Modus Operandi Napa Valley Sauvignon Blanc 2008; a fun delicious fresh white, popping with energetic yet tightly wound stone fruit and citrus zest; lovely medium to light body, and excellent integrated mouthwatering acidity.
Perhaps not the most complex white wine; but every sip is a delight. Drink it, if you can find it. To me it’s a classic example of contemporary Napa white wine.
Château de Fonsalette 1988 Reserve; a fun old southern Rhône wine. Smells funky, yet yummy if you don’t mind that gamey (slightly bretty) funkalicious smell of old grenache. And on the palate, just a brilliant delicious harmony, despite the fact that there is nothing modern about it. I know some winemaker friends who would spit in horror. Yet, to me, it is one of those works of genius where it all comes together, just the way it should. Still that silky cool-warmth of great grenache; in a wine whose pedigree clearly outshines its (sometimes modest) Côtes du Rhône appellation.
This bottle was definitely pushing the old-age barrier; but still a pleasure to spend the evening with. To me, it is an Old-school beauty:
Warres 1977 vintage port; what a lovely bottle (magnum) of wine; super-pure maturing port; sure, it has a hint of that odd ‘77 aguardente on the nose, but it almost seems to be mellowing in; and the palate has a beautiful balance - the intense yet wonderfully perfumed aromas dance on the tongue; sweet, yet tangy and with the lovely satisfying drying twist on the finish. A delicious bottle of port. The flavours, the purity of fruit, the sweetness, the alcohol all in balance - perhaps oddly, I think this is a contemporary classic.
Vieux Château Certan - beautiful, elegant Pomerol wines; flowing, subtly structured, and with a complexity driven by delicacy and fragrant perfume, not by obvious fruit. The classic beauty of merlot -driven Pomerol wines, without the fruit-compôte of the nouvelle vague.
I consider both the 2005 and 2006 Contemporary Classics; great examples of preserving the beauty of right-bank Bordeaux, while embracing contemporary competency and good cellar practice.
A. Margaine Blanc de Blancs 2000 is a delicious bottle of Champagne. A conscientious grower in the Montagne de Reims is seems. Chardonnay grown in the heart of Pinot Noir country makes for a deliciously intense, assertive Champagne, with very expressive chardonnay fruit, and tremendous drive through the palate. Loads of character and interest. Not a ‘classic’ delicate subtle Champagne, but a delicious well-managed example of the new-wave ‘modernist’ style. Fun. A modern masterpiece.