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Weekday drinking thread [7 to 10 October 2019]

A personal landmark in that this is the first time I’ve finished an EP purchased case. Always a product of northern Rhône sensibilities, the most gentle of southern Rhône crus and a fairly gentle year, with a little age this is now distinctly Burgundian - a hint of forest floor on the nose and kirsch on the palate with very little tannin. Whilst it is lovely like this I have no regrets about drinking the previous bottles more in their pomp. It’s a shame this now only comes in 12s because at £42 for 6 it was a wonderfully cheap gateway to EP

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Tonight with Puy lentils and griddled salmon fillets, we enjoyed this wine. It was the first bottle of a case of 12 bought EP some years ago. no farmyard on the nose, just fruit. Rich palate and good acidity in the finish. Enjoyed every drop.

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Beef shin and chianti tortellini encouraged me to open this to accompany:

Very nice indeed. Pale red in colour, delicate fruit (predominantly cherry) but with a savoury, slightly spicy tang and a nice length. Super smooth, integrated tannins meant I kept drinking after supper was all gone whilst browsing my new World Atlas of Wine (selling at £20 from The Book People). Half a bottle gone and no regrets!

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Meant to say, absolute bargain at £11, will definitely be looking out for future vintages.

Tasting at The Winery last night

The champagne was excellent value for money, but not blown away by anything else. Both rieslings nice, bone dry and super crisp, Viognier a good example but expensive for what it is. I much preferred the Valpollicella Superiore to this one by the same producer for just a couple of quid more and both the Syrah and Puglian red good but not great.

Didn’t buy any of the above, but picked up a bottle of spatlese trocken 2010 by Riffel I’m looking forward to trying.

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Wonderful example. Nicely floral and fruity. Like biting into a wild strawberry.

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I very much enjoyed reading about the lovely wines you’ve all opened this week. On top of all that stimulus, I’ve just unpacked a delivery from TWS received earlier this morning. It’s only 9:30 and I’m already thinking about what to open tonight. I’ll be having the same meal as below…

Yesterday with veal liver and ( over reduced ) onion gravy and way too much broccoli…

…an Etna Rosso ‘Barbazzale’ 2106 from Cottanera. An unoaked blend of Nerello Mascalese with a smidge of Nerello Cappuccio.

Fragrant nose of earthy red berries and redcurrant with a herbal undertow isn’t particularly complex but it is fresh and inviting. Medium bodied bright red fruits, fresh acidity, and some ripe tannin to begin which softened through the course of drinking. Plummy, raspberry flavours with a supple Pinot like texture and surprising depth of flavour. So drinkable it barely made it to the table !

And on Wednesday, with roast chicken and some leftover mushroom risotto…

…pulled from reserves last month. A densely fruity nose of plums, black cherry, black pepper and some slate like mineral complexity. Similar flavours on tasting, medium bodied ripely succulent fruit and light tannins, good depth of flavour, a silky supple texture and fresh acidity providing very good balance.

I think i prefer this to both the 2012 and 2013 vintages, which is high praise, as both were lovely wines. This one’s drinking perfectly now so will probably drink the rest over the next eighteen months or so.

Even taking into account the cost of three years cellaring it came in at £15.13 on the table. I envy any of you who bought the 2015 / 16 vintages EP, I reckon you’re in for a treat !

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I am set to visit this restaurant at some point soon and think I’ve never seen any higher mark ups on wines! That said, its a good list, just brutal pricing: https://hutong.co.uk/mod/menu/118

It inspired me to open a half bottle of Château La Mission-Haut-Brion which is on the list. Its not the best of years, but still enjoyable. I think I need to benchmark it against a better year, as a little underwhelming QPR wise.

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Thanks for the note on Rosine, I have 14, 15 and 16 and 1 bottle of 13. I’ll be pulling the 14’s from reserves now!

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I’ve had the 2013 Rosine on the back of which I got a 6 bottle case of the 2016 on EP. But I didn’t go for the '17.

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CLast night we held our tasting group’s committees fine wine evening. As some of us had been on wine holidays there was a holiday wine theme.
Valdesil Godello Sobre Lias- vintage not noted. An elegant ripe wine, but with a clear acidic note. Not one for me, but others really liked.
Pazo Barrantes Albariño 2018 - much more to my liking. A rich texture and long, with stone fruit and pepper.
Miguel Merino Blanco 2017 -, Rioja. serious wine, Vuira and Granacha Blanco, fermented in oak. This has a richness but no obviously oak. There a nice freshness as well as clear texture. Best in a year or so.
Samuel Billaud Chablis 1erCru Mont de Milieu 2016
Ripe and classy. A real treat, but at £30 I’d look for cheaper cote d’or.

That’s the whites. More later.

Russ

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Looking at their EP notes and the reputation of the vintages I’d guess the 2015 and 2016 will have more longevity than the 2014. I generally like my wines on the younger side so I’d love to hear what you think of the 2014 if you do pull it.

Instead of the ‘Rosine’ I ordered a St-Jo Clos de Cuminaille from Gaillard in 15 and 16 which I’m hoping will deliver a similar good value experience. With hindsight, I wish I’d ordered both !

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I wouldn’t be surprised if the 2016 is even better than the 2013. Hopefully TWS will have some stock to release at a latter date, as per 2013, if so, I’d certainly buy a bottle to try. And then probably regret not buying EP in the first place.

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I also added Saint Joseph Chateau Saint Cosme and Crozes Hermitage Cuvee Gaby Domaine du Colombier to get my full northern Rhone quota in 16 and 17

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That’s good to know. I very much enjoyed the 2011 so will open my sole bottle of 2013 some time soon.

The Pinot Nero rosato and the Alicante from the same producer are well worth trying too, should TWS stock them again.

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Thanks for the update on the La Rosine.

I bought both the 2016 Syrah and Viognier EP. Not been that impressed with the Viognier thus far. Not enough stone fruit for me. Pleasant but nothing special. Think some of the Southern Rhone whites that are a bit cheaper offer better value.

Oratoire Cairanne, Maby Lirac, Cazeux Vacqueryas & Montine Grignan Viognier spring to mind as better value to my palate.

Hoping for better things from the Syrah. I’m yet to withdraw.

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Last night was a CNDP Blanc picked up from Waitrose on a 25% off deal.

Had with tuna steaks and med veg.

The wine was alright. We didn’t finish it off and isn’t that the best indicator? Will tidy it up this evening.

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I have a similar opinion of the viognier, which I bought EP in 2012 / 13. For my tastes, both had an overtly buttery texture and the fruit flavours, as you mentioned, were more tropical ( guava ) than the apricot / peach I would have liked and expected.

I think the syrah has a lot more to offer and that it’s odds-on you’ll like it when the time does come to eventually broach a bottle.

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I have a sole magnum of the 2016 Syrah, for which I have high hopes as enjoying my case of 2013.

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