Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Ridge Lytton Springs 2003

One of my favorite things is having long, meaningful conversations with my wife T, over a bottle of wine. I cannot say enough about how much I appreciate that 1. T - really enjoys her wine and 2. that she holds her alcohol better than most guys I know. Which is saying something seeing as that most of my drinking buddies throw back alcohol at a rate that would make the Surgeon General cringe!!

I am reminded of special moments we've shared over Kistler McCrea '94 @ Nobu, NYC; sipping D'Yquem '90 in a suite @ The Plaza overlooking Central Park; drinking a great bottle of Philip Togni '91 on the rooftop of her bohemian East Village apartment, whilst the familiar sounds of the city roared from the street below. Ahhh...the good life.....

Shared recently was a bottle of Ridge Lytton Springs 2003, which was a welcome departure from the Pinot-philic mode i've been in recently.

T-notes > Deep hues of black and blue, the wine was initially about as tight as an old wedding tux. Allowed some time to breath, it then really began to strut its stuff. The palate - an amalgamation of raw egg white, freshly ground white pepper and the finest dark chocolate. The tannins were firm, but provided grip to the bold, ostentatious flavors. Really enjoyed this.

Saturday, March 11, 2006

Burgundy @ Oso Ristorante

Impromptu plans led us to a "packed to the gills" Oso Ristorante for what turned out to be some great bottles of Burgundy paired with the equally wonderful food at this cosy Italian restaurant along Tanjong Pagar Road.

Part of the discussion that night settled around how these "shotgun" tastings invariably turned out better than some of the tastings that were meticulously organized. In my mind, it partly has to do with expectation, or lack thereof, and also that the number of bottles poured are usually more manageable than at our mega tastings where bottles tend to outnumber participants. This allows us to adopt a more relaxed posture with the tasting, and track the evolution of each bottle through the entire night. A most important exercise especially when tasting Burgundy.

There were 5 bottles that night, beginning with an interesting bottle of Fixin Blanc from Hubert Lignier. By the time I arrived, there was nary a drop of this left, so I assume it must have been pretty good for the boyz to have drunk it all up. My personal thoughts on the reds that flowed were as follows:

> Domaine Trapet Gevrey-Chambertin 1er Petit-Chapelle 2002 - Medium ruby red with a charming nose of century egg, meat and freshly broken branches. Lovely minerality on the palate dominated by red fruit and a sappiness which I really liked. Tannins were very fine and the finish proved persistent.

> Domaine Fourrier Gevrey-Chambertin Combe aux Moines 2002 - Started off a little closed, dusty, and a touch austere for my liking. An hour later, though, the welcome mat was out! Olfactorily, like a freshly opened ampoule of Vitamin B complex injectable solution. The mid palate was jam packed with strawberries and the lift provided by the acid was invigorating.
Not sure if I really enjoyed this stylistically, though I suspect that during our current intense sojourn through the wondrous world of Burgundy, it may start to grow on me.

> Domaine Jacques Frederic Mugnier Chambolle Musigny Les Fuees 2001 - Bright, intense red fruits with ferns and bark, and even a touch of ginseng. Smooth as silk, and the purity quite something to behold. Slick ripe tannins complete the package very nicely. Excellent.