- 1966 Croft Porto Vintage - Portugal, Douro, Porto (4/23/2006)
Ruby with a hiny of tawny. Tawny rim.
The nose is pretty fresh for 40 years old and there's some sweetness on the nose. The palate shows great complexity with some nutty notes and a long subtle finish. Top wine. Not falling over, but why wait any longer?
- 1988 Fritz Becker Brauneberger Juffer-Sonnenuhr Riesling Auslese - Germany, Mosel Saar Ruwer, Middle Mosel (4/23/2006)
Straw colour with moderate brightness.
Vibrant nose of honey, orange and lime. acidity, fruit and sweetness all in good balance, making this very gluggable. Some complexity and a fair length. A great wine for the price.
- 1994 Chateau Musar - Lebanon, Bekaa Valley (4/23/2006)
As always, a wine to split opinions.
It's a mature light garnet red colour showing maturity in the browning rim. The nose shows fairly typical leathery and farmyard smells together with vanilla, spice and almonds/marzipan. There's also some sweetness to the nose. On the palate there's a mix of leather and sweet fruit with a beautiful savoury finish. It might not be a great vintage for Musar, but to a Musar fan, this is still highly enjoyable.
- 1998 Te Mata Estate Cabernet/Merlot Awatea - New Zealand, North Island, Hawkes Bay (4/23/2006)
Very dark purple in colour, with little sign of ageing. The nose is wonderfully complex, perfumed and surprisingly elegant with a hint of oak. The palate, whilst offering much of the complexity offered by the nose, is a little bit of a let down. It's quite rich with hints of meat, mint and more than a hint of oak in the finish. Despite this it doesn't feel multi-dimensional at the moment, but I suspect there is more to come (perhaps a little more air would help).
Of enjoyment now, but I'm guessing this has more to give over the next 3-5 years
- 2001 Houghton HWB - Australia, Western Australia (4/23/2006)
Much weaker than last years bottle. I don't think this is falling over, more likely a poorer bottle or mild taint.
The colour is fairly deep straw, it's clear and moderately bright.
The nose is muted (particularly in comparison to last years bottle). There's a suspicion of oats on the nose and vanilla on the palate, but little in the way of fruit or honey. A disappointment.
- 2004 Isabel Sauvignon Blanc - New Zealand, South Island, Marlborough (4/23/2006)
Clear,very pale straw colour. On the nose typical nettles, gooseberry, blackcurrant and also passion fruit and pineapple, with perhaps some grapefruit on the drying finish. The acidity is crisp and drying and there's maybe a slight lack of balance. Good but not great.
- 2004 medici Lambrusco Lambrusco Secco - Concerto - Italy, Emilia-Romagna (4/23/2006)
Another disappointment.After tasting a Venturini Baldini Lambrusco secco late last year, I was hoping for at least as good from this and it fell short.
The colour is a promising dense purple and the wine is noticeably not over-fizzy. The slightly weedy nose suggests high cropping levels and the nose is more savoury than fruity. The palate is slightly better, with blackberry and some woody/vanillan notes. There is little length to the finish, though the dry and crisp finish would work well with the right food.
Overall ok, but much preferred the Baldini. Will leave this for a year or two as happy to gamble for some added complexity at the risk of freshness.