A few years ago Geoff and I attended a (paid for) wine tasting put on by the excellent Worth Brothers of Lichfield, held in a newly opened, and very stylish, Regency boutique hotel in the city. We were not much impressed with the wines, although the canapés were good, and the only bottle that has stuck with me was the D’Aussieres – because I’d bought a few bottles en primeur, doubtless seduced – as were those at the tasting – by the Rothschild name. We thought it was ordinary but I opened a bottle at the weekend and it was very good. The extra maturity had integrated the fruit and tannins to make a very appealing wine. And at £10 (in bond), a bargain. Incidentally if you are in Lichfield the WB shop is worth a visit. Some unusual and very good wines.
Having been rude about Chateauneuf de Pape, Sod’s law should dictate that I’ll soon after open a decent bottle – and so it proved. We abstain Monday to Wednesday so any wine opened on Sunday has to be carefully chosen if you think the bottle will be left unfinished. A 14.5% CdP? Perfect. The Mont-Redon (WS £18) was drinking well on the Sunday. Four days on (under a vacuum seal), much the same – powerful, some fruit, quite savoury, very drinkable.
Finally, after the boring Co-Op Rioja, I got back on track with an old school star. The Riscal is thin but savoury in the way the only old Rioja seems to achieve. Long, of course, with plenty of interesting flavours and a fabulous nose, better to induce another mouthful. Not sure where I bought it from, possibly MWW who have later vintages. Classy wine, apart from the very crumbly cork.