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2006 Armand Rousseau Charmes-Chamb’, 2005 Groffier Amoureuses, 1961 Gilette…

March 29, 2018

Ever the generous soul that he is, CJ very kindly threw a grand dinner at Yan on 24 March 2018 for the usual suspects. This time, though, we knew the raison d’tre behind it. The manager Shek rose brilliantly to the occasion with the wine service while the restaurant has maintained its very high standard of cuisine. Contributed by people who know what they are drinking, the highly curated line-up was simply outstanding. Thank you everyone and especially to CJ; please do journey more to the east.

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2006 Champagne Salon, courtesy of CJ. Luminous tint, exuding a lifted floral bloom with fine concentration of green fruits, lime and bitter lemon that shone through its dry textures with excellent clarity, possessing a deeper minerally vein with an emerging trace of early layering. Still tight. Highly consistent with my initial impression at its worldwide launch back in April 2017. Excellent now, but will be outstanding in time to come.

2008 Champagne Deutz, courtesy of Sanjay. Slightly heavier tint with a sharper nose of attractive yeasty pungency amidst traces of burnt. Expansive on the palate, its crisp citrus imparting good attack, concentration and intensity with further notes of creme and dark green fruits after some time, smooth with excellent linearity, distinctly more feminine over time, exuding lovely floral tones.

2004 Champagne Salon, courtesy of Sanjay. Compared with the 2006, this wine is more open and relaxed with a restrained quality though equally luminous, glowing with gentle yeasty tones on a palate of lush white citrus, nutmeg and stern minerals, just a tad dry with some early complexity coming on. Excellent.

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2002 Piper Heidsieck Rare, courtesy of KG. This wine exudes pungent yeasty tones amidst a complex bouquet, quite superb, open and delicate enough on the dry finely detailed palate with further notes of snuff and high-toned citrus, slightly stern, that yielded some attractive gentle tension. Pretty consistent on the whole with a previous tasting note in Nov 2017. Excellent.

2005 Domaine Roulot Meursault Les Tessons Clos du Mon Plaisir. Displaying a slightly evolved hue, this wine is rather reserved, proffering quiet gentle tones of aged crème with reserved intensity and understated acidity, quite minerally and delicate on the whole with traces of sweet as it tapered to a neat finish, revealing better inner detail over time. This is a wine that cannot be hurried on the table.

2004 Domaine du Comte Ligier-Belair Vosne-Romanee Aux Reignots 1er, courtesy of Dr Ngoi. Well evolved, proffering a fine bouquet of plummy red fruits with gentle tones of earth and mint that preceded a fleshy core of tangy citrus, soft and rounded with very fine acidity, focus and weight, just a little short.

2005 Domaine Robert Groffier Chambolle-Musigny Les Amoureuses 1er, courtesy of KG. Very correct in color and tone, generously effusive in dark cherries and dark roses, displaying superb balance, poise and elegance with excellent focus, definition and purity, opening up with deeper growing intensity over time, highly persistent in its complete finish. As good as the 2006 from the same producer that was tasted at this year’s La Paulée, if not better. A complete wine. Outstanding.

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2014 Domaine Roger Belland Criot-Batard-Montrachet Grand Cru, courtesy of CJ. Shut on the nose though there is quite a bit going on on the minerally palate where grassy elements and cool icing dominate initially with a soft focus that eventually gained better definition as other characters of mint, white flowers and incense emerged. Plenty of potential here but this isn’t the right time to pop it.

2001 Domaine Remoissenet Pere er Fils Le Montrachet Grand Cru, courtesy of Grace. Very relaxed feel. Layered with lovely concentration of fruit and minerals but somewhat reserved, developing well in the glass as it gained richer tones of creme, icing and complex minerals, very subtly layered. Excellent but not exceptional, missing the inner detail and ethereal delicacy of the best Montrachets. Highly similar in character to the Montrachet of Baron Thenard, which used to sell its Montrachet grapes to Remoissenet in the past (as stated on the label) before the former began bottling Montrachet on its own. Baron Thenard has the second largest holdings of Montrachet Grand Cru in two plots, all on the Chassagne side.

2002 Domaine Fourrier Gevrey-Chambertin Clos-Saint-Jacques 1er, courtesy of John. Racy with an exciting deep streak of dark fruit and raspberries, ripe and fleshy with excellent concentration, slightly forward in balance, just managing to keep its raw intensity under control with matching sublime acidity that ensured lovely suppleness with a special lightness. Quite fabulous.

2006 Domaine Armand Rousseau Charmes-Chambertin Grand Cru, courtesy of LF. Great colour and purity that promised rose petals and bright cherries, wonderfully open with a fabulous richness that produced great intensity, depth and verve, impeccably balanced. This is a wine of utter elegance and sophistication. Still youthful but drinking fantastically well. What a superb treat for the senses!

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1999 Domaine Comte Georges de Vogue Bonnes-Mares Grand Cru, courtesy of MH. Rather dark, as expected from this source. There was an initial whiff of faint cork taint that blew off quite quickly, thank goodness, to reveal notes of deep dark berries on the nose and open palate, infused with a deep core of tangy citrus that produced some understated intensity, still remarkably youthful and shy. Quite unlike usual extroverted character of Bonnes-Mares. Perhaps best to lay down a little further.

Larmandier-Bernier Rose 1er, courtesy of LF. Grapefruit and aged tangerines dominate on the bone-dry palate with scorching intensity. Needs to be washed down with food that is equally robust.

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1961 Ch Gilette, courtesy of LF. Vinified in concrete vats and usually released many years (even decades!) post-vintage, this unique Sauternes displayed a hypnotic deep golden orangey colour with notes of aged apricot, nutmeg and balm on the nose and palate, still retaining fresh acidity and body, quite luscious, though the fruit is just beginning to recede a little. Still showing very well.

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