Weekend Drinking 17-19 November 2023

Boom, the weekend is here


Mary Delaney Collection Citrusdal Mountain Chenin Blanc 2021 by Botanica. Complicated name, awesome label. I have to admit I’m a sucker for their labels and those of Thistle and Weed. To the contents…

Boom this wafts out of the glass. Plush and rich just short of oily. I’ve been on the fence on Chenin but this is pretty epic. I’m really struggling with descriptors - peonies and lilies, chalk, an elegant touch of what I assume is 500L used French oak crops up, and a very intense fruit element that is neither citrus nor tropical - plum, rhubarb and baked apple? Some herbal touches and reduction. Very confusing. The texture is amazing with a very slight tannic grip, big moutheel, long finish and medium acidity. It’s bigger than the sum of its parts.


Couldn’t have come sooner!!

Always a little distracted on Friday evening as family starts to arrive home. Looking for a 2016 to ease into the evening managed to inadvertently pick up my first half bottle of 2018 Guigal CDR. Needs to warm up a little but nice typical nose so far, will be interesting to see how it copes with being 14.5%

Happy weekend all


A little coravin sample from an auction purchase. Fresh smelling with only faint fruit in the background. Fades fairly rapidly after a burst of acidity. Low tannins. Short to medium finish with a little prune and almonds. Not sure yet if this going into the bouef bourgignon or accompanying it(!)


Evening all,

More rummaging.

This time from a box of “wines of low expectation”.

These were left to me by my deceased mate Pete manu moons ago. From memory his storage wasn’t optimal. He was never a wine geek.

Probably bought on one of many Le Man’s trips from a hypermarket early 90’s. Probably best consumed then. But heh ho…

I’m thinking this may be in the DNPIM region or drain cleaner.

Grand Cru Chablis 1988 from Albert Parent.

A mediocre Chablis vintage and (from a quick Google) an unknown negociant.

Will report back…

Good weekend to all.



To celebrate the end of our alcohol free period we are opening the first of a half case of cheap as chips Cremant de Bordeaux bought for about €9 per bottle at a wine fair in Brittany. Bought especially to make Kir Royales, it will be dosed with my own homemade (not quite) Cassis.

85% Semillon with the rest Ugni Blanc and Muscadelle.


A great wine. For me, Chenin from South Africa can be as exciting as an amazing Riesling or Assyrtiko. Happy weekend!


Happy weekend to all,

This evening, it’s a ‘leftover’ from a recent Pinot Noir tasting/ masterclass.
La Framboisières is a Mercurey Monopole belonging to J.Faiveley.
2018 produced a ripe, beautifully expressive red fruited wine. Crushed raspberries, fresh turned earth and some wood spice.
The palate is all succulent ,juicy raspberries, bright cherry and fresh acidity that carries the fruit throughout all stages of flavour development. The wine is perfect at 5 years old.


Exploring my first mixed white Rhone Ep case again …. Lovely stuff


Barolo, Rocche di Costamagna 2016, bottle 3 of 6. Bought roughly 2.5 years ago for £21.59 delivered. Pleasing VFM. Very moreish. Light red. Roses and tea on the nose. Liquorice and something like a Parma violets and fruit combination in the mouth! Enjoyed with a decent pizza. A hard week. Will be more contemplative with the remainder tomorrow!

Followed by a sample of my 50-something batch of all grain beer. An IPA packed with tropical fruit flavour and a deeply satisfying bitterness. Made with fresh home-milled Maris Otter, Chinook, Willamette and Cascade hops with dry hopping in the fermenter too a few days in. Thames Valley Ale liquid yeast from a starter and built up over a few days. ABV dialled down to a more reasonable 4.5% abv (the original recipe often comes in at circa 6%) but with the flavour of a higher strength beer. Similar mouth feel too, so a result.


The horror… we all think it happens to someone else, but tonight it was me (ok… a tad melodramatic)

Trotted out to the garage to get a chilled bottle of white Crozes-Hermitage, all Marsanne, to go with a dish of spinach & ricotta ravioli with mushroom & truffle sauce.

Picked out the bottle - it was dark but easy to read the label. Back in the kitchen drew the cork and turned out to be red !!! WHAT IS WRONG with Chapoutier? can they not at least use a different label for the red and the white ?


Prepare for a long title…

San Marzano Anniverario 62 Primitivo di Manduria riserva Founders’ Vineyard 2018.

Phew! Made it. Whenever I am presented with a name this long I am reminded of a quote my mother used to say; “The more he spoke of his honour, the faster I counted the spoons”. The other big question mark for me is the bottle; it is colossal. I mean stupid big.

And the wine itself? Actually quite interesting and not as extracted and lumpen as you might expect, I might almost say elegant. I do like a primitivo.

This was sold to me as recommended by the chap in the wine shop in Lyme Regis. Another aside would be the number of times apparently honest wine sellers have sold me appalling cack whilst telling me how lovely it is*. But though not awful it was about the dearest primitivo I have ever bought.

*I remember with a shudder the Portuguese sparkling rose tasting of turnips and sweetex Henry sold me once…


This here tonight.

A Pinot Noir ‘Enselberg’ 2018, Karl H Johner. From volcanic soils in the Kaiserstuhl area of Baden.

A graduated, translucent, crimson colour. Forest floor, ripe cherries, wild strawberry and smoky spice on the fragrant nose. All of that again, initially, on the delicately savoury and freshly balanced palate. Intensity of fruit and integrated oak flavour then builds on the mid-palate and onto the expansive, fan-tailed, finish. The subtlety and harmony of its component parts, rather than power, being its key points. :yum:

Er, which reading back, is as close to waxing lyrical as I’m ever likely to get !

All the best for the weekend everyone.


An tonight’s winner is…

Actually sounds pretty good. I will look out for that one next time in Waitrose. German Spatburgunder seems to be a winner regarding climate change.


Coming up…. J. M. Boillot Montagny 1er Cru 2019. Still a bit too cold from the fridge, but first taste of this is delicious. Everything I want in white burgundy - excessive wine purchases during covid WFH really coming into play.

Rich, honeyed and buttery - but nice and sharp / acidic with it. Mineral, not at all flabby, but viscous and round.

First bottle - possibly of 6 (but maybe of 12… lots of wine in storage during building work).

To be enjoyed with a medley of fish. I am sure it looks better in the raw state than it will do when served…. I aspire to the heights demonstrated by others on this thread in that regard. Delivered by “upper scale” - highly recommended to those living within London delivery area


Salmon, Tuna, maybe seabass and ??? go on then, I’m useless at ‘name that fish’

I cooked some Chinese food this evening - garlic and ginger prawns with noodles, salt and pepper squid, and pak choi with fresh shiitake mushrooms and oyster sauce. We drank Pierre Frick, Gewurztraminer Grand Cru Eichberg, 2020.

It’s a long way from your usual GC gewurztraminer, but still a very fine thing. Dry, lots of skin contact, and quite cloudy. The leesiness is certainly there, but doesn’t dominate - the overall impression is actually very fresh, far more acidity than most gewurz, and pretty spicy. Frick are the granddaddies of natural wine in Alsace, and the depth of experience shows - this is very well put together. Also, bottled with a crown cap, which the back label says “preserves in tact the emotion contained in the bottle” [in translation].

Have a good weekend!


3 out of 4. Sea Bream being the 4th - sashimi grade, but all going to be lightly fried this evening.

… and I see my food presentation compliment is - as usual - due to @robertd


Because Duck calls for Pinot…


Apart from some Pfalz and Baden vintages getting too warm - big and heavy wines result unless the winemakers are on top of it.