Mitchell and Son
1. Dry Furmint,
Tokaji, Hungary, 1997
Not very positive response
2.Fransola Sauvignon Blanc, Torres, Penedes, 1997
This was lovely, albeit a bit expensive
3. Riesling Rosacker, Dom. Sipp Mack, Alsace Grand Cru, 1997
Restrained nose, beautifully zingy. Good fruit and acid, well balanced,
slightly smokey. A hint of wood. Crisp
£12.95, on sale at £10
4. Chatsfield Chardonnay, Mount Barker, Western Australia, 1997
Lovely straw colour. Restrained nose. Particularly steely, rather French
but with plenty of fruit. Citrus tones. Hint of wood. Very nice, but at
this price it would want to be. By Ken Lynch. A chat, by the way, is a
useful bird that eats insects in the vineyard.
5. Vina Vermeta Reserva, Alicante, Spain, 1990
Light, orange tint. Quite leathery, woody. Would go nicely with the barbie.
This is Monastrell (said to be Mourvedre although I can find no reference
in the literature), but from a much hotter place than Bandol. Monastrell
is Spain's second most widely planted red variety, used to add body and
guts to many Catalonian Tempranillo blends: makes dark, tasty, alcoholic
wines, sometimes sweet.
6.Spatburgunder Spatlese Trocken, Herxheimer Honigsack, Pfalz, Weingut
Darker than expected. Nose present but nondescript. Warm taste. Quite
bitter/sharp ending Spatburgunder is Pinot Noir, but it didn't taste like
Pinot to me; OK at £5. Tasted again after the Waipara (below); seemed
very hard by comparison.
7. Waipara Pinot Noir, Mark Rattray Vineyards, NZ, 1995
Very cold, which didn't help. Looks older. Very nice nose. Initial feeling
of sharp tannins. Fizzy, fruity, ends very nicely. Long aftertaste, maybe
a bit watery. Lowish acidity nade it a bit flat.
8. Vintner's Blend, Zinfandel, Ravenswood, California, 1996
Dark, deep browny colour. Loads of fruit with a tannic edge. Good balance,
albeit a bit jammy. I like this, which, for a confirmed Zinfandel hater
is quite an admission. An amaro finish. From Joel Peterson.
9. Domaine Muller Cabernet Sauvignon, Styria, Austria, 1995
Lovely deep red. Nose doesn't scream Cab Sauv. Maybe a bit of mint behind
the berries. Incredibly tannic. Very young. Noticeable fruit and lots
of promise. Would I buy and wait five years?
10. Xanadu Cabernet Sauvignon, Margaret River, Western Australia,
Big red liquorice colour and slightly minty, not very pronounced nose.
Very concentrated fruit. Quite a good tannin grip, with fine acid. Puckering
at front of mouth. Quite elegant. 20 months in oak not visible. Bit expensive.
11. Alion, Bodegas y Vinedos, Ribera del Duero, 1994
Really dark, but crystal clear. Interesting nose: 100% Tempranillo, but
some minty smell. I suspect some Cabernet is added. Very intense. Good
acid. Cool taste on back of palate. Some tannins. Lovely. This is vinified
in a completely different way to Rioja.
12. Brown Brothers Late Harvested Noble Riesling, Milawa
This was an unexpected extra treat. Amazing nose. Pure honey on the palate,
cool acidity at the end. Lasts for ages in the mouth.