Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Labradoodle Likes His Vino Tinto

Sorry Angel, no more Richebourg for you!

Sunday, June 25, 2006

Wieninger Gruner Veltliner 2004

Gruner Veltliner is a grape varietal ubiquitous to Austria, the way Zinfandel was to California, Shiraz is to Australia. Drinking this very quaffable white wine now, brings back lovely memories of time spent one carefree summer in Vienna with my wife T, over some lovely bottles of Gruner aka Gru-Vee.

Tasting notes > Pale green crystalline color. Wafting aromas of citrus with just a hint of petroleum. Mouth filling yet light on the palate, all flowers and white pepper. Great typicity for this varietal. Tenacious acid provides verve and razor sharp freshness. Great versatility as a day drink, perfect on its own, or a great companion to food. A shame that we don't see a wider range of Gruner on our shores.

Saturday, June 17, 2006

Peter Michael 'La Carriere' 2004

Tasting notes > Visually, a pale, straw yellow with the distinctive cloudiness of an unfiltered wine. Much like purulent urine. Limestone aromatics are woven in with a smorgasborg of citrus fruits and caramel popcorn. Peach, apricot and mango flavors dominate the very clean, bright palate. The mouthfeel - silky and velveteen. 14.6% alcohol here, but nary is it felt cuz of the incredible balance provided by the intense fruit profile and scalpel like acidity. Reminds me very much of Pahlmeyer 04 Chardonnay. Lots of class here. Has great presence. Of the more recent vintages of Peter Michael whites, this to date is my favorite.

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Bordeaux 2005 - An Asian Perspective

There has been a ton of hype surrounding the recent Bordeaux 2005 vintage, and expectations are that as the en-primeur campaign gets underway, prices for some of the most sought after wines will be stratospheric, even malignant.

In the introduction to his review of the 2005 vintage, Robert Parker, hands down the most influential wine critic today, suggests that the vintage is most similar to 2000, because of its overall consistency of both high end and minor wines.

Andy Tan (pictured above) is a good buddy of mine that has dedicated his entire life to his passion - wine. A sommelier by training, he began his career more than a decade ago with the Marina Mandarin Hotel, followed by a period that saw him rise to the ranks of Chef Sommelier of The Regent and Four Seasons Hotel in Singapore. In 1996, during his tenure in the renowned Maxims de Paris @ The Regent, his wine list won Decanter Magazine's "The Best Wine List in Asia".

In 1995, he was invited to be one of the twenty judges @ the annual Sonoma Wine Harvest Fair, and again the following year as an echo judge.

He also co-wrote a piece called "Wine Trends of the World" with Terry Copeland, Michael Hill Smith MW, Anthony Dias Blue MW, Kim Maxwell and Lim Hwee Peng, which won the "Wine Article of the Year Award" at the World Gourmet Summit 2003.

Currently, Andy is General Manager of Auric Pacific Fine Wines. He is the exclusive distributor for some of the world's most sought after wines - Harlan Estate, Colgin, Abreu, Au Bon Climat, Arietta, Kongsgaard, Martinelli, Pahlmeyer, Ramey, Quilceda Creek, Soter, Spottswoode, Williams-Selyem, Philip Togni, Aldo Conterno, Braida-Giacomo Bologna, Falesco, Fanti, Feudi di San Gregorio, Isole e Olena, Tua Rita, La Spinetta, Franz Kunstler & Didier Dagueneau, to name a few.

Andy was recently in Bordeaux tasting through the 2005s, and has filed an extensive report about the wines and his thoughts on the vintage. Read it here. To be added to his mailing list, email