Burgundy 2011

investire con opzione binaria By mthomas

Köpa Cialis PiteÃ¥ I have been pleasantly surprised by the 2011 Burgundy En Primeur tastings. The wines haven’t been massively hyped but are stylistically more ‘up my street’ with lower alcohol and more restraint than the lauded 09s and 10s (both of which I like). I guess most telling is what I actually bought to drink and it wasn’t at Grand, or even Premier, Cru level.  I am increasingly priced out of these as Burgundy becomes ever more globally fashionable but in 2011 it also seems that top end wines might not be the best value because of the understated nature (limited longevity?) of the vintage. Given the problems with 2012, 2011 en primeur may be an opportunity not to be missed

http://mksplumbing.com.au/?sese=regulated-options-brokers&19a=55 regulated options brokers The Corney and Barrow Tasting at the Tower of London gave an excellent overview of the pros and cons of the vintage and was the one that got me to part with cash.  I ended up buying all three wines being shown by Domaine A & P de Villaine. The name will probably ring DRC bells but this is Aubert de Villaine’s own Domaine, based in Bouzeron, set up with his wife Pamela and now run by his nephew Pierre. (Website here). Villaine is of the ‘wines are made in the vineyard’ school of thought, and the wines reflect restraint in the cellar. A & P de Villaine has been organic since 1986 (certified by Qualicé-France) and the approach is well-bedded in, perhaps influencing the high quality of the fruit despite challenging conditions in 2011.

The Côte Chalonnaise (named after the region’s county town Chalon-sur-Saône and AKA Région de Mercurey) was identified as having good terroir by monks during the Middle Ages. Wines from Bouzeron, Rully, Mercurey and Montagny often provide value at a basic level but the area also has some seriously good makers some of them, like Villaine, interested in tradition rather than fashion.  These wines also seem to be particularly food friendly.

binäre optionen trading 212 Bourgogne Aligoté de Bouzeron (2011) A & P de Villaine; Aligoté may have been relegated in much of Burgundy (often for good reason) but in Bouzeron it is still extensively grown. This is Aligoté Doré, more refined than the more prevalent Aligoté and, in this incarnation, it ages well. Lots of lemon and hints of melon with wonderful minerality. Not cheap but fascinating and satisfying. Corney and Barrow, £135 per case of 12 in bond.

http://www.studio-asnieres.com/?serimepoke=opciones-binarias-a-corto-plazo opciones binarias a corto plazo Rully Les Saint-Jacques (2011) A & P de Villaine; Despite its youth this is accessible (and may not be the longest lived white burg out there). The usual suspects of green fruit and blossom with a bit of brioche. I guess I could have bought any number of similar wines elsewhere but there was something about staying with the maker once I had decided on the other two wines. Corney and Barrow, £175 per case of 12 in bond.

opciones binarias neteller Mercurey Les Montots (2011) A & P de Villaine; ‘Les Montots is situated on a fairly steep slope with southern exposure, planted with a selection of Pinot Noir vines from Nuits-Saint-Georges chosen for their aromatic qualities and moderate yield.’ account demo opzioni binarie Assorted red fruits and pleasant spiciness. At first it appears quite slight but there is an underlying structure that makes it surprisingly age-worthy (ready to drink in a year or two but potentially until 2020 onward).  Traditional yet quirky, I can’t wait to drink it cellar cool with food. Corney and Barrow, £100 per case of 6 in bond. (This is made in such a small quantity that there is a limit of 6 per customer).



Summer review

By mthomas

The Olympics have defined this summer. In many ways they are now defining September too which is a huge achievement for the Paralympics. I had committed so much to the former that the latter became a bit peripheral despite my work with kids with disabilities. I came back from France (see below for winey stuff) and was faced with awe inspiring images of people showing the world that our stereotypes are patronising and outmoded. There are challenging new discourses opening up and wandering around Stratford is even more  inspiring than it was 4 weeks ago. Fantastic! Luckily quite a few friends have tickets so I am going to get to see some events. I can’t wait.

I managed to visit Languedoc‐Roussillon, Burgundy and Champagne over the summer and it has been a good opportunity to reflect on their relative strengths and weaknesses. The extreme south east of France will always be one of my favourite places. The wildness, magical light, social history, food and wine …  it has it all and is a hugely underestimated wine region because of its history of mass production. Makers such as Jean Gardies and Olivier Pithon are the antithesis of this, making terroir driven wines characteristic of the physical landscape but also representative of cultural capital and attitudes. I was told that Pithon is no longer making his ‘Saturne’ and have contacted him to try and find out if this is true. That wine epitomises all that’s good about the area; old republican vines, grenache, carignan and syrah, biodynamic experimentation, garrigue and minerality. It would be a profound loss and I have had my fill of that this summer.

I had been due to meet up in France with my friend Mark and his family but he had already told me he would be too ill to travel due to surgery and chemo. He died a few days before I left after demonstrating how to face a terminal diagnosis with bravery and humour. I found myself surrounded by the beauty of Collioure reflecting on how much I would have enjoyed sharing the wines of the region with him as our kids played on the beach. He will be badly missed, particularly by Nicola, Ella and Nick. He is also a loss to Psychology, the training of clinical psychologists and to our understanding of disability, the area that fascinated him.

I have spent years in search of obscure vineyards and dragging my family around cold and dimly lit cellars but they still show great magnanimity about such visits. In Burgundy we had bikes and the highlight was a pleasant ride from Beaune to Puligny‐Montrachet taking in Meursault and a few other villages sacred to ‘Burg hounds’. It was a wobbly ride back after a tour, tasting and lunch at Domaine Leflaive. Disguised as exercise this was still great fun and my boys thought Simon Aplin’s engaging wine spiel the best of the summer visit talks.

Like Burgundy, Champagne has so many tasting opportunities it can be a bit overwhelming. A lot of the bigger houses are closed in August but Mumm was buzzing and they have good infrastructure for visitors. They also have a house style I quite like (not as much as Verve Cliquot or Pol Roger though) and a few interesting lines not available in the UK. Visits to Epernay and various growers are easy and well worth it. Although everyone is raving about ‘grower champagne’ I found them patchy though a couple were superb.

So my favourite wines of summer;

köp Cialis online-Lidköping Mon P’tit Pithon Blanc Vin de Pays des Côtes Catalanes Domaine Olivier Pithon A snip at 16 euros for a magnum given the current exchange rate. Maccabeu, Grenache Blanc and Grenache Gris blended to accompany food and please rather than impress. Not too boozy and very gluggable so perfect for long lunches with lots of local anchovies.

trading opzioni binarie cos\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\'è La Torre (2009) Côtes du Roussillon Villages Domaine Jean Gardies Not cheap at twenty quid but a seriously good wine with a great future. Mourvedre, Grenache and Carignan, it has depth and balance that could stimulate a myriad of pretentious comparisons.

ikili opsiyon türkiye Saint Romaine Sous Le Chateau (2009) Domaine Olivier Leflaive Lovely mineral white Burgundy that is good value at not much over a tenner in France (premier cru status is being pursued but has not been granted yet). The 2010 is available in the UK from Haynes, Hanson and Clark.

che significa quando il trading non è disponibile su opzioni binarie Champagne Fernand Lemaire Champagne Brut (2005) An admirable effort from a medium sized family concern.  80% chardonnay and 20% pinot noir. Ginger biscuit notes which might not be everyone’s cup of tea but works for me. Premier cru although that designation in Champagne doesn’t really say much.

And favourite things to see and do; say ‘hello’ to the mischievous ‘Messire Bertrand’ in the kitchen at the  Hospices de Beaune, eat Bouzigues oysters at the fishermen’s outlet in the harbour at Port Vendre then night sail back to Le Racou, visit Montrachet as a reminder that magic can emerge from pretty humble fields, ooh and ahh at the Champagne themed and Chagall designed stained glass windows in Reims Cathedral, whisper ‘Merrett’ by Dom Pérignon’s grave in the pretty chapel at Hautvillers, and perhaps best of all go on all the slides at ‘Aqualand’ in Argeles with fearless kids…



Nicolas Potel Beaune Premier Cru Clos des Vignes Franches 2006

By mthomas

As previously blogged, reading The Drops of God Manga (review here) whetted my appetite for a decent Burgundy. I couldn’t stretch to the 1990 DRC Richebourg (featured) in the story so plumped for a Monopole Beaune from Nicolas Potel bought en primeur from the wine society in a mixed case. Just as an aside, I have more or less given up on buying en primeur. The last time I bought any Bordeaux was 2005 and I have no intention of buying any more. This is partly because of prices which are increasingly exploitative and subject to fluctuations due to trading such as those seen with 2010. There are also longevity issues (not simply that the wines will not be ready to drink for 20 years but also that I am now 45…), although I am happy with the idea of my kids cracking some open in their twenties and thirties. I have also come to the conclusion that I prefer Burgundy (red and white) and Rhones (red) so will focus on them. I am also at a stage where I want to ‘back fill’ with wines that I know that I enjoy and are ready to drink.

With all things Burgundian generalizations can often be of limited use but the 06s are mostly drinking before the 05s and I have tasted a few recently that are in really good shape. Nicolas Potel is generally a safe pair of hands and the Beaune is a Parker 90 pointer (cited for reference not kudos). The fruit was bought from the owner of the decently sited Monopole (Les Vignes Franches) near the southern end of Beaune’s Premier Cru vineyards close to the boundary with Pommard and I had reasonably high expectations given the vineyard, maker, supplier and critic’s assessments.

On opening it was a lovely colour, crystalline raspberry with a pink rim and no obvious signs of age. It had quite a boozy nose which surprised me (13%ABV) but not much else going on. First taste showed concentration yet it was relatively light as pinot should be (in my opinion). It was cherry all the way with little meaty or herby complexity.

I was looking to satisfy a craving (although as I was playing tennis 3 hours later I knew one glass would be all I could indulge in) and so ‘pumped and fridged’ the rest of the bottle, hoping that it might be more expressive the next day.

24 hours later it was still slightly montone (a reasonably pleasant tone but not the complex melody I had hoped for).  Don’t get me wrong, this is technically ‘on the ball’ and a really nice wine, it just didn’t have that magic I craved. It could be characterized as a feminine wine and would probably make most people very happy; especially if they love those round cherry liqueur chocolates (which is what it most reminded me of).

Anyone into their wikis could update the wikipedia entry for Monopole Burgundys (here) because Clos des Vignes Franches is not listed.



The Drops of God

By mthomas

Amazon finally got around to sending me the recently published English language version of  the first volume of  The Drops of God aka ‘Kami no Shizuku’ and ‘The Twelve Disciples’ by Tadashi Agi (a pseudonym used by a brother and sister writing team) and Shu Okimoto (illustrator). It’s an award winning Manga series with a wine focus that Decanter described as “Arguably the most influential wine publication of the past 20 years“. This is not as absurd as it first appears when you consider the rise of the Asian wine market and the importance of engaging younger wine drinkers. The Drops of God has been directly linked with price rises in specific wines but, more interestingly, has also captured the imagination of people who may not have previously considered esoteric Burgundys and sensory issues in wine.

I had seen a few of the original Japanese issues, and even skimmed a French one, but have been eagerly awaiting it in English so I could really immerse myself and assess the overall quality. First impressions are not mine though. Eldest son Luke ripped through it before I got home from work and declared it ‘really good’. He is an avid reader, really loves Manga (Bleach, Naruto and Toriko are favourites) and I respect his knowledge.  It is interesting that he is articulating more questions about wine than usual and is keen to read the next one. I guess it therefore passes muster when judged simply on ‘Manga merit’. Not a bad start…

Reading ‘backwards’ and right to left is a bit of a challenge for me, but in terms of narrative, it is pretty straightforward;  the son of an influential wine critic has to identify mystery wines to claim his inheritance. There are the usual supporting cast, mysteries and twists but the most interesting aspect is the take on wine and tasting. The protagonist Shizuku has been ‘trained’ to identify aromas from an early age but has never tasted wine. He is a blank slate and this allows us to join him on a voyage of discovery where he challenges orthodoxy and relates to wine in a unique way. During this voyage he is exposed to some of the rarest and most celebrated wines (First Growths and Burgundys from Jayer feature prominently) but also to cheaper, sometimes more interesting, alternatives. The story touches on the importance of context, drinking windows, terroir, the influence of critics, blind tastings and most of the other big issues in the world of wine. As such it provides a effective, novel and accessible introduction to wine.

In terms of artwork, there is lots to enjoy, especially in the use of illustrations that are used to create metaphorical descriptions of a wine. The Angelus (originally titled ‘A Prayer for the Potato Crop’) by Millet is Mouton Rothschild 82 and Mont Pérat 01 is Freddie Mercury and Queen. An image is a richer and more enjoyable description of a wine than any score will ever be and the use of imagery and metaphor like this should be encouraged.

There are some weaknesses. The dialogue, like many translations, does not always scan that well. Depth is limited by the genre and many comics suffer from a lack of space for words. Illustrations do supplement this and are why ‘graphic novels’ can succeed so well but these are not always the most dynamic or creative drawings out there. There are also minor factual inaccuracies and more than a few cliches along the way. However these should not put you off as there is much to enjoy and I couldn’t put it down. It also had me reflecting on past wine experiences and triggered a severe craving for pinot (review of the Potel Beaune I plumped for will follow). I have already ordered the second volume (out in December) and I guess that in terms of reviews that is a definitive statement.

Agi, T. and Okimoto, S. (2011) The Drops of God Vertical New York

originally published in Japanese by Kodansha as Kami no Shizuku (2005)



Trapet Bourgogne 2006

By mthomas

I have tasted this 2006 Burgundy previously but was not overly impressed. However the bottle I opened at the weekend was superb and it got me thinking about the variables involved. Was it me, the wine or the moon that was different from when I previously drank it?

Although this is a humble, not inexpensive, Bourgogne (Corney and Barrow £15.82) it is made biodynamically by Jean-Louis Trapet (who also produces some excellent reds including Chambertin) using high quality fruit from limestone rich terroir in  the Marsanny commune. It is precise and pure, really enjoyable and far superior to many white Burgs with Premier Cru status but little love in the making. The Domaine website is worth a visit and there are some interesting images and diverting observations (here).

On opening I was struck by its acidity (my earlier notes were useful to refer back to as it had seemed much flatter last time) with a range of uncanny tropical citrus flavours which, again, hadn’t been apparent previously. The best I can do is ugli fruit; tangerine/lemony.  Mineral is an overused term, and probably has little to do with minerals, but this seemed to have a tangible limestoney quality rather (distinct from slate , chalk etc). Interestingly, Ann Noble’s aroma wheel does not include mineral terms as the criterion for a tag is that it is ‘objective, analytical and nonsubjective, nonevaluative and nonhedonic’. Metals and stones just don’t make the grade.

I am not sure if oak was used but the subtle caramel notes would suggest it was but with a light and skilled touch. This combined with the aforementioned fruit and minerality produced a really balanced wine with depth and contrasts. I wonder if it was a ‘fruit day’ yesterday and the wine showed well due to the lunar phase? (I am a skeptic but try to remain open-minded) Maybe the last bottle was from a different batch or slightly flawed (it wasn’t corked)? Maybe it was my tastebuds or mood? Maybe a combination of these factors? The bottom line was that this wine was lovely on this occasion. However, this is no guarantee of replication.



Domaine Maume 2005 Gevrey-Chambertin

By mthomas

I bought this  Burgundy en primeur after a tip off that some good fruit had been included because of the embarassment of riches makers in Burgundy had during 2005. A catch up chat with a pal who also bought some suggested it is in its drinking window now. I hadn’t tried a bottle until yesterday so am proud of my improving ability to delay gratification.

The Maume website states:

opzioni binarie senza investimento The cuvée of indicadores de comercio justo Gevrey-Chambertin (1.47 Ha, 30 year old vines) is a blend of several tiny parcels, the principle ones being option trade demo account “les Murots”, “la Justice”, “les Etelois”, “les Fourneaux”, “Clos prieur” and “Combe de dessus”… Whether they come from the place where small Gaillic huts were formerly built or from vineyards that once belonged the superieur abbey, the grapes blended as soon as they enter fermentation vats. The resulting wine is elegant, rich in floral aromas and notes of small red fruit.

On opening it had a lovely cherry nose and promised good things. I tasted it cellar cool and was intially reasonably happy although the finish seemed pretty dull. After half an hour there were some more intriguing, and not unpleasant, earthy notes but the finish remained pretty restrained despite the promising ‘bouquet’. Maybe it is true to its relatively lowly status and actually would have been better drunk quite young.

I expected a lot more from this but know that the mercurial nature of Burgundy means that my other bottles might be very different. Perhaps I should also check the biodynamic calendar for an optimum opening day. The weather has been pretty strange and who knows what effect this might be having.

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