19-21 May '23 Weekend Wine

Had a couple of glasses of Pichard 2004, an enjoyable mature Madiran. Evolves and opens over a few hours. Divides opinion so it seems, but I like it.

Currently a Chateau La Rame 2015 from Sainte Croix du Mont, over the river from Barsac. Got this from Majestic a few years ago, and it’s still going nicely. Peach, apricot, honey, lemon nose and flavours… even a touch smokey. A sense of a lot of sugar; lively acidity, yet stays just a touch on the sticky side but not cloying. Good balance and a light toffee/caramel citrusy finish, if not that long. Makes a great sipper. We need to drink more sweet wine.
Edit +5 days - this has fleshed out brilliantly; beautifully balanced acidity and sweetness, even a touch of petrol going on. Masses of character here


This here tonight with an ( alcohol free) beer battered haddock loin, buttered Jersey Royals, and a leafy tomato salad…

…a Cremant d’Alsace Extra Brut ‘Prestige’ 2019, Paul Ginglinger. Pinot and chardonnay are mentioned on the rear label so I initially assumed pinot noir to be the grape in question. However, TWS notes helpfully state it’s actually a blend of ‘first press’ chardonnay with a dash of pinot blanc and ( pinot ) auxerrois, bottled without dosage.

Anyway, a fine and persistent mousse in the glass. Citrus and green apple fruit with a distinct whiff of doughnuts on the nose on opening which faded to a freshly opened baguette by glass two. Crisp and clean, bone dry, tart lemon and apple flavours on tasting with a touch of textural grip and a refreshing palate cleansing finish to end. All in all, an engaging and exhilarating wine that was well worth the £15 paid.

Best wishes for the weekend ahead everyone.


This evening I cooked a sort of North African seafood stew, made with squid, prawns and chermoula, with some dulse seaweed. We drank Domaine Bohn, Sylvaner L’Indigène, 2020.

Made with 5 weeks of skin contact on whole grapes from 70-year old vines (90% whole bunch), and then aged on the lees. There’s quite a lot of orchard floor going on, especially on the nose, and on the palate it’s dry and grippy. Lots of flavours coming through, with bruised apple, but also some fresh white pear, and some floral notes too.

Hope everyone has a good weekend. We’re planning to finally get the barbecue out :crossed_fingers:


Cooking our favourite Moroccan fish balls dish, i opened this Pietradolce Etna Bianco Carricante. It was delicious. Laurel, sage, almond and lemon ,this is a beautiful example of the variety. I’m glad i ordered a few more of these.

Viña Real Gran Reserva 2014 was opened to get some air and accompany our dinner. With tomato/pepper based sauce, cumin,saffron, turmeric and plenty of coriander flavours, the wine held its own very nicely.
It was a while later, when we served some cheeses that it really impressed with vanilla, cigar, coconut american oak touch, plum in cinnamon, black cherries and leather. Who wouldn’t love such a wine? It’s superb.

Wishing everybody a beautiful and sunny weekend :sunglasses:


Do you have a recipe you can share (or point in the direction of) for the fish balls? They look amazing! (I love the colour contrast in the before cooking picture too).


Drinking through the last of my Angludet 2011s, these have been delicious for about 5 years now, and I wish I had many more.


Exceptional evening with friends last night. No detailed notes only to say that the Au Bon Climat was universally the highlight of the night. Such a complete wine. The Foundi was voted a close second, terrific value for money.


Was just going ask that

Same as taking the covers of the garden furniture, it immediately started raining!


What a line up, covering a few bases there!

How was the Pallieres drinking? I have a couple but was probably going to hold off for another year or two.

I do love chardonnay from everywhere but tend to get drawn back into white Burgundy again and again.
When it’s good like this, it’s very hard to beat.
Terrific precision.
NB: the Diam 5 cork not quite doing its job with about 3/4 seepage. @Toby.Morrhall, with all the previous discussion elsewhere on other threads, this may be of interest.
Cheers all. Lovely sunny day here in Ilkley. :sunglasses:


5 year cork so it’s done it’s job ok

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Thanks. 2nd bottle of 6 of Les Pallieres, drinking beautifully now. I’m sure it will continue to improve, still loads of fruit and some nice tertiary in the mix.



Garden party, going through these. The Amar is quite interesting: peach and biscuit. Berdié seems alright.


Aside from my rambling postings on the Lebanon Visit thread, we have actually also eaten and drank good food and wine when not on the road visiting wineries

Lunch yesterday in Byblos

the evening tipple back at the hotel

A mid-day snack for today’s trip to Sidon

And this evening in our room. Just to digress… we booked an Aparthotel room in the Hamra district, and reassuringly enough it comes equipped with a kitchenette, with microwave, fridge, sink and induction hob.

But - bizarrely - we are not “allowed” to cook anything in our room. So we are restricted to assembling cold things, but I have become expert in making Tabouleh.

So, for the penultimate evening meal tonight… the crumbed chicken and potato wedges are from the take-out 5 mins walk up the road, but it’s my own tabouleh in there… The '20 Hochar rouge is delicious btw

Apologies for the stupid glasses, that’s all the hotel could rustle up for us !!


Chapeau for flagging up a St C-d-M. Super value for money compared to Barsac or Sauternes, and I find them fresher and more delicate.

Agree about the drink more dessert wines


Well, it didn’t rain, and I was able to get the BBQ going for the first time this year :slight_smile: . I made chicken and beef satays, honey and chilli prawns, and grilled fennel with yoghurt and coriander. We drank another bottle of Achillée’s Quetsches Alors plum pet nat.

This was much more its territory than the quetsche dessert with which we drank the last one - it comes across somewhere between fruit beer and wine, and at just 5.5% it was very refreshing. Mrs Robertd voted it better with the fennel (which also had some pomegranate seeds) than with the satay, and I agree. Interesting summer drinking if you’re after something different.


Bit of a mixed week here, started off great and seemed to tail off slowly.

First off, this beauty

Domaine Zafeirakis New Age Limniona 2018

One of those wines that is so hard to describe, and if I was to put one word on it, well I think it would be ‘horsey’ as ridiculous as that sounds. Earthy, leather, sweaty saddle, musky all came to mind and although these are hardly selling points I loved it. My first Limniona but based on this I want to try more. I can see this as being a bit of a Marmite wine.

Next up

Altamana Grande Reserve Itata Semillon 2020

As I have often stated before, Semillon is my white grape of choice. To me a good version cannot be topped, so always excited to try some new ones. IMO, a good attempt but falls a little short. Has a lot of the Semillon qualities like honey, wax and citrus coupled with body and acidity but misses the mark with depth, concentration and length. This is me being very harsh as whilst it is very good it falls short of good Aussie examples.


The Liberator ‘God’s Own Country’, Upper Hemel-en-Aarde Valley 2017

Not for me. When I think Syrah and Mourvedre, I think big wine but that is exactly what this is not. Nice to a point, I like the sweet fruit and acidity that makes it very easy-drinking but that’s all it has to offer. No depth or concentration, just feels weak.


I was hoping to pick up some Montus Blanc when passing through Gascony last month, but to no avail (a visit to the Chateau was not on the itinerary). I was greeted with a Gallic shrug and a shake of the head at the request in a couple of places. I find this development slightly worrying.

Unfortunately, stock seems limited of Alain Brumont’s white wines all over (2011 for the Brumaire PdVB seems the most recent sweet widely, available, for example), so I was at least fairly pleased to mitigate that with a more recent vintage of his other PdVB sec.

A slightly reductive nose on opening, settled down to a bit of pickle-with-wood-and-white-flowers (me either, but it did). On the palate is where it picks up and gets interesting. Good, dense texture, with a much more restrained acidity than it’s Jurançon Sec cousin (I always said Courbu was the secret weapon of the SW). Limes, stone fruit and liquorice complete the picture (no wood ageing, but some lees stirring). Very nice. Not quite as epic as the Montus Blanc, but those who know Brumont’s wines also know that his top cuvées can be monumental in scale, and in that respect this is more refreshing (it is of course, a relative concept :grinning: ).