Skip to content

Dec 2016: 2011 Bouchard L’Enfant Jesus 1er, Guy Charlemagne Blanc de Blancs NV, 2004 Rockford Basket Press, 2001 Bass Phillip Premium, 2006 Armand Rousseau Chambertin, 2010 AF Gros Richebourg, 1998 Greenock Creek Roennfeldt Road,

December 31, 2016

2011 Bouchard  Pere et Fils Beaune Greves Vignes de L’enfant Jesus 1er (courtesy of Dr Ngoi), popped and poured over lunch on 02 Dec 2016 at Tunglok Signatures, Orchard Parade Hotel. This is certainly my best experience with this special wine from Bouchard, a monopole of 10 ha within the 32 ha plot of Greves, exuding a lovely rosy fragrance with traces of earth, camphor and burnt sugar, generous in depth and purity of fruit with plenty of finesse and elegance, finishing well. Positively glowing.

2004 Rockford Basket Press, two bottles decanted on-site at FOC, a very hip Spanish eatery along Hong Kong Street, Singapore, to celebrate Troy and Linsey’s promotion on 06 Dec 2016. This perennial favourite is drinking superbly on this occasion, displaying savoury tones, sweet meat and cedar on the nose with plenty of verve and vigour from the great body of ripe Barossa fruit, caressing the palate with svelte silky tannins, richly layered with overtones of gentle mocha and subtle licorice with understated acidity and later notes of red fruits and currants, very open and inviting, not at all overbearing. At its peak and will hold for many years to come. Outstanding.

2016-12-13-20-03-102005 Ch Du Tertre, popped and poured at Yan, National Gallery Singapore, on the occasion of Vincent’s farewell, 13 Dec 2016. This lesser-known estate from Margaux is showing very well, displaying secondary nuances of earth, cedar, lifted currants, plums and tea, surprisingly full with very good definition and subtle intensity coupled with silky tannins, finishing on a persistent note of olives with a slight vegetal trace. Very fine.

2011 Montevertine (courtesy of CJ), popped and poured at Yan, National Gallery Singapore, on the occasion of Vincent’s farewell, 13, Dec 2016. Dark roses, cherries and raspberries dominate on the nose, gentle and feminine with a rich vein of fruit still tightly coiled within its soft outer body, yet to develop but this will turn out to be most lovely in another 5-7 years.

2005 Ch Rauzan-Gassies, popped and poured at Yan, National Gallery Singapore, on the occasion of Vincent’s farewell, 13, Dec 2016. Compared with the Du Tertre, both from the same vintage and commune, this wine displays greater sophistication with an attractive bouquet of dark red fruits leading to an excellent concentration of ripe dark berries and plums, brimming with quiet intensity, subtly structured with velvety tannins, unashamedly masculine. Quite excellent.

2003 Ch Sociando Mallet, popped and poured at Yan, National Gallery Singapore, on the occasion of Vincent’s farewell, 13 Dec 2016. This particular vintage marked the year that this estate voluntarily pulled out of the re-organisation of the Medoc classification, hence the need for a new label. In spite of its unclassified status, this wine is clearly in the league of classified growths. Displaying a deep dark red, this wine was relatively closed, but the palate is awashed with great concentration of dark fruits and currants, fairly dense with characters of soy with superb tobacco undertones that indicate its close proximity to the soils of Pauillac, structured with sweet subtle tannins. Excellent, but yet to hit its peak.

2006 D’Arenberg Dead Arm, popped and poured at Yan, National Gallery Singapore, on the occasion of Vincent’s farewell, 13, Dec 2016. Still very dark in color, this wine is saturated with dark chocolate with traces of licorice and black pepper, full-bodied with sweet medicinal tones, great concentration and  powerful intensity, structured with sweet well-integrated tannins. Drinking well now, but nowhere near its peak.

Guy Charlemagne Blanc de Blancs Grand Cru Brut Reserve NV, bought off the list of Corner House for SGD190 at the Singapore Botanical Gardens, over lunch with Victor and Kieron, 16 Dec 2016. This wine opens with lifted aromas of deep toasty characetrs and nutmeg, quite full with  complex sweet citrus contrasted against mild bitter lemon and crystalline minerality that offered excellent definition, enhanced by understated acidity and superb length. Simply outstanding.

2016-12-16-13-37-102001 Bass Phillip Premium (courtesy of Kieron), aired for 45 minutes prior to serving over lunch with Victor and Kieron at Corner House, Singapore Botanical Gardens, 16 Dec 2016. This top pinot noir from Mornington Peninsula, Victoria, Australia, appears fully evolved, open and inviting with deep bold characters of camphor, dark plums and incense with creamy overtones, displaying good concentration of red fruits supported by saline minerals with understated acidity, becoming broader and more Burgundian over time though it remained a tad short at the finish. Excellent.

2010 Louis Jadot Chambolle-Musigny (courtesy of KP Hui) over dinner at Jade Palace, 19 Dec 2016. The nose here is dominated by white flowers with overtones of creme and icing, with good presence of complex citrus on the palate, fairly intense and lifted and well-integrated. Louis Jadot is always reliable.

2014 Chateau de Mersault Les Charmes-Dessus 1er, poured after a brief aeration at Jade Palace, 19 Dec 2016. An estate run by Stephen Follin-Arlebet, this wine is broad with an abundance of white flowers and lime of subtle intensity balanced by attractive saline minerality, opening up with some early complexity. Very fine.

2010 Louis Boillot et Fils Pommard Les Fremiers 1er (courtesy of Kenny), poured after a brief aeration at Jade Palace, 19 Dec 2016. This wine is darker in tone for a pinot, offering sweet dark fruits and currants amidst dryish textures of earth and minerals. Not really memorable.

2010 Jacques-Frederic Mugnier Nuits-Saint-Georges Clos de la  Marechale 1er (courtesy of Hiok), poured after some aeration at Jade Palace, 19 Dec 2016. This perennial favourite offers an attractive bouquet of sweet dark roses, dark cherries, camphor and incense, quite understated on the palate with excellent depth of glorious red fruits displaying good definition. Very fine.

2009 De Bortoli Noble One (courtesy of Jonny), popped and poured at Jade Palace, 19 Dec 2016. Weighty with a great concentration of complex citrus and aged nectarine, layered with fresh acidity and petroleum characters that persist long after the wine has gone down the hatch. Surprisingly good.

Larnaudie-Hirault Fleur de Singapour NV (courtesy of Hsiang Sui), popped and poured at Otto Ristorante on the occasion of Vincent’s farewell, 22 Dec 2016. Made from premier cru 100% pinot noir from the village of Montagne de Reims, this interesting bottling exudes complex sweet citrus with a mild yeasty pungency and toasty notes, slightly dry, displaying very good concentration of fruit and minerals that imparted a slightly stern demeanour. Drinking well.

2005 Patrick Javilier Corton-Charlemagne Grand Cru (courtesy of Li Fern), aired in bottle for an hour at Otto Ristorante on the occasion of Vincent’s farewell, 22 Dec 2016. Subdued and somewhat closed and awkward, dominated by overtones of malt, wheat and icing with grainy textures and dull minerality, rather backward and reluctant. However, I have long noticed this to be a characteristic of the whites of this noted producer.

2012 Escaleras de Empedrado (courtesy of Hock Foong), aired in bottle at Otto Ristorante on the occasion of Vincent’s farewell, 22 Dec 2016. This Spanish pinot noir exudes earth, dark roses, cherries and medicinal tones with some camphor, displaying good concentration and soft subtle tannins with quiet intensity, producing a lovely mouthfeel.

2010 Henri Bonneau Chateauneuf du Pape (courtesy of Hsiang Sui), aired in bottle at Otto Ristorante on the occasion of Vincent’s farewell, 22 Dec 2016. Displaying a dark brownish red, this wine offers an interesting complex of dark cherries, licorice, peaches and bright fruits amidst some earthiness and vegetal traces, undoubtedly full, becoming more rosy and accessible over time. Good stuff, but needs further cellaring.

2016-12-29-19-43-33

2005 Ch Montrose (courtesy of CJ), aired in bottle for an hour at Otto Ristorante on the occasion of Vincent’s farewell, 22 Dec 2016. Deep inky red, exuding a deep lovely fragrance, open and layered with glorious rich dark berries and redcurrants with a quiet intensity, highly supple with very well-integrated tannins. This will be great in time to come, but needs plenty of time. Excellent.

1997 La Spinetta Barbaresco Gallina (courtesy of Li Fern), aired in bottle for an hour at Otto Ristorante on the occasion of Vincent’s farewell, 22 Dec 2016. True to its Barbaresco roots, this wine  is open and feminine with an excellent body of dark red fruits and blueberries, medium-bodied, framed by soft sweet chewy tannins and finishing well. Excellent.

2008 Mount Mary Quintet, a magnum decanted on-site at Otto Ristorante on the occasion of Vincent’s farewell, 22 Dec 2016. Consistent with a previous note a year ago, this wine is surprisingly mellow and open with soft feminine tones of rose petals amidst a lovely floral fragrance, displaying excellent acidity with some lovely intensity, finishing well. Excellent.

2001 Poggio Salvi di Montalcino Riserva (courtesy of Li Fern), . This wine opens with aromas of old wood and almonds, gradually evolving to a more complex bouquet recalling red fruits and rose petals, well-replicated on the palate where it is gently layered and open, cloaked in lithe supple refined tannins, finishing with a spicy trace. Excellent.

2016-12-29-21-17-39

2008 Casanova di Neri Tenuta Nuova Brunello di Montalcino (courtesy of Li Fern), aired in bottle for an hour at Otto Ristorante on the occasion of Vincent’s farewell, 22 Dec 2016. Great presence on the palate from a solid core of dark fruits, cedar, plums and grapefruit, exuding earthy forest floor characters with a lovely fragrance. Excellent.

Louis Roederer Brut Premier NV, popped and poured at Imperial Treasure Crowne Plaza, 24 Dec 2016. Somewhat reticent on the nose with notes of egg tart and some yeasty pungency while an intense concentration of lime, citrus and pomelo attack the palate with abrasive dryness, supported by stony minerals that lingered at the finish. One to go with food.

2012 Kalala Onkanangan Valley Pinot Gris, popped and poured at Dorothy’s Christmas Eve party. Forward with fresh green apples, pears and green melons, quite full with an easy presence from the subdued acidity, finishing with a bit of stern minerality. Drinking very well.

2000 Dom Perignon Rose, courtesy of Hsiang Sui at his Christmas party, 25 Dec 2016. Open with gentle red fruits, grapefruit and tangerines, its feminine tone aided by the fine gentle bubbles, supported by mild ferrous minerality that imparted a slightly stern demeanour at the finish.

2010 AF Gros Richebourg Grand Cru, courtesy of Hsiang Sui at his Christmas party, 25 Dec 2016. Very open with lovely deep notes, beautifully proportioned between the fragrant red fruits and saline minerals with a mild savoury dash without calling attention to itself, utterly seamless with a fine balance. Excellent.

2016-12-25-19-56-30

2010 AF Gros Echezeaux Grand Cru, courtesy of Hsiang Sui at his Christmas party, 25 Dec 2016. Broader and richer with a forward balance than the preceding Richebourg at this stage, still somewhat closed on the nose though its excellent concentration of glorious dark cherries and currants is apparent with good purity. Yet to unfurl its full glory but the potential is great. Excellent.

2010 AF Gros Vosne-Romanee Clos de la Fontaine, courtesy of Hsiang Sui at his Christmas party, 25 Dec 2016. This monopole village exudes a lifted floral fragrance of camphor and red fruits, displaying  good concentration, depth and purity of fruit with a slight forward balance, structured with sweet subtle tannins. Very fine.

2005 Armand Rousseau Gevrey-Chambertin Lavaux St Jacques 1er, courtesy of Hsiang Sui at his Christmas party, 25 Dec 2016. Notes of sandalwood with a good concentration of recessed fruits, strawberries and subtle saline minerals comb the palate, very correct in its balance and guise, gently structured with lovely integration. Excellent.

2016-12-25-19-44-30

2006 Armand Rousseau Chambertin Grand Cru, courtesy of Hsiang Sui at his Christmas party, 25 Dec 2016. Tasted after more than three hours of aeration, this benchmark of the Cote d’ Or is open with great purity and immense complexity from a wonderful body of fruit that exudes nuances of camphor, red plums, cherries and redcurrants, cloaked in sweet supple tannins and lovely acidity that lingered with great persistence. Truly wonderful.

1998 Veritas Hanisch Vineyard Shiraz (courtesy of Chee Foong) at Hsiang Sui’s Christmas party, 25 Dec 2016. This difficult-to-source wine opens with powerful deep dark tones of licorice and medicinal characters, big and bold on the palate, undoubtedly huge in proportion, yet well balanced without overwhelming the senses, saturating the palate with distinctive acidity and supple tannins that impart a biting intensity and persistent mouthfeel, mildly bitter at the finish. I am partial to these well-crafted robust Barossa reds but those who are less open-minded are advised to stay away.

1998 Greenock Creek Roennfeldt Road Shiraz, courtesy of Hsiang Sui at his Christmas party, 25 Dec 2016. Aired in bottle for about 30 minutes prior to tasting, this cult Barossa displays all the hallmarks of Chris Ringland’s craftsmanship, a deep garnet red that opens with powerful tones of ripe dark berries and black fruits, saturating the palate with great concentration, acidity and depth, framed by sweet velvety tannins and held in exemplary balance in spite of its 16% alcohol. Compared with the Veritas of the same vintage (above), this wine is considerably more open and sophisticated in feel, more refined in its spectrum and layering of fruit. Excellent.

2014 Markus Molitor Zeltinger Sonnenhur Auslese (courtesy of Li Fern) at Hsiang Sui’s Christmas party, 25 Dec 2016. This is a understated wine, highly enticing on the nose with notes of aged apples and tropical fruits whilst apricot and subtle nectarine tones dominate the palate, infused with subtle sweetness and acidity that belies its auslese classification. Excellent.

2002 Penfolds St Henri Shiraz, popped and poured at Huat Kee, renowned for its refined Teochew cuisine at RELC Singapore, 26 Dec 2016. I remember buying a case of this with Kieron back in 2006 when it was mispriced at only SGD58. Deep inky red, this wine opened initially with powerful medicinal aromas tinged with licorice, mushrooms and herbs leading to a full-bodied presence, though somewhat stiff and reticent. Over time, it transformed into a more open wine with better definition, recalling black fruits and dark plums on the nose while soy and black tea leaves dominate the palate with fleshy dryish textures, finishing with mild peppery tones. Drinking well but yet to hit its peak.

2003 Clos des Papes Chateauneuf-du-Pape, a bottle I’d cellared for many years, popped and poured at Perle Noire, 27 Dec 2016. Displaying an evolved tint of brownish red, this wine exudes gentle medicinal overtones amidst a complex of earth, undergrowth, sweet wild berries and briar with traces of licorice, medium-bodied, soft and open with good concentration and dryish textures that taper to a peppery spicy finish. At its best now.

Moet et Chandon Brut Imperial, at Shinzo (courtesy of Miah Hiang), 29 Dec 2016. Smoke incense and dry charcoal fill the nose with good presence of sweet citrus and lime characters on the palate, not too dry. Drinking well.

2004 Henri Abele, a champagne blend of pinot noir and chardonnay, popped and poured at Ming Kee Live Seafood, 31 Dec 2016, truly my last drop for the year. Generous aromas of smoke, earthy pungency, charcoal and yeasty tones fill the bouquet, exuding a gentle presence on the palate with soft bubbles amidst an attractive expanse of citrus and lime and subtle minerality, moderately complex but well-integrated and rounded, finishing with good length. Very fine.

 

 

No comments yet

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: