Given it’s my birthday today, I thought I’d crack open a wee beauty - and we weren’t disappointed. Beautiful, light but deeply fruity and a lovely tannic touch. Will be ethereal in 5 years time. Top drop!
Happy Birthday Ewan. I would say enjoy yourself, but it looks as if you already are!
Happy birthday @Ewan! what a fabulous wine to celebrate with…!
Martin went all Elf & Safety when he saw the Roman candle! Mind you, this is the man who drank bleach by mistake.
Happy birthday! I gather I might be getting to meet you on Saturday if you’re still going to be at the Glasgow Festival of Wine.
Yep! See you there!
Greywacke Wild Sauvignon 2014
Have to confess I hadn’t bought Sauvignon for years. I had one from the Alto Adige (Tiefenbrunner) which I enjoyed very much, though, so thought I should revisit it. Mistake - or at least I should have one to the Loire, clearly. Had high expectations of this one (aged a bit too), which seems to be highly rated, but I was sorely disappointed. Unsubtle and tastes like it has even higher alcohol than its 13.5%, and I presume there is some residual sugar, which perhaps adds to the fundamental and unforgiveable crime of this wine - a lack of freshness!
It’s not cheap either. There are soooo many better wines of a similar style at lower prices - Jurancon comes straight to mind, but also verdejo, cataratto, greco, even Andalusian moscatel, or malagousia, or moscofilero… If this pleases the crowds, then my low opinion of much of humanity appears to be thoroughly justified
I don’t think this wine ages well at all. We will drink a couple of bottles of the 2016 this summer but my last bottle of the 14 was over a year ago and I thought it had lost a bit of zip even then.
I finished night shifts yesterday morning and after a deep sleep during most of the day we decided to skip cooking and head out for dinner. Last night we decided to eat out at the excellent a local gastopub, The Bell & Cross at Clent. Once again it didn’t fail in providing exceptional food and wine.
Starters were soft shell crab and pig cheek. Main courses were venison and Tournedos Rossini. Dessert was Rhubarb & Strawberry Pavlova.
The wine was a 2013 Alasia Barolo supplied by a local independent wine merchant. In the glass this wine has a medium garnet main body colour with a good orange rim like a well ripened peach. The good slow running legs reflected the ABV.
On the nose are primary flavours of redcurrant, blackcurrant, blackberry, liquorice and old rose. There are secondary flavours of sourdough toast and flint. Tertiary flavours are provided by new leather and a whiff of cigar smoke.
On tasting this wine has good mouthfeel and body. There is a initial slight sweetness before a dry astringency reveals some blood orange like bitterness. There are plenty of softening tannins. A slight alcohol burn gives way to a dry long finish.
For a restaurant wine straight from the bottle this is impressive. Ideally in the home situation it would certainly benefit from decanting for at least an hour at room temperature. It’s good now and could easily age for longer to further soften the tannins.
Suprisingly too, the mark up on this wine and in fact their whole wine list is only around 2.2x retail price which I think is pretty impressive.
Raspberries, strawberries, pink grapefruit. Creamy finish. Good for a sultry summer evening…
Martin Codax 2017 Albariño, probably from Majestic. Very pale colour. The label says lemon, green apple and grapefruit. I’m not picking up much apple, but lots of lemon and grapefruit. A slight bitterness on the finish at first though this seems to disappear when it warms up a little, or perhaps with food. A light and very refreshing drink.
I’m booze free for a month at the end of the week. So I’m going out with a bang - couple of 1er GCC’s bought from TWS recently.
My first time tasting this. It was just ok - a bit austere. Probably not the best intro to the chateau.
This on the other hand is more like it! Absolutely juicy and luscious and worth the ticket price.
In the 2018 Bordeaux EP there is a Ségla, Margaux about which TWS has this to say:
A UK en primeur exclusive for The Society, Ségla is consistently one of the best of the second wines, with more than a passing resemblance to its senior sibling Rauzan-Ségla.
However TWS has no examples of any previous vintages on the site so, despite being a little intrigued (I’m a great believer in second wines as VFM), there was no way for me to sample it from TWS but… I stumbled on this in a certain wine store at the weekend:
And very nice it is too. Slightly subdued nose but excellent on the palate. Smooth, well integrated tannins with some dark fruit still there.
Jancis Robinson said of the '05 vintage:
Last week I took part in a major blind tasting of nearly 200 significant 2005 bordeaux now that they have had 10 years in bottle. I will report on it in detail next week. One of the more surprising results was just how well Ségla, the second wine of Ch Rauzan-Ségla, showed. It was the second-favourite wine overall in the blind Margaux flight, nestling between Ch Rauzan-Ségla and Pavillon Rouge de Ch Margaux. And some of us – seven out of 18 highly professional tasters - even scored it higher than Rauzan (17.5 as opposed to 17 for the grand vin in my case). The second wine is certainly even more pleasurable to drink now, and costs only about a quarter the price of Ch Rauzan-Ségla itself.
Full article here: https://www.jancisrobinson.com/articles/sgla-2005-2007-and-2014-margaux where she looks at '05, '07, '14 so a pretty good cross-section.
And the VAT and duty paid price is still comfortably under any of the prices I’m seeing for current vintages. So it’s probably safe to assume it will be excellent value for money by the time it hits its drinking window (I store my own wine).
I’ll see how I feel by the end of the bottle but it’s definitely a candidate. Oh I do like a good Margaux!
We also had a Bordeaux last night - a 2015 St Emilion Grand Cru, which we got from Lidl a while ago:
Excellent value for money, and a perfect mid-week tipple with a bit of bottle age which was a bonus. It definitely moved into the tertiary territory, with stewed plums and dried berries notes, tobacco, cedar and wonderful floral notes. Minty finish, with a satisfying savoury edge and smooth tannins. Went perfectly with a sirloin steak and mash.
What a bargain!
I bought a couple of those last October. I’ve drunk and been impressed by one and will probably drink the other before the year’s out. As you say, excellent VFM. I got mine on a cut price deal for £7.49… serious VFM!
Yes, we also got a couple more bottles in the wine fridge. Did you have the 2015 or the 2016 (which is what advertised on the website)?
Mine is/was the '16.
Ah! mine was the 2015… I wonder how they compare!
I’d imagine they’d be very similar; aren’t these sort of wines, with no named source vineyard, generally blended specifically for supermarket level consistency? (which doesn’t necessarily translate as bad!)
Yes, you’re probably right! Although I would assume levels of ripeness depending on vintage conditions would still be slightly different (though probably much less so than in finer examples!).
Monday should have been alcohol free but there was half a bottle of this leftover from Sunday. And at only 7.5% ABV it practically was…
…like most of the German wines from the 2015 vintage I’ve tried this seemed to have an extra degree of everything. All without compromising balance or the desired lightness of touch one would expect from a Saar kabinett.
And yesterday with some hake…
…I was very keen to try this. £12.95 seems a very reasonable price to pay for a bio wine from a country with such a high standard of living. Green and yellow orchard fruits, wet stones, mouth coating texture, full flavour whilst retaining freshness and balance, this is very good indeed and reminiscent of a decent growers Chablis.
If I was the sommelier at a smart restaurant I’d want this on my list for serving by the glass.