We had our trade tasting on Monday in the stunning Ely CHQ. I saw the cellars there before they were taken over by Ely and every time I go in there I am amazed at what an amazing job they did on that place. It really is stunning and a must-see for any wine fans. They are offering really good value there at the moment as well.
Anyway, back to the tasting. It is always difficult to get people out to tastings - I'm not sure if there is a bit of winetasting overload going on; I was happy enough with the turnout, but would have liked a few more. The people that came were all serious, though and that is possibly more important that getting big crowds. The wines were, happily, all tasting well. It is always a good exercise to taste the range all in one go, something we don't do that often. Out of a tasting of 47 wines, highlights for me were:
Gregoris Pinot Grigio - this was really singing, jumping out of the glass, fresh, aromatic and delicious.
Chateau Miaudoux Bergerac Sec - hadn't tasted it in a while, but this was crisp and fresh from the Sauvignon with the 15% Semillon adding a little roundness. Really good.
Reverdy Sancerre - I had this in Alexis recently and it was lovely. Crisp, but with amazing aromatics and a long, stony, mineral finish. Excellent.
Poggerissi Rosso - amazing value from Basciano - 100% Sangiovese - ripe fruity and straightforward but really easy-drinking. Great house red.
Basciano Chianti Rufina - this again is great value with good concentration, full-bodied and rich. Punches way above its weight.
Degani Valpolicella - the real deal - great purity of fruit, med body, quite concentrated, dangerously easy to drink.
Chateau Larzac Coteaux de Languedoc - Syrah/Grenache blend- med body, very smooth and easy-drinking. Great all-rounder.
Haut Medoc de Giscours - fragrant, reflecting its Margaux roots. Perfect claret.
Felton Road Pinot Noir - expensive, obviously, but what a knockout wine. Rich by Otago standards, incredibly smooth with a silky texture, lovely fruit and a finish that goes on and on. Delicious now but with last for years.