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Weekend drinking thread [25th-27th October 2019]

I had the 2014 vintage, was very impressed but even more so the next day. Try and save a glass if you can.

Wow some good stuff being consumed tonight. We had this with beef stroganoff. Opens up beautifully in the glass to a rich, decadent, herb-backed red fruited warmth. Grandeur without weight. Not a wine to hold onto for ages though - bought on the strength of it being reported as dialled back a bit on the power because of the vintage and that’s certainly the case, I would say end 2021 max. First of a case of six, £18.50 ib.


What to drink with lamb tagine? Well, this. What a VFM bottle costing 7.50 UKP as part of a 6 bottle buy from Tesco (until 3/11/2019)


We’re drinking this tonight:

Assyrtiko from Crete, picked up in Majestic for a tenner. Never tried this grape before, but my interest was sparked by this thread:

Was the last bottle of 2017, they appear to have moved on to the 2018 (which I also grabbed one of).

Really enjoyed this, lemony with a mineral edge and long finish with a hint of honey. If this is an entry-level example of this grape, I’d love to try a premium version.


Domaine Maby La Fermade Rouge 2016 on Friday night. Beautiful wine for not very much money (bought in France!).


Its superb value. For various reasons mentioned in the Assyrtiko thread there is a high premium on any wines from Santorini. The Lyrarakis Assyrtiko doesn’t have the volcanic “terroir” of Santorini examples, but its a great wine for the money.

There are also good Assyrtikos to be found on mainland Greece. Look out for Biblia Chora and Kir Yianni examples.


I second that! :+1:

Their 2014 ‘Ovilos’, a blend of Assyrtiko and Semillon using wild yeast, was one of the best whites I had last year. It literally left me speechless!


Pulled from reserves last month, the first of six, with a lamb loin, roast veg and buttery new potatoes…

…not the best pic. A Cote-Rotie ‘Eminence’ 2012 from Remi Niero. Better known for their Condrieu, this was the cheapest Cote-Rotie in the 2012 EP offer. From the ‘la Vialliere’ and ‘Bassenon’ vineyards. 5% viognier. Described as stylish, charming and good for earlier drinking.

Red and black berries, violets, white pepper and slate on the nose. Very similar on tasting, sour fruit, but not unpleasantly so, good depth, weight and structure, no iffy aromas or flavours, 15 months in oak provides seasoning only and no obvious flavours. Doesn’t flatter or seduce, but to my mind, shows good typicity.

However, I didn’t think it was substantively better than Ogier’s ‘la Rosine’ 2014 recently broached. A Morgon ‘Cote du Py’ or a Galician mencia could also provide a similar experience, albeit with different fruit flavours, for half the price.

Thoroughly enjoyable but not good value. Further investigations will take place tonight with something similar from the 2010 vintage.

Edit - with 4 years cellaring included this came in at £31 on the table.


Very nice, rich, full bodied.

It is a real shame it is now out of stock, hope more will arrive, very good value for money. The risk of only ordering one bottle to try is that wines go out of stock, but for now I will stick to my current strategy and see how it goes.


I want to make some space in the racks in the long, slow run-up to Christmas, so last night we made short work of this one:

Loved the 2011 and this is more of the same. Tasty blackcurrant fruit offset by the usual cedar, classroom pencil sharpener and what have you. Nice balance, good bit of grip and a satisfying, dry finish. I’d buy some more, as it’d be great to have a few knocking around over the next few years, but to be honest the last thing my racks/reserves need is more claret. But I’ll keep it in mind for the future.

Oh, and we made a start on this as well, the last of a few cheapies I found in Lidl:

More savoury than the Charmail, perhaps a little shorter, but they’ve done well to get this much depth out of a shonky vintage and it cost a fiver less than the Charmail, so it’s win-win.


Last night we finished of the Vina Real 2010 Gran Reserva which is Logan do fruity despite its clean cloak of oak, lovely now but wine with long live.

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Is that difficult to find Envinate stuff in general (are you looking for anything in particular? Specific ones do seem to sell out pretty fast, but it feels like I see both the Taganans around London fairly often - I know London is often different, but it’s the sort of thing I’m on the lookout for in places with aggressively natural lists as often the only thing I’m confident will be remotely pleasant to drink). I think VinCognito usually has a selection (at a price). Anyway, you’ve given me an excellent excuse to put a Palo Blanco in the fridge, so thanks for that…

By coincidence I had a glass of Suertes del Marques Vidonia at a restaurant earlier. Pricier, and served icy - pity, as it became really lovely on the pretty warm side, but I wasn’t really giving my full attention to the wine yesterday. I do like 7 Fuentes as a sipping wine - always enjoyed it more wihtout food.


I’m particularly after “Benji” from envinate , no such luck in the north so I’ll just have to open the wallet and pay over the odds for delivery , decantalo always seems to be sold out , even the Taganans sell out … I’m sure I’ll be able to track them down, I just didn’t want to pay the price tag :joy::joy:.

On another note , the Chablis form last night didn’t have a date on the cork either so I’m assuming from this colour and rank “sherryesque” smell and taste it was old and god knows how it has been stored … went down the sink … oh well :open_mouth:.


I agree with your wife!

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You might want to try this if you enjoy red Corbieres

We tasted it at the vineyard and thought it glorious. Subsequently bought 6 EP from the TWS.


Tonight we are pairing a wine to go with pork loin chops in a mushroom, red wine and cream sauce. Tending towards a Pinot noir. We have a few bottles of German PN, including some that are halbtrocken in style. Anybody had a Spatburgunder Halbtrocken before and have comments? Winemaker reckons it goes with savoury dishes so tempted to give it a try - with an alternative on standby in case it really is too sweet and more suited to the Communion rail😊


Planned foursome for tonight’s dinner-party foursome to accompany melone con prosciutto, salmon with caramelised lemons and herbs, chocolate bread and butter pudding …

Plus the Vinsanto which was a kind gift from Paolo de Marchi when I last visited Isole e Olena. That’s the one I’m really looking forward to tonight, plus whatever the guests bring (TWS members, #natch!).


The in-laws are at ours this weekend so fine Burgundy is not featuring this weekend. Might open something tomorrow once they are gone. Riesling yes, Mosel and aged not.

We had the Once and Future Oakley Road Mataro 2016, opened as the last bottle last weekend, but only a small glass consumed. It was not in the eto, not under vacuvin… just the cork, it tasted delicious, almost chocolaty. This probably should have stayed in the bottle for another 10 years. I will keep buying the odd bottle from Joel Peterson if I can.

Tonight with a creamy chicken and mushroom macaroni we are having a Franken Riesling. The 2016 Alte Reben from Wirsching does not disappoint, what you expect from a dry Riesling and more. Expecting the 2018 to be offered next month… will probably be in for the (mixed) case.

We will also open the Kumeu Sparkling to have ‘neat’ or as a base for Rossini tonight.


On this stormy, rainy evening it feels right to open something full bodied and generous – so opted for this 2017 St Chinian ‘Les Cent Foudres’:

A blend of Syrah and Grenache, this is a wine you don’t need a PhD to appreciate. It struts its stuff openly, but in the best possible way; dark ripe fruit (plums, blackcurrants, cherries), perhaps a bit of raspberry too, black pepper, tar, cedar, clove and a touch of liquorice on the nose. Similar notes follow on the palate – plum jam, cherries and bramble with present but very smooth tannins; the liquorice and spice twist on the finish stops it from being one dimensional.

This should go nicely with veggie chilli and the weather! :wine_glass: :cloud_with_rain: :tornado:


Came across a new small Bodega in Uruguay this week. Alto de la Ballena is inland from a headland of the same name (Whale Point) and close to Maldonado. I tasted the Tannat (85%) and Viognier (15%) blend, with the white grape really smoothing out some of the tannin from the Tannat. 15000 bottles of this were made in 2015. To try at a later date, I have a bottle of their Reserva Merlot 2015 (4200 Bottles) and Cabernet Franc 2013 (2600 bottles to try.

My notes on the Tannat, Viognier Reserva from 2015 were:
Clear and bright. Opaque centre, deep red rim. Clean nose. Medium/full intensity. Black fruits, black pepper, vanilla. Hints of chocolate and cherries - kirsch. Clean palate. Dry. Intense fruit, soft tannins - silky. Good acidity. Great balance between tannins, fruit and acidity. Black fruits. Delicious wine.