Tuesday, 11 June 2013

Wine bar Libero: Second anniversary blowout. Part one.

Sometimes an extravagant event comes around that one really can't miss. Such an event was the second birthday of my good friend Shohei Juge's wonderful Kyoto wine bar, Libero. The guests had been pouring over the offerings from local wine stores for weeks in advance in order to impress the other guests with interesting bottles. There were certainly some expensive stuff on display and here I give a few impressions.

The sparkling on the left is Michel Gonet's 1998 Blanc de Blanc Millesime. I hadn't heard anything about this wine before it's arrival in front of me last saturday. A rich toffee colour, the mousse subsided quickly as it was placed in my hand. A quick cheers and this was half dispatched in double quick time. The second gulp, once the first spring of effervescence had subsided, revealed a little cork taint that simply couldn't be covered up by the nutty, peely, rindy richness of the palate. A shame. This wine had length. And damp cardboard.

Yellow wax cap? Domaines Raveneau's Chablis 1er Cru Montee Tonnerre 2006. Excellent and my white of the night. Everything you could want from a Chablis plus length! To be honest it's been a while since I've had Chablis I usually source my white burgundy from other places. This rolled back the years with simple, sweetly singing green fruit with hints of steel and flint. There's not much more you can say about the palate of this wine. There's also not a lot more that needs to be said. A restrained nose? Well that would be nit-picking.

The other end of the spectrum now with a huge, limey, oaky blockbuster. Kongsgaard's The Judge Chardonnay. This is one chardonnay that actually looks a little green in the glass. Chartreuse? Let's hope not! If you like lime cordial you'll love this! The power of this wine cannot be underestimated and the length is impressive as well. Looking for secondary flavours proved to be an uphill struggle as wave upon wave of citrus coated my mouth. Changing tack seemed to be an appropriate course of action for tasting this. Simply reveling in the weight and resinous texture of this titan proved to be enjoyable enough for me to have a thoroughly good time. Blowed if I can remember the vintage...

I hope to be back soon with part two, the reds!

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