Well, we are waiting with baited breath for the releases of the first growths in 2009. I’ve read that London’s Farr Vintners report that Chateau Lafite-Rothschild is already ‘pre-trading’ at £10,000 [$15000] a case. Blimey. I guess when you’ve got a worldwide army of wine investors chasing your wine that’s what happens. If Lafite is releasing anything near these prices you can bet Chateau Margaux and Chateau Latour will be up there too.
Inspired by tasting some old Aussie Coonawarra Cabernets at the London Wine Fair I decided to have a look at a few older bottles of red from Penfolds that I’ve squirreled away over the years from the 1998 and 1996 vintages. Tasting the wines reminded me just how wonderfully these wines can age as well as what terrific vintages ‘96 and ‘98 were in South Australia.
The chance to taste fourteen separate Chablis from a single grower across the same vintage was an opportunity too interesting to pass up on the final day of the London Wine Fair. Also thrown in were a couple of 2009 wines. Jean-Marc Brocard is one of the larger Chablis producers, a business he started from scratch in 1974. Some of the vineyards have been put on a biodynamic footing.
Three estates hardly represents a comprehensive tasting of the bounty of the Yarra Valley, but these are an impressive bunch nonetheless. Named after John Coltrane’s first solo album – and reflected in winemaker Phil Sexton’s big move from winemaking in Western Australia [Devil’s Lair] to the Yarra Yalley – Giant Steps is an impressive Yarra producer of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. The Chardonnays have race and verve, you feel they’ll be hitting their stride when others will be kicking the bucket.