Monday, 20 December 2010

TN : Chateau Pedesclaux 2004, Grand Cru Classe, Pauillac, Bordeaux, France

This is a blend of 50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 45% Merlot, and 5% Cabernet Franc.

Château Pedesclaux was created in the beginning of the 19 century, in 1810, by Mr Pierre Urbain Pedesclaux, a well-known wine broker of Bordeaux. In 1855, Château Pedesclaux was classified as a fifth great growth.

Colour : Purple/red

Aroma : Blackcurrant, plums, herbs, tobacco

Taste : Blackcurrant, plums, tobacco, cedar, herbs, grippy tannic finish

Alcohol : 13%

Price : 299 SEK

Mark : B-

Website : Chateau Pedesclaux

Wednesday, 15 December 2010

TN : Ruedesheimer Berg Rottland Riesling Trocken 2009, Weingut Josef Leitz, Rheingau, Germany

This wine was sealed with a screwcap.

Colour : Pale yellow

Aroma : Mandarin oranges, honey, green apples, stone fruits

Taste : Bone dry, minerals, honey, pineapple, green apples and acid on finish

Alcohol : 13%

Price : 149 SEK

Mark : C

Website : Weingut Josef Leitz

Tuesday, 14 December 2010

TN : Craggy Range Single Vineyard Syrah Block 14 2007, Gimblett Gravels Vineyard, Hawkes Bay, New Zealand

This wine was bottles under screwcap. The wine received 94 points from Wine Advocate in issue 184 (September 2009).

This wine was imported by Divine AB.

Colour : Black/purple

Aroma : Blackberry, blueberry, pepper, meaty

Taste : Blackberry, blueberry, spice, drying tannins and white pepper on finish, overwhelming stony minerals spoil this wine, thin texture

Alcohol : 13.5%

Price : 269 SEK

Mark : C

Website : Craggy Range
Website : Divine AB

TN : Mendel Malbec 2007, Mendoza, Argentina

All of the grapes came from a vineyard situated in Lujan de Cuyo at an altitude of 1000 metres. The vineyard was planted in 1928. The wine spent twelve months in new French barriques. 5500 cases were bottles. Roberto de la Mota was the winemaker.

I purchased this wine 16 months ago and maybe it was tasting better then. Some of the primary fruit seems to have faded.

Colour : Dark red, blue hues

Aroma : Blueberry, blackberry, herbs, oak

Taste : Fading blackberry, plums, oak, very drying finish with no fruit

Alcohol : 14%

Price : 169 SEK

Mark : C+

Website : Mendel Wines

Monday, 13 December 2010

TN : Chateau Fourcas Dupre 2001, Listrac-Medoc, Bordeaux, France

This wine is a blend of 54% Cabernet Sauvignon, 39% Merlot, 6% Cabernet Franc, and 1% Petit Verdot. This wine spent one year in oak of which one third was new.

The vineyards of Fourcas are mentioned on Belleyme’s map, a geographical engineer of Louis XV. In 1843, the lawyer Jean Baptiste Antoine Dupré, member of the Bordeaux Appeal Court acquired the vineyard and in 1844 Château Fourcas Dupré was born. The cellars, buildings and château were then completely renovated. Today, a new fully functional fermenting room and refurbished cellars for storing and packing complement the original ones. The chateau now belongs to a family-owned company managed by Patrice Pagès.

The vineyard of Château Fourcas Dupré is located on a crest of Pyrenean gravely soil at an altitude of 42 meters. It is an uninterrupted plot with an average density of 8500 vines per hectare.

Colour : Dark red, browning on rim

Aroma : Spice upfront, oak, coffee, plums, blackcurrant, milk chocolate, herbs

Taste : This wine smells better than it tastes. Spice, plums, sour cherry, developed talcum powder texture, herbs, thin, lacking fruit

Alcohol : 12.5%

Price : 159 SEK

Mark : C

Website : Chateau Fourcas Dupre

TN : Chateau Rollan de By 2004, Cru Bourgeois, Medoc, Bordeaux, France

This is a blend of 70% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc, and 10% Petit Verdot. Before fermentation, the grapes underwent a maceration for three days at 10 degrees. The must was fermented in stainless steel vats broaderthan higher (3.50 metres by 1.50 metres). After the fermentation, the wine was kept in the vats for up to three weeks before it was heated up to 30 degrees and put into oak barrels for twelve months. Traditional egg white fining and no filtration was used.

Ricardo Cotarella was the oenologist and Alain Raynaud was a consultant. The chateau was founded in 1989 and is now owned by Jean Guyon.

Colour : Dark red

Aroma : Cedar, plums, oak, green herbs, blackcurrant

Taste : Blackcurrant, plums, woody, underlying grippy tannins, excessive intrusive green tasting herbs

Alcohol : 13%

Price : 139 (375ml bottle)

Mark : D-

Website : Chateau Rollan de By

Tuesday, 7 December 2010

TN : Wallace Shiraz Grenache 2008, Ben Glaetzer, Ebenzer, Barossa Valley, Australia

Wallace is an ancestral name of Colin Glaetzer's wife Judith, whose family hail from the old market town of Cupar in Fife, Scotland. Judith's Celtic ancestry is reflected in the three elements of the Wallace symbol - the Celtic cross, thistle and the Celtic knot pattern.

The wine is a blend of 80% Shiraz and 20% Grenache. The age of the vines was between 60 and 80 years old. The vineyard yield was 1.5 tons per acre (3.6 tonnes per hectare). The wine was aged in 2-3 year old oak barrels, (80% French, 20% American), for 12 months. The pH is 3.4, total acidity is 6.6 grammes per litre, and the residual sugar is 0.8 grammes per litre.

This wine was sealed with a screwcap.

Colour : Deep purple

Aroma : Spice, chocolate, coffee, dark berries, herbs

Taste : Mega fruit bomb, spice, blackberry, raspberry, plums, coffee, chocolate

Alcohol : 15.5%

Price : 179 SEK

Mark : B-

Monday, 6 December 2010

TN : Le Macchiole Bolgheri Rosso 2008, Azienda Agricola Le Macchiole, Bolgheri, Tuscany, Italy

This is a blend that doesn't work for me. My guess is it is the Syrah which doesn't mix well. This wine smelt much better than it tasted.

This wine is a blend of Merlot, Cabernet, Syrah, and Sangiovese.

Colour : Dark black red, blue hues

Aroma : Milk chocolate, cherries, plums, herbs

Taste : Concentrated plum, sour cherry, blueberry, strange herby taste, toasty oak and spice on finish then finishing off with a savoury note and a sour finish

Alcohol : 14%

Price : 199 SEK

Mark : C+

Website : Azienda Agricola Le Macchiole

TN : Torricella 2009, IGT, Barone Ricasoli, Tuscany, Italy

This is a blend of Chardonnay with a small addition of Sauvignon. The Chardonnay comes from two vineyards, one located at 500 metres above sea level on sandy and pebbly soil, the other at 350metres above sea level on limestone-rich soil. The Sauvignon blanc comes from a vineyard situated at 200 metres above sea level on alluvial soil.

The growing season experiences a mild winter with an average temperature which was always above zero and a rainfall of 200 mm. There was initially a cold spring with temperatures slowly on the rise at the end of May. The rainfall for this period was 200 mm. This was followed by a hot summer especially in July and the first half of August. The rainfall during this period was 100 mm. The grape harvest started on the 24th August for the Chardonnay and the 7th September for the Sauvignon Blanc.

The wine underwent a cold maceration at four degrees for six hours without oxygen. Alcoholic fermentation was at very low temperatures between 14 and 20 degrees. Two-thirds of the wine was aged in new 500 litre. tonneaux, the rest in stainless steel for sixmonths. Lees stirring was carried out for the two-thirds aged in barriques, initially every day, then less frequently. The wine was further aged for three months in bottles before being putting on sale. The wine was bottled in May 2009.

Colour : Bright yellow

Aroma : Oak, nutty, buttered toast, citrus fruits, pineapple, vanilla

Taste : Oak, fresh and crispy mouthfeel, nutty, oranges, pineapple, grapefruit, zingy finish

Alcohol : 13.5%

Price : 139 SEK

Mark : B-

Website : Barone Ricasoli

Tuesday, 30 November 2010

TN : Chateau du Grand Mouëys, Premieres Cotes de Bordeaux, France 2006

Chateau du Grand Mouëys is situated on the right bank of the Garonne river in the Entre-Deux-Mers area. The estate comprises 170 hectares of woods, meadows and gardens of which 80 hectares are set aside to vines.

The historical origins of the Château are diverse: A Gallo-Roman villa of the first century AD that disappeared after the Visigothic invasion of 407. A medieval legend has it that the Château once belonged to the Templer Knights who hid some fabulous treasure in an underground passage that joined to the abbey of La Sauve Majeure. Subsequently, the Templer Knights would have been burnt alive under royal orders.

In 1989, the Bömers family became the new owner of Château du Grand Mouëys. The family also used to own the Reidemeister&Ulrichs Company in Bremen, an important company of fine wines in Germany dating from 1831. The distribution of the wines of Château du Grand Mouëys is carried out by its subsidiary company "Caves des Grands Vins Français " (CAVIF).

This wine is a blend of 58% Merlot, 37% Cabernet Sauvignon, and 5% Cabernet Franc. 140,000 bottles were produced.

Colour : Red

Aroma : Plums, raisins, tobacco

Taste : Plums, blackcurrant, cedar, drying tannic finish

Alcohol : 13%

Price : 89 SEK

Mark : C

Website : Chateau du Grand Mouëys

Monday, 29 November 2010

TN : La Luna Rosso 2008, IGT, MGM Mondo del Vino, Maremma, Tuscany, Italy

"It's the moon, rather than the sun, that makes the grapes grow", the name for this wine comes from this local saying. This wine is a blend of 50% Sangiovese, 25% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Sauivgnon, and 5% Cilliegiolo.

MGM Mondo del Vino was founded in 1991 by Alfeo Martini, Roger Gabb, and Christoph Mack.

Colour : Dark blackberry

Aroma : Herbs, milk chocolate, tobacco, dark berries, cherries

Taste : A little flat, dried fruits, blackcurrants, herbs, cherries

Alcohol : 13.5%

Price : 86 SEK

Website : MGM Mondo del Vino

Mark : C

Wednesday, 24 November 2010

TN : Parras Viejas Cabernet Sauvignon 2008, Santa Helena, Colchagua Valley, Chile

This wine is 100% Cabernet Sauvignon from 100 year old vines planted in 1910. 7200 75cl bottles were produced. All of the grapes were hand harvested between April 16th and April 20th 2008. The wine was aged for 14 months in used French oak barrels.

The label depicts an original vine from the vineyards, and is meant to show the sturdiness that only time can create. The tartaric acid is 5.8 grammes per litre and the pH is 3.55.

This wine was imported by Fondberg.

Colour : Red, blue hues

Aroma : Blackcurrant, plums, mint, chocolate

Taste : Blackcurrant, plum, oak, drying powdery texture on finish

Alcohol : 14%

Price : 219 SEK

Mark : B

Website : Santa Helena
Website : Fondberg

Tuesday, 23 November 2010

TN : Tenuta Belguardo 2007, IGT, Marchesi Mazzei, Maremma, Tuscany, Italy

The Belguadro estate is located in the Maremma region of Tuscany, on the hills between Grosseto and Montiano, near the National Park “dell'Uccellina”, about ten kilometres from the coast at Montebottigli at an elevation of between 70 to 130 metres. The vineyard has a south - southwestern exposure. The soil is sandstone and the age of the vines is ten years. The vines were Cordon trained and spur pruned. The number of vines per hectare was 6,600.

All of the grapes were hand picked from September 1st (Cabernet Sauvignon) and September 7th (Cabernet Franc). The wine is a blend of 90% Cabernet Sauvignon and10% Cabernet Franc. The grapes were fermented at a temperature between 28 to 30 degrees. The total acidity is 5.80. There was a 16 day maceration period an dthe wine was bottled in August 2009. The wine was aged in mall French oak barrels (225 litres of which 70% was new) for 18 months. The wine was released in Octobre 2009 and 16,000 bottles were produced.

Colour : Dark blackcurrant

Aroma : Oaky, blackcurrant, plums, chocolate, cherry

Taste : Over oaked, blackcurrant, tobacco, milk chocolate, raspberry amd cherry liqour, spice on finish

Alcohol : 14%

Price : 239 SEK

Mark : B

Website : Marchesi Mazzei

Monday, 22 November 2010

Faulty Italian Wines

This weekend I tried a couple of, what should have been, very nice Tuscan reds. Instead, disaster struck.

The first was a Chianti Classico 2006 from Castello Dei Rampolla at 14% alcohol which just tasted of red wine vinager. I cut the capsule and the top of the bottle was covered in red-stained mould. This was completely undrinkable.

The second was the Bolgheri Sondraia 2007 from Poggio Al Tesoro at 14.5% alcohol. On opening, the contents smelt of old damp cardboard. Obviously it was suffering from about of TCA. Underneath was some great dark fruits however. This would have probably been a great bottle if it weren't corked. With a bit of imagination, it was possible to drink this wine thanks to the concentrated fruit.

Tuesday, 16 November 2010

TN : Paracombe Pinot Noir 2008, Adelaide Hills, Australia

This wine is imported by Johan Lidby Vinhandel.

This wine is sealed with a screwcap.

Colour : Pale red

Aroma : Very spicy, strawberry and cherry fruit, toffee

Taste : Overwhelmed by the very very spicy notes, soft red fruits, strawberry, raspberry, cherry, liqourice, boring, mostly two-dimensional spice and fruit

Alcohol : 13.5%

Price : 169 SEK

Mark : C

Website : Paracombe Premium Wines
Website : Johan Lidby Vinhandel

TN : Marsiliana 2005, IGT, Tenuta Marsiliana, Maremma, Tuscany, Italy

This wine is a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and Petit Verdot.

Colour : Dark red, brown hues

Aroma : Tobacco, plums, blackcurrant, raisins, herbs

Taste : Aged, drying talculm powder texture on finish, plums, blackcurrants, raisins, herbs, spice

Alcohol : 14%

Price : 309 SEK

Mark : C+

Website : Tenuta Marsiliana

TN : Pauillac 2005, Bordeaux, France

The producer is Cordier Meztrezat.

Colour :
Red, slight browning

Aroma : Blackcurrant, plums, milk chocolate, earthy, cedar

Taste : Blackcurrant, plum, earthy

Alcohol : 13%

Price : 189 SEK

Mark : C+

TN : Chateau Gachon Cuvee Saint-Georges 2004, Montagne St-Emilion, Bordeaux, France

This wine won a gold medal at the Concours Genral Agricole De Paris in 2006.

The vineyards lie on deep chalk soils over looking St. Emilion. The chateau is owned by Gerard Aspin and his son.

Colour : Red

Aroma : Toast, coffee, milk chocolate, plums, blackcurrant

Taste : Blackcurrant, blueberry, plums, milk chocolate, herbs

Alcohol : 13%

Price : 176 SEK

Mark : B-

Tuesday, 9 November 2010

TN : Corison Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2006, Corison Winery, California, USA

The ancient (5,000 years B.C.) European design motifs on the label are enduring symbols of the creative and regenerative power of nature.

Cathy Corison is the Winemaker and Proprietor of Corison Winery.

Colour : Dark blackcurrant

Aroma : Blackcurrant, toast, oak, vanilla, mint

Taste : Blackurrant, vanilla, coffee, oak, toast, smooth tannins, slight liqourice on finish

Alcohol : 13.8%

Price : 599 SEK

Mark : B

Website : Corison Winery

TN : Paracombe Cabernet Franc 2006, Paracombe Premium Wines, Adelaide Hills, Australia

This wine was sealed with a screwcap. Only 240 cases of this wine were bottled.

This wine was imported by Johan Lidby Vinhandel.

Colour : Dark red/blue hues

Aroma : Herbs, blackcurrant, tobacco, plums, coffee

Taste : Blackcurrant, plums, herbs, green pepper notes, milk chocolate

Alcohol : 14.5%

Price : 189 SEK

Mark : B

Website : Paracombe Premium Wines

Monday, 8 November 2010

The Men's Loo at Forum Nacka, Stockholm, Sweden

I went to Forum Nacka, a plush shopping centre on the outskirts of Stockholm, on Saturday and was greeted by this wall-sized poster on the back wall of the cubicle in the men's toilets.

The poster is introducing a guy named Stefan who runs a wine tasting group and according to poster loves a good Cab.

TN : Chateau Belgrave 2006, Grand Cru Classe en 1855, Vignobles Dourthe, Haut-Medoc, Bordeaux, France

This wine is a blend of 58% Cabernet Sauvignon, 40% Merlot, and 2% Petit Verdot. This wine opened up after an hour in the decanter.

Colour : Blackcurrant

Aroma : Blackcurrant, plums, tobacco, herbs, toasted oak, vanilla

Taste : Blackcurrant, plums, coffee, herbs, drying tannic finish, still tight - try again in two years

Alcohol : 13%

Price : 289 SEK

Mark : B

Website : Vins et Vignobles Dourthe

TN : Artemis Cabernet Sauvignon 2006, Stag's Leap Wine Cellars, Napa Valley, California, USA

Warren Winiarski founded Stag's Leap Wine Cellars in 1970. The winery's 1973 SLV Cabernet Sauvignon won the best red in the, now legendary, 1976 Judgement of Paris tasting. Artemis is the greek goddess of the hunt and is often pictured with a stag by her side.

This wine was imported by Ward Wines AB.

Colour : Dark deep purple

Aroma : Blackcurrant, vanilla, mint, coffee, oak, plums

Taste : Blackcurrant, oak, vanilla, coffee, sandpaper textured tannins on finish

Alcohol : 13.5%

Price : 300 SEK

Mark : B

Website : Stag's Leap Wine Cellars

TN : Cono Sur Vision Chardonnay 2008, Casablanca Valley, Chile

The winemaker was Adolfo Hurtado. The wine was sealed with a screwcap. The grapes came from the El Centinela estate. The vineyard soils are mineral with red clay. All of the grapes wer hand picked on the 29th March 2008. 60% of the wine was aged in barrels and 40% in stainless steel tanks for seven months. The finished wine was bottled in October 2008. The pH at bottling was 3.32, residual sugar was 5.6 grammes per litre, and the total acidity was 7.17 grammes per litre.

Colour : Lemon

Aroma : Pineapple, banana, vanilla, oak, stone fruits

Taste : Pineapple, butter, vanilla, oak, slight bitter almond and oranges on finish

Alcohol : 13.5%

Price : 95 SEK

Mark : C+

Website : Vina Cono Sur

Tuesday, 2 November 2010

Book : Chateau Lafite 1953 - and other stories, Malcolm Gluck

This book is a non-factual fiction book (Malcolm "Superplonk" Gluck's first foray into fiction writing) where each story is loosely associated to a particular bottle of wine.

The stories are quite varied and consist of a murder mystery, a young man's introduction to wine and his loss of virginity to his sister-in-law, a wine writer being replaced, a wine writer being setup to order a ridiculously priced bottle of wine at a restaurant, a man who retires from a factory, a women mistaken for being Jancis Robinson, a wine merchant who ends up at Tesco and meets a woman from South Africa, a bottle of wine made up of the contents of a spittoon, a wine writer who accepts perks which he shouldn't do, the preparation of the travel programme for a range of wine personalities visiting Argentina, a wine writer who writes under two identities, a female author who gets it together up one of her attendees at a book signing, a woman on a TV chat show, an old woman and man who live in the same block of flats and have a common interest in wine, and a TV presenter of a wine programme who can't smell a thing.

While some of the stories are much more interesting than the others, I would thoroughly recommend this book as a source of wine-related entertainment.