Oeno-File, the Wine & Gastronomy Column

by Frank Ward

Archive for the ‘Mature wines’ Category

Tasting 13 mature wines from Domaine de la Romanée Conti

Posted by Frank Ward on May 24, 2014

AvatarMay 2014. In vinous terms, the commune of Vosne-Romanée has often been described as the jewel in Burgundy’s crown. In particular, the wines from Domaine de la Romanée Conti (DRC), based in that commune, are possibly the most sought-after reds in the entire world. They are also astronomically expensive. This means that scarcely anybody who is not extremely wealthy ever gets a chance to taste them. Or even to sniff the cork. And that’s just the young vintages.

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Tasting le Pin for Two Pins!

Posted by Frank Ward on March 5, 2014

AvatarMarch 2014. Together with Andrew Jefford, well-known wine writer, I am poised to taste two vintages of Château Le Pin, a Pomerol that, since its creation in the early 1980s, has achieved what’s called cult status. Collectors have shown themselves willing to pay several thousand pounds for a single bottle, especially for the 1982. The 1982 was, in fact, the very first vintage of this rare wine, made from a plot measuring a mere one-third of a hectare. The most amazing of all, the vines – mostly Merlot – in that first vintage were only four years old [….]

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Dinner With Friends

Posted by Frank Ward on February 7, 2014

AvatarFebruary 2014. We are three couples who meet regularly to eat dinner together and taste wines, each calculated to match the various dishes we try. The evenings seldom finish without our having tried at least eight or nine wines, all of them of distinction, even the few that prove to be over the top!. All are tasted blind. On blind tastings, a French wine producer once said to me: “la dégustation à l’aveugle est un exercice en l’humilité.” I made him chuckle by replying: “”Yes, and sometimes an exercise in humiliation!”.

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Tasting le Pin 1982 and 1998 with Andrew Jefford

Posted by Frank Ward on January 25, 2014

Jefford-Le-PinAndrew Jefford and Frank Ward have just tasted two great vintages of a Pomerol that’s achieved cult status : Château Le Pin.

As a foretaste of Andrew’s main article in the April “Decanter”, here’s his post in their online issue : Jefford on Monday : Giffen, Veblen – and Wine.

Andrew Jefford & Frank Ward, Le Pin tasting at Forres House.

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PRE-PHYLLOXERA PUZZLE : An 1870 Overture

Posted by Frank Ward on June 10, 2013

June 2013. It was one of the biggest challenges I’ve ever faced at a blind tasting. True, I’d been given one piece of vital information just before sampling the wine, namely the vintage: 1870. A wine that was 143 years’ old. But that wasn’t much help. I’d never sampled a wine of quite that age before and didn’t really know what to look for. In addition, no clue had been given as to the region, or even country of origin (though one could be pretty sure it was French, our host being a great fan of that ucontry’s wines). fresh tasting notes on fabled wines, 3 great vintages of musigny vieilles vignes

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Eating Out & Eating In

Posted by Frank Ward on September 18, 2012

Eating In & Eating Out. In which I describe some recent meals and vinous rarities and also have pleasure in publishing tasting notes on some 19th-century wines, written by David Matthews, the composer. One of Britain’s leading composers, David Matthews, has a house in Deal in southeast Kent (where I happen to live) and often comes down to the coast to work on his various compositions. In the course of his career he’s written seven symphonies, 12 string quartets, and all manner of other works, including a piece specially commissioned to mark the 90th birthday of the late Queen Mother. 

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