Monday, May 27, 2013

Entertaining Guests

My wife used to cook regularly and we often had people to dinner. Age has meant she can't stay for hours in the kitchen. On a friday evening she decided she wanted to do it all again...so on Saturday I was out to the market and on Sunday evening we invited three friends.
What started out as a small meal escalated into 5 courses. As the three friends (Volker, Steffi and Robert) are regular wine 'amigos'...I was down in the cellar looking for something special.

Planned:
Domaine Paul Blanck Furstentum Riesling 1989
F. X. Pichler M Grüner Veltliner 2002
Gantenbein Pinot Noir 2002
Chateau Trotanoy 1975


As I was uncertain about the Riesling from Alsace...I had popped a bottle of
Jaunegg Muri Sauvignon Blanc 2007 into the fridge. Think ahead when you are opening old wines.
I opened the Pichler early afternoon as I know the M needs plenty of air. No problems here...a quick sniff told me we would be pleased by this one. Mid afternoon...the Gantenbein saw the light of day....a gentle whiff showed no bad signs so leave it to develope. This was followed by the Trotanoy....Volker's favourite Bordeaux...and checking the Internet...99% positive notes on the 1975. The cork crumbled...so it was quickly pushed in and decanted. A smell and a taste told me that I had the other 1%...this was a bad bottle...and would not be any use to anyone. It's substitute was from another part of France...an old Chateauneuf-du Pape...a real rarity.





I offered the Riesling...but we all decided it had too much acidity...although the nose showed good ageing. Coming off the bench to rectify things....
Jaunegg Muri Sauvignon Blanc 2007
South Styria, Austria

Yellow-green colour...an explosion of ripe gooseberry and lychees really make you sit up...elegant...juicy...cassis even...and very fine acidity...perfect with the Asparagus Soup
.
Points 17










F. X. Pichler M
Grüner Veltliner 2002
Wachau, Austria

Great colour...golden green...pears...white pepper...full-bodied with great minerals...layers of fruit in the mouth...perfect now. All the guests marked it highly...

Points 18.25









Gantenbein Pinot Noir 2002
Fläsch, Switzerland

Served blind...and the guests were thinking...this is not Pinot...as I always offer one version....and to be honest...the nose was poor...and had a slightly mouldy smell. Unbalanced...it had no heart....and the dry tannins masked nothing to come. Disappointing...and the opinion was that we were expecting too much...as we knew all the younger vintages from this top property in Switzerland.
Points 15.5



The 'bad' bottle of Trotanoy was presented...sorry Volker...I have no control over every bottle.



The final course (no photo...the alcohol was taking over) of 'Kalbsgeschnetzeltes with Pasta' seemed one course too many...until we tried it. Perfect...and perfect was the wine.

Domaine du Pégaü Châteauneuf-du-Pape
Cuvée Réservée 1990
Rhône, France

Must have bought this about 20 years ago. Back in the 'old days'...I loved Ch-du-Pape...they were reasonably priced and aged well. Those days are gone...and the ageing curve is pretty short nowadays....so...how was this after 23 years? Well..Monsieur Féraud's wines are a cross between wine..and a dry port.

A mix of 80% Grenache, 17% Syrah..the rest Mourvèdre and others...farmyard smells...funky animals...medium-bodied...no alcohol details on the label....not thought necessary back then...but there is a few per-cent here...but so well made....rich flavour...wild raw meat...saddle leather...coffee...so silky but yet with power. Every time you went back to the glass you discovered something. A real living wine...something you could never construct in 5- 10 years...patience is needed....a wine from a time maybe lost forever.
Points 18.5


The comments from our friends...first to tell my wife Eva-Maria she had lost none of her talents...and to myself for the liquid stuff...were gatefully accepted. We enjoyed your company guys. One of life's pleasures is sharing...

1 comment:

Tom said...

Sounds great, the food looked world class. Had a August Kesseler 2007 Assmannhauser Hollenberg Spatburgunder the other night and it was really good. Does not drink like a 14,5% wine. Try some of his wines if you get a chance.

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