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MWG May 11th tasting: report (2/5)

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Aconcagua 2010, Signos de Origen, Casablanca Valley, Emiliana Organic Vineyards ($22.25, 11639037)
A blend of organically farmed Chardonnay (65%), Viognier (20%), Marsanne (11%) and Roussanne (4%) aged in French oak barrels for 10 months.
Mango and pineapple custard. Clean, sweet fruit with a round-bordering-on-heavy texture only partly relieved by the underlying acidity. Long but not hot, despite the high alcohol (14.9%). Not much else going on. Unobjectionable but a bit blowsy and cloying. (Buy again? No.)

Chardonnay 2008, Red Claw, Mornington Peninsula, Yabby Lake ($35.25, 11640492)
Whole bunch-pressed Chardonnay fermented in French oak and aged on its lees for ten months. Mornington Peninsula is a cool-climate region about 50 km southwest of Melbourne in Australia’s Victoria state. The Yabby Lake winery is moving toward organic farming methods.
Faint tropical fruit cocktail with some minerals and a sour note. Clean and relatively complex, the flavours tending to lemon and minerals. Winey and a tad alcoholic (14%) but with a freshening acidity. Long, tangy finish. (Buy again? Not when I can get a 1er cru Chablis for the same price.)

Châteauneuf-du-Pape 2009, Prestige, Simon Alexandre ($30.50, 11600888)
A recent arrival not from the Cellier release. Made by Domaine de la Présidente, not that you’ll find any mention of it on their website. A blend of Grenache Blanc (50%), Clairette (20%), Roussanne (20%) and Bourboulenc (10%) from 25-year-old vines. Destemmed and cold macerated before being given a long, cool fermentation. I’d originally sampled this from a bottle that had been open for several hours and found it a tasty and even classy southern Rhône white that delivered good QPR, hence my decision to include it in a tasting.
Perfumy, spicy nose with cut apple, sour mash and even medicinal scents. On the palate, heavy, alcoholic (14%), chalky and not very flavourful, the shy fruit candied. “A wine that even its mother couldn’t love.” And yet after a half-hour in the glass, it had transformed into what I remembered: white flowers, yellow fruit and minerals on the elegant nose; supple, if unctuous, and nicely balanced on the palate with a long, elegant finish. The taster who took the tail end home with him reports that the wine was even better the next day. (Buy again? Yes.)

Written by carswell

May 18, 2012 at 09:02

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