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1961 Paul Jaboulet Aîné Hermitage Chapelle, 1982 Ch Lafite Rothschild, 2005 Masseto, 1996 Robert Ampeau Meursault-Perrières, 1990 Domaine Romanée-Conti La Tâche

September 18, 2020

These notes came from a dinner hosted by Dr Ngoi at Imperial Treasure Great World on 10 September 2020 to celebrate SKY’s birthday, whom I never knew was a movie star until I saw Eric Khoo’s Be With Me. Every wine was showing very well; the old reds in particular were simply mind-blowing. Thank you SKY, Dr Ngoi and Tony for bestowing such a privilege on me.

2004 Champagne Dom Pérignon, courtesy of Dr Ngoi. Beautiful luminous gold, exuding a lovely fullness that struck a perfect balance between ample lime, pomelo and citrus and subtle ferrous minerals, imbued with very fine acidity that imparted a superb smooth intensity that carried tremendous zest and lift. No wonder everyone loves Dom.

2007 Domaine Faiveley Corton-Charlemagne Grand Cru, courtesy of Dr Ngoi. Surprisingly deep golden lustre, proffering fine density of caramel, coconut shavings and secondary characters of aged chalk on the nose while the palate is layered with a smooth, almost satiny, intensity of lithe white fruits that opened up with excellent transparency, displaying traces of the classic Corton spiciness at the finish. Excellent.

1996 Domaine Robert Ampeau et Fils Meursault-Perrières 1er. Dull golden. Quiet caramelized tone with recessed yellow citrus that led to a medium-bodied palate, layered with lovely transparency that revealed superb subtle inner detail within a highly harmonious body of understated chalky intensity and very fine sleek acidity, delicately balanced and poised with superb refined elegance that finished with lasting persistence. This is Burgundy white at its best.

2007 Domaine Forey Père et Fils Vosne-Romanée Les Gaudichots 1er, courtesy of Dr Ngoi. This wine opens at first with gentle notes of rose petals, light cherries and raspberries, wonderfully fragrant, while the palate is highly harmonious, imbued with excellent purity of fruit that yielded fine understated definition, eventually blossoming with a more intense deeper tone of red fruits as it grows on you with unassuming elegance. A confident refined beauty. 

2015 Domaine Georges Lignier et Fils Clos-Saint-Denis Grand Cru. Deep ruby. Shy on the nose with a sense of understated intensity. Harmonious medium-full palate of ripe raspberries and subtle earthiness with good purity of fruit and controlled intensity, displaying some early suppleness but still largely primal.

2005 Tenuta dell’Ornellaia Masseto, a double magnum courtesy of SKY. Deep crimson with an equally deep bouquet of bold dark currants, red and black fruits, rather forwardly balanced at this point and still harboring traces of enamel. The medium-full palate is superbly layered with a clean astounding freshness and focused intensity amid overtones of mahogany and some licorice, revealing some inner detail though still remarkably youthful. This slimly-defined Masseto is quite different from the lush velvety opulence that I remembered of the 2001. Far from ready.

1982 Château Lafite Rothschild, courtesy of SKY. Opaque brownish red, exuding a glowing distilled complex of dark berries, currants, cassis, soy and dried mushrooms, superbly focused in its effusive deep velvety fragrance while the medium-bodied palate is beautifully open with supple subtle Pauillac nuances, laced with sublime acidity that conferred understated verve. Elegantly poised with great harmony and feminine refinement. Pardon the cliché, but this is really quite the quintessential Lafite.

1990 Domaine de la Romanée-Conti La Tâche Grand Cru, courtesy of Tony Chew. Displaying an evolved brownish red, this wine opens with a wonderful lift of delicate red fruits amid overtones of haw and rose petals, still imbued with sublime acidity and superb concentration of fruit that teased the palate with supple fleeting intensity, fleshing out with tremendous agility and freshness, eventually developing the classic D.R.C. signature of deep tangerines tinged with spice and orangey hues whilst maintaining its refined controlled exuberance throughout the evening. Truly a complete wine.

1961 Domaine Paul Jaboulet Aîné Hermitage La Chapelle, courtesy of SKY. Still deep crimson in colour, this wine opens with an absolutely beguiling lift of creamy red fruits and red roses with a sense of velvety warmth that carried well onto the palate with amazing freshness and purity, still imbued with superb concentration of fruit laced with a hint of saddle that is utterly mesmerizing in its fleeting sublime acidity. Beautifully proportioned and balanced, finishing with fine linearity although it began to fade a little after an hour. Still glorious in every way. What a privilege!

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