Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Summertown Wine Cafe

The Summertown wine cafe in North Oxford (www.summertownwinecafe.co.uk) offers two different wine menus, a monthly selection and their "Superstars" list. For just £2 you can taste all 12 monthly wines, which I duly did (all in the line of duty!). Some of the wines tasted were : Mariner Pinot Gris 2004 is a subtle New Zealand number, light in body and flavour but with excellent flavour (16.5/20). Domaine Thibault Pouilly Fume' 2004 is quite frankly a poor example of this wine, it's astringent and lacks any of the gooseberry type flavours that Sauvignon from the Loire should posess, frankly it was a bit of an embarrassment being asked what I though about it (14/20). Kim Crawford Tietjen Chardonnay 2004 was toasty, perhaps a little too toasty in fact, it has too many burnt flavours, (15/20). Calera Pinot Noir lacked any intensity of flavour, it is clearly made in the Burgundian style, but lacks the flavours that Burgundians are so good at extracting. (15.5/20). Fayolle Crozes Hermitage Les Pontaix 2003 had lovely flavours but was being drunk 2 years too soon and had over active tannins which brought this one down (15/20 perhaps as much as 18/20 in 2 years or more). I also had the opportunity to taste a few of the Superstars, and briefly found Paul Jacqueson Rully 2003 to be a fine flinty example of a white burgundy (16.5/20) , Cuilleron Viognier 2004 smelt and tasted of peaches and cream and was fabulous (17/20) as was the impressive Poderi Aldo Conterno "Conca Tre Pile" Barbera D'Alba 2001 - this is probably the best wine I've tasted in 2005 - high praise indeed - and is easily worth 18/20 possibly up to 19/20 (I'll have to do a full tasting on that sometime!)

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