Sunday, July 16, 2006

Contrasts


Lou and Kim have just returned from Italy and brought a couple of bottles of Chianti which they were kind enough to share. We drank them with Koko's famous smoked ribs, big and meaty. First up was the Castello Il Palagio, Chianti Classico Reserva, 1999. This is a very smooth smoky bacon mature CC, nice and elegant. Was the favourite wine of the night. The verdict: Good. Can't comment as to value coz I don't know how much it cost. Defintely would not turn down a glass of this stuff, though.
Following right after was the Fattoria Montagliari, Chianti Classico, can't remember the vintage ('03 or '04). They had met the owner at the vineyard and had commented that they really liked this wine. It is very different in style from the Il Palagio; obviously younger, more fruit driven, very little evidence of oak ageing. Altogether pleasant, but not as enjoyable as the first chianti. The Verdict: OK.
Next up was Joel's continuing quest for an Argentinian wine that he likes. This one Amanda really likes - the Gran Lurton, Cabernet Sauvignon, Mendoza 2003. A thoroughly modern style cab, typical berry flavours with moderate tannins, a medium - full bodied wine. The verdict: Good. Value: fair at $22. I finished the wine portion of the evening off with a bottle from the "young winemaker of the year" in Australia, Ben Glaetzer's Heartland Shiraz, Limestone Coast, 2004. Well, quite the contrast from the preceding wines. This one was pure blueberry fruit, tasted like drinking concentrated blueberry essence. No vanilla tannins to speak of. Very plush and hedonistic, but not everybodies cup of tea. Mind you, Lou called it "too strong for him" as he filled his glass up with the last of the bottle. hmmmm. The verdict: interesting enough to get a "Good", but drink it as a sipper or with dessert. Value: fair at $20.

Cheers!

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