A hastily arranged Friday night tasting at a friends house was taken to a higher level than expected with the opening of a newly released 1996 Krug.

2006 Bellarmine “Auslese” Riesling
Lemon, honey, spice and a whiff of kerosene on the nose. A lovely sweetness to the palate with good focussed acidity. Medium length. I would drink over the next couple of years.

1996 Krug Champagne
A multi-layered nose with cinnamon, vanilla, cloves, ginger, apple, honey and fresh floral aromas – every exciting sniff of the glass revealing something new. Incredible intensity of flavour on the palate with remarkable acidity and balance. Extraordinary persistence and length, leaving its mark on both your palate and mind with each sip. Breathtaking even now at such a youthful age, I am certain it will be a legend with time.

2005 De Bortoli “Reserve” Chardonnay
Mealy with straw and some lees style aromas. Some rich flavour to the palate with good texture and nice balance between the richness of the fruit and elegant minerality.

1998 Domaine Bart Chambertin “Clos de Beze” Grand Cru:
A powerful nose of cherry, stalks, violets and earth and game character. The palate is approachable with fine tannins and chalky acidity. Medium length and reasonably interesting.

1988 Jaboulet “La Chapelle”

1991 Petaluma “Coonawarra” Red
Pine needles, tobacco, mint and ash form a not very appealing nose. The palate is hollow, lacking depth, body and structure. Very disappointing.

1990 Yalumba “The Reserve” Shiraz Cabernet
Blackberry, cassis, tobacco, vanilla and some leather rounding out the mostly primary aromas. Seamless medium bodied palate, no hard edges or any elements out of balance. Very fine tannin and excellent structure. A delightful wine with plenty of years left to develop.

1998 Peppertree “Reserve” Merlot
Raspberry, blueberry and plummy aromas. Palate has strong acid but other elements seem to be lacking. Didn’t really enjoy this wine based on this bottle. I’ve had the “Grand Reserve” Merlot from this producer and vintage before and thought it was great.

2005 Chateau Pato “D.J.P” Shiraz
“Fresh rubber hoses” was the quote from Danny and that summed it up pretty well. A little bit of mulberry and blackberry with time but the faulty rubber did not lift. Palate has some good spice and savoury character but there is also a kick of alcohol on the back palate. A shame as I had heard good things about this wine and producer.

2005 Meerea Park Terracotta Shiraz Viognier
Floral, briar, blackcurrant, leather and a citrus peel and apricot lift that gives away the presence of Viognier. The palate is fresh and vibrant with the bright fruit flavour a highlight. Slippery texture and with good length. A very “pretty” wine that I really enjoyed.

2001 Kracher Trockenbeerenauslese #8
Lots of aromas reminiscent of dessert on the nose with coconut, honey, oats, brown sugar and cookie dough. Intense, voluptuous sweetness that I personally found delicious but may be a bit too over the top for others. The deep sweetness did seem to be the sole focal point of the palate and I would have liked a little bit more texture and structure to be able to rate this higher.

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