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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.

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