Preamble Tasting March 2002 
Richard Verling

1. Lugana 'Vigna J Frati', Ca dei Frati, 2000
Creamy, grapefruit and pineapple.  Lovely, although loses out with a slightly watery finish.  100% Trebbiano di Lugana
12 ish

2. Sauvignon de Saint Bris, William Fevre, 2000
Not a typical Sauvignon nose - first sense is of Riesling.  Beautifully rounded.   Made in stainless steel.  Not up to its price tag but still lovely.

3. Chablis Premier Cru Fourchaume, Bouchard Pere et Fils, 1999
Beautifully crisp, fruity nose.  Toasty oak and lots of fruit, but not overly so, well balanced but lacking depth.

4. Pinot Gris 'Prince Abbes', Evelyn Schlumberger, Alsace 1999
Nose with some of that light, scented, 'Cuvee des Amours' Pinot Blanc scent, but much more honeyed.  Really opulent but well balanced, the honey stiffened with 13.5% alcohol.  Try with Foie Gras or pear tart.

5. Vina Real Crianza, Cune, Spain, 1999
Light red, hint of orange.  Quite dumb.  Predominantly Tempranillo, American oak but not too hard.  Juicy, well-made, easy drinking without being too upfront.


6. Coldstream Hills Pinot Noir, Yarra Valley, Australia, 1999
 Farmyard, burnt rubber.  Perhaps a hint of sourness.  Not at all up to its usual standard - a teeny bit off, I fear.  Shame, I love it.  13.5%

7. Domaine de Limbardie, Vin de Pays, Coteaux du Murviel, 2000
Lovely dark red, a hint of farmyard on the nose.  tarry, amaro style.  Milk/condensed milk.  Cab/Merlot blend, drinking well now.  Perhaps change in style; I have some 1995 that is still young.

8. Mapa Merlot, Baron Philippe de Rothschild, 2000
vely rich, dark, velvet.  Very unusual nose - minty?  Milky? Not too soft, lots of wood, herbaceous, very French style.  Lovely label too. 13.5%

9. Don Melchior, Cabernet Sauvignon, Concha y Toro, 1997
Beautiful, elegant looking dark red.  Nose blackcurrant, spearmint  rather than peppermint.  Quite tannic, pastilles.  Not near ready but going to be great.  7-9 years?  Buy now!

10. Marques de Riscal Gran Reserva, 1994
Lovely clear, red.  Gorgeous, clean fruity nose with violets, sweet vanilla of American oak  Last 20 years?  Still tannins, very flavoured - fruit gums and milk.  Buy even at this price and keep. Bit too dear, perhaps ... the recommendation is more circumspect give the price.


11. Duca d'Aragona, Rosso del Salento, Cadido, 1995
Mid dark, clear, rich red.  Montepulciano and Negro Amaro in new oak; stern, polished, fruity with a dash of bitterness.  Yum.  14%


12. Domaine de Vieux Telegraphe, Chateauneuf du Pape, 1999
Cherry red with lots of legs.  Big white pepper and fruit aroma.  Very tannic but fruity.  Cloaks the palate.  Price has gone up a lot.  Probably more grenache than usual.  Buy it if you can afford it :(  I remember the last of my stock of 1985 with deep fondness and regret at its passing.  This is not a patch on it.  But then, I'm probably biased. 14%


13. Wynn's Michael Shiraz, 1997
Dark as a port.  Red fruit pastilles.  New oak?  Some tannin, very silky, huge fruit but by no means overblown.  Absolutely gorgeous!  If the money didn't matter it'd be three stars, well, two and a half anyway.

55 ish


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