This is still a work in progress as I upload tasting notes and wine labels from as far as 1999... Check back once in a while to get the updates.

December 24, 2001

Dom and Harlan

Dinner at Pastoral in Seiyo Ginza in Tokyo.

1983 Moët et Chandon Cuvée Dom Pérignon - it was surprisingly young and crisp. Very mature and full-bodied, with loads of oak. High in acidity and not as smooth and mature as I expected. Not bad. Have to try it again.

1990 Harlan Estate - this was the first release for Harlan and now it's been 11 years. I have to say it was a little disappointing to me. The tannins are now soft and round, but the fruit wasn't really there. There was some grilled meat, a little mineral. Finish kinda short.

December 17, 2001

MNSC dinner - 1991s

MNSC dinner at Brasserie on the Eighth. Theme was 1991 around the world.

1991 Latour - I had long heard from a friend that this was a great wine, and was eager to see it for myself. It was definitely good, showing very beautifully. Nice bouquet with red fruits, pain grillé, smoke. Nice and smooth with round tannins. Delicious.

1991 Robert Mondavi Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve - this was also a beautiful wine. Typically Californian, lots of sweet black cherries. Yummy, nice comparison with the Latour.

1991 Penfolds Grange - wow! This wine packed a real punch, as usual. A real powerful nose. Very classic Grange. The nose stayed strong throughout the night. This was my favorite of the night.

1991 Chapoutier Ermitage Le Pavillon - this was a completely different style of wine. This was elegant, finesse, smooth. However for the second time in a row - last time was in Tokyo - I was disappointed in the wine. I felt the nose was too weak, that it wasn't open enough. Others liked it fine enough though. Most felt it was the best bottle of the night.

1991 DRC Richebourg - by all accounts this was a disappointment, including me who's had 2 previous bottles. This may be due to the fact that the Ox lugged it back from Taipei the night before, and it didn't have enough time to rest.

December 15, 2001

Bahans and Gary Farrell

Dinner at M Kitchens.

1995 Gary Farrell Pinot Noir Olivet Lane Vineyard - this was a bit disappointing in the beginning, since the body was too diluted. However the nose was developing well over time, with lots of fruit, mint, very nice and elegant like a great Burgundy. However the body is still a little light, more like a finesse wine.

Bought from St. Helena Wine Shop for USD 95.

1985 Bahans Haut-Brion - this was double-decanted at home. Better than the last bottle I had. Lots of cigar, smoked meats, game meat around a core of red fruits. Pretty nice. Smooth texture. Also sweet grass in the nose.

Bought from Eslite for TWD 2,500.

December 14, 2001

1998 Napanook

Dinner at Onion Bistro.

1998 Dominus Napanook - very young and tannins are very apparent. Sweet fruit is apparent although acidity a bit higher than expected. Nose also has stewed prunes. Needs a few more years.

December 13, 2001

1994 Angelus

Dinner at Da Domenico.

1994 Angelus - it was very typical Bordeaux with lots of smoke, minerals. Red fruits showed but not as well as expected. Still a bit young and needs more time to really blossom.

Bought from Oaks for SGD 169.

December 8, 2001

95 Vieux Télégraphe

Dinner at Daluca.

1995 Vieux Télégraphe La Crau - pretty good. Good concentration, enough power. Good mid- and after palate. Very enjoyable.

December 5, 2001

French and Aussie

Dinner at a friend's home.

Started with a Piper-Heidsieck Champagne.

1993 Trimbach Gewürztraminer Cuvée des Seigneurs de Ribeaupierre - within expectations.

Bought from Berry Brothers for HKD 379.

2000 Torbreck Juveniles - pretty nice Guigal wanna-be, but clearly not complex enough to compare with the single vineyards. Lots of good fruit, though.

1996 Primo Joseph Cabernet Sauvignon Merlot - this was drinking well despite not having enough time to breathe. Lots of good, sweet red fruits and a spicy after palate.

1997 Duhart-Milon - pretty typical Bordeaux, full of earthy minerals, smoke, grilled meats.

Also had a couple of bottles of Lynch-Bages from different vintages.

November 26, 2001

MNSC dinner - Rhône

MNSC dinner at the Mandarin Grill. Theme was Rhône.

1996 Chapoutier Ermitage De L'Orée - for some unknown reason no one got enough of this wine. It was creamy, buttery, and lacking of the usual mineral nose. Unfortunately temperature wasn't quite right as it was too cold and nose was not open.

1991 Guigal La Landonne - this was a deep ruby color. Nose was bacon fat, grilled meats, without any violet or floral notes typical of viognier. Tannic and a bit hard on the palate.

1991 Guigal La Mouline - notes of lavender, floral, mint, and this was very open. The taste was "soapy" with round tannins, and a good, long finish. Thoroughly enjoyable. This was much better than my last bottle a year ago.

Bought from Vinum for SGD 541.

1991 Guigal La Turque - the nose also showed lavender but was less open. It was also very good and probably my favorite of the night, just as good as I remember from 2½ years ago.

Bought from Vinum for SGD 541.

1972 Jaboulet La Chapelle - the edges have turned amber and fading. The nose was pain grillé and gamey, grilled meats. Smooth, silky tannins but the finish was a bit short.

1996 Chapoutier Hermitage Vin de Paille, en demi-bouteille - bouquet was full of sugar cane, sweet corn, and beet sugar, along with toasty oak. It was only medium sweet but still very nice.

Bought from Berry Brothers for GBP 55.

November 25, 2001

91 La Chapelle

Dinner at Brown.

1991 Jaboulet La Chapelle - this was not bad. Round tannins. Very drinkable now.

November 24, 2001

Long-Depaquit Vaillons

Drinking at home.

1996 Long-Depaquit Chablis 1er Cru Les Vaillons - pretty typical chardonnay, with citrus and minerals in the nose.

Bought from Tatung Atherton for TWD 900.

November 21, 2001

1996 Moss Wood

Drinking at dinner.

1996 Moss Wood Cabernet Sauvignon - pretty disappointing. Too acidic and a bit tannic still.

Bought from Ponti for HKD 431.

November 20, 2001

96 d'Arenberg The Noble

Drinking at home.

1996 d'Arenberg Riesling The Noble, from half-bottle - pretty standard nose and palate. Enjoyable as usual.

November 19, 2001

Torbreck Juveniles

Drinking at home.

2000 Torbreck Juveniles - Whoa! This was pretty good, very much like a poor man's Guigal Côte-Rôtie, with all the same nose and especially the violet/lavender from the viognier. Very good once opened up. Have to get more of this stuff.

November 16, 2001

89 Ygay

Dinner at M Kitchens.

1989 Marques de Murrieta Castillo Ygay Gran Reserva Especial - very, very good stuff! Nose was incredible, with sweet grass, red fruits... but palate was a bit acidic, especially after 2½ hours. Nose also had stewed fruits and cardboard, but the cardboard faded after a while.

Bought from Ponti for HKD 289.

November 8, 2001

Grande Dame and La Turque

Dinner at Chef's Table at Gaddi's.

1990 Veuve Clicquot Ponsardin La Grande Dame - mmm... very smooth. Toasty oak. Good stuff.

1989 Guigal La Turque - very beautiful wine indeed. Full of cassis, grilled meats, smooth, round tannins. Nose of violet.

Bought for SGD 520 from Vinum.

November 7, 2001

85 Lafleur

Drinking at home.

1985 Lafleur, en demi-bouteille - beautiful! Typical Bordeaux with nose of smoke, minerals, earth on top of black cherries, cassis. Nice and sweet. Smooth texture. Yum.

Bought from Vinum for SGD 350.

November 6, 2001

98 Leeuwin Chard

Dinner at Brasserie on the Eighth.

1998 Leeuwin Estate Chardonnay Art Series - very nice and delicious.

Bought from Remy for HKD 340.

November 5, 2001

MNSC dinner - Aussies

MNSC dinner. Theme was Parker's Aussie favorites.

1997 Greenock Creek Seven Acre Shiraz - this was pretty good and fruity.

1999 Rusden Zinfandel Lodestone - this was the only Aussie zin as far as we know, and it was very good! Very jammy and sweet, with caramel and toffee nose. Wow! Very interested. I think everyone was pleasantly surprised.

1994 Clarendon Hills Astralis - this was a bit closed and not as good as expected.

1995 Clarendon Hills Astralis - this was pretty good, probably the best out of the three vintages, but it was a bit tannic.

1996 Clarendon Hills Astralis - this also outperformed the '94.

Bought from Oaks for SGD 168.

October 28, 2001

1995 Vieux Télégraphe

Drinks at El Cid.

1995 Vieux Télégraphe Le Crau - pretty good, but a bit on the acidic side for friends.

Bought from Apex for HKD 320.

October 26, 2001

Dinner in Taipei.

1996 Etude Pinot Noir Carneros

1995 Chateau de Fesles Bonnezeaux Les Deux Allées, en jennie -

1995 Zind Humbrecht Pinot Gris Clos Jebsal Sélection des Grains Nobles, en demi-bouteille -

October 24, 2001

1940 Latour

Dinner at Marco Polo in Taipei.

1940 Latour - not bad at all! Of course our expectations were very low, but there was still core of fruit in the nose. A bit acidic but doesn't taste like it's over the hill. Wow!

September 26, 2001

September 24, 2001

MNSC dinner - world cult wines

MNSC dinner at Teca. Theme was cult wines of the world. Lord Rayas joining for the first time.

1986 Gruaud Larose - very nice! Classic St.-Julien. Smooth and velvety, with good fruit core of sweet berries as well as leather. Sweet on the palate, too.

1996 David Abreu - nose of caramel and toffee.

1988 Guigal La Landonne - very strong nose of game meats, with "horse sweat" notes.

2000 Andreas - nose of coconut, caramel, toffee, and cotton candy. Curiously spicy mid- and after palate.

1994 Artadi Viña El Pison - high acidity on the palate. Nose of lime powder?

1997 Gaja Barbaresco - nose smelled like cherry-flavored cough syrup and caramel. Tannic and high acidity on the palate.

September 19, 2001

1995 Reynella

Drinking at home.

1995 Chateau Reynella Cabernet Sauvignon Basket Pressed - it was alright. Nothing really special. Disappointing after a friend's recommendation.

Bought from Ponti for HKD 119.
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