Preamble Tasting January 2002 
Hairshirt Time
Conor McGuinness

After the excesses of the chairman's festive presentation Conor brings us back to earth (well, a bit anyway). 

1. Unico Pfalz, Qba, Germany 1997
Green gold, and a slightly floral grapey Muscat nose.  (It's actually Muscat and Gewurtztraminer.)  Good bite, bitter-sweet, pinedapple. Grapey finish with some cream of tartar.
Octavius Fine Wines, and Findlaters 10.15

2. Jesuiten Hof, Kircheimer Steinacker, Scheurebe, Spatlese, QmP, Pfalz, Germany 1999
Yellow green, nose of peaches and a little lime.  Peaches, flowers, sweetness balanced with good acid.  Lovely.  The grape, Scheurebe, is a cross between Sylvaner and Riesling.  QmP is Qualitatswein mit Predikat.
Octavius Fine Wines 17.76

3. Thanisch, Brauneberger Juffer, Riesling Auslese, QmP, 1996
Deeper greenish yeallow, hint of buterscotch, beautifully concentrated, some petrol, dry with rich mouth feel and great complexity.  From Mittel Mosel.
Octavius Fine Wines 15.17

4. La Jolie Brise, Moulin de Gassac, VdT, Languedoc
Made for Chez Youen.  (I'll reserve judgement on the wine, but the restaurant provided one of the worst culinary experiences of my life.)  La Jolie Brise is the name of a pizzeria in Baltimore, I'm told, which in turn was named after the yacht that won the first Fastnet in 1925.  Hint of burnt/oxidised.  Very light, watery pink. Grenache, Carignan, Cinsault, Alicante - the slightly medicinal flavour coming from the Cinsault.  Not my cup of tea.
Youen Jacob, Chez Youen, Baltimore, Co. Cork 6.35

5. Chianti Colli, Fiorentino, DOCG, Azlenda Agricola 'La Spinosa', Tuscany, 1997
Served blind. 
Pale orange red.  Dry, a bit thin.  Hint of sweetness.  Some mouth-puckering tannin.  An organic wine, 85% Sangiovese, 10% Canaiola, 5% Uve Complementati.  Very good, complex, ineteresting.Drink with food. 13% alc.
Octavius 12.63

6. Bosco del Merlo, 360 Ruber Capite, Rosso del Venezie, IGT, 1998
Deep clean red.  Intense nose, fruit and vanilla.  Merlot but wit the smell of something else in there.  Quite a stern finish, loads of fruit, well balanced, hint of doft tannin.  Long finish.  Organic. Black fruit.  Chewy.  Heavy.  Food wine.  Very good.  13%
Octavius 18.98

7. Enzo Boglietto, Barbera d'Alba, Vigna del Romani, DOC, Piedmont, Italy, 1999
Really deep, very slightly murky red. Pear-drops/esters.  Fruit and alcohol!  Quite smooth but with good zing.  Plums, prunes, toasty, long finish, big burn (14.5%)  Pity about the price. 
Cabot Fine Wines 35.55

8. Fox Creek JSM Shiraz-Cabernet Franc, McLaren Vale, South Australia, 1998
Deep, deep non-transparent red with hint of orange.  Nose of black fruit pastilles (my favourite).  Plum, blackcurrant, vanilla, slight sweetness.  Parker gave it 96/100 - the price will go up:(  Shiraz 70%, Cabernet Franc 18%, Cabernet Sauvignon 12%.  14% alc.

Cabot Fine Wines 20.95

9. D'Arenberg McLaren Vale Vintage Fortified Shiraz, 1998
Red Bubbles, slightly antiseptic nose.  Quite sweet with a touch of bitterness.  Somewhat medicinal finish.  Quite a lot of fruit pastilles, good burn, liquorice, glycerie.  Nice, complex but at this price ...   I'm afraid Tuke Holdsworth from Dunnes beats it into a cocked hat.
Cabot Fine Wines 31.74

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