This is one of the most interesting reds I've tasted! An experimental, non-vintage blend from unorthodox California winemaker Sean Thackrey.This example is the 27th release of what Thackrey describes as the "Chefs Special". Never standing still, The Pleiades is an ever changing blend of varieties sourced from growers throughout Napa Valley, Marin County and Mendocino.This … Continue reading Sean Thackrey – Pleiades XXVII. The chefs special!
This was recommended to me by an independent wine merchant in the Castro district of San Francisco. I was originally looking for a big, traditional Californian Chardonnay but was intrigued by what was described as a more mid-palate example of the variety.100% Chardonnay from the Anderson Valley region, this is a zippy wine with plenty … Continue reading A golden state shiner! FEL – Anderson Valley, Chardonnay (2017)
This wine has been on my radar for a while now, but only recently have I taken the plunge and picked up a bottle. A Southern-Rhone style blend, slightly tweaked with each vintage to take full advantage of seasonal variations, The Chocolate Block is full of new world character from South Africa's Swartland region. Considering … Continue reading The Chocolate Block 2018 (Boekenhoutskloof)
I've recently put some time aside to appreciate some of the lesser known, and perhaps unappreciated wine regions of the world. I'll be kicking off this journey of discovery with a brief delve into the wines of Austria. With the Danube river in Austria marking one of the most northern settlements of the Roman empire, … Continue reading Austria – The best wines you’ve probably never heard of…
During my recent obsession with Saint-Émilion Bordeaux's, I stumbled accross this modern style example from a prestigious 2009 vintage. This Chateau Teyssier represents a really interesting example of the classic Merlot / Cab Franc blend, typical of the area. Nicely aged yet still in its infancy, the Teyssier shows a bright glossy garnet in the … Continue reading A new age classic! Chateau Teyssier – Saint Émilion Grand Cru (2009)
Ask any Chardonnay lover to describe the wonders of this grape and they would struggle to do so without taking you on a verbal tour of Burgundy. The region arguably lends the most expression to the grape variety, and is considered by some as the spiritual home of Chardonnay. My recent personal discovery lead me … Continue reading The colour of sunshine! Domaine du Pimont, Saint-Aubin 1er Cru (2012)
My recent wine exploration has lead me to re-discover the complexity of characteristics that can be held within a bold, oaked Chardonnay. This particular Chardonnay was introduced to me during my WSET level 2 course, and I was not disappointed! Produced in Napa Valley, California, well known for wines of character and expression, the Bread … Continue reading Bread & Butter Chardonnay (2016) – An upside down cake, flipped on its head!
A balanced effort of academia and tasting sessions have developed my knowledge in the art of wine analysis, articulating flavours, varietal styles and grape varieties as well as an overall assessment of wines true quality. Variety is the spice of life etc... Following on from my studies I've been attending tastings a plenty, sampling a … Continue reading Chapter 3 – Level up!
This ones a bit special, a Christmas present I was saving to stave off the new year blues. This classic merlot, cabernet franc blend is an excellently aged example of a Saint-Émilion Grand Cru. In the glass, this wine gives a brilliantly rich tawny appearance, dragging you in straight away with its elegant shine! A … Continue reading Clos Villemaurine – Saint-Émilion Grand Cru (2002)
Recently I was lucky enough to receive some samples of MacNairs Lum Reek range, courtesy of The GlenAllachie Distillers Company and The Whisky Wire. Prior to tasting these Whiskys, I'd never really given blended malts as much attention as their single malt siblings. This proved the perfect opportunity to expand my horizons towards the world … Continue reading MacNair’s Lum Reek Tasting – The Art of the Blend!