t quite measure up to the 2006 but its tonal balance is still unmistakably Leflaive, turning more introspective and minerally over time with emerging notes of orange peel.

1996 Domaine d’Auvenay (Lalou Bize-Leroy) Chevalier-Montrachet Grand Cru, courtesy of Sir Bob. Deep golden. Clean lean bouquet, showing some restraint that belies the piercing intensity of tropical citrus graced with tight acidity on the tensile medium-full palate, just a little distant at first before settling down with a gentle glow of nutmeg amid a distinct salinity, morphing into an utterly seamless entity with great agility and freshness, revealing white medicinal elements within. Highly persuasive, staying the course throughout the evening. One is never quite sure whether this is at its drinking peak or will it attain even greater heights. Ours was bottle 635 out of 725. Superb!


2008 Domaine Coche-Dury Meursault, courtesy of Kieron. Clear golden hue, opening with a lifted lightness of apples and pears on the nose. Equally deft and agile on the medium palate, couched in a velvety fullness that impart delicate intensity and refined acidity with a trace of floral sweetness at its gentle finish. Beautifully balanced with effortless elegance and clarity. A more traditional style of Coche-Dury by Jean-François before Raphaël took over. Very classy.

2014 Domaine Coche-Dury Meursault, courtesy of Alvin. Pale. Marked reductive tones dominate, greatly enhancing its delicate minerally detail and inner definition with tremendous precision. Settled down with a placid elegance of cool icing and very fine powdery textures tinged with capsicum and tangerines, beautifully balanced and refined to the point of ethereal gleam. Outstanding.

2016 Coche-Dury Meursault. Pale. Good lift of white fruits and clear citrus, slightly reductive though not quite chiseled as expected in spite of the fairly accentuated intensity exerted by its high-toned acidity, yielding tremendous detail. More introspective after some time with a laidback charm before re-emerging with sharp definition, exuding gentle complexity as well. Note the non-domaine labeling.

2010 Domaine des Comtes Lafon Meursault Goutte d’Or 1er, courtesy of Vic. Light dull golden hue. Surprisingly restrained, proffering a distant nose of floral characters that belies the tight chiseled intensity of white fruit and frangipani that exert considerable power on the rounded palate, shot through with sublime acidity throughout its dense layers. Distinctly Old World.

2016 Domaine Arnaud Ente Meursault Clos des Ambres, courtesy of LF. Pale. This wine opens with a reductive pungency, contrasting beautifully against the attractive lift of delicate white fruits and clear citrus that cut across the medium palate with subtle intensity and tension, resembling very much a Coche-Dury in its clean structure, clarity and fine precision though a tad short.


2017 Sandhi Bentrock Santa Rita Hills Chardonnay, courtesy of LF. There is a sense of pebbly warmth beneath its pallor, beautifully endowed with an elegant presence of white fruits and tangy citrus that teased with deft agility and great clarity on the medium-full palate, exuding subtle pungency amid overtones of nutmeg and spice with a trace of sweetness. Almost burgundian, holding its ground solidly in spite of coming at the end of a long illustrious list of whites.

2011 Domaine Ponsot Clos de la Roche Grand Cru, courtesy of Vic. Evolved crimson. This wine opens with a lovely rosy fragrance, leading to a medium palate of raspberries and darkish fruit shrouded within a thin veil of paraffin, subtly structured with supple intensity and clean definition. Great balance. 

1999 Domaine René Engel Vosne-Romanée Les Brulées 1er, courtesy of Anthony. Opaque pinot tint, proffering plummy tones of mature red fruits in sharp definition amidst a teasing pungency. Still superbly fresh and supple, boasting a fine expanse of fruit evoking mandarins with a deeper core of superb tangy intensity graced by crisp acidity. So highly integral to the point that it is almost reductive. Outstanding.

2004 Domaine Jacques-Frédéric Mugnier Musigny Grand Cru, courtesy of Kieron. Opaque red, exuding a lovely glow of red fruits and rose petals. Medium-full. Clearly entering its mature phase, displaying cool calm precision with relaxed charm underpinned by sublime acidity, exerting a bit of tonal tension that teased with delicious intensity. Very naturally balanced and structured without calling attention to itself. A classical Musigny, made by a gentleman who understands his terroir. 

1995 Charles Heidsieck Blanc Millenaires, 2011 Dujac Vosne-Romanée Beaux Monts, 2011 Montille Aux Malconsorts Christiane, 2002 Robert Arnoux Vosne-Rom Chaumes, 2007 Louis Jadot Montrachet

May 4, 2023

A casual but superb evening hosted by Barrie at his residence, 21 April 2023, on a theme of Vosne-Romanée and Puligny-Montrachet. The Chassagne was unexpected but who would ever refuse a Ramonet? Thanks Barrie!

1995 Champagne Charles Heidsieck Blanc des Millenaires, courtesy of Barrie. Light dull golden. Dense concentration of yeast and minerally elements on the nose, exuding an attractive austerity. Wonderfully complex and beguiling, still amazingly fresh, yielding delicate detail graced with overtones of cinnamon and burnt metal underpinned by a trace of sweetness. Superb.

2009 Domaine Leflaive Puligny-Montrachet Clavoillon 1er, courtesy of Kieron. Clear golden lustre, opening with a certain restraint amid distant chalk and white tones. Still coiled with fairly tight intensity that teased with fleeting depth on the medium palate. Smoothly delineated with excellent refinement and linearity, developing a laidback charm with overtones of paraffin.

2007 Louis Jadot Montrachet Grand Cru, courtesy of Barrie. Clear golden. Effusive in mature white tones within a sheen of paraffin, tinged with the smoke of burnt matchstick, its relative sternness contrasting against a plump fleshy rounded fullness, very subtly layered with delicate white tones that yield fine detail with further caramelised nutty tones. Not quite as ethereal as the Montrachet of Bouchard and Drouhin though impeccably balanced, nevertheless, with more than a hint of aristocratic pedigree. Caught at its peak.

2000 Domaine Jean-Claude Ramonet Chassagne-Montrachet Les Caillerets 1er, courtesy of Brandon. Golden hue. Quite effusive and lively with a clean elusive presence of lime and clear citrus. Still imbued with excellent freshness with a medium presence of warm ripe fruit, fleshing out with white fruits though the spectrum is rather narrow and lean. Moderate finish. Holding up well.

1994 Domaine Mongeard-Mugneret Grands Échezeaux Grand Cru, courtesy of Barrie. Dull pinot tint with some obvious evolution, proffering red fruits and haw. Medium-bodied. Good presence of mature fruit supported by a deeper darker vein, graced by fine acidity with a dash of earthiness wrapped in rounded tannins, yielding fine detail. Good balance but somewhat short.

2011 Domaine Dujac Vosne-Romanée Les Beaux Monts 1er, courtesy of Kieron. Classic pinot tint with a nose of red fruits and raspberries, leading to a luxurious velvety bed of delicious fruit underscored by clean crisp acidity that imparted supple refinement. Very well proportioned and balanced. A classical Dujac. Lovely.

2011 Domaine de Montille Vosne-Romanée Aux Malconsorts Christiane 1er, courtesy of Kieron. Classic pinot tint. Delicious lift of red and dark berries, extending to the medium palate with sweet supple tannins. Very seamlessly structured and balanced with good definition and well-integrated acidity, though not as luxuriant or voluptuous as one may imagine this special plot to be, actually lying within La Tâche itself. Moderate finish.

2002 Domaine Robert Arnoux Vosne-Romanée Les Chaumes 1er, courtesy of Barrie. Deep garnet. There is a certain darkish restraint on the nose with some notes of briar, though surprisingly energetic with youthful exuberance on the full palate, very cleanly delineated, boasting supple acidity on a bed of velvet, balsam and minerally elements, distinctly stemmy at its moderate finish. I’m not even sure this has reached full maturity for this is truly burgundy done in the old way, requiring years of patience.


April 2023: 2005 Château Duhart-Milon, 2021 Chapoutier Crozes-Hermitage Blanc, 2020 Garaudet Monthelie Sous Le Cellier, 2014 Philippe Chéron Clos des Varoilles 1er, 2004 Carpineto Vigneto Poggio Sant’ Enrico

May 1, 2023

2020 Domaine Florent Garaudet Monthelie Sous Le Cellier, by the glass at 67 Pall Mall, Singapore, on 01 April 2023. Light greenish with a profusion of attractive floral fragrance matched by very good presence of tangy citrus with a bit of biting intensity on the palate, eventually developing a gentle delicate tension, shining with refined clarity and freshness towards a glowing finish. Good finesse. Very correct.

2010 Château Cissac, by the glass at 67 Pall Mall, Singapore, on 01 April 2023. Deep garnet. Excellent density of dark plums, currants and wild berries tinged with menthol. Fairly aromatic. Medium-bodied. Structured with tightly knit tannins, slightly angular though neither gruff nor abrasive. Good acidity and grip, developing a bit of delicious coolness but still not quite ready.

2021 M Chapoutier Crozes-Hermitage Blanc, aired in bottle for two hours ahead of dinner on 02 April 2023, Crab At Bay.  Luminous hues. Bold in upfront white pepper, spice, nutmeg and white tones. Structured with smooth power and excellent density, developing cool icing and vanillin with further depth and layering, imbued with a distinct salinity. Great value!

2010 Château Chasse-Spleen, tasted 4-5 Apr 2023 at home. Deep opaque purple, featuring ripe raspberries, mulberries and currants. Highly aromatic, layered with very fine presence and depth of fruit, structured with dryish tannins that added to its inner definition. Fairly masculine. Good finish.

1999 Domaine Robert Ampeau et Fils Auxey-Duresses Ecusseaux 1er. Aired in bottle three hours ahead of dinner at Otto Ristorante, 06 April 2023. Mature red fruits and boiled plums on the nose with a distinct note of heated gravel and burnt cane sugar. Very lively on the medium-full palate, the fruit slightly at risk of being overwhelmed by the pronounced acidity before fleshing out with even supple intensity, yielding fine inner detail amid further notes of briar and wild berries.

2018 Domaine Bertrand Bachelet Maranges La Fussière 1er, by the glass at 67 Pall Mall, Singapore, on 14 Apr 2023. Darkish colour and tone. Fairly attractive nose of dark fruits and plums amid overtones of briar and bramble. Medium-full. Structured with fine acidity with a clean feel. Still rather tight.

Champagne Taittinger Brut Reserve NV, by the glass at 67 Pall Mall, Singapore, on 14 Apr 2023. Notes of burnt toast and wisps of gun smoke on the nose amid an effusive icy glow, boasting very good density of clear citrus that cut through with refreshing crispness and clarity, finishing with a tinge of bitter lemon.

2005 Château Duhart-Milon at David’s residence, 15 Apr 2023. Deep purple. Delicious dark berries, currants and tobacco on the nose, replete with the classic Pauillac signature. Fullish with fleshy supple intensity, already developing early notes of cedar and cinnamon. Structured with refined tannins, slightly sweet. Good finish.

1996 Château Lynch-Bages, courtesy of MH at David’s residence, 15 Apr 2023. Deep garnet core. Mature glow of green capsicum and earth with a certain elusive charm. Very open with a relaxed feel on the medium palate, softly contoured with an even moderate intensity of dark fruits.

1996 Château Grand-Puy-Lacoste, courtesy of Alan at David’s residence, 15 Apr 2023. Deep garnet core. Distant herbaceous notes amid darkish characters on the nose. Seamlessly structured with supple fleshy intensity, displaying an open ripe plummy warmth. Good balance though there isn’t much depth, the fruit beginning to fade a little.

2004 Carpineto Vigneto Poggio Sant’ Enrico Vino Nobile di Montepulciano. Aired in bottle prior to dinner at home, 17 April 2023. Deep purple. This wine appears to have turned the corner, the tannins now considerably softer and gentler, yielding true sangiovese tones of raspberries and rose petals in soft focus on a base of sandy gravel, open with delicious subtle detail. At its best.

Champagne Billecart-Salmon Brut NV. Poured from magnum at Solo Ristorante, Singapore, on 18 Apr 2023. Pale. Highly aromatic in dense citrus, lemon and pomelo that is well-replicated on the palate with refreshing zest and fine detail, oozing with great verve and intensity before settling down with glacial tones and subtle buttery characters.

2015 Domaine Thibert Père et Fils Pouilly-Loché En Chantone, aired in bottle ahead of dinner at Crab At Bay, 23 Apr 2023. Generous nose and body of lime and clear citrus laced with crisp cutting acidity laid on a dense minerally base. Fleshed out with more of ferrous elements amid pears and white fruits. Well-balanced with refreshing zest.

2014 Domaine Philippe Chéron Gevrey-Chambertin Clos des Varoilles 1er. Aired in bottle for three hours ahead of lunch at Bedrock Bar & Grill, 24 Apr 2023. Slightly darkish in tint and tone. Medium-full. Rounded with good presence of mulberries and wild berries, its acidity fairly pronounced at first before morphing into a refined supple entity, fleshing out with a deep dark rosy intensity, well-integrated with substantial power. Long minty finish. Excellent potential. No wonder Prieuré-Roch has bought over this entire monopole, its inaugural vintage of 2020 jacked up to SGD800 per bottle.

2016 Domaine Denis Mortet Gevrey-Chambertin Mes Cinq Terroirs. Popped and poured from magnum at A Symphony of Passions Gala Dinner, 29 Apr 2023, at Ritz-Carlton Millenia Singapore. Opaque purple. Nose of raspberries, dark cherries and wild berries. Suitably ripe, exuding rose-scented aromas. Surprising soft and rounded in spite of the large format bottling, displaying refined presence of fruit with understated acidity underpinned by sweet subtle tannins.

2016 Domaine Lucien Muzard et Fils Santenay Maladière 1er Rouge. Aired for ninety minutes prior to dinner at Liang Kee, 30 Apr 2023. Attractive soft floral aromas of dark roses and cherries amid some briar. Nicely rounded and supple, structured with unobtrusive smooth tannins that exert mild intensity, displaying good depth and layering with a dash of stems. Drinking well.

Rose & Arrow Estate 2019

April 27, 2023

Rose & Arrow Estate began in 2012 as a collaborative effort between Mark Tarlov (who started Evening Lands) and Louis-Michel Comte Liger-Belair of the eponymous domaine in Vosne-Romanée, looking to produce the best expression of Oregon pinot noir through a fastidious in-depth study of the Basalt soils of the Willamette Valley by uncovering the best plots within plots. While they own or farm over 60 hectares of land there, less than four percent of the harvest goes into the prestigious Rose & Arrow cuvées. Since the untimely passing of Mark, the estate has also ended its relationship with Comte Liger-Belair. Its viticulture and winemaking are now entirely in-house, led by Felipe Ramirez who had originally conducted the geological studies. However, the ties with Vosne-Romanée still exist in the usage of French barrels that are still flown in every year, of which twenty-percent consists of new oak. The 2019 line-up below was specially organised by one of the estate’s partners, Tristan Sjoberg, at Solo Ristorante, Singapore, on 18 April 2023. Compared with the 2018, the 2019s appear to be more masculine and extracted, very tightly wound at this stage which makes it difficult to pass judgement. Part of this, I suspect, is due to the wines being served in generic non-burgundy glasses compared with the 2018s that were tasted from Zalto burgundy stemware at 67 Pall Mall last year (click here). Nevertheless, the potential is evident, most clearly articulated by the Rose & Arrow Stonecreek. Patience is required. Many thanks, Tristan!


2020 Rose & Arrow Estate Eola Springs Chardonnay. Pale. Darkish bouquet though the palate is tightly structured with chiseled white tones, very cleanly delineated with sharp precision and crisp acidity but still exuding a refined elegance through its subtle verve and intensity, developing further notes of nutmeg and olives. Highly successful.

2019 Rose & Arrow Estate Hopewell Hills. Deep ruby. Dark roses and cherries on the nose. The full palate is imbued with abundant warm ripe fruit laid on velvety textures, graced by fresh acidity that lingered with glowing persistence. From Eola-Amity Hills, Oregon.

2019 Rose & Arrow Estate Gathered Stones. Deep garnet. Some restraint is evident on the nose while the rounded supple palate is appreciably weightier, beautifully clean and precise, structured with silky tannins on a solid backbone of deep dark fruit that swept across with delicious fleeting intensity. Very finely balanced with good sophistication. Excellent. From vines grown on porous volcanic rocks. From Eola-Amity Hills, Oregon.

2019 Rose & Arrow Estate Highland Close. Deep purple. Nose of mulberries, raspberries and dark currants. Well extracted with a full darkish presence. Structured with masculine proportions, underscored with some velvetiness from understated sweet tannins. Cool minty finish. Still too tight at this point of time though its potential is huge. From Chehalem Mountain, Oregon.

2019 Rose & Arrow Estate Riverline. Deep ruby, proffering dark roses amid exotic spices and overtones of warm wet gravel. Fairly supple, structured with cleanly defined tannins laced with an understated sweetness but its pronounced acidity is not helpful at the moment, way too intense and awkward. Slightly more perfumed after some time though it remained bright and pebbly.

2019 Rose & Arrow Estate Stonecreek. Deep purple. Highly attractive dark floral fragrance matched by superb concentration of fruit, richly layered and structured with fine definition but yet to open. Excellent sophistication. Very classy. Huge potential here. Proudly claimed by the estate to be its equivalent to a burgundy grand cru, and quite justifiably so. From Eola-Amity Hills, Oregon.

Perrot-Minot: 2015 NSG La Richemone 1er, 2015 Chambolle La Combe d’Orveau 1er, 2011 Charmes- & Mazoyères-Chambertin

April 24, 2023

20230414_184436.jpgThe great Jasper Morris, M.W., conducted a masterclass at 67 Pall Mall, Singapore, on 14 April 2023 featuring the wines of Domaine Perrot-Minot, comparing 2015 (by all accounts an extraordinary vintage for the Côte d’Or) with 2012 (a difficult one), plus a couple of grand crus from 2011 (tricky, where the reds are lighter). The domaine is run by Christophe who took over from his father Henri in 1993. Known for his severe selection and, hence, declassification of whole bunches of grapes, Christophe is not the type to actively promote his wines, which probably accounts for its relative obscurity although they certainly command quite a hefty premium. Using no more than 20% new oak, the differences between 2015 and 2012 are clearly discernible across different communes; I certainly prefer the latter at this stage, drinking better and costing less as well. Perrot-Minot is one of the very few owners of the small plot of La Combe d’Orveau 1er in Chambolle which directly abuts Musigny Grand Cru, always desirable at the correct price. The domaine also bottles its Mazoyères separately from Charmes-Chambertin (many others tend to lump it all under the latter) and this tasting proves the former to have its own distinct merits. At this price point, however, there are many options for the connoisseur to choose from…so choose wisely.

2015 Domaine Perrot-Minot Vosne-Romanée Aux Champs Perdrix Vieilles Vignes. Crimson hues. Highly alluring perfumed fragrance of red plums, mandarins, rose petals and haw. Medium-full. Rather delicate at first, displaying refined acidity and detail before developing a little more verve and body, weighty enough though its layers remain closed. Not the voluptuous sort.

2012 Domaine Perrot-Minot Vosne-Romanée Aux Champs Perdrix Vieilles Vignes. Classic pinot tint with some early evolution, exuding a clean rosy fragrance with a tinge of earth. There is a certain restraint on the palate, distinctly more minerally than the 2015, displaying an even presence and fullness with understated acidity. Good balance. Fleshed out beautifully with a lovely glowing finish.

2015 Domaine Perrot-Minot Morey-Saint-Denis La Riotte 1er Vieilles Vignes. Clear ruby, lifted in cherries and tangerines with effusive charm, bursting with excellent fullness and purity of fruit laced with sublime acidity. Settled down with understated supple intensity. Still rather tight, turning a little chunky in the glass after some time. Very fine.

2012 Domaine Perrot-Minot Morey-Saint-Denis La Riotte 1er Vieilles Vignes. Classic pinot tint. Equal measure of mandarins and cherries doused with a distinct minerally presence, its relative austerity masking the fruit. The palate is consistently darkish and earthy, laid on a subtle but persistently ferric floor. Quite integral and stolid, structured with unobtrusive rounded tannins. Drinking well.

2015 Domaine Perrot-Minot Nuits-Saint-Georges La Richemone 1er Vignes Centenaires. Classic pinot tint. Fairly effusive in red fruits and haw. Medium-full. Very cleanly delineated, displaying good precision and freshness though a little lean. Fleshed out well with rounded ripe fruit laid on a minerally floor. From vines planted in 1902.

2015 Domaine Perrot-Minot Chambolle Musigny La Combe d’Orveau 1er Vieilles Vignes. Lovely pinot tint though it is rather restrained on the nose in spite of the forward balance of fruit on the full palate, still quite tightly wound. Well-structured with vibrant acidity, displaying good power and succulence that taper to a moderate finish. Needs several more years in bottle. From vines planted in the 1930s.

2011 Domaine Perrot-Minot Charmes-Chambertin Grand Cru. Evolved pinot tint, exuding a very gentle delicate perfumed fragrance. Medium-full. Distinctly more weighty and layered than any of the preceding wines, appreciably more integral and a notch higher in sophistication and refinement. Moderate finish.

2011 Domaine Perrot-Minot Mazoyères-Chambertin Grand Cru Vieilles Vignes. Opaque crimson. Excellent in density and detail of fruit, seamlessly structured with refined acidity underpinned by a distinct sweetness that imparted some velvety succulence before receding into its shell, turning more minerally with understated fruit.

1960 “Y” d’Yquem, 1973 Mouton Rothschild, 1983 Lafite Rothschild, 1996 Cheval Blanc, 1968 Beaulieu Private Reserve, 2004 Latour

April 14, 2023

The usual suspects gathered at Summer Pavillon, Ritz-Carlton Millenia Singapore, on 11 April 2023 to mark LF’s twin-digit milestone with a stellar Bordeaux line-up where it turned out every decade between 1960-2010 was represented. Many happy returns, and many thanks too for dinner and for the generous contributions.

2006 Champagne Pierre Péters L’Esprit Blanc de Blancs Grand Cru Brut, courtesy of LF. Clear golden. Plenty of yeasty pungency amid characters of burnt toast and walnuts on the nose. Fairly plump and rounded with a full presence of bright clear citrus and pomelo from the blanc de blancs within a sheen of soft bubbles, yielding fine definition and intensity with a trace of sweetness.

1993 Château Smith-Haut-Lafitte Blanc, courtesy of Sir Bob. Light golden, opening with a pronounced earthiness that quickly blew off to reveal notes of malt and rye with a characteristic powdery texture that I find to be consistent in these blends of sémillon/savignon blanc, replete with distinct tones of mature white fruit on the medium palate. Still fairly fresh with fine clarity, taking on a high-toned acidity over time but it lacks real complexity and layering.


1960 “Y” d’Yquem, courtesy of Sir Bob. Tasted blind. Dull opaque golden hue, proffering a refined nose of cashews and almond with a distinct note of preserved plums amid classic powdery textures that teased with a certain elusiveness. Still holding up with crisp acidity though the fruit has receded somewhat, glowing with mature white tones and distant chalky characters with a signature style and balance that is distinctly d’Yquem. Only its second vintage after the inaugural 1959. What a privilege!

1973 Château Mouton Rothschild, courtesy of LF. Tasted blind. Displaying a lovely deep ruby with substantial bricking, this seminal vintage of Mouton opens with a most alluring fragrance of rose petals within a glowing complex of mature dark fruits and currants, tinged with a dash of smoke. The medium palate is seamlessly structured and integral with a distinct autumnal character of tangerines and red plums, perfectly balanced with just enough fruit to match the acidity that is still fairly fresh, carrying itself with graceful elegance towards a quiet finish. Certainly worthy of its elevation to premier cru that year though Mouton, indeed, does not change. Thank you!


1968 Beaulieu Vineyard Private Reserve, courtesy of LF. Darkish core, proffering a weighty bouquet of herbal and medicinal characters with overtones of smoky diesel. Clearly mature but still fairly full in ripe red plums and mandarins underpinned by darker tones on a bed of sweet velvety tannins, displaying good verve.

1983 Château Lafite Rothschild, courtesy of Kieron. Deep garnet, basking in an effusive glow of mature dark berries, capsicum, mushrooms and cigar box with a teasing elusiveness. The medium palate is soft and fleshy, imbued with a supple intensity of plummy tones laced with sleek acidity, receding a little in fruit over time but still holding on with moderate presence before tapering to a quiet finish.

1996 Château Cheval Blanc, courtesy of Vic. Deep crimson, opening with a gentle fragrance of distant red fruits. The medium palate is rounded with soft tannins, rather relaxed and placid with understated detail and minerality. Moderate finish. Distinctly feminine.

2004 Château Latour. Deep garnet. Classic Pauillac nose of soy and tobacco amid a deep dark rosy fragrance. Medium-full, displaying some early complexity within its layers of ripe fruit and subdued minerality that lent a trace of austerity. Very well proportioned, exerting controlled power and sweet subtle intensity through its structured tannins and slick acidity that culminate in a long glowing finish.


Peter Michael Les Pavots & Au Paradis: 2019, 2018 & 2011

April 11, 2023

20230405_153334.jpgSome for reason, Peter Michael Winery would usually not be the first name one thinks of when discussing Californian wines, but everyone seems to agree that its whites and reds belong right up there with the best. Started in 1982 when Sir Peter Michael purchased 255 hectares of volcanic ridges on the western face of Mount Helena in Knights Valley, the winery focuses on chardonnay, pinot noir as well as Bordeaux-inspired blends, sourced entirely from individually-farmed estate-owned vineyards located on steep hillsides at altitudes well above 500 feet. One senses a fastidious streak in the winemaking which is organic (though not biodynamic): triple-sorting of whole clusters during harvesting, the grapes are 100% de-stemmed, the French barrels are only medium-toasted and the wine is unfined and unfiltered. Only 20,000 cases are produced in total annually, accounting for its relative scarcity on the secondary market. For this tasting on 05 April 2023 at the offices of Wine Clique, Singapore, Paul Michael (son of Sir Peter) and Peter Kay (Sales Director) have specially flown in to showcase Les Pavots (its French name refers to the poppies that initially grew on the land first purchased by Sir Peter), the winery’s flagship Bordeaux blend, as well as Au Paradis, made from a more recent acquisition in 2009 in Oakville where the blend comprises at least 75% cabernet sauvignon with cabernet franc making up the rest. I find Les Pavots to be consistently lush and opulent, its exuberance never tipping into uncontrolled hedonism, while Au Paradis is more classically structured with a restrained elegance, drinking better at this point of time whilst the former needs a long runway. Many thanks, Alice and Emerson.

2019 Peter Michael Winery Les Pavots, comprising 60% cabernet sauvignon, 21% merlot, 14% cabernet franc and 5% petit verdot. Deep garnet. Great abundance of dark plums and red currants beneath the rich creamy nose, developing a further effusive core of tropical fruits. Medium-full. Very luxuriant, ripe and lush, rounded with smooth svelte tannins underscored with sublime acidity. Just a tad forward but nobody really minds when the fruit is so drop-dead gorgeous. Already accessible in spite of its masculine proportions, gelling together very well with juicy succulence. Utterly delicious. This will turn out to be a great Les Pavots, if one has the patience.

2018 Peter Michael Winery Les Pavots, comprising 68% cabernet sauvignon, 10% merlot, 19% cabernet franc and 3% petit verdot. Deep crimson. Perfumed dark rosy characters amid waxy overtones, displaying pointed definition of red fruits. Medium-bodied. Highly supple with very good density of fruit, quite seamlessly integrated with refined tannins and acidity, imbued with understated minerally elements. Moderate finish. Classically structured and proportioned. Drinking well.

2011 Peter Michael Winery Les Pavots, comprising 73% cabernet sauvignon, 10% merlot, 14% cabernet franc and 3% petit verdot. From a cooler vintage. Deep crimson. Lovely lift of haw, cherries and red currants amid discernible traces of paraffin and marmite, marking its entry on the medium-full palate with a rush of deep rosy characters from a gorgeous core of fruit that is so wonderfully fresh and lively, delivering great verve. A little forward, just like the 2019, but it suits the wine well, already imbued with early complexity on a bed of velvety tannins. Impeccably balanced. Yet to peak, but it is so irresistibly delicious.


2019 Peter Michael Winery Au Paradis, comprising 76% cabernet sauvignon, 8% merlot and 16% cabernet franc. Deep purple. Highly aromatic with a distinct note of vanillin and paraffin. Good density of ripe plummy tones beneath, fairly lively though it doesn’t really plumb the depths. Appreciably less tannic than Les Pavots, finishing well with pronounced medicinal tones.

2018 Peter Michael Winery Au Paradis, comprising 76% cabernet sauvignon, 13% merlot and 11% cabernet franc. Deep crimson. Fairly aromatic, where haw and red fruits dominate with a distinct note of vanillin. Almost exuberant, such is its lively acidity and energetic burst on the medium-full palate. Very well integrated with sleek tannins, taking on a sudden and surprising austerity as more ferrous elements emerged to the fore. Good finish.

2011 Peter Michael Winery Au Paradis, comprising 76% cabernet sauvignon and 24% cabernet franc. Deep crimson. Lovely bouquet of complex fruit and capsicum with a teasing elusiveness. Medium-bodied. Highly supple and elegant. Very well-proportioned, displaying very good juicy presence and energy with refined detail. Classically structured and balanced. This has developed very well. Superb.

Comte Georges de Vogüé Musigny 2017 2014 2011 2010 2005 & Musigny Blanc 2017

April 4, 2023

Domaine Comte Georges de Vogüé will, surely, be familiar to all lovers of burgundy as it owns the lion’s share of Musigny Grand Cru (7.2 ha), which already accounts for 57% of the domaine’s total holdings. Still, there is not enough wine to go around, partly because half of the Musigny vines are cordon-trained which results in lower yields of about 25 hectolitres per hectare. Whilst the history of this domaine may be traced as far back as 1450, it officially came under Comte Georges de Vogüé in 1920. Its modern history, though, only took off in 1986 when Francois Millet joined as cellar master (until 2019) while the aptly named Eric Bourgogne came on board a decade later in 1996 to manage the vineyard. Quality has been tremendous during this outstanding period of more than thirty years, and it is certainly a distinct privilege to be able to taste through a vertical of Comte de Vogüé Musigny Grand Cru, all made by the legendary Francois Millet, on 30 March 2023 at Sonder, Singapore, kindly organised by Domaine Wines in the presence of Comte de Vogüé’s long-serving Sales Director Jean-Luc Pepin. The Musigny of Vogüé is consistently graceful and elegant even in riper vintages where the wine may be more generously proportioned, never calling attention to itself though it demands absolute patience in the Old World manner. Its vieilles vignes designation implies the wines are made from mature vines, as plantings less than twenty-five years of age are declassified and bottled as Chambolle-Musigny 1er. While approachable, the wines that evening would most certainly show better another decade or two down the road and with plenty of aeration in bottle. It remains to be seen how the wines from 2020 onwards, made by new cellar master Jean Lupatelli, would fare but I suspect it will always be the ever-diminishing supply of pre-2020 vintages of Comte de Vogüé that wine lovers will seek and cherish. Merci beaucoup, Jean-Luc and Alvin, for your friendship.

Champagne Ruinart Brut NV, courtesy of Sir Bob. A bottle from 1985 but only popped now. Luminous golden hue, proffering a generous bouquet of walnuts, almonds and yeasty overtones. Still very fresh, full and vibrant, coating the palate with luxurious soft bubbles underpinned by a deeper sweet gentle intensity. Excellent.

2017 Bachelet-Monnot Chassagne-Montrachet, courtesy of LF. Beautiful clear luminosity, exuding highly elegant tones of distant chalk and yellow citrus where its subtle powdery white tones and restraint sing unmistakably of Chassagne, particularly as it rounds off the palate with a lovely teasing intensity already imbued with some early complexity. Wonderfully precise. Very classy.


2017 Domaine Comte Georges de Vogüé Musigny Grand Cru Cuvée Vieilles Vignes. Coming after the frosty vintage of 2016 where the generous bud burst had necessitated active green pruning. Translucent deep purplish hue, proffering mulberries and cranberries on the nose. The medium-full palate features ferrous elements and dark cherries in equal measure, its highly refined acidity imparting a degree of freshness to the measured intensity of red fruits. Very finely balanced, finishing with subtle glowing length though, somehow, it comes across as being somewhat underwhelming, missing in layering. 13% abv.

2011 Domaine Comte Georges de Vogüé Musigny Grand Cru Cuvée Vieilles Vignes. Purplish core with some bricking. Highly reticent on the nose, just hinting at warm pebbles against a backdrop of distant red fruits. Rather full and bright, the fruit appreciably lighter and more delicate, imbued with undertones of dried mushrooms. Seamlessly integrated though without much weight, tapering to a moderate finish marked by a dash of spice. Distinctly feminine. Only 12% abv.

2010 Domaine Comte Georges de Vogüé Musigny Grand Cru Cuvée Vieilles Vignes. Deep ruby. Gentle fragrance of rose petals and raspberries. Quite full and fleshy, displaying good purity of fruit with refined intensity and controlled verve, underscored by a subtle minerally vein. Very elegant and unassuming. Moderate finish. Rather understated on the whole. 13% abv.

2014 Domaine Comte Georges de Vogüé Musigny Grand Cru Cuvée Vieilles Vignes. Fairly deep garnet red. Quite effusive in raspberries and mulberries, tinged with an elusive herbal character amid a certain earthiness from what seems to be early secondary characters. Bright and cheerful, lit by vivacious red fruits and ripe cherries that impart great energy and controlled exuberance whilst maintaining its refined balance and purity, turning a little more minerally over time. Highly successful from a vintage of weather extremes.

2005 Domaine Comte Georges de Vogüé Musigny Grand Cru Cuvée Vieilles Vignes. Clear deep ruby. Gentle aromas red fruits and currants amid some haw. More masculine and fleshy, cleanly structured with excellent presence of cool ripe fruit that exert lovely svelte intensity. Highly harmonious and impeccably balanced, underpinned by a deeper vein of fruit though less minerally than expected. Moderate finish. 13% abv

2017 Domaine Comte Georges de Vogüé Musigny Blanc Grand Cru. Pale. Generous allure of floral aromas in full bloom along with attractive white tones, bananas and cinnamon, all very beautifully matched with indescribable complexity in spite of its youth. Only medium-bodied but all the better, allowing its layers of fresh elegant fruit to shine with relaxed charm and utter refinement, immaculately proportioned all the way to its confident but restraint finish. Already fabulous in its infancy, this will turn out to be truly legendary, worthy of a place amongst the pantheon of the greatest whites. Whereas only previously bottled as Bourgogne Blanc (from 1994 to 2014) even though the chardonnay comes from a 0.66 ha plot in Musigny, the vines have come of age since the 2015 vintage, hence its rightful classification now as Musigny Blanc Grand Cru.