Archive for June, 2007

Grand Cru Chablis – Worth the extra?

Monday, June 11th, 2007

I am in danger of teaching my Grandmother to suck eggs.  Not my real Grandmother, I mean you.  You are probably aware that generally, whilst in Bordeaux a Premier Cru is better than a Grand Cru, in Burgundy it’s the other way around.

Anyway, I was curious as to the difference between a Chablis, a Premiér Cru and a Grand Cru so I’ve started an experiment.  I decided to pick a brand and try all three.  So I waited eagerly for the Sunday Times Wine Club to deliver my mixed case of two of each from the Domaine Long Depaquit stable… I was badly let down.

Don’t try this at home - a Grand Cru Chablis balancing precariously on my lawn mower (for some reason)

The six bottle case actually had two bottles of Premiér Cru and four bottles of Grand Cru.  I decided not to complain, albeit that this is hampering my test.

So to the question of the title.  The short answer is that I don’t know yet – I have only tried the Grand Cru.  To give it its full title “Domaine Long-Depaquit, Les Clos 2002 Albert Bichot Chablis Grand Cru”!  It tasted of rich creamy butterscotch and oozed class from every sip.  An elegant wine with lots of complexities to savour but at £24.99 a bottle it should be bloody good!

The 2004 Premiér Cru was £13.99 and the 2005 bog standard £11.15.  When I have tasted the PC I’ll get back to you.  In the meantime I’ll just ponder why the Domaines of Bourgogne put so much information on their wine labels whilst the Bordelais so little.

Anyone who has tasted the “ordinaire” from 2005 please leave a comment…

Why I’m giving Bordeaux 2006 a miss

Tuesday, June 5th, 2007

I’ve got Bordeaux fatigue.

Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely love most of the 2005’s I’ve tried so far.  I’ve got a load booked en primeur to come later this year.  I’ve bought 2004, 2003 and 2000, all of which have so far impressed me.

But after so many years of exceptional, extraordinary, legendary, once in a lifetime, holy grail, once in a several millennia, best ever vintages, to hear 2006 described by most people as “patchy” is an opportunity to take a breather and give my poor wallet a rest.

So everyone who is currently sending me invitations to “invest” en primeur in 2006, please save your paper.  For a “patchy” vintage the prices are too high and the risk of disappointment too great in my opinion.

I might well buy 2006 Bordeaux once it is released but I won’t be investing in bond.

Malbec’s Plain Little Sister

Sunday, June 3rd, 2007

I am always interested in fairness.  So I buy wine from a variety of sources.  OK I admit I am biased towards the Wine Society and the Sunday Times Wine Club but I also like Majestic and I have been formulating a growing respect for the various supermarkets.

You may remember (or you may have forgotten) my post on Torrontés where I lauded the second grape of Argentina (in my opinion, and second to Malbec), and you may remember my fondness (not) for the self styled Hand of God, Diego Maradona himself.

But this time I am afraid Argentina loses in the quarter final.  Asda’s wine buyers have impressed me greatly at times but the Argentinian Torrontés (Asda forgot the accent on the e) Famantina Valley 2005 was a nice drinkable wine but really not memorable and no distinct flavours at all.  I can tell you that Torrontés normally has the most distinct flavour of apricots -ahhh memories.

Memories?  Actually I prefer mammaries……but’s that’s a story that would not meet the strict decency requirements of a serious wine blog.

Caring For Your Glasses

Saturday, June 2nd, 2007

Following my recent post on which glasses to drink from I was asked about glass “maintenance”.

There is a supposed cardinal rule with fine wine glasses that you should never use soap.  I ignore this, but do so with care.

Here’s a few practical tips for keeping your wine glasses in tip top condition.