Harkin Blind '09
great levelling power of the brown paper bag confounds one and all -
1. St Hallett Poacher's Blend, 2007
thought it was Pfalz Riesling so I wasn't completely and utterly wrong.
It's Semillon, Sauvignon Blanc and Riesling and
took its name from "The Night Poaching Act" of 1816 (UK). People convicted
under this particular Act were transported to Australia for their
It is very fruity with tones of citrus,
pineapple, passion fruit and melon, but with a nice, refreshing, dry
finish. I guessed its price at about €9, so somewhat dearer than I
€11.24, normally €12.49
Zenato Lugana, Veneto, 2007
A straw yellow in colour with
greenish hues, aromas of peach, citrus, banana and herbs, beautifully
sustained by a crisp, minerally and supple body. The balanced acidity and
a slight and pleasantly bitter finish allow for a wide choice of food
The grape is "Trebbiano di
Lugana”, said to appeal to people who like fruity un-oaked Chardonnay and
Pinot Grigio (which I thought it was). Trebbiano – also known as for Ugni
Blanc – is claimed to be the second-most planted grape in the world (Airen
is the most planted). Lugana sits on the border between Lombardy and the
Veneto on the south end of Lake Garda, where the fertile Po Valley plain
rises into Northern Italy's lake country and the glacial foothills of the
Alps. Lovely as always. Unfortunately, although I guessed Italy, I thought
it was Pinot Grigio. How could I mistake one of my favourite whites?
3. Pouilly Fume Sainte Clelie,
Domaine Chauveau, Loire, 2006
Aromas of nettle, gun flint
and a racy, sharp palate.
Unusual flavour for a dry white wine: a strong flavour of musk and smoke.
Pouilly Fumé is best drunk young - 12 months after harvest - but retains
its aromatic qualities for 3 - 4 years.
Pouilly is very close to Sancerre, just on the other side of the river.
However, Pouilly Fumé is probably
thicker, deeper and has more structure. Don't confuse it with the
similar-sounding Maçon wine, Pouilly Fuissé, which is Chardonnay.
Many French lords living at
the end of the 11th century left for the wars in the Holy Land and sold
their assets to finance their crusades: thus the fief of Pouilly was sold to the Benedictins de
la Charité for the sum
of "3,100 sous and a silver mark".
.Wicklow Wine €19.95
4. Luigi Bosca Reserve, Pinot
Noir, Mendoza, Argentina, 2007
Quite light, with a pale rim.
Big nose. Quite bitter; cherries, too much burn. 100% Nebbiolo Michet from
the Monprivato vineyard, in the village of Castiglione Falletto. 14%.
A lot of people liked this; I thought it only OK.
Domaine D'Aupilhac, Montpeyroux,
Coteaux du Languedoc,Les Cocalieres 2004
Completely flummoxed me: I
went for Argentina, deciding it was Luigi Bosca. In fact it's Syrah 40%,
Grenache 40%, Mouvedre 20%. Sylvain Fadat, the proprietor, used to grow
white asparagus and is considered outspoken and wildly progressive in the
Wicklow Wine €22.50
6. Coyam, Bio Dynamic,
Colchagua Valley, Chile
Wine of the night for me.
34% Carmenere, 14% Merlot, 13% Cabernet Sauvignon, and 2% Mourvedre.
Matured for one year in oak, 70% French, 30% American. Winemaker Alvara
Espinosa. The Syrah really
came out; spicy, dark. I thought Australian, though.
Bertani Villa Novare Albion, Veneto, 2000
I thought Amarone but it's
100% Cabernet Sauvignon. I also thought it somewhat medicinal and very
Donna Maria Amantis, Alentejo, Portugal 2005
Cab Sauv, Syrah, Petit Verdot,
Touriga Nacional (10%). I thought it Coonawarra Cab Sauvignon. A very fine
Wicklow Wine €22.50
Chronicon Montepulciano d'Abruzzo, Italy, 2005
I thought it quite like an
Australian Shiraz and I liked it a lot. Good, soft tannins and pepper.
10. Villa Rizzardi Amarone
della Valpolicella, Bardolino, Italy, 2002
I didn't get Amarone at all
and I thought the price about €24. It seemed very restrained and more
strawberry than plum; not my idea of what an Amarone should be. It's 49%
Rondinella, 25% Corvina, 10% Barbera, 9% Sangiovese and 7% Corvinone.
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